LinkedIn nukes contacts export option, makes you ask and wait

LinkedIn is a networking website for professionals, and as such it is expected you'll develop new contacts while using the service. Users are able to manually import existing contacts from outside the service, as well, so that they're all collected together neatly in one place. For those occasions when you need a full list of your contacts (for importing them into another service, for example), you were able to export them as a CSV or VCF file from LinkedIn and go from there. For reasons that aren't clear, LinkedIn has decided to do away with that feature.

News of the removal surfaced today as users attempted to export their connections but discovered the feature was no longer functional. Given that LinkedIn quietly removed the feature, users didn't realize it had been pulled and took to, among other places, Twitter with their questions.

LinkedIn confirmed the removal of the feature through a tweet, saying that users "can still request [a] copy of your LI data, incl 1st degree conns", a new method it has detailed on a "Help" page updated earlier today. According to that page, users now must make a request via the "Privacy & Settings" page.

From that page, one must click "Account" near the bottom, then click "Request an archive of your data", which is tucked within the "Helpful Links" region. It will take up to 72 hours for LinkedIn to assemble a download of the data, at which point the user will be sent an email to download. This includes other account data in addition to contacts.

SOURCE: Venture Beat