Wednesday, August 17, 2011

It's Like High School All Over Again

In high school there were the cool kids, the popular crowd, the ones who told the rest of us how to dress, act, think and feel.

It's been ten years since those glorious angst-ridden days, and looking back I can't even remember who the cool kids were, but I can assure you, I was not one of them.

This didn't bother me because 1.) I was too clueless to realize how totally uncool I was and 2.) I had an awesome group of really great friends, many of whom I'm still really close with.

When I graduated, I was under some delusion that high school was actually over.  All the petty bullshit is finished, I (naively) thought.  For the first four post-high school years aka college, this was true.  Or maybe it wasn't.  I lived in such a tailgating, football games, parties, lounging by the pool go to class, study hard, get a degree so you can get a good job haze to know what was really going on.

And then I entered the real world, got a job, and Oh.  Mah.  Gah.  You aren't seriously telling me adults act this way!  The cattiness, the backstabbing, the gossiping, the drama.

OMGTHEDRAMA!

For the most part, I stay out if because I am mature a professional too tired to give a shit.

But as much as the workplace is just like high school with its cool kids and cliques, it is nothing, I repeat, NOTHING compared to twitter.

Just like in high school, I managed to find my crowd.  I've made some really great friends who I think are all pretty kick-ass.  I have no idea if we're the popular crowd or not, and I don't really care because we all think we're pretty awesome and we have THE BEST time together.

Although I am clueless about where I fall on the popularity scale, I still know the cool kids exist.  And those cool kids reign supreme.  Or rather, one kid.  One giant robot cool kid that reigns from the clouds and shouts down at us, telling us how (un)meaningful, (ir)relevant and (un)important we really are.

That kid is Klout.

Those of you on twitter know exactly who I'm talking about.  Those of you who don't are probably all, huh, who the hell is Klout?

And my answer to you is:

Exactly.  Who, or rather what the hell is Klout? And more importantly, where the hell does Klout get off, thinking it can tell us what topics we have "influence" about?

Klout will tell you there is an order, a system, a reason, for the manner in which they dole out the topics they deem you influential about, but DO NOT BE FOOLED.

Klout reels you in, making you think you're pretty and popular and way cooler than you really are by telling you you are influential about topics that are deeply meaningful to you.  Like bacon.  And sausage.

You spend a few weeks walking on air.  You take extra time getting ready in the morning, carefully selecting your outfit, doing your hair, plucking your unibrow and lining your lips in the perfect shade of rasberry razzle dazzle lip gloss.  You must look perfect - you're a part of the In Crowd now! 

Then, one day out of the blue Klout tells you you're influential about Hootsuite.  And you're all, "Huh?  I don't even know what Hootsuite is, yet Klout has declared I influence others to take action about, think about, dress like, look like, wanna be like Hootsuite?  Um...okay!" 

You know better than to question Klout for long, lest you fall from its good graces.  And besides, you're getting more popular by the day! 

The next thing you know Klout is telling you you're influential about children and you're like, "what a minute. children?  i don't even have children and the only thing I know about them is that they usually annoy me on airplanes."

You're starting to suspect Klout is screwing with you.  Making you believe you're pretty and popular, getting you all excited about prom. But then you show up and they dump pig's blood on you.

You really want to tell Klout to take a long walk on a short pier, but it tells you you're influential about unicorns, and well  OMG UNICORNS!  I LOVE UNICORNS!  AND NOW THE WHOLE WORLD WILL TOO BECAUSE I AM INFLUENTIAL!

You're so excited you could posivitely pee!  In fact, you do!  All over yourself.  But who cares!  UNICORNS!

Klout's talons are really in deep now.  You don't know your head from a hole in the ground, so high are you on unicorn love.  You don't realize it, but you are weak, vulnerable, proudly wearing your heart on your sleeve just waiting for someone to come by, rip it off and stomp all over it.

