New Palin scandal: She deletes some comments from her Facebook wall

How much work does it take to keep everything so sanitized? To help me find out, my colleague Jeremy Singer-Vine wrote a program to capture comments to Palin’s page before the clean-up crew could arrive. (Here’s an explanation of how Jeremy’s program works.) All these posts were initially public, if only for a few minutes. We looked at the comments to 10 Palin posts over 12 days, capturing the deletions in the 24 hours after the posts were live. In that period, a rough average of 10 percent of total posts were deleted.

The deletions amount to a real-time look at how much effort and care Palin puts into protecting her public image. It’s not just the number of posts that are screened out that gives some indication of how seriously Palin’s team is monitoring things. The superfine mesh through which posts are sifted also gives an indication of the work involved. You don’t get erased just for using vulgarity or pushing spam (which Facebook might remove anyway if flagged). The kinds of posts that are likely to get you removed from the Palin comments section can be divided into categories (the comments have not been edited)…