Political Misinformation Game: Harmony Square

What is
Harmony Square

Welcome to the idyllic Harmony Square, a small neighborhood mildly obsessed with democracy. You are hired as Chief Disinformation Officer. Over the course of 4 short levels, your job is to disturb the square’s peace and quiet by fomenting internal divisions and pitting its residents against each other.

Harmony Square was developed in collaboration with the U.S. Department of State’s Global Engagement Center (GEC) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). The game is currently available in Czech, Dutch, English, French and German, with more translations being added regularly; click the button on the top right of the page to change the language.

How does
it work?

In a randomized controlled study, we found that playing Harmony Square improves people’s ability to spot manipulation techniques in social media posts, increases their confidence in spotting such techniques, and reduces their willingness to share manipulative content with people in their network. The results of this study were published in the journal Harvard Misinformation Review, and can be found here.

Project Description

Our inoculation games were designed as part of a collaboration between DROG, Gusmanson Design and Cambridge University. We created these games to improve people’s ability to spot common manipulation techniques such as trolling and creating conspiracy theories out of thin air. So far, we’ve launched three different games, each of which covers a different domain of misinformation: Bad News (about online “fake news”), Harmony Square (about political disinformation and intergroup polarization), and Go Viral! (about COVID-19 misinformation). More games are currently in development. This page will be updated as soon as they are publicly available.

All our inoculation intervention games were developed by Bad News, serious gaming development studio, a 100% subsidiary of DROG