It's not long before that someone comes, and that someone...is Klout.  In the blink of an eye, it takes your unicorn influence away.  And your bacon influence.  And sausage.  In fact, it takes all your influence about super awesome things away and leaves you influence in used dental floss or dust mites, or bed bugs, or something equally lame and disgusting.

You are stripped of your cool kids status and sent straight to loserville.

I see it happen every day.  To good people.  To funny people.  To awesome people.  People like me and you. 

How does one recover from something like this?  How do you pick up the pieces, and the used floss, and move on with your life?

I don't know the answer to that.  I probably never will.  But what I do know is that I'm sick of seeing decent people being used and tossed aside like yesterday's garbage.  So sick, in fact, that I'm going to do something about it, and I hope you all will join me.

I'm going to de-join Klout and never utter its name in another tweet, blog or real life conversation - not that I actually talk about them in real life now, cuz that would just be weird or...lame or something. 

It may seem like a small inconsequential thing, but if we ALL do it, if we all refuse to acknowledge Klout's existence it will have no choice but to slink away, with its head hung low, never to be seen or heard from again until we all forget it even existed.

Or... we could just make fun of it, say bad stuff about it on twitter and write it letters like the one I wrote below about my good friend @carribrown being stripped of her unicorn klout.


Dear Klout,

I don't know what kind of honky-tonk crackhead outfit you're running over there, but clearly you are out of your effing mind.  Recently you stripped my vodka loving friend @carribrown of her influence in unicorns.

Are you kidding me?  Are you f*cking kidding me!

@carribrown influences me every day, EVERY DAY, about unicorns.  In fact, until Ms. Brown, I doubted the very existence of unicorns.  But thanks to her magnificent influence I not only believe they exist, I am on a quest to find one.

That's right.  I've quit my job, sold all my possessions and have embarked on the greatest journey of my life.  I have absolutely no idea where or how one goes about locating a unicorn, but I assure you, I will find one.

The road traveled will not be an easy one.  In fact, my feet are already killing me.  In hindsight, it wasn't the best idea selling my tennis shoes with great arch support.  But honestly, who knew walking 327 miles in heels would be so painful.

I probably should have kept my car too, but I didn't want to scare the unicorn away when I found it.  Unicorns are very serene animals.  They don't appreciate loud noises, but do love skittles, have an affinity for pretty colors and bop to the happy beat of Jack Johnson.

How do I know all this?

@carribrown that's how!

Thanks to @carribrown, I've not only set off on my quest to meet one of these majestic creatures, I've also started a foundation United for Unicorns that raises awareness about unicorns in the efforts to dispel all the terrible rumors about them.  You see, some people think that because unicorns are magical, they are evil.  But as @carribrown will tell you, they only use their magic for good.

Unlike you, Klout, who does not have magic, but is most definitely evil.

I'd like to think this was a mistake.  A gross oversight of the HR department.  Perhaps you were thinking of @carriebrown, as in Carrie with an E.  I don't know who she is, and she very well may not be influential about unicorns - only a very select few are - but Carrie with an E's influence should have no bearing on Carri without an E's influence on unicorns.

I'd like to believe you will recognize this injustice and restore unicorn influence to @carribrown, but I have seen how carelessly you distribute and take back your topics of influence and therefore, I have little faith you will do the right thing.

But just remember this, Klout.  What goes around, comes around.  One day, when you least expect it, you will be stripped of that which you hold most dear.  I'm not really sure what that is, but when I find out...watch out.  Seriously.  WATCH.  OUT.

Sincerely,
SG


Linking up with lovelinks! Woot!

35 comments:

  1. Sounds like Klout is the best thing since the PTA. That's why in blog world I'm the girl sitting in the corner with my bangs over my eyes drawing Manga cartoons.

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  2. I've been wondering about this Klout business. I thought maybe next week, if I could possibly find some spare time, I would look into it seeing as how I feel the strong need to influence a few stupid people out there. But, since you have claimed it be like high school all over again I will NEVER be looking into it.

