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Klout CEO “We Messed Up On This One and Are Deeply Sorry”


Klout has been dealing with quite a bit of criticism lately when it comes to how they measure your social media influence and who they measure it by.

There is an interesting story in the New York Times about a mom who discovered Klout had created a profile for her 13 year old son. Needless to say she was surprised and shocked. Here’s an excerpt from the story:

The boy had never set up a Klout page for himself; he was only her Facebook “friend,” so she could monitor his interactions there. Klout had automatically created a page for him and assigned him a score. Then Ms. McGary’s 15-year-old daughter Mimi popped up on her Klout page — this time not with a Klout score of her own, just a nudge to Ms. McGary to invite Mimi to join.

Basically, Klout was creating profiles without social media users even knowing about it. Which meant it was creating profiles for minors. Klout has said they do not market to children and they no longer create profiles automatically.

In a blog post entitled “We Value Your Privacy” from yesterday (November 13th), Klout CEO Joe Fernandez, offered up an apology.

We will always be vigilant in working with the platforms (Twitter/Facebook/etc), our legal counsel, and the community to do what’s right here. We messed up on this one and are deeply sorry.

There are so many people who are already questioning Klout, so this came at a really bad time for the company.

At the end of February, Allison did a Brilliant Bloggers post about Klout. It definitely makes for some interesting reading and I would love to see how many of these bloggers have changed their mind about Klout since then.

What are your thoughts on Klout’s misstep with creating profiles without permission?


  • MamarazziKnows

    I liked the concept Klout has been trying to establish, but I hate the way they do it. It isn’t accurate by any means or measurment. It seems the formula they’ve created to guage influnece and list the topics people discuss are way off, and are some of the major gripes with the Klout concept.

    I see most of my Google contacts appear on my Klout page asking me to invite them to join but I can’t!! A lot of my friends don’t care about Klout, are not using Twitter or Facebook. Yes, there are still people out there who do not engage in social media and rely on direct contact, word of mouth or a monthly newsletter. How do you measure that, Klout?

  • ChrisBoese

    Yes, Klout in its infinite wisdom has decided my ONLY influencers are people with private Facebook profiles who have no desire to promote their public profiles at all. My own Klout influence is in a massive decline since the algorithm adjustment, despite my constant and regular engagement with a large and very active and influential Twitter community.

    I’ve given considerable thought to disconnecting my Facebook profile from Klout altogether, just to protect all my private profile friends who are now stuck in the public domain with totally unwanted Klout profiles (and endless prompts to “invite the to Klout.”)

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