It seemed like good news when Klout announced that users could delete their own profiles.  For a company that has been known for double-speak, it seemed too good to be true.  Guess what – it was.

So, you think that your profile and Klout Score has been deleted.  Guess what, they haven’t been.  You just can’t see them.  They’ve been suppressed, but Klout is still busy amassing data on you and calculating your Klout Score, every single day.

Half-Truth or Big Lie?

How in the world would I know that?  A day or two after Klout announced the ability to delete profiles and scores, I deleted mine. 

Then yesterday (about a week later), I went back to Klout.com and signed back up using my Twitter handle only.  Guess what? I was greeted by a graph that showed my score – changing every day, including during those days when I supposedly didn’t have a K-score or a K-profile.  In the attached graphic, you can see how my K-score changes every day - including the days where i supposedly didn't have a score at all.

My Daily Klout

I then “attached” my LinkedIn, Facebook, WordPress and Youtube accounts.  I was curious to see what impact adding them would have.  

The next day when my K-score was recalculated – guess what?  Almost no change at all.  The only logical conclusion is that Klout kept all my profile information and account linkages.  Otherwise, when I added all the other accounts, my score SHOULD have changed.  The very last day in the attached graphic should have shown a change.

So the profiles and account information are simply suppressed.  Why would Klout do that?  Klout makes its money by amassing information on people and selling that to “sponsors”.  By secretly gathering and maintaining information on people, they are creating an asset that they can monetize. 

Adult Supervision Definitely Required

This issue I have with this is the complete lack of honesty and transparency coming from Klout.  At almost every juncture, Klout chooses obfuscation and dishonesty, rather than transparency and good citizenship. A constant stream of PR-speak, half-truths and misdirection.

For a corporation that openly aspires to impact everyone’s economic and even social lives, such lack of ethics is truly troubling.  Without a question, Klout is a company that needs external oversight and auditing.