    I just started to feel better about all the BS that happened in high school. And that was 20 years ago. No thanks. Not for me.

    I just unfriended a friend on facebook for removing my birthday wish to her. She was mad at me and removed it from her wall. So I deleted her. That is as high school as I think I can handle right now.

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  3. OMG! Not the UNICORNS?! Klout should have known better than to mess with Carri, and apparently, you too!!!

    (And yea, I was spiraling down in the gutter of despair when klout took away all my klout over topics that I do actually know something about and replaced it with....influential on....wait for it....klout! LOL!)

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  4. I. Love. This. For some reason I am highly influential about Lady Gaga. Because I live tweeted the SNL season finale she was on.

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  5. everyone knows klout is a god damn whore. does this mean i can't give you klout with fake topics anymore??? cause that's like the highlight of my day, telling people i gave them +k in narcolepsy and latex fetishes.

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  6. Bless you.

    Twitter makes me feel like a big giant loser most days, and I'm typing this comment twice because Blogger said I don't own my Wordpress identity. I can only conclude that Klout would have me looking for something high to jump from.

    Thank you for the warning, and please know that I know what the score is. I will be coming to Carri for all of my unicorn sh*t.

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  7. Well. It seems my decision to handle computer cookies manually has paid off once again. Someone had "awarded" me points on Klout, and I was curious so I tried to get on the site. Couldn't. And since it's a pain in the ass to unblock sites, and I couldn't be bothered...I just wandered off. Glad I did.

    As for Twitter and cliques, I was on 2 years ago, was dragged into some drama, was actually threatened(!) and deleted my account. Now that I'm back on, I stick pretty much to bloggers and such. I found that you can really gauge a person by how and what they write/comment.Have found some great people and am now enjoying myself.Glad you have too!

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  8. Klout is a finicky bitch and I am totally WITH YOU on this! It did the same shit to me, said I was influential about, well something...don't remember what it was exactly and I was all excited. "Yeah bitches!" But then it was gone the next day. Klout has to pay....it needs to die a horrible death

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  9. Ah, so that's what Klout is. Hmm, guess that just goes to show how clueless I am. How annoying! Who needs Klout anyways? I've been quite content without it. That is, until I just now realized who the cool kid is again...;)

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  10. I've been thinking about doing this very thing! Can we unjoin? Because if you tell me how, I will totally do it!

    Also, I'm SO relieved I'm not the only one to sell off everything I own to go look for a unicorn (or a magical fairy...I've done it twice).

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  11. I am cracking up! After everyone raving about Klout, I finally went and checked my "score". i am influential about....."pathetic". So I came to your blog because in your bio, you assured me that the awesomeness would rub off onto me. Thank you.

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  12. I have no idea what you wrote about, but I bet is hilarious. I. Must. Tweet. And, give you a K+ (If I knew how to do that)

    I, would love to believe that whatever so hilarious you wrote about have such an influence on someone, or at least on unicorns or bacon. Really. I really do.

    Did I mention this was so influentially hilarious? Um, bacon!

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  13. You are HANDS-DOWN my favorite blogger in the whole world. And I think that Klout is a big jerk who wasn't hugged enough as a child and is compensating for having a small... Well, it's an aggregator and I don't know WHAT they have, but I assure you it is inadequate and Klout is just a sad little man with no friends. Jerk!

    Good luck with the unicorn thing. I think I might quit my job and join you. Will two people be more efficient in searching or will we be too much of a crowd and scare it off?

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  14. BOOM. You hear that, Klout? Every time you make SG and I cry, a unicorn stabs a kitten. You'd better watch your back!

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  15. I don't want to care about Klout as it's a right PMS bitch.

    But the bitch told me I'm influential about shoes! Though it/ she (gah) took it away from me for a day then gave it back. BITCH.

