The Official Klout Blog

Understanding the Klout Score Part I

November 18th, 2011 by Joe Fernandez
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This post begins a new “Understanding your Klout Score” series. Today, we review our recent changes and in the future we’ll dive more into your Score, networks, and tips on how to improve your Score.

It’s been an interesting few weeks here Klout. Now that we are finally catching our breath, I think this is a good opportunity to look back at what we’ve learned and discuss the changes we’ve made.

The way influence is signaled online is constantly changing. New networks are born and new behaviors emerge overnight. The Klout Score will continue to evolve to support this change. The Klout Score and Topics will always exist in a dynamic state of improvement.

We will be more transparent
Our biggest priority with the new scoring model was to increase transparency. We added some insights to show why your Score changed but this isn’t nearly enough. Given the passion our users have for their Klout scores, it is clear that we need to do more to help them understand why the Score has changed and what that Score means. To accomplish this, we are focusing nearly all of our efforts on projects that relate directly to the transparency of the Klout Score. The team is really fired up to share the tremendous amount of data and thought that goes into creating the Klout Score.

In the spirit of greater transparency, here are some in-depth examples to illustrate the three, primary improvements we made to the Klout algorithm on October 26th.

Greater equality of networks
In our previous Scoring model, the main driver of your Klout was a primary network (the one you’re best on) and, to be honest, your influence on secondary networks was too small a part of your Score. Now, a user who has two networks that are fairly equal in terms of participation and influence will see a greater parity in the way we score those two. Certainly, there may be more potential to be influential on a network with many millions of users like Twitter or YouTube, but we measure that influence equally wherever it occurs. That said, there is no score reward for just adding networks that you do not participate in.

Example: Consider two people who influence the same 100 people to the same extent. One person influences their network exclusively on Twitter. The other person influences two audiences of 50 equally on Twitter and Facebook. In practice, they have the same level of influence, and now they will have the same Klout Score as well.

Interactions must be taken in context
Likes, Retweets, and other interactions have always played a prominent role in the Klout algorithm. We believe these are valuable signals of influence. What we found though is that some people are extremely generous with these interactions. People should Like and Retweet to their heart’s content, but we believe that interactions need to be measured in the context of the person interacting. This was the most prominent reason why some scores dropped.

Example: Consider two users who Retweet my Tweet. User A Retweets me but she also Retweets 100 others in the same day. User B Retweets me and only me. We now consider these ratios in our algorithm and consider the singular Retweet as a greater sign of influence. Similarly, if you selectively only give out one Facebook Like a week and you choose to do so for my content, that is much more meaningful than if you Like 50 times a day.

Stability and consistency
Seeing the ebb and flow of your influence on a daily basis is helpful, but we also understand that your influence rarely makes huge jumps in short intervals of time. We considered massive spikes and steep drops as problems in the way our algorithm behaved. Our new algorithm makes the Klout Score more stable by taking a longer window of time (90 days instead of 30) into account when measuring your influence.

Example: We used to hear about “the vacation problem” where users saw a steep drop in their Klout if they took a break from social networks while they were off the grid. Now the Score will remain much more stable during short breaks from social media.

These are three of the main improvements in this algorithm change, but there are many more small improvements in this release. With this release, the average Klout Score is close to 20 and a Score of 50+ puts you in the 95th percentile. We now analyze 2.7 billion pieces of content and connections a day.

We are continually improving and solving new problems with our science team. We appreciate all your feedback and are working to help you better understand what goes into the Klout Score with this new series. Let us know what you think!

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This entry was posted on Friday, November 18th, 2011 at 9:13 am and is filed under Understanding the Klout Score. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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  • http://twitter.com/MattSTKC MattSTKC

    This is exactly what I’ve been looking for in terms of detail. Some days I’ll know I’m more active and have more interactions yet don’t see it reflected in my score. Good to know it’s a living algorithm.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you very much for going into detail on these issues. It provides a better understanding of where you are and what we can gain from your service.

  • Eric Wilborn

    Now you know.. and knowing is half the battle.

  • http://twitter.com/lizcable Liz Cable

    Thank you for explaining.  I definitely tweet more than I do anything else, so its good to see overall score reflect overall influence more closely.

  • Desiree Scales

    I never thought I’d say this, but this makes a lot of sense to me now. Nothing is more frustrating than seeing feeds in my timeline of people who retweet everyone and everything. I’m also glad about the 90 day refresh. Those who travel can attest to losing Klout because of their absence which was frustrating. This makes me feel a little better about losing my points. It will definitely help separate the wheat from the chaff. Thanks for sharing this with us. 

  • http://twitter.com/thenpb Nate P. Barker

    Now, THIS is more helpful…thanks guys. I know you don’t want people to game the system, but it’s also nice to have a peek behind the curtain to get an idea of how it’s all worked out.

  • Bellajpr

    I would like to understand how you determine what topics we are influential about. Of the 6 listed for me none of them pertain to what I use social media for.

  • http://twitter.com/running4autism Kirsten D

    I’d be interested in knowing how you determine topics of influence. I have a high level on influence on a topic that I tweeted about twice, several weeks ago. One tweet prompted a response, the other did not. On the other hand, I have a much lower level of influence on a topic I tweet about almost every day, with many tweets resulting in dialogue. Several people I know have noticed the same thing. It does not make much sense.

  • http://www.phildrysdale.com Phil Drysdale

    Thanks so much guys for all your hard work in helping us know how much of an influence we are actually having. I’d much rather a low score that is accurate which I can work on than a high score that had me kidding myself.

    Thanks for keeping us posted of how things work.

  • http://www.phildrysdale.com Phil Drysdale

    Thanks so much guys for all your hard work in helping us know how much of an influence we are actually having. I’d much rather a low score that is accurate which I can work on than a high score that had me kidding myself.

    Thanks for keeping us posted of how things work.

  • http://twitter.com/ToneMan34 Tony Dahlberg

    this was very helpful! thank you!

  • http://twitter.com/ToneMan34 Tony Dahlberg

    this was very helpful! thank you!

