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Photo Vote FAQs

What is Photo Vote?
Office Labs Photo Vote is a new experiment designed to let you quickly gather input from your Facebook friends and easily bring that data back into Excel. You can create polls with up to three photos and captions and Photo Vote will post it directly to your Facebook wall so your friends can share their opinions. As your friends vote on the options, the results are collected for you and displayed in an Excel workbook embedded in the browser, allowing you to explore your poll results mixed together with social data such as gender, age and relationship status. You can also create and monitor Photo Vote polls using our dedicated app for Windows Phone 7. The app allows you to post new polls when you’re out and about and receive notifications when new votes arrive.

Is Photo Vote free?
Yes. There is no charge to use the Facebook app or the WP7 app.

Why was Photo Vote created?
To find new and useful ways of collecting and analyzing data in the powerful new Excel Web App. Votes are collected along with Facebook profile data, such as age, gender and relationship status, and are presented in an Excel workbook hosted in the Excel Web App in the browser. The workbook allows users to explore the voting data using the power of Excel.

Why would I use Photo Vote instead of Facebook Questions?
Sometimes you want to ask a quick, text-only question, and you only care about the majority vote. For those times, Facebook Questions is a great tool. However, for certain questions, a photo really is worth a thousand words (ex. “Which dress should I wear to the party?”). In addition, with Photo Vote you get more than just the majority vote – by viewing your vote results in the Excel Web App, you can slice by age, gender and relationship status to reveal deeper insights in the results.

Does Photo Vote store personal data?
Photo Vote stores the minimum amount of Facebook profile data necessary to let users analyze their voting results. This includes friends’ age, gender and relationship status. However, Photo Vote cannot access any Facebook profile data that the users themselves cannot see. For example, Photo Vote will not disclose the age of a friend if you could not normally see that information on Facebook.

Who developed Photo Vote?
Photo Vote was built by the Office Business Intelligence team in close partnership with Office Labs.

How can users provide feedback on Photo Vote?
We’re really excited to hear people feedback and suggestions for this experiment. There are a variety of ways for people to share our thoughts with us. They can do so through the Office Labs Get Satisfaction page in the Photo Vote section, send email to photovote@microsoft.com or use the Contact the Developer feature on Facebook.

What Microsoft technologies does Photo Vote use?
Photo Vote is hosted on Windows Azure. It uses the Excel Web App, a free service available in SkyDrive, to display the vote results workbook. Photo Vote also uses Silverlight for its WP7 app.

Is this going to be included in the next version of Office?
No. As with all Office Labs experiments, Photo Vote is designed to get feedback and suggestions from people about the scenario. This experiment will be active through the end of 2011 at which point we’ll analyze the feedback and figure out how to use those learnings to enhance the Office experience.

What happens when the experiment ends?
This experiment will be active through the end of 2011 at which point we’ll be turning off the system. This means that no new polls can be created and we’ll stop tallying new votes. In order to give people a chance to retrieve the results of any prior polls, we’ll keep the Excel Web App access open for an additional three months so people can get and store their data.

Is Photo Vote available in other languages than English?
Sorry, not at this time.
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