For better or worse we will be seeing gamification used by politicians during this election year and in the future.
The political arena comes with a natural level of competition just like any popular game. By deliberately offering politics ideals in the form of a fun engaging game, politicians can target gamers to support them in elections and causes.
In a Campaing & Elections’ article Jordan Raynor said, “67 percent of households are playing games.” That’s a large target market to advocate to.
Raynor, vice president of media and public affairs at Engage, added, “Why can’t we make political advocacy fun?”
Why can’t we indeed? Some basic low quality online games can already be found. “Are you a Republican?” a game by EllaGames.com allows users to select pictures that appeal to them and then calculates their Republican score for the day.
Also think back to the 2004 Bush versus Kerry election when web users could play “Presidential Knockout“. The MiniClip.com game allowed you to be either Kerry or Bush and then punch their political opponent out.
Now eight years later the public will likely see a higher quality of gamification being utilized. The more clever and intriguing the game the more likely the public is to use it.
We will see politicians trend towards gamification the way they did towards social media in the last few years. A politician will reach a bigger audience and gain more supporters by utilizing more technology. Gamification is already being used by politicians in creative ways. For instance, President Obama is currently using Foursquare to check-in to places he visits.
Perhaps this will be a pleasant alternative to the political Facebook page and all the political ads. Do you think politicians could ever use gamification well enough to swing your vote?
Image (c) League of Women Voters of California