Why LinkedIn kicked me out because of my Byju’s posts

I HAVE BEEN ACTIVE ON LINKEDIN FOR 10 YEARS
I have over 180000 followers, which means that people find value in what I say. I speak my mind – and while I don’t have a monopoly on the truth, I am frank and honest, and am happy to call a spade a spade !

WHY IS E-LEARNING IMPORTANT NOW ?
COVID has changed our world, and because educating our children is so , the role of E-Learning is going to become even more significant.

WHY DID I TALK ABOUT BYJU?
When I learned that Byju’s – the world’s most highly valued education startup – was mis-selling its app to parents by using pressure tactics, and blaming and shaming parents into buying it, I spoke up against these malpractices. I was hopeful that Byju would respond to this feedback and fix their broken processes . They had a chance to engage on LinkedIn and show the world how they had improved.

WHAT HAD BYJU BEEN DOING WHICH WAS WRONG?
They taught their sales-people to mis-sell by blaming and shaming parents, who are vulnerable. They exploited their ignorance by bad-mouthing schools and teachers, and warning them that their kids would be left behind in the competition if they did not buy the Byju’s apps. They locked them into multi-year subscriptions by offering discounts for payments made using EMIs through a third-party financer, and once parents had signed these contracts, they were stuck and could not cancel.

WHAT DID BYJU DO TO ME?
They complained to LinkedIn, claiming my posts defamatory – even though they knew the posts were completely true , and in turn LinkedIn permanently deleted my account, without giving me a chance to be heard, or to appeal !

WHY AM I CONCERNED ABOUT E-LEARNING?
As a senior citizen , I am concerned about India’s future, and our future is in our children’s hands ! eLearning is becoming mainstream, but if we don’t fix the malpractices these EduTech startups are employing just to push their sales and make money , the problem will become uncontrollable. It will damage many children in India because they have so much money to spend on advertising and selling !

WHAT WAS MY MISTAKE?
I acted as a responsible citizen. I spoke the truth, in the hope that Byju would use this opportunity to get their act together. And the result was that 10 years of my hard work and the 180000 followers which I had built up, one at a time, have been taken away from me ! Not only have I lost the decade of hard work I put into generating original content on LinkedIn, I have I lost my connections with all of you, who helped me to learn so much by engaging in debate with me.

WILL YOU HELP ME ?
Please help me to get back my voice ! Do you believe their action in deleting my account without hearing my side is unfair, arbitrary , unjustified and opaque? If so, please speak up ! Show your support on social media please. Today they are targeting me – it may be your turn tomorrow !

WHY SHOULD YOU CARE ?
Should we keep quiet when a US MNC punishes me for speaking up for the good of our children of India ? If we don’t speak up for our children, then who will ?

Spread the love

42 thoughts

  1. In Kerala cases came against Byjus for threatening parents to pay money at this Covid period. So when police started registering cases, owner Byju who is from Chief Minister’s caste and place went to the DGP Behra and offered Byjus app free for all children of Kerala Police. It comes to crores and the Police was silenced. Then he gave full page advt.in Kerala dailies front page making them silent. Only online channels write against his marketing tactics.

      1. I have been a direct victim of Byjus where the sales staff called me up to say my child was a below average student because she dcored below 50% in one test conducted for her batch in NPS, Bangalore. Short of calling Byju an asshole for such selling techniques being used, I published in Facebook this entire experience. After the same someone called me from their office and apologized but seems like their sales techniques remain the same.

        My child may not be brilliant or even average, but is Byjus qualified to decide in one test (who knows how they have corrected or what rigging they have done in the test process to make it seem so) a child’s level of knowledge or learning capability?

        What if that day my child was not keeping well… or was in a sad mood or just under the weather?

  2. Dr Malpani
    I have been reading several of your posts on Byju’s in Linkedin although I never commented on them. IMO, it came to a situation where your posts almost looked like rants. Posting a couple of posts, perhaps even 3-5 on a given issue is fine, but when that goes on for several posts, the nature of the message automatically changes.
    While I respect you for being a very successful person, I do not think vilification of a company/person no matter how much you dislike them is not fair, beyond a point. I guess with your posts, you reached that point for someone.

      1. How is telling the truth considered to be defamation ? And they can always take me to court, right ? The fact that they choose not to says a lot, right ?

        1. Sir, where are the so called investors of Byju. where is their brand ambassador. i often see them on talk shows and panels and lauding how byju has transformed indian education system!!! i recently watched that overacting lady interviewer from yourstory going gaga about byju!! it looks like these are real culprits that have fueled byju to act the way they are these days. in the last 10 yrs there havent been any overachieving prodigies from the byju stable as projected.

        2. Dr Malpani,
          I think you have a very interesting point to make – I am disappointed that in this era internet can attempt to wipe your speech. I was disappointed to see your post and that video wiped from internet. It takes a brave and driven person to ask important questions to things that negatively effect lot of us.

          Why I think your post and video needs to come back?
          Pandemic of biology can be seen easily and the world is freaking out, but the the pandemic of the brain and society level psychological disorder that we are facing is not even talked about.

