Survey Says: Facebook Goofed, But Why The Long Political News Quiz?

By David Cohen 

Some Facebook users were invited to take a survey from the social network — in error, as it turns out — and the survey evolved into a quiz about political news.

Marketing Land reported on and captured images of the survey, later receiving this response from Facebook:

For a brief period of time, an incomplete test survey was visible to a small percentage of users. This survey has been removed.

According to Marketing Land, the survey was introduced with this message at the top of the news feed:

Before the shift to the quiz on politics, the survey sought information on the following topics from respondents:

  • Overall satisfaction with Facebook.
  • Overall satisfaction with news feed (mistakenly referred to as new feed).
  • Where and how many times per week users get their news from.
  • Race.
  • Education.
  • Year of birth.
  • Combined household income.

Politics then took over, with the survey asking respondents:

  • How they would rate Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, Democrats, and Republicans, on a scale of one to 100.
  • Party affiliation.
  • Political ideology.
  • If they will vote in the upcoming presidential election, and who they intend to vote for.
  • If they feel closer to the conservative or liberal point of view.

Then came the news quiz (including the answers at the end, for all the cheaters out there), which asked the following questions:

  • Who is the current vice president of the U.S.?
  • Which presidential candidate supports allowing illegal immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children to remain in the country?
  • The economy has shrunk 7 percent in the past three months (true or false).
  • Mitt Romney was the governor of which state?
  • More American troops died in Afghanistan under Bush than Obama (true or false).
  • Mitt Romney was the CEO of which of these companies (Bain Capital, Google, American Motors, Sears)?
  • The Republican Party currently has a majority of seats in (the House of Representatives, the Senate, both, or neither).
  • Mitt Romney supports outlawing abortion, even in cases of rape and incest (true or false).
  • Which president signed into law the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), which authorized $700 billion to purchase troubled bank assets?
  • What state did Barack Obama represent in the U.S. Senate before he became president?
  • Nearly 60 percent of all occupants of government-subsidized properties in the U.S. are illegal immigrants (true or false).
  • Under President Obama, a record number of illegal immigrants have been deported (true or false).
  • What does the term “super PAC” refer to?
  • From 2000 to 2012, Mitt Romney paid no income tax (true or false).
  • Obama is a Muslim (true or false).
  • Who is the current chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court?

The survey then ends with a question of how users perceived its length.

Readers: Why do you think Facebook was considering a survey with a long political news quiz?

Screen grabs courtesy of Marketing Land.