The concept is simple: You download the app, tap who you are voting for (the options are Hillary or Donald or decline to answer), what state you are in and record a short video explaining your reasoning.
Exit Poll then will collate these videos into a Facebook Live stream tomorrow night that will play on its newly formed Facebook Page. The idea is you can watch the stream and hear the thoughts and opinions of thousands of Americans participating in the election.
While this sounds simple, it actually provides a valuable service. These days it’s harder than ever to drown out the noise and hear what your fellow Americans think. Sure, you can open your Facebook feed and see political posts from your crazy uncle who posts daily links from random right- or left-wing news sites, but that doesn’t tell you anything useful. From the sound of it, Exit Poll will let you hear thoughtful comments from Americans around the country.
Of course, this all depends on the quality of the videos submitted by voters. But Neistat explained to me that his company will be screening everything for “profanity and inappropriateness,” which helps increase the odds that the videos shown will actually be interesting and thoughtful.
Notably (and despite its name) Exit Poll won’t be releasing any of the aggregate voting data — so there will be no way to see how many people in Pennsylvania using the app voted for Trump or Clinton, even though the startup will have that data.
In his launch video, Neistat readily admits that the app will most likely only be useful tomorrow, on Election Day. But the project is part of a bigger move from Beme to experiment with live video, and Facebook Live is obviously the frontrunner in this space.
As a refresher, Neistat launched Beme about a year and a half ago as a way to share short clips with others around the world. While the app initially soared in popularity, with 1.1 million videos shared in the first week, it had trouble gaining traction and downloads slowed. Beme is still available for download, but Exit Poll may be an indicator that the company is at least experimenting with other ideas.