Image Courtesy of TBS
Listen up, everyone! This past Tuesday was National Voter Registration Day: a day where media outlets, celebrities, social media platforms, and universities all encouraged first-time voters to register to cast their ballot in the 2018 midterm elections. What are the midterm elections, you ask? The midterm elections mark the halfway point of a president’s four-year term. Voters across the country directly elect those who will represent their districts in Congress, as well as some offices for governor and mayor. The midterm elections have a crucial impact on the lives of everyone in the United States, but through the years, the youth vote has been missing from the polls. According to DoSomething.org, 62% of unregistered people say they have never been asked to register to vote, which means that only a small number of first-time voters are having their voices heard on election day.
This year the midterm elections are on November 6th, 2018, which is only a little over a month away. As of right now, it seems like all the campaigns and crusades to drive up voter registration and engagement are working. According to a recent Pew Research Center Poll, 61% of all registered voters say they are more enthusiastic about voting in the upcoming midterm elections, which is higher than at any point during midterms in the past two decades. Amazing, right? The only question left unanswered is how to keep that momentum and excitement going all the way to election day. More than that, how can we make politics outside of the midterm elections palatable for those who don’t know anything about political science?
The team at the Emmy-nominated, late-night political comedy show Full Frontal with Samantha Bee has tried something new and revolutionary to incentivize voter turnout and engagement: they’ve created a mobile game! During the show on September 12, the Samantha Bee and Full Frontal team unveiled their new trivia app: This is Not a Game: The Game, a non-partisan voting app specifically directed towards making civic engagement fun. The show has produced two segments detailing the development process for the app from start to finish – including going to Silicon Valley to work with app developers, and with women at the Lesbians Who Tech Summit in San Francisco. It’s clear that a lot of love and time has been poured into the game through the process of its creation. An article from Deadline outlines how during the development process, Samantha Bee herself has described the game as “A heart-pounding, prize-stuffed turducken of a trivia game in which average citizens play to the death OR win kick-ass prizes, not sure which. We’re waiting to hear back from our lawyers.” If that sounds fun and exciting, it’s because it is!
We here at Her Campus have given TINAG:TG a try so you can know everything you need to know before you play! Here’s how the app works. The app lets you play live trivia with other people around the country, so to participate you have to tune into the app before a game starts. There are ten questions in each game, each question having four possible answers. The questions and answers range from serious to ridiculous, but since they’ve been written in the voice of the show, the outcome is always funny. If you get the question right you move on to the next round. Here’s one of the questions we were asked:
Courtesy of TINAG:TG
What if trivia isn’t your strong suit? Don’t worry. When you first start playing you get three lives, but every time you answer a question incorrectly you lose a life. If during a game you lose all your lives, you are put in “Dead Mode.” This means that you’re no longer in the running to win the prize for that game (we’ll explain prizes in a little bit) but you can still answer questions. Don’t worry if you lose all of your lives in one round – you can get more by signing up for election reminders, inviting friends, and completing weekly challenges. Here’s one of the questions that we got stumped on (don’t judge us):
Images courtesy of TINAG:TG
What might be the most exciting and innovative part of the game is that the app rewards players by giving you the option of winning real money (you read that right, real money). If you get all ten trivia questions correct without running out of lives, you and other trivia winners from that round split the jackpot of one thousand to five thousand dollars. Cool, right? We think so. What’s better than learning more about what’s going on politically in the United States through funny and topical questions, while also winning cold, hard cash? We can’t think of anything else. This is Not a Game: The Game is available for download on the App Store and Google Play, so go and try it! You won’t be disappointed.
Link to the Full Frontal With Samantha Bee website to download the game: https://www.tbs.com/shows/full-frontal-with-samantha-bee/articles/thisisnotagame
Link to vote.org to register to vote or learn more about how the voting process works on election day: https://www.vote.org/
Image Courtesy of TBS