  • http://twitter.com/adimike55 Adrian Hickman

    This is much better info. However, I disagree with the idea that one retweet a day should be considered more influential than some multiples. I choose a retweet based on a few criteria:

    1) a good friend has commented on something that I find funny or informative and I want to share that with my followers, and possibly get them or myself more good followers

    2)Somebody I follow posts info or a link that I think my followers might find interesting. I like to make sure that I always credit the source for any info, and a retweet is the most efficient way.

    3)I find it better to retweet various sources on breaking events and news (Occupy, Penn State, elections, etc) and again want to both credit sources and give the info I pass on more legitimacy

    4) I retweet info that i find important to me personally, such a concerning my lung disease) in the hopes that my retweet shows up on the other timeline and maybe attracts good info from people not currently following me

    5) I champion my home town area (Philly and the surroundings) and by retweeting, i again may show up in other timelines and fine like minded comments.

    If you are using the retweet frequency without looking at content and potential impact, then it is not enough.

  • http://twitter.com/adimike55 Adrian Hickman

    This is much better info. However, I disagree with the idea that one retweet a day should be considered more influential than some multiples. I choose a retweet based on a few criteria:

    1) a good friend has commented on something that I find funny or informative and I want to share that with my followers, and possibly get them or myself more good followers

    2)Somebody I follow posts info or a link that I think my followers might find interesting. I like to make sure that I always credit the source for any info, and a retweet is the most efficient way.

    3)I find it better to retweet various sources on breaking events and news (Occupy, Penn State, elections, etc) and again want to both credit sources and give the info I pass on more legitimacy

    4) I retweet info that i find important to me personally, such a concerning my lung disease) in the hopes that my retweet shows up on the other timeline and maybe attracts good info from people not currently following me

    5) I champion my home town area (Philly and the surroundings) and by retweeting, i again may show up in other timelines and fine like minded comments.

    If you are using the retweet frequency without looking at content and potential impact, then it is not enough.

  • http://twitter.com/batrad Devesh Batra

    Thanks for the detailed analysis. Looks like I may not qualify for the Free Windows Phone offer, till the Nokia Phone launches next year and that may not be a bad thing

  • http://twitter.com/batrad Devesh Batra

    Thanks for the detailed analysis. Looks like I may not qualify for the Free Windows Phone offer, till the Nokia Phone launches next year and that may not be a bad thing

  • http://www.wol.ca/staff/lyons Charlie Lyons

    Thank you for this description. Definitely helpful.

  • http://www.wol.ca/staff/lyons Charlie Lyons

    Thank you for this description. Definitely helpful.

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Kirsten,

    Topics will definitely be something we’ll go into more detail about in a future post. In short, Klout generates this list by semantically analyzing the content you create and the resulting responses. Your most influential topics are not those topics you talk about the most, but those that you get the most engagement on. If one of your topics doesn’t feel right to you you can remove it in your own topics tab. Hope that helps!

  • Deborah Napoleon

    I wish I understood topics of influence  – I mean, mine is water?  What is that from?  I write about home staging, design, jewelry and small business.  I blog about that and my family.  Where does any of that equal water?

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Bellajpr, see our above response to Kristen on how we determine influential topics. 

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Deborah,

    Topics will definitely be something we’ll go into more detail about in a future post. In short, Klout generates this list by semantically analyzing the content you create and the resulting responses. Your most influential topics are not those topics you talk about the most, but those that you get the most engagement on. If one of your topics doesn’t feel right to you you can remove it in your own topics tab. Hope that helps!

  • http://twitter.com/LindaVeeSado Linda Vee Sado

     

       Like to know how football got into my Influential topics LOL I hate it and never talk about it
     

  • Anonymous

    Really Klout?  You are penalizing people for sharing and re-tweeting and interacting? That seems bass ackwards to me. It goes against what Facebook, Twitter and other social media are about at the core!

    My score just jumped considerably yesterday, so I guess that correction needs to be massaged!

  • http://www.gorankem.com adamwexler

    on the opposite end of the vacation dip is the birthday bump…

  • http://twitter.com/Route53 Erik Hom

    Interesting.  And definitely more insightful.  Glad that Klout acknowledges they weren’t as transparent as they could have been.  Maybe transparent wasn’t the right word.    I think the 90 day example explains a lot, although a big spiking event like speaking at a conference or 15 minutes of fame 90 days ago will correspond to a big change as well (15 minutes of fame is more frequent and sometimes more fleeting online than in the real world).  it is interesting still that most people I talk to are still seeing small downward trends in their scores (me included) maybe because the score is still adjusting until we get to that 90 day steady state??

    A couple questions still exist at least for me:
    1.  So you say you are not rewarded for adding new channels you dabble in.  Are you penalized for them?  For example, if I try Google + but decide I don’t like it, will my score go down if I keep it linked to Klout?  Will score change if it is a tertiary network for me?

    2.  What is with the influencers?  Not a single person that I interact with is showing up as someone I influence.  Who are these people?

    3. Influencer topics.  I know the ability to add topics will come soon, but how long does it currently take for a topic to become a topic?  For example I’ve tweeted many times about the San Francisco Giants, but for some reason only get called an influencer of the New York Giants and the Arizona Diamondbacks?  What’s up with that?

    4. Klout Style. If I have a Klout score of 52 (and dropping), that puts me in the top 95%.  So why would Klout establish me as a Dabbler (someone who doesn’t quite get social media) while someone I know who has a 17 is considered more of a conversationalist (a style that seems to have more cache).  Is this area broken?

  • http://twitter.com/Plain_ol_T Just plain ol’ T

    Interactions must be taken in context – thank you for explaining this – I appreciate that you are considering those who truely re-tweet quality over quantity.
    Next could you explain the difference in impact for people who get a tweet retweeted a handful of times vs the contest spammer who gets retweeted a bazillion times because they have a piece of Bieber hair to give away ;o)

  • http://twitter.com/Route53 Erik Hom

    I also request that nobody like my post unless it is the only like they make all day ; )

  • http://www.pammarketingnut.com PamMktgNut

    I agree 100%. Just because someone only tweets once a day or likes once a week does not mean they are more influential. I tweet many tweets a day and get between 50-200+ clicks on the urls. It doesn’t matter what I tweet it usually gets clicked. The tweet life of many of my tweets are days, not minutes. People will dig thru my tweets from 2+ days ago and retweet them.

