The Christian Democrats and Social Democrats are going door-to-door collecting voter information. They are hoping to gain access to the electorate in a way that was once unthinkable under Germany’s strict privacy laws. Cornelius Golembiewski takes an iPad and a smartphone with him when he goes door-to-door for the Christian Democrats (CDU). On the iPad, he sees a map of his hometown, Jena, covered in green spots. The green indicates clusters of houses where potential CDU voters are likely to live.
woman at her home near Jena’s main train station and talks to her about the party’s goals, just like in any other election season. But what is different this time around is that once she closes the door, he pulls out his smartphone and opens an app called Connect17. First, he clicks on a smiley face to show that the conversation went well and then enters the woman’s estimated age, gender and any questions she had about the campaign. When he clicks the last button, he wins 100 points, which will increase his ranking among fellow canvassers.
The Connect17 app has been audited in the German state of Saarland, and Praxisnah, the company that developed it, made a few adjustments to comply fully with privacy laws.