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Klout's New App Cinch Is Like Quora, But More Social

Klout tries to score your social media influence, but now it's also trying to leverage its users' expertise to answer questions. Like, er, Quora.

Klout is best known for its social influence measurements—rating how much its users can influence their social graph with interactions on Twitter, Facebook, and so on and then monetizes its results. But the company this week released a new app called Cinch, and it's very different. Cinch is, at first blush, a lot like Quora. But where Quora is perhaps best described as crowdsourced, Cinch is more about the social graph.

Cinch, according to TheNextWeb, is like Quora and Klout mixed together. When a user asks a question to the community, the app's algorithms scour the user base and try to match the question to an expert with the right knowledge. The answers are then communicated privately. In this way, it's the opposite of Quora's open-answer forum, which also lets other users not involved in the conversation see the interactions. Cinch uses Facebook authentication, so you don't have to be a Klout user to take part. Its success seems to hinge on matching questions with the right expertise, so that questioners don't have to sift through a lot of inaccurate or inappropriate answers.

Klout is itself controversial, with early questions about the reliability of its social graphing algorithms and also dubiousness about how entities like employers may be putting too much emphasis on an employee's Klout score. Do you think the company can make more of a splash with its new Q&A app?

[Image via Flickr user: Duncan Hull]