    If someone is a go-to source for information and they tweet or post or like a lot it doesn’t make them less influential than the person who only does it once a week. I think if you pulled the 2nd tier data on actual influence that happens from that one like you’d have the opposite data. A person that is more engaged with their audience, likes more, comments more is going to have a more engaged following. Think of how Facebook edgerank works. If your content gets likes and comments it is going to perform better in news feeds. 
    I am shocked you are proud to state this is part of the new algorithm. Without further context you are providing an innacurate and incomplete measurement. You have nothing to back up your justification other than that “you’re the standard of influence measurement” and this is how we do it?? 

    BTW I am still waiting on my Klout profile to be deleted after I submitted a form on your privacy page, sent an email and disconnected 8 networks. Tell me how my score could have dropped by one point since then even though I have no network connected? And when will my profile be deleted from Klout?

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Erik,

    Thanks for the feedback! As for your questions:

    1) No, you are not penalized. If you add a network you have no influence in, you will see no change in Score.

    2) Would love to see this and look into it for you. Can you send an email to help[at]klout.com? Keep in mind you can always hide an influencer from your public profile if they don’t feel right. 

    3) When we release add topics, you will get the new topic as soon as others vouch for your influence.

    4) Klout Style is based on many signals from you and your audience. We will send your example to our science team, as it does appear you do not fit the typical profile for a dabbler

    Thanks!

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Linda,

    We determine influential topics by semantically analyzing your most influential content (the content that gets the most responses). If you never talk about football or anything related what may be happening is our system is wrong attributing a word in your content to football — it could be a team name or similar that you’re using in a different context. You can always remove topics that don’t fit in your topics page and it helps us to improve our analysis. Thank you!

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey jfrenaye, we’re definitely not penalizing you! You can share and Retweet as
    much as you’d like and it will not affect your Score. However, when
    we’re looking at your audience’s interactions we are taking them in
    context. If someone Retweets 50 times a
    day, getting a Retweet from them is definitely valuable but less so than
    from someone who Retweets once a day (assuming the same Klout Score).
    We’re looking at how much you influence someone as opposed to how many
    interactions you get. Hope that helps!

  • http://twitter.com/jasgrace Jason Gracey

    I consistently post 6-12 tweets per day (typically much less if any on weekends) and I use hashtags, links, and reply and retweeet others. Yet since your changes have come about my score continues to drop daily. Why?

  • http://profiles.google.com/isaacw3ston Isaac Miller

    I think the point is that when you have a singular individual retweet your tweet, and only your tweet for that entire week, that reflects better on meaningfulness of the information contained than if a retweet-spammer retweets yours. I feel like that is worded weirdly. 

    It has nothing to do with how many YOU retweet or like per week or day, but they’re taking into consideration WHO retweets you and how often THEY retweet or like other people’s content.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=5251812 Teddy Wilkins

    is this… “ok, because you whine so much, here are our algorithms”?

  • http://twitter.com/adimike55 Adrian Hickman

    I understand that, but shouldn’t their methods account for spammers? Again, it seems that actions trump content a lot. The same goes with the feeling that to have a high score, you should only interact with other high scores.

  • http://twitter.com/nicolascpa Nicolas Liu

    Agreed. I don’t know any of my influencer. Basically, you took out my Twitter friends and put some Facebook garbage in. If I’m not active on Facebook, no one will influence me, period.

  • Ghostfacemillah

    my head is going to explode,

  • http://spiritoftaste.blogspot.com Jacob Croston

    I keep seeing examples about Facebook and Twitter, nothing about other networks. Will services like G+ be more of an impact? I have the most followers and do most of my activity on there.

  • http://www.eriktronica.com Eriktronica Electronics

    FUCK KLOUT , they’re just making things up .. Really !! I have a paid account by twitterstats that says completely different things than klout.. And my score changes every hour with 30 or 40 points .. ! Where do i sign out ??

  • http://dustinstout.com Dustin W. Stout

    The question is, when will Google+ have ANY impact. I wish Joe Fernandez would be TRANSPARENT about the fact that they aren’t even measuring it. That one fact alone is turning this once “Klout Evangelist” into a skeptic.

  • http://dustinstout.com Dustin W. Stout

    And even if one adds Google+ and has HUGE success… there will be no influence in score. Correct? If yes, then no need to respond. ;)

  • http://dustinstout.com Dustin W. Stout

    Great, that makes it much easier to GAME the Klout score. All I have to do is set up a bunch of Twitter bots to only retweet my stuff, and I should be up there with Pete Cashmore in NO TIME!

  • http://dustinstout.com Dustin W. Stout

    Great, that makes it much easier to GAME the Klout score. All I have to do is set up a bunch of Twitter bots to only retweet my stuff, and I should be up there with Pete Cashmore in NO TIME!

  • http://dustinstout.com Dustin W. Stout

    So if @JoeSchmoe only checks twitter once a week and decides to retweet one of my tweets to his 3.5 followers, that would have more postitive effect on my Klout score than if @ChrisBrogan:twitter retweeted it. Oh, yes… THAT makes sense.

  • http://www.flowingfaith.com Mari-Anna Frangén Stålnacke

    Just a quick observation/question about the first example. What if the 50 people are the same people in Twitter and Facebook? He is then influencing only 50 people. And the other one is influencing 100. Are you able to take this in consideration?

    But thank you for sharing. Much appreciated!

  • Lori Kober

    Klout claims that having a site (like Facebook) that you aren’t that active in will not hurt your Klout Score.  But today was the 3rd time I received a notice on my Klout Profile that my Klout Score was reduced due to influence on Facebook.  I only use Facebook to interact with a small select number of people, which has never been an issue with Klout in the past.  Should I just remove Facebook from my Klout Profile?? as I have no intention on changing how I use it

  • http://dustinstout.com Dustin W. Stout

    While I’m sure it’s fun to talk about being transparent, I think it’s much more rewarding to ACTUALLY be transparent. Here’s some examples of being transparent, since you guys at @klout:disqus  seem to be struggling with it:

    1. Apologize: “Hey guys, sorry we screwed with your scores and jacked up your credibility with clients or potential employers– but we really are trying to make it better.”

