By: Sarah Drummond for MI First Election
A recent trend in college communities has emerged: the debate drinking games. There are a few varieties but the most popular, according to Google, is www.debatedrinking.com.
The game is based on key words that the candidates are likely to say during the debate. The player picks a candidate and drinks each time their chosen candidate said one of those words. The website has a Twitter handle as well as a live ‘scoreboard’ keeping track of each team.
Not all students are big fans of the game.
“I think it’s weird people are making a game about political stuff,” said Taylor Zuelch, a Freshman and Michigan State University. “I think they should be taken more seriously.”
Other students, such as Peter Cernak, don’t mind the game, but believe it defeats the purpose of watching the debates.
“After a while, you kind of get too much alcohol in your system,” Cernak said. “You’re kind of zoning out.”
Not all students feel the game is counterproductive.
“It’s a fun way to get engaged for college students,” said Eric Jaros, a junior at MSU. “Maybe you learned a little bit while you were doing it. You listened at least.”
The founder of debatedrinking.com, who goes by Dan, felt that the game was a good way to watch the debates and have some fun with it.
“It wasn’t really our intention to get people to watch the debates who would not have otherwise, but we do try to make the debates more fun,” said Dan. “We avoid the ‘drink when candidate x side lies’ type of rules. We know that people have friends and family with differing political views and we believe that should not get in the way of sharing a beer and hearing both sides of the debates. “
The site is also unique in the way it runs the game.
“We also saw an opportunity to improve the standard drinking game. We thought it would be more fun to assign different words to each candidate and pick a candidate to drink to. After all, what is a game without winners and losers?” said Dan. “We also introduced the live scoreboard as a way to have fun with the technology and provide a ‘second screen’ experience that wouldn’t be too distracting from the actual debate.”
Not only does debatedrinking.com cover the debates before the election, they also have a game for the primaries of both parties, the State of the Union Address, as well as tonight’s coverage of the election.