Today we are announcing some significant changes to our Developer Program. Over the past several years, we’ve seen some exciting applications from our developer community. While many delivered value back to our members and LinkedIn, not all have.
As such, we’ve taken steps to refocus the Developer Program from primarily open APIs to partnership integrations that we believe provide the most value to our members, developers and business.
The net result of the changes is that LinkedIn have decided to curtail access to the open, free, API, and to replace that with access via a formal Partner Program (presumably paid, but I haven't looked into this any further). This is entirely their prerogative, and probably makes commercial sense - we have no complaints.
That said, we do currently use LinkedIn as our preferred (and for some time, only) authentication mechanism for freelancers joining the YJ network. It's not clear whether the API changes restrict this, as they focus on the use of the profile data, and not authentication, but we're taking the conservative route, and assuming that, come 12-May-2015, we will no longer be able to support this feature.
Fortunately, we've already kicked off a major re-working of the on-boarding experience, so this news, whilst unwelcome, could not have come at a better time in the product cycle. Our product team is working towards a new registration process, which will no longer use an external authentication provider - just good old email / password.
Until then, the existing LinkedIn integrations - authentication and profile API - will continue to function. The new registration process should be live well before the May 12 cut-off, so we're planning for a smooth transition.