    2. Confession: “Yea, I know we SAID that all networks are equal, but in fact we don’t really measure most of them– specifically Google+. Having your Google+ account connected to @Klout:disqus  is just an illusion. In fact, David Copperfield would be astonished by how we’re pulling this one off.”

    I could add a few more, but I’ll give you some time to figure these ones out first. In the mean time, I’m going to go create some Twitter bots who will retweet my posts once a week at different times, making the most of your new “context” algorithm.

  • http://twitter.com/azurelaroux Nancy Catherine

    I have had no influencers and have influenced no one since the change over. Despite 600 plus followers on Twitter, several conversations (not just retweets) a day with other tweeters, and other mentions. The influencer section states that I need to interact more to get influencers. Really??? Interact with who? 

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Dustin, we take into account the influence of any account that engages with you. Our science team works to detect bots and spam so they do not factor into the Score (this is an ongoing process). 

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Dustin, 

    We are releasing Google+ scoring very soon — in the next week or so and then it will impact your Score. As we add new networks, we first allow users to connect so our science team can analyze the data and build the model we use to score that network. Thanks!

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Dustin,

    We are happy to transparently share which networks are actively scored and accounted for in your Klout Score. Currently it is Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Foursquare. As we add new networks, we first allow users to connect so our science team can analyze the data and build the model we use to score that network. We are working to add scoring in for our other networks as soon as possible. Thanks!

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Lori, if you got a notification that your influence went down in Facebook we are letting you know that we are seeing your Score on that network lower. You are still better off than having no connection because we are seeing some influence from your Facebook profile. Basically, even if you do not have much influence on a network, your influence in that network can go down (comparatively), but still be a net gain in your Score. Let us know if you have further questions.

  • Tosarahnally

    This is an incredibly well written, clear and concise article, well done!
    Makes sense, I’m looking forward to the next one. Are there also top tips for improving influence in the pipeline?

  • Janettwokay

    I agree pretty much with everything you’ve said. I see others are complaining about how you’re handling retweets. I have to say that I agree completely with the tack that you have taken. I would have written my algorithm the same way. I look forward to reading the next part in this series.

  • http://dustinstout.com Dustin W. Stout

    Now THAT is the beginnings of some REAL transparency. Thanks for your honest response, but why wasn’t this non-scoring of connected accounts made clear earlier?

    It makes sense though because those were the only networks which, when disconnected, dropped my score prior to the algorithm update. 

  • http://twitter.com/judyshapiro judy shapiro

    Hello all –

    It’s hard not to feel the pain expressed all around – by disbelievers, by supporters even by Klout itself. 

    This discussion confirms in my mind what I shared in Ad Age recently – “Hey Klout – what are you REALLY measuring” http://adage.com/article/digitalnext/hey-klout-measuring/230997/

    The disconnect IMHO is at the philosophical level – to wit – Can any external tool measure the very fluid, very subjective human attribute of influence. I am not so sure TBH. To me, we need to clearly define WHAT is being measured (BTW – I give a specific suggestion in the article as well). 

    It is unsatisfying to many (present company included)  to simply say Klout is measuring “influence”  - what the heck does that really mean in the real world?

    Judy Shapiro

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    It’s been an interesting few weeks here (at) Klout
    -proofreader ;)

  • Nickida Stephens

    This still makes no sense to me.  I have been so much more active and still my score drops constantly daily.  I just don’t get it at all.

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    It was an example. Of course I could be wrong, but I really doubt their algorithm is that simplistic. I’ve stated many times over many different venues, people want transparency, yet they hate Klout for being gameable. How easy do you think having it both ways is?

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    Activity isn’t measured, the reaction of your audience to your activity is what is being measured (is the activity that gives you higher Klout scores); I can shout all day long in Time Square, but if I’m ignored all day long, I’m not being influential.

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    Everything can be gamed. Taking a Klout score as a single data point to make a decision isn’t ever wise. Compare bots with real people and you should be able to tell the difference pretty easily.

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    ;)

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    No influence? You have a 46 Klout score? Why do you say you have no influence?

    You have 800+ Twitter followers and you reach over 600 of them. Good percentages also count (right Joe?). I’d say your 46 is well deserved. Pop your True Reach over 1k, and your score will be even higher :)

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Pam,

    Thanks for reaching out, we wanted to add that you we do also (and always have) take into account the influence of someone engaging with your content. Someone who has a very active, highly engaged audience sharing your content definitely means a lot. 
    Secondly, it appears your account is deleted, but let us know if that is not the case. Re the Score drop — what likely happened is the majority of your influence was coming from Twitter. 

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    Sheezh, Klout didn’t make anyone lose their homes over their change. I don’t see Klout any different than Google or even bloody Microsoft or Apple. I wish those last two would apologize for releasing their latest OS 30 years later than they should have :) Microsoft Workgroups? iMac? WTH

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Judy,

    You’re right, measuring influence is an incredibly challenging task, and we are very aware of the fact that we need to constantly evolve and improve. We define how we look at influence on our Klout Score page (http://klout.com/corp/kscore), but in short we look at influence as the ability to drive action and we measure this based on data we collect from social networks to see how many people you influence, how much you influence them and how influential they are. Hope that helps!

    Thanks,
    Megan

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Thanks for the kind words! We will definitely be adding tips on how to increase your influence. 

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    Along with what Klout says openly, hashtags help. What helps a great deal is blogging, along with ensuring your posts are optimized. In WordPress, you can add SEO optimization via plugins. If you are using hashtags in your tweets and tags in your posts, and they are responded to (which is the most important, really vital part of it all), you’ll get the topics you want.

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Dustin,

    You’re right, we haven’t done the best job of making it very clear which networks are simply connected and which are part of the Score. We are talking internally about how to do that, but rest assured that information will also be a part of this understanding the Klout Score series. Cheers!

  • http://twitter.com/EarlBowser Earl Bowser

    Along with what Klout stated, hashtags help; they help the algorithms find your topic and differentiates them from just another word. What also helps a great deal is blogging, along with ensuring your posts are optimized. In WordPress, you can add SEO optimization via plugins. If you are using hashtags in your tweets and tags in your posts, and they are responded to (which is the most important, really vital part of it all), you’ll get the topics you want.