    I've been pursuing the unicorn dream for a while now. When someone knows where I can get one, @ me

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  16. How on earth does Klout come up with this stuff anyway? Apparently I am influential about cars. Because I posted on FB *once* about my boys and their new Cars backpacks. Funny huh?!

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  17. I just recently reached out to Klout and she must have tried to get me on her side by saying I was influential in wine. It worked but now it's gone. And I like you better.

    I used to tell all my seniors that high school is the best learning tool you've got in the world because everything later in life is JUST like it.

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  18. The unicorns wouldn't kill me, but the meat products would.

    Damn klout.

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  19. I dig Klout cause they give me free shit. But yeah, to live and die by a site that tries to quantify your coolness would be the epitome of dumbfuckery.

    Also? Bacon.

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  20. LOL Klout told me I was influential about cars...Did you know the most influential I am about them is the color?? I have decided the only way Klout can make up for it is by insisting I am influential about zombies!!! Then I may forgive them a little!!

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  21. Klout says I haven't influenced anyone recently, which I knew, but didn't need to have in writing thanks very much.. I influence the dog. She is in awe of my knowledge.

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  22. Klout must have taken Carri's unicorns and given them to me b/c I've been influential about them for a while now. And I don't even want one! Klout also says I'm influential about teeth. Teeth!

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  23. WTF is wrong with Klout and why did they take away Carri's unicorn topic. That's just wrong. I hope you still have #nerd as one of your topics.

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  24. High school ended and I missed it? Damn. ;)

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  25. klout says i'm influential about barbies. no fucking clue.

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  26. --You mean to tell me you weren't popular in high school? Shuuut the F up! You are utterly and fabulously and sensational cool in my book, biaaatch. :) I would have definitely smoked a joint with you! HAaaaaaaaaaa
    btw, the the hell is "Klout?" It really pisses me off.

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  27. I've been wondering what clout is, but none of the cool kids would tell me :-). Who am I kidding? I can barely keep up with twitter!

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  28. THIS. WAS. AWESOME!! I totally loved it, it actually made me laugh out loud, which I rarely do when reading. @carriebrown is a LUCKY girl to have you as her friend! Hey, SO AM I!!

    Recently, Klout took away my influence in alcohol and medical (because do you KNOW how hard it is to find a wine-loving non-doctor who has Klout in both of those?? REALLY. HARD.) But? It gave me klout in cats and bellybutton lint, so there's that.

    Fuck Klout!

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  29. I've never been able to figure out Klout. But, it let me sign up, so apparently there are no intelligence requirements. Lucky me.

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  30. haha! Love this! I think Klout needs to recognize Carri's dad as influential based on the vlog she made of him...right!!!! Then again, here I am spouting off, and due to my general lack of social media knowledge, I am scared of Klout. And in high school, the popular girls chased me from the school yard and threatened to cut my hair off. I'm not going near Klout!
    Great post! I love the comparison!

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  31. YES............. I'm totally with you. I've only been on klout for a day and I HATE it

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  32. How is it possibly for you to turn out so many hysterical things like nearly every day???!!! This is just so funny and right on. Klout began by telling me I was influential about... Klout!!! And that's just a few weeks after I joined and knew nothing about them! Then they took it away and replaced it with popcorn. I don't think I've ever written about popcorn! Love your letter - we must all send one!

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  33. Meh, I never got into Klout. I couldn't see how it would benefit me, why I should care about it, and what the point really was anyways. The traits Klout bestowed on others never really made much sense to me, except to produce some entertaining tweets. I guess this shows my continuing inability to be cool :)

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  34. Klout is the pretty girl who befriends you on the first day of school only to decide weeks later that you're entirely uncool and should be shunned for the rest of the year.

    Klout sucks.
    PS. Another good article on why Klout sucks: http://dannybrown.me/2011/08/25/enough-with-the-opt-out-bullshit-klout/

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  35. I'm on Twitter and always wondered what Klout was...now I think I'll just stay away. I don't need another reason to feel crappy! :)

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