Will Gamifying Parenting Make Dads Help Out More? 'Call of Doody' Aims to Find Out

Mother L.A.'s competitive chore game

Armed with data showing moms overwhelmingly bear the brunt of added responsibilities when a couple has a child, ad agency Mother L.A. has launched "Call of Doody," a competitive chore game that will hopefully give dads an added incentive (as if they should need one) to shoulder more of the workload. 

Timed to Mother's Day, the game is a cheeky gamification of daily parenting chores. It tracks chores like changing diapers, feeding the baby from a bottles, giving baths and putting the baby to sleep. Mom and Dad can both earn points to see who wins "Parent of the Week." The winner gets bragging rights that can be easily shared in social. 

Call of Doody

We're going to go ahead and suggest that surely the last thing new parents need is a reason to be competitive with each other. That said, maybe fathers' reptilian, sports-addled brains actually would respond to a scoreboard-like interface for this kind of stuff. And the campaign's heart is in the right place—it aims to rectify the imbalance of a mother's workload increasing by 21 hours per week with a new baby, while a father's increases by only 12.5 hours. 

Mother, thankfully, acknowledges its overly simplistic approach. 

"Men love competition. And video games," Mother says. "What if there was a prize for changing poopy diapers? We know progress is being made, but is it happening fast enough? While we don't claim to have a permenant solve for this highly complex and nuanced social issue, the stupid answer, clearly, is to turn the crappiest part of the parenting job into a literal game." 

Check out some images from the game below, and try it for yourself at callofdoody.me.

Tim Nudd
Tim Nudd is editor in chief of the Clio Awards.