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Eriktronica,

    Your Score definitely shouldn’t change every hour, it updates daily right now. We’d be happy to take a look at your account and see what might be going on. Please shoot us an email to help[at]klout.com. Thanks!

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Jacob,

    Currently we score your influence on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Foursquare. As we add new networks, we first allow users to connect so our science team can analyze the data and build the model we use to score that network. We are working to add scoring in for our other networks as soon as possible. Hope that helps!

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Adrian,

    You raise some great points, there are many reasons we choose to engage with and share content and as we evolve we’d love to get better at understanding what effect this should have on your Score. That being said, what any engagement or Retweet means is that you have been influenced by the piece of content and that is what we’re factoring into the Klout Score. In addition to the context around actions we mentioned in this post, we certainly do take into account how influential an influencer is (and how high their potential impact is) when analyzing these interactions. Hope that helps!

  • Diether sweeck

    nieuw op klout, maar kan er nog niet goed aan uit ze , pfff 

  • http://profiles.google.com/aspoonfullofsugargirls Lisa Cox

    Thanks for the detailed post which helps to cast more light on how things work with Klout. My main centre of influence is my blog where has loads of subscribers, good traffic, and generates lots of comments – yet my true reach is quite low? I am new to twitter and only started a personal facebook profile so that I could develop a blog page. Unfortunately I am not able to link my facebook page to Klout even though that is where most of my influence lies.  Hope the ability to add topics will come soon. 

  • http://twitter.com/Route53 Erik Hom

    Well i think they account for that.  If you get Rted by a spammer then it is not a very influential RT!

  • http://twitter.com/Route53 Erik Hom

    Thanks, I have sent a reply to help [at] klout

  • http://twitter.com/adimike55 Adrian Hickman

    Thanks for the reply.

    I’ve got another question based on one of your answers now, to Pam.

    “Re the Score drop — what likely happened is the majority of your influence was coming from Twitter.”

    Since we are using the phrase “retweet” so much, have you deemphasized Twitter that much?

    Also, I did not connect FB because I use FB for an entirely different reason than Twitter. I use Twitter for real time conversations, information, and a much more immediate reaction. With Twitter, the conversation always comes back to the top when someone replies, mentions, or retweets. And this can happen for my entire list of followers.

    This keeps it more immediate than FB, where conversations move down the page and eventually drift away in favor of more recent stuff for all your followers. For that reason, I use FB for more relaxation, a couple of zen games and checking with family and friends. I’ll sometimes crosspost from Twitter, but have found that can annoy people who follow you on both platforms.

    I read many people of all Klout Score levels, but don’t reply to everyone. That doesn’t mean that they haven’t influenced me. It is just that the information didn’t require me to respond.

    The same goes for my WordPress blog. Until late 2009, I worked 27 years in the home video business on both a local and national retailing level. as the home video business left brick and mortar behind, my last employer started to phase out my stores division and laid me off.

    At the same time, I developed an Interstitial Lung Disease that is irreversable. In the last year, I’ve started to blog about it (and other happier stuff) as I learn to refocus, but I am still not sure how what will happen there as it grows and gets followers, and how it relates to my Twitter feed. 

    People made read it, but may not comment. That doesn’t mean they haven’t been influenced.

    Will topics and perks go past the purely commercial and into more informational?

    I feel it is almost comparing apples and oranges by giving each platform equal weight when people use them for different things. 

    Thanks again for the reply. I love the idea of Klout, but hope it is a help for those who use it, and not just a way to pinpoint people for advertisers.

  • Anonymous

    I am sorry Joe but this doesn’t make sense at all. If info you provided up is correct then why all spamming profiles are in 70+ scores system. They RT 1000 times per day, as followback profile are know to get RT with same people all the time. There is something fishy here i am sorry. Would love to hear you explanation to this ? Even one profile of spammers is now on 83. So give me a break here. 

    Second you dont measure generosity at all, i participate in many chats weekly and my score is dropping and not increasing. To get 20 people to response to a tweet is more influential IMO then get one link with the news RT. I am sorry but you are missing a part here. O yes i forgot i am talking to less influential people so period my score will go down. Yes i know if Obama or GaGa will RT my links my score will go up, like Megan explained to me. 

  • Akeough37

    I dont like it, my influence dropped from 59 to 39 in one day when the new formulation started. I dont think its fair. Nothing I do has changed, therefor I dont understand the drop…

  • Anonymous

    What i was trying to say is in your words: influence is ability to drive action. Replies & community chats are part of the abilities to drive action. You gave almost zero weight to that in your score, as can be clearly seen in your scoring system. You look how influential person who RT and reply to you is and this is wrong. You said everyone has Klout, yes it has, but even everyone voice should be equality measured. You are measuring our voice based on our score you assigned to us. For example if my score is 20 and RT you every day you will lost your network influence as i am not enough influential in your network to keep your score up. This is not cool as Klout doesnt give equal voice to every person. 

  • Anonymous

    Pam i can still see your profile, ask em to invite you to join the Klout and your score is now 59! Profile is full of info! 

  • Anonymous

    Simple question, i disconnected all profiles on Klout except Twitter account. I did disable and revoke all access on every individual profile but here is my question to you:

    Why i am advice that my amplification was increased on Facebook ? You have no access or you should not have access to my FB account and indeed my FB is not in public settings ?

    In the past month, your Amplification increased by 19 pointsYou increased your influence on Facebook recently

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Pam (and jkcallas) looks like you signed back in and that brought your profile back, we’ve disabled your account again and are looking for a better way to manage this process. 

  • http://corp.klout.com Klout

    Hey Jure, we will look into this for you and ensure we have successfully removed your Facebook account connection. You have our apologies for the inconvenience. 

  • KB

    Very helpful. Thank you for the info. I am looking forward to reading your next article.

  • Anonymous

    well i would agree with you, but i can not as all spam accounts are having high Klout score, one 83, another 77, 74, few 75, and almost zero of spam account are under 70. they are styled as Celebrity or Leaders! 

  • Jack

    I appreciate the transparency, or at least the attempt with the transparency but it doesn’t explain why all the influential people’s scores dropped by 15 to 20 points when you implemented the new algorithms.

