Big data firm grades KC-area counties on social distancing—Cass and Wyandotte need to get it together

You’ve heard the orders barked on social media, by employers and by the city: Stay home. It turns out we’re being tracked, and a tech company knows who isn’t following stay-at-home directives.

Location data experts at Unacast created an interactive map—what the company calls a Social Distancing Scoreboard—to track movements in counties across the country. Updated daily, the map documents the percent change in distance traveled per county using phone GPS coordinates—the percent change a difference in movement from pre-COVID-19 conditions. Counties are scored as followed:

  • A: >40% decrease in movement
  • B: 30-40% decrease in movement
  • C: 20-30% decrease in movement
  • D: 10-20% decrease in movement
  • F: <10% decrease or increase in movement

Let’s break it down: Both Kansas and Missouri both averaged a B.

Specifically, Johnson County in Kansas scored an A while Missouri’s Platte, Clay and Jackson Counties scored Bs and Kansas’ Wyandotte County and Missouri’s Cass County both scored Cs.

Our cross-state rival, St. Louis County, also scored a C.

Hats off to D.C., Alaska, Nevada, New Jersey and Rhode Island for coming out on top on the Social Distancing Scoreboard.

Oregon, New Mexico, Idaho, Montana and Wyoming: You’ve got some work to do to get those grades up.

Wyoming is the only state to have an F.

Unacast seemed to have gotten a head-start on this task—just last week, the Washington Post reported that the government was in talks with tech giants like Google and Facebook about using anonymous location data to track peoples’ movements.

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