CNNPolitics.com’s Political Prophecy game is powered by Pivit, a predictive market system built by New York-based startup Binary Event Network. It’s the same team that created the Intrade market for betting on events (like elections); however, Intrade was shut down in 2013 by government regulators.
CNN tested out Pivit with the midterm elections last November, and it’s now planning to make it a much bigger part of its political coverage after launching a redesign of CNNPolitics.com last month aimed at better showcasing breaking news, analysis and original video. In addition to users’ bets in Pivit, the probabilities incorporate other data, including the betting lines from gambling sites.
The news network plans to launch a CNNPolitics app on Sept. 10, which will include the Political Prophecy game. Currently, the CNNPolitics predictive market has several thousand players per day. After the app launches and the 2016 campaigns kick into full swing, O’Keefe expects that number to go into to tens of thousands. “A really healthy poll is about 1,200 people – we’re going to have way more than that in this probability market,” he said.
The incentive for players to participate in the Political Prophecy market, besides prestige? CNN will be offering the leaders in the game the opportunity to attend CNN-sponsored debates later this year, starting with the Sept. 16 GOP debate at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley, Calif.