Where Do Sporcle Events Questions Come From?

Where Do Sporcle Events Questions Come From?

Have you ever found yourself in the middle of a Sporcle trivia event, frantically trying to remember the capital of Burkina Faso or the lyrics to “Baby Got Back,” and wondered, “Who on Earth comes up with all these questions?” 

The truth is, behind every Sporcle Event is a team of trivia enthusiasts working to bring you fun and thought-provoking content, and lots of it. In 2022, over 17,000 questions were asked across our various live events. As you might imagine, creating it all is no easy task. So how do we do it? Let’s break it all down.

Our Writers

All of the trivia questions at Sporcle Events originate in the creative minds of our writers, who hail from diverse backgrounds and all corners of the country. These trivia aficionados bring their varied interests and experiences to the table, resulting in a wealth of interesting and entertaining questions which get sent to us on a regular basis.

Our writers draw inspiration from a variety of sources, including pop culture, current events, and wherever Wikipedia may take them.* They are naturally curious individuals who stay up to date on the latest news and trends. Whether they’re knowledgeable about politics, music, or the animal kingdom, they work together to provide the wide assortment of questions that make Sporcle Events so much fun.

*While Wikipedia is a great starting point for our writers, it’s never the sole source when deciding if their question is accurate.

Crafting the Perfect Game

After our writers have submitted their content, our Content Team editors take over to compile the questions into fully-fledged games that we hope will be fun for players of all skill levels. In many ways, it’s like building a newspaper.

We review the questions to ensure that they are appropriate and interesting, and carefully consider the difficulty level of each. As our Content Team begins to put questions together to build a trivia game, we take great care to include questions that cover a range of subjects and that appeal to a wide audience. We want to make sure that every player feels included and represented in our games. 

We track which Final Question categories and Mystery Round types we run each day. The team makes sure to not duplicate categories or rounds from week-to-week on the same day of the week. So, if you get a Before and After Mystery Round on a Wednesday night, you’re not likely to see it again on a Wednesday for a handful of weeks. The same thought process goes into Final Questions. If you get a Science and Movies question in those slots one week, they likely won’t be in those categories the following week.

Believe it or not, we hear equal amounts of grumblings that the questions are “too old” or “too young.” Our team works hard to mix up the age range of pop culture questions. If you get a question about a TV show from the 80s, it’ll probably be followed by a music question from the last few years.

Once we’ve compiled a set of questions into a game, we’ll add in notes for questions that can help hosts run a smooth and engaging trivia event. This might include additional background information that can add context to a particular question, or phonetic spellings for any hard-to-pronounce words or names. 

Utilizing Technology To Make Great Games

After doing this for over a decade, it’s clear that every audience and trivia night is different. We have bars where the average score is well over 100 points per night that are just miles away from a show with scores in the 60 or 70 range.

Because of that and because of our desire to make the content right for everyone, we write an A set and B set each night. An A set is automatically delivered to the 50% of locations that have had the highest average scores in the last six weeks. The B set is delivered to all new locations and the 50% of locations with the lower average scores.

Most times the A set and B set are very similar. We simply add words or clues to help make a question easier. Here’s an example:

A set – In terms of total number of letters, which Pixar film has the shortest title?
B set – In terms of total number of letters, which 2009 Pixar film featuring Ed Asner has the shortest title?

Quality Review

We take great pride in providing high-quality games to our players. As part of our commitment to excellence, we subject all of our games to a rigorous quality review process before they are released to the public.

Our review process begins with an even deeper check for errors, typos, and grammar by our editors. We also perform a comprehensive accuracy check to ensure that the information provided in our games is up-to-date and reliable. We take every precaution to ensure that our games are free of any mistakes that might detract from the player’s enjoyment. 

In addition to our internal review process, we also have the Content Review Council, a team of diverse individuals who represent a variety of backgrounds and experiences. They review each game to ensure that questions are appropriate for all cultures, ethnicities, and regions of the world. Most of the people on this council are Trivia Hosts themselves.

By subjecting our games to a comprehensive quality review process and incorporating feedback from our Content Review Council, we aim to provide the best possible games to our players. 

It Doesn’t Stop Once the Set is Delivered

The following day after a game is run, we get delivered a handy set of stats that our team studies for way too long. We know the percentage of teams that get each question correct, average Mystery Round scores, etc. This helps the team write better sets by seeing which categories are hard for teams. It also shows us that not every night of the week is equal. Some nights need lighter content (looking at you Friday night party animals).

See for yourself – here is our content chart from February 7th, 2023. The orange is Game 1 and the blue is Game 2. You can see that in Game 1, Question 4, only 19% of teams got that question correct. We know you’re curious. Here it was – What annual award show presents a trophy to winners that is a 16-inch-tall man holding a mask of comedy and a mask of tragedy?

See the Questions Yourself

Did you know you can see at least one Final Question each day? We post one of the Final Questions from the night prior on our Facebook page and on this page.

Opinionation: A Unique Approach

For Opinionation, our team of writers create a series of questions that are compiled into weekly surveys. These surveys cover many different topics, and are available for anyone to take. We’ll tally up the results of each survey question and use them to build out the games. This means that players can have a direct impact on the games they play, as their responses to these surveys help to shape the content of the game itself. 

While Opinionation is a little different from our traditional trivia games, it still adheres to our high standards of quality and accuracy. Our team of writers and editors work together to ensure that the questions are well-crafted and thought-provoking, while also being fair and accessible to all.

Bringing Fun to the Masses

Once our team of writers has created the questions and our editors have reviewed and refined the content, we turn our attention to all the technical aspects of actually bringing the game to a Sporcle venue near you. We create any necessary media, like slideshows or audio clues, and questions and show files are uploaded to the necessary avenues. This all creates a more interactive and visually appealing trivia experience, and allows for use of our PlayLive scoring system.

With the content completed, our games are now ready to be played and enjoyed by pub trivia attendees everywhere! Whether you’re a seasoned trivia player or a first-timer, we believe that our games have something for everyone!