What is Sporcle’s Digital Answering System and Why Do We Love It?

(Last Updated On: April 22, 2022)

Why Does Sporcle Events utilize a Digital Answering System for Stump Trivia by Sporcle, Sporcle Pub Quiz, and Opinionation by Sporcle?

When COVID-19 hit, Sporcle was faced with the reality that our paper and pen method of collecting answers needed to change. Requiring players to walk around made social distancing impossible and asking our hosts to handle materials that had been touched multiple times by multiple people was not exactly pandemic-friendly. More so, we needed an immediate solution to collect answers via our virtual events on Zoom. Thankfully, our team of web developers was able to get started on a solution before someone could jokingly suggest we purchase Sporcle-branded hazmat suits.

A short time later, PlayQuiz.Live debuted and we quickly learned just how accurate the saying “necessity is the mother of invention” is. We’ve come to love this Digital Answering System (DAS) and have decided it’s here to stay. While it’s clear to us why the DAS is a monumental improvement over the old-school method, some of you might be asking why. So, here we go.

It saves so many friendships.

Studies show that the #1 argument among pub quiz teammates is who will turn in the answer slip. Studies don’t actually say that but we know it’s an issue. Rather than scrambling to strategically secure an inside seat in your favorite booth or playing rock, paper, scissors every round, teams just need one person to type the answer into their phone. 

We’re saving trees.

Did you know that last year we saved over 75 fully-grown trees by going paperless at our trivia events? 

Hosts are less stressed.

Anyone who has ever played any of our pub quizzes has probably noticed their host manually entering the points into Excel sheets. The DAS takes the pressure off of them by automating this process and eliminating the need to decipher different handwriting styles. Don’t worry, hosts can still override the system to give points to people whose answers were incorrectly marked wrong because of simple mistakes like spelling. 

Quicker Games.

A second benefit to automated scorekeeping is that games go faster thanks to the DAS. We know how frustrating it can be when trivia nights take too long, especially for those who aren’t night owls. Have we unlocked the secret to eliminating bags under your eyes? Maybe not, but the DAS helps out immensely. 

Waitstaff can move freely.

Without trivia players getting up every round to turn in their answer slips, they stay in their seats. This means waitstaff don’t have to dodge players who are scrambling to turn in the answer before time is up. It also means you get your food and beverages sooner. Cheers!

It’s more inclusive.

Not everyone can easily write with paper and pen or navigate their way to the host’s table. Using a digital system lets players who might otherwise be excluded join in on the fun. 

It will make for a better future experience.

In the not too distant future, Sporcle Events teams will be able to view their Passport Stamps, league leaderboards, and individual stats in the DAS. 

It’s a necessity for Sporcle’s Virtual Pub Quiz events.

It’s been two years since we launched the DAS in response to COVID-19. We’re back in person for many of our Pub Quizzes, but we still host over thirty virtual trivia games via Zoom each week! The DAS allows people to stay connected with each other through trivia and quiz games and events, regardless of their location.

Post-Game Recaps arrived.

We launched post-game recaps shortly after DAS’s debut. These recaps go out to all teams registered for The Globe and anyone else who puts their email address into the DAS. The post-game recaps include all the scores from each night along with state and national ranks. Data is fun.

Nerd point: DAS ist lustig auf Deutsch 

“Das” is a definite article in German (think “the” or “that”). It’s funny (lustig) to think about someone vaguely saying “put your answer in that!” every time someone mentions our DAS. At the very least, it’s a cross-linguistic pun to make our deutshsprachige Spieler roll their eyes.