          I am not worried about byju’s practices (yes they are evil but capitalism will correct it) , Byju is an example only.
          I am worried about the fact that few of those Biz Dev kids will idealize what the manager was doing and will become the manager who is blindfolded to continue inhuman BD practice in return of “a fair compensation” (I am getting paid heavy to suck the shit – so shouldn’t complain)

          The foreign money that comes to india has a simple equation , let’s buy users , let’s buy cheap lead generating humans (because india has population, English speakers, and no China is no longer an option :))

          How will this shape the future of everything in india?

          In old school industrial revolution the stress of our labour, the blood and sweat was seen through eyes so labour abuse could be dealt with, how are we going to do this in psychological stress that young workforce is facing and will face when the flood gates are open – come buy us for what ever the cost – pay money we will do all shitty things .

          Please somehow get that video out there to stay on internet.

          1. Agreed, and it’s because it breaks my heart to see how badly young managers are treated at these companies that I spoke up ! I guess this is why I got shut down !

        3. I think you should use your own platform for such things. The whole world business runs on this kind of a thing, so to bring it out is a brave thing, but risking your effort for that is not worth. So it’s always better to keep these things separate and link it from LinkedIn. If your site picks up , linkedin would also be worried to take any undue action. You might still have a legal option to regain back your efforts.

    1. What’s the point of posting if it doesn’t result in corrective action ? If they had responded intelligently, it would never have come to this ! They could have taken the moral high ground and made my complaints irrelevant ! The fact that they chose to complain to Linked and block me says a lot about them and their intent !

  3. Dr.Malpani you will be rewarded because the truth sets us free not the others. I have been kicked off twice on linked in – once because bluelivesmatter ganged up on me for speaking truth about police and a canine officer harassed me on the platform but I got kicked off. It’s actually a blessing, dont ever use social media on a mobile phone only on desktop.
    Very truly ❣️ yours, Andi Boggs

  4. Hello sir,

    I was not a follower of yours and but I read your posts frequently whenever they appeared in my feed. I am extremely anguished to see this action against you by LinkedIn. It’s not justified and it seems that there is precedence to this arbitrariness. At a time when social media platforms are struggling to balance free speech and fake news, this example shows us what ought not to be done.

    As to the other comments saying “too much negativity and sustained defamation campaign”, I think truth is a valid defence against defamation even in there courts.

    I hope this gets resolved in your favour and thanks for fighting it out!

  5. Annirudha, I only just found out that you had been banned. I’ve already started posting on the topic to have your ban rescinded.

    https://www.linkedin.com/posts/that-startup-guy_posts-criticizing-byjus-leads-to-permanent-activity-6692948584427601920-VsmD

    Stay strong; I believe that even if they’ve permanently deleted you, that you have the right to speak up, speak out & speak the truth.

    I’ll continue to follow your comments here. Stay well #uncancelMalpani

    Daniel Mumby “That Startup Guy”
    Australia.

  6. Your concerns are valid and it is also true that byju’s needs to take a corrective action.i am surprised to see celeberity such as shahrukhkhan endorses byju’s without knowing the true picture behind the scene.please continue to raise flags.

    Best Regards

  7. This is one of the reasons why I advice everyone to write on their own sites other than on a social network. Use social networks for promotion/distribution only.

    You should’ve used email marketing to interact with your 180000 followers.

  8. Anyone would rant if such a conglomerate continues its unethical practices by demoralizing children and their parents on such a sensitive subject….and Linkedin using such strong arm tactics makes it very obvious that they are not concerned about being an unbiased and honest platform but purely motivated by the advertisement money it can generate. Of course it is a business organization but it is also into morally responsible unless morality is now old fashioned.

  9. Covid is a scam. I support Dr.Malpanis views. Please see how things are unfolding. hundreds of doctors in the US and now in India are opening up on this matter on how influenze like illness has been turned into a pandemic ,setting us all back by 3-4 yrs in time of progress. please listen to Dr.BM Hegde or Dr.Biswaroop Roy

  10. Dr Malpani,
    Immense respect for you to take a stand. Though the points you were debating in the posts were applaudable, it might not have been the best way to put forward your thoughts.
    Anyway, now please don’t get disheartened and lose sight of the bigger picture. Ideal way forward might be to file a PIL or court case against Byju’s (and not against linkedin) for their malpractices and parent’s mental harrassment. People already are lining up to share their experiences and am sure many more would come forward once they see a favourable outcome.
    Please don’t expect community support, buzz around social media to take this to a conclusive end.
    You’ll get your reputation and maybe linkedin account back once you win.
    Best wishes for you!

  11. Sir, you should take a strict action them. They have led your account deleted through Linkedin do something in case you want others to support you am there. Raise your voice on other social media.

  12. I had been wondering where you were since your posts were not to be seen on LinkedIn, then I tried searching and couldn’t find, then I searched for Malpani Ventures and on of the comments got your website link, now I know the reason.
    Nevertheless, as long as you have a platform its good I think, will visit here to read your posts..

  13. On Byjus, I came to know about their sales tactics via your posts and the comments on your posts. Its ridiculous, especially if they are arranging for loans through finances to pay the tuition fees.

    As for LinkedIn, people who liked to read your posts will read them wherever you post, I’ll keep coming to your webiste.

    Thank You for all your insights so far Sir.. 🙂

  14. Dr Malpani,

    I typically don’t agree to a lot of your posts but that does not mean I should be able to get you banned from Linkedin. Linkedin has frankly done something grossly wrong.

    –kkg

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *