Karolyn Hart founded her own international business, has a well-documented and respected career and still, she can’t escape men mistaking Linkedin as a platform not to connect professionally, but as an avenue to ask her out.
“I just added the ‘Mrs’ to my name on LinkedIn. Why? If we met in person you’d notice the wedding ring and unless you were a creep you’d respect it. In the virtual space, you can’t see the wedding ring but you’ll note the prominently displayed ‘Mrs’ in front of my name and respect that (unless your name is Mr Creepy McCreepy),” the Canadian wrote on Linkedin, in a post that has since attracted nearly 1,500 likes.
“And before the statements start… yes, I fully realise that I shouldn’t have to identify myself as married in a business environment… no, I don’t feel ‘put out’ or offended that I needed to do this… Yes, I did this because of being approached on LinkedIn for dates… No, I am not offended of the inquiries they were all quite gentlemanly… Yes, I am happy to honour Mr Hart who I’ve been married to 21 years.”
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Hart says she’s “happy to have an identifier” like Mrs It can re-focus the conversation.
For 24-year-old Alyssa Hill from San Diego, adding Mrs to her own profile came with the same rationale.
“I was one of many women who was receiving vulgar, disrespectful, and just plain weird messages on LinkedIn,” she wrote on her profile on the platform.
“I, SADLY, expect this on Instagram and Facebook but I never thought this behavior would reach LinkedIn. I purposely deleted all of the messages I got to spare myself but I wish I had kept them for this article.
"I'm a Woman in Tech. I am on my way to becoming a developer. I have experienced first hand the way some men view this. They don't like it and they are very vocal. I won't blame this on the President or anyone else but the classless people who do it.
"Women in business have a hard enough time as is. We don't need men trying to pick us up for dinner, especially when it's not directly related to work."
Hill says she is relieved to see other women "fighting back" against a practice that is becoming both familiar and intolerable.
"I'm not your baby, I'm not your beautiful little thing. Im a freaking human being who has a spouse, a family, and a life."