everyone into trivia

Why is Everyone into Trivia These Days?

What’s the capital of Paraguay? Who was the first person to break the sound barrier? What Broadway musical has won the most Tonys? What’s one of the most popular pastimes in the U.S. these days?

The answers? Asunción, Chuck Yeager, The Producers… Trivia. It takes place live in thousands of bars across the country every night of the week, trivia apps have exploded in popularity, and a whole new generation is obsessed with the classic TV show “Jeopardy!” (The polling site YouGov says it’s the number three favorite show among Millennials.) When did everyone get so into trivia?


Healthy Pastimes for $1,000, Alex

HealthLine’s “It’s Not Trivial…Knowing Obscure Facts is Good for Your Mental Health” sums it up perfectly.  People get a boost in their confidence and brain power when they correctly answer a question. Trivia nights at bars and restaurants are great ways to socialize and share your favorite subjects.

A recent GQ article credits the fun of competition and the need to belong. We all know that one person who’s quick to solve word puzzles or answer pop culture questions. By the very nature of the game, there are endless categories for people to enjoy. You shine as the star who knows what no one else does and meet others as passionate about certain subjects. Everyone can learn from each other, regardless of age or education.


Prizes Don’t Hurt, Either

This desire to win is further elevated when the game involves monetary prizes. Most bars give out gift certificates as prizes and some apps, like HQ, award cash. Mic likens the drive to the appeal of gambling; even if you only win a few chips every now and then at the casino, you keep at it. Humans are competitive by nature. Playing a trivia game is just another way of expressing that competitiveness. Plus, a gift certificate provides an incentive to return the following week.

Trivia provides a great basis for a successful fundraiser, too. You might charge an entry fee and split the pot between your organization and the winner.


Apps and Websites Entice Everyone into Trivia

If you prefer to flex your competitive spirit online, there are plenty of opporutnities. The mobile app Trivia Crack offers categories such as art, science, sports, entertainment, geography, and history. You can play this family-friendly game against people you know or someone at random. Another one for all ages is QuizUp, which delivers timed trivia rounds. At Sporcle, you can apply filters to find your ideal quiz, including the level of difficulty. You can also compile a “playlist” or group of quizzes for easier access, and make your own quiz. Entertainment site Buzzfeed archives quizzes, so that they too have something for everyone into trivia.


Trivia Increases Your Presence

Organizing and hosting games are a great way to engage the community at non-profit, school, and civic events. It’s an activity that works well as part of fundraising 101 plans, and sparks unique conversations. There’s a timeless essence that may also explain everyone into trivia – when’s the last time you played a round?


IMAGE: Wikimedia Commons / CC0 Public Domain

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