.vote

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DotVote.jpg
Status: Active
Manager: Monolith Registry LLC
Registry Provider: Afilias
Registry: Monolith Registry LLC
Registry Backend: Afilias
Type: Generic
Category: Lifestyle
nTLDStats
Registrations: 2,858
Parked Domains: 1,786
Parked Domain %: 62.49 %
Important Dates
Delegation: 02 March 2014
General Availability: 17 February 2015

More Information: NTLDStatsLogo.png

.VOTE is an active gTLD, added to the DNS root zone in ICANN's new gTLD program. Monolith Registry LLC manages .vote with the support of Afilias as its back-end provider of registry services.[1]

Mission and Purpose

The new (.VOTE) and its Spanish/Portuguese/Italian counterpart, (.VOTO) top level domains are dedicated to providing spaces on the Internet where voters can find useful information from candidates and other bona fide political participants who agree to abide by the .VOTE/.VOTO registration

.VOTE and .VOTO reduce confusion with domain names and create an easily recognizable Internet space where voters can find reliable information regarding governments, current elected officials, and candidates seeking public office at all levels. [2]

Registration Policy

Eligibility

Registrants must have a bona fide intention to use the domain name, during the current/relevant election cycle, in connection with a clearly identified political/democratic process at the time of registration. Warehousing domain names for future speculative use, or registering a domain name to principally block the bona fide registration and use by a third party is expressly prohibited.[3]

Name Selection

There must be a clear and logical nexus between the activities of the Registrant within the political/democratic system and the domain name being registered. Registrants shall have a bona fide intention to use the domain name in promoting, developing, educating, or engaging in commerce regarding the political system. Domain names that are likely to deceive, disparage or cause a material detriment to the .VOTE brand, its customers or Internet users are explicitly prohibited, e.g., www.ihateCandidateX.vote, www.yourOpponentsName.vote, etc. The default allocation mechanism in connection with Standard Registrations are First-Come, First-Serve. However, the Registry Operator reserves the right to utilize alternative allocation mechanisms.[4]

Proxy/Private Registration

.VOTE requires that accurate Registrant data is available in the WHOIS at all times. Therefore, Proxy / Private Registration is not allowed in .VOTE registrations.[5]

Compliance

In addition to standard anti-abuse policy, the registry has an audit mechanism in place to protect the integrity of the .VOTE brand and the interest of .VOTE customers and internet. There are processes in place where non-compliant names can be reported, investigated and removed promptly, when warranted. Abuse reports can be emailed to abuse@afilias.info.

Delegation and Availability

On November 21, 2013 Monolith received a Registry Agreement signed by ICANN for .vote after passing the Initial Evaluation.[6] It was subsequently delegated to the Root Zone of the DNS on 2 March, 2014, completing the successful application for the string.[7] The Sunrise Period was held from January 13, 2015 through February 12, 2015. General Availability opened on February 17, 2015.

Applications

The winning applicant, Monolith Registry LLC is a venture backed by Afilias. The application was in contention with Donuts. In June 2013, the contention was settled in a private auction, for an undisclosed amount. This was the first case of a private gTLD auction leading to a withdrawal of an application. The auction was facilitated by Innovative Auctions.

[8]

Registrant Usage

The .VOTE domain is intended for use in the political sphere, primarily in relation to elections. As stated in the Applications, the target registrants are governmental organizations, political candidates, political action committees (PACs), political committees, and other registrants who meet the domains specific eligibility requirement.[9]

State Usage

Currently, eight states have registered .vote domains:

  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • Connecticut
  • Colorado (not live)
  • Iowa
  • Louisiana
  • Rhode Island
  • Washington

Seven of these eight states (excluding Colorado) have live sites, where voter information can be found. All of these states have registered .voto domains as well.

Presidential Candidates

Additionally, a few of the political candidates in the 2016 Presidential Primary have adopted .vote. It has been promoted as a way to limit the impact of the cybersquatting that has become common in general elections. Candidates such as Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, and Carly Fiorina have active sites registered under the .vote domain.[10]

References

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