    Actually, let me rephrase that, as Klout keeps on saying “most people didn’t see a drop in score”. Anecdotal evidence (and perhaps I just surround myself with people who had an over inflated score – though I doubt it as it seemed rather universal with everyone I talked to) showed that major influencers on the internet all complained about the drop in their score. It’s one of the reasons why there was such a backlash and (presumably) why you had to write this post in the first place. If these people really weren’t as influential as you say, we probably wouldn’t be reading this article at all. Instead we have these same people, who’s score dropped, writing about how Klout has lost all credibility, forcing Klout to explain why.

    The other point I’d like to make is that your bell curve seems ridiculously off. Why would you set an algorithm where 95% of the people have scores lower than 50 and the average score is 20? Why not shift the curve so that the average person actually has a score around 50 and distribute the bell curve in a way that most people can understand? Companies and brands that look at Klout are used to looking at people’s scores over 50 as a metric for who they want to work with. The drastic shift in score was confusing to many, and had companies and brand reconsidering people who they originally wanted to work with, as they had no idea that the algorithms shifted. 

    Worse, some people were considered for jobs using their Klout score on their resume, and the shift in score made them look like they lied on their resume. Klout readjusted the scores, and changed past scores without any explanation, confusing HR people (who often don’t understand social media to begin with) and companies in general.

  • http://twitter.com/nayrbgo Bryan and Tongo

    Way cool to read this ‘behind-the-scenes’ talk. Can I tell klout that I don’t want to connect Facebook? and therefore to stop asking? I hooked up everything else possible, but FB is another world for me.
    Also, the retweet concept would make more sense if the usage of my tweet were tracked, rather than relying on the algorithm of one’s tweet getting retweeted by heavy or light users.
    Keep up the great work! I am hoping that I will clout others with my klout. ;-p

  • http://www.pammarketingnut.com PamMktgNut

    This is incorrect Klout. I did not sign back in. I did not authorize you to access my Twitter profile. The Klout app has been revoked from all 8 networks I had connected including Twitter since earlier this week so how did my score drop by a point when you have zero access to any of my social network accounts. 

  • http://www.pammarketingnut.com PamMktgNut

    This makes no sense. The only account I had connected since the algorithm changed and privacy issues after deleting 7 social networks was Twitter. 

  • http://www.pammarketingnut.com PamMktgNut

    Klout – seriously? the lies are getting thick. “We haven’t done the best job of making it very clear which networks are simply connected & which are part of the score”? 

    On these two posts as examples do you mention NOTHING of the fact that they aren’t measure. You actually are dishonest in that you state “You can connect your Google+ account from the dashboard right now and you’ll be among the first to have it integrated into your Score.”  

    Please explain to me how when I connected my 6 additional accounts i was the “first” to have it integrated into your score. 

    I fell for your stupid tricks. I connected my networks thinking it actually had influence. Even when I sent you emails asking why my score was dropping with all the networks connected you never thought to mention they weren’t measured. 

    This post and these comments tonight are the first I am learning of this and I am shocked. You are playing people as puppets and it is wrong. We are not your product, our data is not your product and you should not be playing trickery games to get us to connect. 

    There is nothing in your posts which announce these new services that would lead anyone to believe they were doing anything except integrating and helping their score. 

    It is time for Klout to get HONEST and transparent. I feel sorry for the newbies who are signing up and have NO CLUE of what they are getting into.  

    Your Post “Google Has Klout” http://corp.klout.com/blog/2011/09/google-now-has-klout/

    Measuring Klout on 10 Networks: http://corp.klout.com/blog/page/6/

  • Anonymous

    and lies are going on… in today NY times is published: “We analyze data from 13 different online networks and take into account reactions to a person’s content,” said Joe Fernandez, the company’s founder and chief executive.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/20/fashion/klout-scores-sort-out-social-media-stars.html

    But i would add something more, there is no secret, i know Pam Well from communities we share together and i do follow her blog and her posts. But now here is my question for you Klout. After you magic change Pam score went down on 60. I did look at her score every day as i did in my score. Pam published her post with concerns to Klout day after me and got hunders if not thousands of RT and @ to it all from different users. Few days later me and Pam was in the same chat discussing online influence and in 1 hour we both had over 1000 mentions on Twitter alone, but no change in score, not up or down. How is this possible ? This gave me thinking that you do have bell-curve in your system  and her we go, we you hit it up to the curve you go down. Sorry but there is no other explanation or you punished us manually for questioning and expressing our concerns.  

    Joe, Megan i know you take this very personally, but please do understand that many of us are working for brands and we need to get some explanation. As i said before Joe ignoring our questions and concerns just confirm exactly what we are saying! Why can’t we get heard ? Don’t forget we were with you on beginning, we help you grow your product and if you truly understand Social Media you know what community is all about. 

    Thank you! 
     

  • http://www.blurbpoint.com/link-building-services.php Link Building Services

    After the klout changed it algorithm , i thought that what changes and on which basis klout has done this. But now it has been transparent for assigning the score and it is definitely what needs to increase the score. As interaction , continuous discussion , different activities all the things. Thanks for sharing this.

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  • http://www.bellebeanchicagodog.com/ Liz

    I agree with this completely! To people who have no clue about Klout, but they understand that it’s a range from 1-100, a score 50 doesn’t sound like someone is that influential. Second, anyone who really deals with stats and analytics knows that if there is a change such as this, that change is notated in the data on the day the change took affect. Also, you never go back and re-run historical data! I, too, have heard of many people in process for jobs who were made to look like liars because of how the algorithm – and subsequent data – change was handled.

  • http://www.bellebeanchicagodog.com/ Liz

    I deleted my Klout accounts for 4 reasons:

    1. I have 2 Twitter accounts. One was connected to Klout with multiple other social media accounts, gets TONS of interaction, retweets, convos, etc. The other gets ZERO interaction, I maybe tweet 1 time a day from it AND had nothing but a Facebook account linked up with it. With the change, my primary account ended up with a lower score than my secondary account. 

    So my gripe isn’t the drop in scores, but the fact that the algorithm was getting *less* accurate versus more because there is no logical reason for an account that has zero influence to have a higher score than an account that has a good amount of influence.

    When comparing my accounts side by side, there’s no way I could have any faith in what you guys had done.

