I've got a little over 1000 LinkedIn contacts. A lot of people would claim I have a network. A lot of people would wrong. The vast majority of the contacts are random people I chatted with once for 5 minutes at a conference, and have never spoken to again. Or they are random people that sent me a connection request that I accepted, back when I was a much less discriminating.
It's like claiming you have a home network for your computers when in fact none of the computers can get to the Internet, or talk to each other. You don't actually have a functional network, and I don't either. Within that 1000 is a functional network of maybe a couple to a few hundred people.
I've been thinking about a mass delete event to get my LinkedIn "network" down to people that I feel like I could actually message and expect a response. I know a lot of people would argue that all those contacts aren't doing any harm so I should just ignore them. But they also aren't doing any good, and they kind of get in the way.
I'm not playing the collect all the contacts game. In fact, I have a suspicion that my network being more exclusive would make it slightly more valuable to me. Remember, this is LinkedIn we are talking about. So this is like having a penny and realizing it is a wheat penny and thus it's worth 1.2 cents.
Or maybe I should just ignore LinkedIn altogether. As far as I can tell, every feature except the online resume database is a waste of time. A while back I wrote about 50 maybe being the number of close personal contacts you can really deal with. I'm thinking the number of business contacts that constitute a functional network is also kind of low. Certainly lower than the 5000 or whatever that LinkedIn allow you to collect.