Thursday, 3 November 2011

The initial KloutoCalypse: how big is it?


In my last post I showed how to remove your Klout profile from the public eye, without waiting for Klout to take 24-48 hours to do so. As I get impatient every now and then, I decided to take the first 500 tweets containing Klout and delete after I published it. I ignored all the tweets that said something like "Gee I wish I could delete my Klout profile" and only kept those that showed knowledge of being able to delete their Klout account with a few simple clicks.

Out of the 500 tweets, 337 remained. I filtered those for unique users, and stuck to 293 (sorry, said 296 before) unique Twitter users who knew how to delete their Klout profile.
For every single one of those, I checked their Klout profile to see if it still existed.

Now if you read my post you'll see that Klout promises that it will take 24-48 hours to delete your account after you actually deleted it - if you read that well, that means that it will take at least 24 hours before you get removed

I don't know what happens to your Klout profile if you "only" delete your profile, and leave the Klout access to your Twitter account intact. Do you get the dog, or does nothing change at first sight? I'd assume nothing changes, otherwise the disclaimer seems a bit meaningless. Anyway, the benefit of the doubt tells us that an empty profile means that you deleted your account - everything else is an assumption

(Anyway, after deleting your account and getting the puppy when you visit your profile, you still exist. In a way, you're in limbo - and you can already spot that by your picture flashing by just before you're shown the puppy)

So, I wrote a small script and started up 300 Klout profiles - I bet I'd have received an achievement for visiting so many in so short a timespan, but alas I wasn't signed in. Well, I was (limbo): even after having deleted your account, you can simply go to your dashboard and access some of your Klout profile.
I even gave a +K to Michael Chang on Unicorns (thought he deserved that) and high-fived Olivier Blanchard for being so clever on marketing - and got a new achievement: Profile Surfer (for visiting 100 profiles). See, there's life after death!

I actually gained a whole Klout point yesterday, and am now at 51. I guess I should be totally gone in another 12 hours from now, but something tells me Klout will need a whole lot more than 24-48 hours to manually close all accounts that got deleted

Anyway, back to the main story. I worked my way through 293 profiles, and found 52 of them to have "gone puppy". Here's the list of honours:

_EricLowe
aaronkwhit
AmyMccTobin
andypiper
automaton_be
axeldiewald
BrandonEBC
Catballou
cwpontwit
dananderson
DannyBrown
dantecf
DeniseAday
edwardBase22
EdwardBGreen
ellemmes
EnergyVanguard
ErikBoles
ervindex
fjfonseca
getwired
HaroldShawJr
hermanhorsten
jehan
jeremyfelt
JonAvalon
joristi
KatCaverly
KMBTweets
lacouvee
loudmouthman
louisgray
marcseyon
MartijnLinssen
MatStace
MattLaCasse
miech
mor_trisha
MzMeggs
nonobod
pelujan
penelopephoto
qthrul
RandoRay
RMH40
ryharv
saadware
sanchezjb
sarah11918
Soben
suebob
techgraphica

That makes 52 people out of 293 who deleted their profile. That is 18% - one third of the 2008 US election voter turnout. Not a small number by any means

Update November 5th 21:10 CET: another 5 of "the first 293" have deleted their Klout account, upping the percentage to 20%. Welcome to the Klub betajames, bellebellebeau, chicken_scratch, DaveRGallant and ricmanego!
Update November 10th 10:55 CET: and yet another 5 of "the first 293" have deleted their Klout account, upping the percentage to 21%. Welcome to the Klub chibijeebs, devan_, TheWanderer14, sugrNspiceLife and teenwolfblitzer!

Update November 24th 18:56 CET: 3 weeks after opening the gates, yet another few have deleted their Klout profile - will this ever stop?
And yet another 11 of "the first 293" have deleted their Klout account, upping the percentage to 25%. Welcome to the Klub cmanj66, dirktherabbit, ekolsky, forrestkoba, GreenSoil, jangles, jimworth, JohnP_Education, lizisaacslwc, m_covington and solidus!

I asked Christopher Penn to run a similar comparison on a somewhat larger dataset (he has almost 4,000 tweeps on Klout), but this is my initial impression

Judgment day for Klout has finally come, and 1/4th has cut themselves loose so far. How will this end?

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