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Tinder for politics: Swipe right for the next US president
Politics is complicated and often ugly. But picking a presidential candidate doesn’t have to be so agonizing – in fact, it can be as easy as lining up a Tinder date.
Adding to the growing trend of copycat Tinder apps, Voter is an iOS app that puts political power in your thumbs. Although you won’t be voting with the app itself, spend a few minutes swiping right and left on contentious issues and you’ll be given a pretty good indication of the best candidate to tick on your ballot card.
The app never gets too deep into political minutiae, but there are two levels of questioning. First, you’ll be asked to agree or disagree with some major, hopefully clear-cut policies, such as the death penalty, same sex marriage and abortion. If you are unsure on a particular issue, you can simply tap your screen to display a cheat sheet on the surrounding arguments.
Once you’ve answered a handful of questions you’ll be then given the chance to see your results, or you can move on to round two which is pretty much more of the same. Here, we were asked whether we supported building a border fence, stricter laws for online piracy and increased funding for education. A third round is apparently coming soon.
On the results page (named ‘Matches’, just like on Tinder), you’ll see the party and and presidential candidate you agree with the most. Tap on either and you’ll see a full list, showing all of 2016’s presidential hopefuls and your compatibility as a percentage. Tap once more and you’ll see exactly the issues you agree and disagree on, as well as the top contributors to their campaign and some key quotes.
Clearly, Voter isn’t perfect. You might scoff at the idea of a ‘Tinder for politics’, or argue that the app is typical of the dumbing down of the political system. But if that is the case, then chances are you’ve already decided how you’ll be voting and Voter probably isn’t for you.
If, however, you’re new to politics and not quite sure where your values align, then this app is accessible, intuitive and actually kinda fun. Yes, it’s flawed, but knocking down a few barriers in the way of political engagement can’t be a bad thing.
To try Voter for yourself, download it for free on your iOS device. Who knows, the results may even surprise you.