A 77-year-old man who has become a meme after sending a young woman an enthusiastic message over LinkedIn is insisting that he does not use the platform to approach women and that he is married.
Jimmy Diggs, or Jimmy from LinkedIn as he is now known, is actually from California and told BuzzFeed News that it wasn't uncommon for him to send a voice note introduction on the career-oriented social network that has become a favorite of his.
“I like the LinkedIn platform because I get to meet like-minded people like myself," Diggs said. "I use it to expose the business that I'm promoting."
In a message to Candice Emefiele, a student from Dallas, Diggs made his presence known with an unforgettable introduction in a style reminiscent of a late-night radio host for a smooth R&B station.
He said: “Hello Candice, how are you doing? And good morning! How have you been? Hey Candice, this is me, Jimmy from LinkedIn, and the reason I was giving you this quick voice message call was to say thank you so kindly, I really appreciate that you have accepted me here on the LinkedIn platform. What we will do is learn from each other, I appreciate your kindness, Jimmy from LinkedIn.”
Emefiele told BuzzFeed News that she initially thought the message was a joke.
“The first thing that came to mind after hearing the voice note was, this cannot be real," she said.
The 22-year-old, who is currently in school while balancing part-time work and her hair business, explained that she rarely checked LinkedIn. On this particular day, she said she wasn’t in a great mood when she decided to check her account to clear her notifications.
“I was having a horrible start to my day and I was sitting in a parking lot, really just fed up with the day already, and I decided to open my LinkedIn and clear out stuff while I wait. I didn’t even know LinkedIn had a thing where you can send voice notes, so that was the first thing that caught my attention.”
The voice note feature was announced back in 2018.
“I’m not gonna lie, I thought it was a bit weird because I didn’t know Jimmy at all,” Emefiele said.
“But at the same time, it made me laugh so hard and honestly brightened up my morning and my mood. I listened to it like five times that morning and the only thing that could come to mind was ‘this actually isn’t real’ and all I could do was laugh.”
Emefiele shared a screen recording of the audio on her Twitter account, which at the time had less than 1,000 followers, so she didn’t anticipate that it would get the level of attention it has. It now has more than 4 million views and has generated thousands of responses.
“A lot of the responses I got was that it was funny and wholesome. And some of them weren’t so nice. I didn’t think Jimmy meant any harm or was trying to be ‘creepy’ by sending the voice note, and I didn’t post it to be spiteful or make fun of him,” she said.
Emefiele dismissed comments that suggested that Jimmy, who is 55 years older than her, was positioning himself to approach her romantically.
“Some people took it as he was ‘shooting his shot,’ which I didn’t think at all, and people calling it ‘creepy’ was pushing it, really. It was a little weird but it was more so funny,” said Emefiele.
Diggs also responded to people who accused him of using the platform to source potential dates.
“There was nothing special why I made the request for her [Candice] to be a contact with me on LinkedIn," he said. "I'm married and live with my wife in California and not interested in using LinkedIn to meet females.”
He added: “I don't think she thought I was hitting on her. I think she was surprised to get the voicemail.”
The pair didn’t continue their conversation, as Emefiele admits that she became overwhelmed with work and forgot to respond. She did get a message from Diggs’s granddaughter who described her grandfather as a genuine ”sweet soul” who was definitely “not flirting” with her.
“His granddaughter did reach out to me on IG and we talked and she told me he was happy to be making new connections and talking to more people and that made me really happy. I was really hoping he wasn’t offended by me posting it though. I’m glad he was happy about it.”
Diggs has seen the memes, and online attention, all of which he described as “unexpected” and “exciting.”
“Most reactions that I have seen have been positive. It has allowed me to meet more people and I will be able to grow my business with the new contacts," he said.
The moment has given Diggs some new contacts and the internet some great content.
Nothing better than coming online and finding your parent is going viral.
Someone even managed to turn into a song, low-key a bop.
We salute you, Jimmy.