Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Are these Trump or Biden neighborhoods?

The New York Times has created a fascinating quiz which requires you to identify whether a neighborhood voted for Trump or Biden in the 2020 Presidential Election solely from looking at how the area looks on Google Maps Street View. The Trump-Biden Geography Quiz shows you a series of random neighborhoods on Street View and asks you to simply guess if most people voted for Biden or Trump.

The NYT quiz is very simple to play. For each question you are shown the Street View image of a neighborhood. You can rotate around the 360 degree panorama to get a good look at the street and its houses. Purely on this evidence you need to then guess whether in the 2020 election most people voted for the Democrat or Republican presidential candidate.

During my limited time playing the game I managed to guess over 80% of the neighborhoods correctly. I'm not alone in being able to guess most neighborhoods correctly. After each question you are told how many players answered the neighborhoods correctly. For most neighborhoods the majority of readers are able to tell purely from the Street View imagery whether a neighborhood voted for Trump or Biden. 

My answers were mainly guided by how urban or rural a neighborhood appears on Google Maps and also on how affluent the neighborhood seems. It would be interesting to know how other players decide on which neighborhoods voted Republican or Democratic.

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