    2. Privacy concerns. I found it disturbing that people who are not really a part of social media and have no idea what Klout is suddenly had faces and names and scores on Klout.

    3. The way the data and algorithm change was handled. No statistician or analyst would make a change to historical data nor would then not notate in the data when a change such as this took place.

    4. How incredibly easy it is to game the system. People can (and do) send random “Ha, ha!” and “LOL” responses to people they never interact with just to expand their reach.

    Until all 4 of these issues are addressed, I have no interest in reconnecting my accounts.

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  • Anonymous

    My Klout score dropped about 10 points as soon as the new algorithm was adopted. And since then, my score has dropped every day — by almost exactly the same amount each day — no matter what I do.
    This looks like a glitch to me.

  • http://twitter.com/Stareagle Dave Hogg

    So was Joe misquoted by the New York Times and actually said that Klout checks four different online networks, or did he lie and say it was 13?

    Like many people, my score took a huge drop when the new method was released, and has continued to go down on a daily basis. Why? I have no idea, because none of your “increased transparency” actually addresses any of the issues that have been raised time after time on these blog comments.

    1) If I influence 5,000 people, why does my top 10 list include six people with scores under 20? Are you seriously trying to tell me that I influence 4,990 people scores of 10 or less? How can you say that I’m having any impact on them at all if they don’t do anything? One of the people on my top 10 list has tweeted seven times, one of which was a retweet of a retweet of one of my tweets. That’s one of the 10 people I influence the most, even a Klout score that puts me in the 95% percentile? Really?

    2) My amplification has dropped from 16 to 13 in the past month – a drop of almost 20%. The explanation is that my influence on Facebook has dropped recently. I’d love to see any kind of intelligent rationale for that. I use Twitter professionally and Facebook to connect with friends. That hasn’t changed in the past month, and if anything I’ve been more active on Facebook lately than normal. Yet you claim that my influence dropped so much on Facebook that it pulled my overall score down by 20%.

    3) You claim that I’m influential about the Detroit Tigers and Detroit Lions. This makes sense, since I’m a sportswriter that covers both teams. However, if I click on either topic to see the top influencers, in both cases I get a page full of Japanese tweets. Your process is so clumsy that you are picking up tweets about the Hanshin Tigers and the Seibu Lions – a pair of Japanese baseball teams – and counting them as tweets about the Detroit teams.

    All of these things, especially Joe’s highly misleading quote to the New York Times, are quickly ruining your company’s reputation. That’s a shame, because you had a good idea. 

  • Jack

    A perfect example of how someone lost a potential job because of the algorithm change and the lack of information about it is chronicled here: 

    http://www.unplggd.com/unplggd/technology/how-klouts-changes-may-have-cost-me-a-job-159961

  • Alia

    I agree. My Klout score dropped a massive 10 points immediately overnight. And like detroit365 has only continued to do so. I never see very much headway or increase in my score even if i have had a particularly interactive days and been retweeted a lot.

    In fact the days following some of my really busy social days, my score has actually dropped. Shouldn’t it actually rise if it is supposed to be in real time? Why am I instead being penalized? I see piddly little increases occasionally but always massive drops.

    The Klout score has turned into a big joke IMHO. I interact, I don’t spam, I chat quite a lot about topics which I am interested AND knowledgeable in – and for which I also get retweeted, yet there is no mention of those in my Influential topics. Only stupid and random things which I have mentioned in conversation once to someone else. Are you for real?

    Another thing that I find ridiculous: I have a friend with a Twitter account who tweets a couple of times a week max. Nothing too focused or anything to say. Isn’t a huge social networker. I’m always on there, interacting, tweeting original content, selectively retweeting things I find amusing (usually on same topics I’m interested in). I have 20 times the followers and number of people I interact with on a regular basis. So how is it that for all the effort and time I put into building relationships, outreach and interacting, retweets etc I now have a lower score than my friend and my score continues to drop NO MATTER WHAT I DO whilst theirs continues to rise and my friend does barely anything, nor gets rt’d much etc?

    Glitch or not, my social interaction/activity has increased even more since you changed your algorithms and if you believe they are a truer representation of all the things you mention in the post, than you are fooling yourself. They do not honestly correctly reflect what you claim they do and I’m about ready to delete my account like several others I known already have, because all these things have made me lose a huge lot of respect for Klout and for me and others I know, it has pretty much lost all meaning due to what I mention.

  • Alia

    I agree with this. This is the situation that I find myself in. I have a range of followers and do not discriminate against those that have lower scores just because they are not as influential. They are still interesting people that have to start somewhere.

    I notice the same things regarding spammer accounts and agree with what jkcallas is saying – it does not make sense when they often break all the rules which you define as things which work to lowering the score.

    It would be interesting to have an explanation on this.

  • Alia

    Again I can relate to this and have seen this happen to those I know who were considered for things based upon their Klout score. People who often ask for these scores often do not understand their meaning and like Liz says, it’s basic nettiquette not to alter historical data. Especially not without reference or notation.

    I really hope that you at Klout are listening to all the uproar in the way algorithm and score changes were handled – with no prior warning and the way you basically wiped past scores off the face of the planet as if they’d never existed. 

    This was one of the reasons many people complained they have lost respect for the service. I hope you consider this when making any future radical changes to your system. If you wish to be the respected authority, actions like this don’t garner you any brownie points.

  • http://twitter.com/adimike55 Adrian Hickman

    I have a real problem when Klout is used for employment. Unlike a credit score, which some employers use, Klout is a scoring system that only answers to Klout and it’s advertisers. This goes beyond using it to get a look at a free Windows Phone. Klout is setting itself up as a reason to hire or not hire, yet there is no official scrutiny into the scoring system. At a whim, Klout changed scoring and caused problems.

    If Klout wants to be used to affect real lives, they need to be as transparent and responsible as the monitored systems in place.

  • http://twitter.com/Stareagle Dave Hogg

    Oddly, in the few hours since I’ve posted that, my Klout score has jumped from 55.97 to 57.34, my True Reach went up over 400 people, my Influence went back to 16, and my Network went from 30 to 35.

