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You should turn off PAV….now.
What’s PAV?
‘People Also Viewed’, it’s a list of 10 people LinkedIn shows each and every browser who comes to your Profile.
I can’t see it.
Only your browsers can see it.
Why can’t I see it?
Who knows? Maybe because if you could see it, you’ll turn it off?
I didn’t know I could turn it off.
Yeah, most people don’t know you can turn it off.
So how do I turn it off?
Go to ‘Account & Settings’ > Privacy & Settings, click ‘manage’, put your password in at the annoying login, click on ‘Show/hide “Viewers of this profile also viewed” box’ and de-select ‘Display “Viewers of this profile also viewed” box on my Profile page’.
Why is it called ‘Viewers of this profile also viewed’ and not ‘People Also Viewed’?
To confuse you some more. I don’t know, sometimes LinkedIn just likes to mess with you.

Though the above conversation is fictional, I’ve had real life variations of it many times. I tell my clients to turn off PAV. Why? Because (a) you can’t see it but your browsers can (b) you have no control over the information shown and (c) do you really need a third reason?

PAV is mysterious and weird. Is it compiled by people you view the most, or by people who view you? Do colleagues automatically appear? Does it change? Can it be gamed?

Let’s do a search on the LinkedIn Help Center:
PAV H Center

Ok, so LinkedIn are telling us that it is made up of profiles that “some others” have looked at, we don’t know who those others are and it does not ‘reveal’ your or anyone else’s browsing history. So if it has nothing to do with our profile, then why the heck is it even there? “You may see it on your own profile”? What? Where? That’s clearly incorrect. One of my goals on LinkedIn is to increase my visibility – but I’d like to do that in a way that I control and without it being hidden from me.

Here’s what you do. Ask a friend to look at your profile. Ask them to send you a screenshot of your PAV. If your PAV is comprised of superstars, celebs and impressive people, don’t change a thing. If on the other hand your PAV is full of competitors, odd choices, people you may not want to be associated with or don’t know, turn that sucker off.  I personally prefer to have people who have landed on my LinkedIn page looking at and focused entirely on me for the longest time, without any distractions or bounce opportunity. I’m selfish that way.
PAV Mash

And if your PAV is populated with attractive, leggy, buxom women with exotic headlines like “Adult Entertainer”, “Performer”, “Model”. You’ve experienced what countless other women on LinkedIn have experienced: PAV stalker phenomenon. This is what happens to PAV when bored, frisky males (or females) start hopping from one attractive photo to another via PAV. And you thought LinkedIn was a professional networking site.

I recently told a woman she ought to turn it off and sent her a screenshot of her PAV (mostly cleavage shots and leggy sex kittens). She lambasted me and accused me of trying to sell my consulting services. You can’t help some people. The kicker? She is a social media consultant with a large team. So, not only was she clueless about the very thing she professed to be an expert at but evidently not one person on her team, or a client, had thought to tell her about her embarrassing, credibility sapping, business killing profile. Of course she turned her PAV off the day after I emailed her. You are welcome.

I CAN HELP YOU WITH LINKEDIN
If you liked this article, you’ll love my LinkedIn coaching and advice. I can write your Summary, improve your entire Profile and help to make LinkedIn work for you. Contact me now: linkedinsights@gmail.com / 773.469.6600 to get started.

By Andy Foote