ūüö®¬†THIS IS NOT #FAKENEWS!¬†ūüö®

A well informed populace is a foundational element of democracy, and recently that foundation has fallen under siege. Regardless of political lean, about two thirds of U.S. adults say completely made-up news¬†“causes a great deal of confusion about the basic facts of current issues and events.” Instead of sitting idly by, we created Fake News: The Game¬†to fight back against the global pandemic of misinformation.

Stemming from our collective frustration with fake news’ ability to spread like a virus,¬†and after seeing the likes of Facebook, Wikipedia, and The Washington Post¬†create and promote instructive resources; we decided to¬†take a fresh approach¬†to help increase news literacy… by¬†creating a game people might actually want to play.

Fake News: The Game is now available in the app store for any iOS device, and if you live in DC, available for a limited time only at Penn Social to play the physical arcade version.

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How Does It Work?

We’re populating our database daily from a variety of sources, namely Snopes, PolitiFact, and FactCheck.org¬†and serving them up for you to swipe left if it’s real, and swipe right if it’s fake. Its like Tinder… but for, you know, the health and well-being of democracy.¬†We’ve also included references¬†to key resources, as well as ways to engage¬†with organizations¬†such as The¬†News Literacy Project.

Fake News: The Game is a native iOS mobile application built on Swift and designed to work across all currently supported Apple devices running iOS 10 (and soon 11). “News” items are entered into a Django-powered admin panel that is loaded into the app on startup via an API. After a user plays a game, we record anonymous usage data so we can improve gameplay, and draw additional insights using various business intelligence (BI)¬†and data analysis tools like Firebase and PeriscopeData.

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What’s Next?

We’ve already received a ton of interest and great suggestions (e.g. adding in levels, selecting themes/categories)¬†and have heard from multiple bars who can’t wait to install the game themselves.¬†Based on user and game-play performance, we‚Äôll soon be able to publish data/insight on what types of #FakeNews headlines people are most susceptible to believe (across a demographic and geographic breakdown).

Play the game, get on the global leaderboard, and let us know what you think!

Note: we recently¬†came across similar games built by American University’s game studio (check out¬†Factitious) and another in partnership with PolitiFact (check out PolitiTruth).