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  • http://eHermitsinc.com Brian Layman

    Is there any way to re-accept topics that were removed?  When topics came out, I removed a number that were not my main focus.  Now understanding how they integrate with perks, I wish I ahd them back on my list main focus or not…

  • John Sealander

    Hmmm.  So, I guess this means that Google+ activity is not reflected in current scores. I was curious why my Google+ activity seemed to have no influence one way or the other on my Kout score. This might explain it. Will you let us know when Google+ activity is actually factored into your score?

  • John Sealander

    I agree with Judy Shapiro. It is still unclear exactly WHAT is currently being measured by Klout. I am a writer and mostly follow other authors on Twitter. I use Google+ extensively, but have never had much reason to use Facebook.

    Authors and bloggers appear to be the group that got clobbered the most by the recent algorithm change. Sure, a lot of these authors are high volume users who utilize Twitter to promote their books. If you like to read as I do, these messages are NOT spam however. They are just as valid as messages from people on Facebook who talk about their cat. My Klout score went down primarily because these authors, who I apparently influenced under the old algorithm, lost influence themselves and took me down with the ship.

    Something seems terribly wrong when your network impact goes from 4000+ to under 20 overnight.  I think that authors and bloggers as a class ARE being penalized.

  • Fernando Rodríguez

    excelente

  • http://twitter.com/Route53 Erik Hom

    Thanks for fixing my @klout:disqus  style.  It moved from Dabbler to Specialist over the weekend.  Apparently it also moved my score up 2 points, my reach up 150 people, my amplification up 4 points and then my Impact down 2 points.  Very interesting. 

    I got the message: Our Facebook data collector encountered an issue where it was not collecting new data for some accounts. Data collection returned back to normal on November 17th and affected users may see an increase in Score in the next few days as we process the data and give credit for that influence.We apologize for the impact this may have had and want to let you know that we are working to ensure this doesn’t happen again. This was due to expired Facebook tokens in our database that caused our collector to malfunction. We are now fixing the collector and asking those users to reauthorize their Facebook accounts (the predominant reason this would happen is because they changed their password).

    So did this also have an effect on my Klout style?

  • http://twitter.com/postpartumprogr Katherine Stone

    None of this makes any sense in terms of how far my score dropped.  Still.  

  • http://twitter.com/sempleking Dale Stephen Semple

    i am confused  to much to read lol

  • http://twitter.com/willspencer willspencer

    Joe:

    This is good stuff.  It helps me to understand why my Klout score dropped 17 points.

    I don’t understand though, why I moved from a Pundit to a Specialist.  In a future blog post, could you go more deeply into how the different Klout Style’s are calculated?

    Thanks!

  • http://twitter.com/willspencer willspencer

    Joe:

    Another topic that would be great for a new blog post would be to explain how the new +K system will be used.  Thus far, it appears to be disconnected from everything else and not really relevant.

    Thanks!

  • Richard

    dat slaat nergens op?!

  • http://www.bobbbyg.com Rob Gould (bobbbyg)

    Stability & consistency? Are you guys joking? I just saw one of my scores drop by 11 points overnight. This sort of thing seems to happen on a regular basis.

    I’m just about done with Klout. I have found Peer Index to actually be stable & consistent. I don’t see any of the huge, daily influence changes with Peer Index that continue to frustrate me with Klout.

    It seems like the ongoing volatility of your scores is part of your marketing program – driving users to look at your site regularly. Unfortunately, this ploy reveals how truly inaccurate your “scoring algorithm.” Influence rarely changes dramatically overnight and certainly not on a regular basis. Am I frustrated with Klout? To say the least.

  • http://www.facebook.com/windycityhope Hope Bertram

    Can you help me understand why Klout isn’t going one level deeper when scoring RT’s — shouldn’t the net importance go on how many views the RT received, or more importantly, if there is a link involved eg: if a picture or article was shared, is there any importance placed on how many times the link was clicked?  That’s really a more valid show of influence when compared to how many times someone RT’s a day. 

    This metric seems to discourage sharing and not focus on the end influence which would be reach.

  • http://artpredator.wordpress.com artpredator

    How do you measure the score in terms of WHEN the data is collected? Is it 90 days old? an average of the previous 90 days? is it 21 or 14 days ago? or yesterday? Thanks. This info would help  me to see the relationship between my Klout score and recent online activity and it might even explain to me how, overnight, I went from being an influencer of wine (yes) to affiliate marketing (huh?) and how my score slowly fell from 55 to 51 then jumped up to 55 –again overnight. Thanks.

    If the data collections date info is somewhere, please direct me to the URL. Thanks.

  • http://www.facebook.com/windycityhope Hope Bertram

    ok, now you have me thinking more about this.  I understand where Klout is going with the concept that frequent RTers might not have as much influence, but there’s still somewhat of a disconnect in that assumption.  Does the new scoring also take into account how many times the RTer was ReTweeted?  That would be the most valid metric, right?  And then even more so when you layer in the number of clicks on links if that was relevant. 

    P.S.  I just wanted to add the comment about RT’s of RT’s to my comment below to clarify about my reference to reach of tweets.  The more I thought about it, the more the above makes sense.

  • http://twitter.com/mary_mo Mary Morelli

    It would be really great if in the connected networks section it actually marked which networks were being used to calculate the score and which ones aren’t yet. And maybe mark networks that you are working into the algorithm next. I think that would clear up a lot of the confusion about the score. 

  • MARK JANZ-ARMSTRONG

    A bunch of whining crybabies complaining about FREE BETA software. 

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  • Penniesfrhvn

    You make some great points Andrea. I share content with my friends whenever I feel they would benefit or enjoy it. It just does not seem right that it could lower my Klout score. I am just learning about this site, but information like this makes me go Hmmm.

  • http://getonthemap.us juliemarg

    I’m hoping that the new algorithm discounts things like follow friday. If it’s not worth ten points on klout score, I bet people will quit sending tweets that are just a string of unrelated names with a hashtag #ff. In fact, it would be cool if you could fix the score so that doing that made your klout go down.

  • http://getonthemap.us juliemarg

    I think this is a god thing – if I click on the like button ten times in a row the influence those posts have had on me is not really a huge amount. If I pick out just one gem and share it on Facebook, it probably was quite important to me.

  • John Sealander

    I am still confused about how “influence