How Well Do Doodle Polls Do?
Web-based Doodle polls, where respondents indicate their availability for a collection of times provided by the poll initiator, are an increasingly common way of selecting a time for an event or meeting. Yet group dynamics can markedly influence an individual’s response, and thus the overall solution quality. Via theoretical worst-case analysis, we analyze certain common behaviors of Doodle poll respondents, including when participants are either more generous with or more protective of their time, showing that deviating from one’s “true availability” can have a substantial impact on the overall quality of the selected time. We show perhaps counter-intuitively that being more generous with your time can lead to inferior time slots being selected, and being more protective of your time can lead to superior time slots being selected. We also bound the improvement and degradation of outcome quality under both types of behaviors.
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