About a year and a half ago is when I started using social media pretty heavily; mostly through my twitter accounts and this blog but also with Pinterest, Tumblr, and many others. I forgot when I learned about @klout but once I did it was fun seeing my score go up and down. The purpose of Klout is to find out your online influence; they have what they call their secret algorithms that show how influential you are in social media. They have never given specifics on what they actually look at and have been known to drop people’s scores if they call them out on it.
Well, here I am, calling you out @Klout; I think the way you calculate ‘influence’ is completely inaccurate. After watching my score jump around from 60 to 61 to 60 to 59, for no particular reason, I decided to do some research. What I found was a bunch of articles and blog postings about klout scores. What klout does is calculates how often you interact with people who have higher klout scores than you do. Thats what raises your score. What lowers your score is having interactions with people who have lower scores. This to me does not show influence, it shows more of a high school popularity mentality. Influence should be calculated by how you actually influence all people not just higher scored people. If you look at the charts that show your scores klout even says things like “you are doing well today 4 people with a klout score higher than yours retweeted you.”
This would be a very easy game to play and win at; many people do it, I read about many examples of people only talking to people with a higher score and they were able to have their own klout score go up significantly. I will give kudos to @Klout, they certainly have made a name for themselves and they have made themselves the standard bearer of online influence. Even in job interviews people have asked me how I got such a high score of 60? The way klout has branded itself and been taken seriously in this quickly changing environment of social media is quite impressive.
But since the methodology isnt accurate I have very publicly stopped using klout and have disconnected all of my networks from it. I am on twitter and use this blog to express my opinions, inform others of current events, politics, unemployment etc. I like talking to people and hearing differing, and agreeing, points of view. I am not going to look up someone’s score before responding to someone. I have a large following on twitter and many people ask my opinion on things or slam my opinion on things, I like to communicate with people. Since I do have a large following many times people have asked me to tweet out a message for them, to help them find a job; to help raise money for a sick and dying parent; to promote a young persons new ebook. If people are legit I am more than happy to help in any way I can, especially if its just retweeting something. Doing things like this have made my klout score lower than it should have been. Many people say they dont look at their scores but still give klout to each other.
I decided to drop klout and stop thinking about how they score me. Their methodology is incorrect so they are in fact useless. And I for one feel relieved to be klout-less.