It's common knowledge now to keep your social media accounts relatively benign; the idea is to keep current or future employers from seeing your drunken debauchery and decide you're suddenly unfit to be a employed. But even so, we still slip up sometimes — which is why the new social media app Clear exists. If you're in a bit of a crunch and don't have time to go through all the pictures you don't want anyone else to see, Clear will flag potentially inappropriate posts on your Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. How does it work its magic? Some fancy algorithms and Watson, IBM's super computer. Useful, no?
Clear was created, ironically, by Ethan Czahor, Jeb Bush's former technology officer — who, you may recall, resigned after a series of offensive tweets surfaced from his Twitter account, including sexist and homophobic comments. It isn't, however, the first ever app to offer this service or a service similar to this. Social Sweepster does something similar; it cleans up your social media presence by focusing on embarrassing visual content and photos. Meanwhile, Socially Clean and SimpleWash do searches of keywords that might be problematic.
I decided to see if Clear is worth all the fuss so I set up to clean some of my social media profiles and see what it could find... but it turned out that there was a waitlist with about 4,000 people ahead of me:
There goes that idea.
I was still curious about what one of these applications could find on my social media accounts, though, so I moseyed on over to Social Sweepster and connected it to my Facebook account. I was told to wait while my content was scanned:
And just to round out the trio, I attempted to give Socially Clean a shot, too — but didn't work on my computer because my Internet connection wasn't private. Something to bear in mind if you try to use the service yourself.
Maybe it's because I'm a product of my instant gratification world, but encountering these three services made me realize that if you're looking to clean up your social media profiles, doing it yourself is probably best. While computers and machines are becoming more and more advanced an algorithm isn't going to do as good a job as an actual human can when it comes to recognizing what's appropriate or inappropriate — just like dating apps and algorithms can't necessarily detect what you will be attracted to like your own body can.
So if you have copious amounts of vulgar, heinous content that you can't possibly sift through, I would recommend using one of these cleaning apps; otherwise, grab some ice cream, put on your fave album, and get to work yourself.
Images: Mehak Anwar (2)