The Republican Party is going to have its own web address at .gop. You can’t get your .gop domain yet, but you can get on the waiting list. Our question is, who else will be in your neighborhood?
State Republican party websites, for one thing. We hear that Florida, for example, will have RPFL.gop for Republican Party of FLorida. There will be general domains like poll.gop and news.gop. Grass roots organizations affiliated with the Republican Party will be able to get those domains, too. Will individual Republicans get their own domains as well? Apparently so.
ICANN has announced that some domain names, including those for Red Cross and Red Crescent with .gop endings, are reserved. Companies with trademarks can jump in on Monday and reserve their brand names before open season begins on July 7th. However, .gop is not reserved for special use as .gov and .edu are — you don’t have to prove you’re a Republican.
Maybe that wasn’t your question. Maybe you were wondering why the party decided to do this.
USA Today quoted Republican National Committee Press Secretary Kirsten Kukowski as saying, “The goal here is to really make investments and be on top of all of the newest in technology to compete with the Democrats and move up ahead of them.” That’s pretty straightforward.
I found President Obama’s dashboard pretty cool in the last election, and many people suggested that the Republicans got trounced because their tech was less snazzy — or at least less effective — than the Democrats’ tech.
The Democrats disagree. USA Today caught them being a bit snarky about it, in fact. DNC press secretary Michael Czin said, “Republicans didn’t lose in 2008 or 2012 because people couldn’t find their websites. To the contrary, it’s because people could figure out what they were campaigning on.”
Democrats and other political parties have yet to establish their own top-level domain names. You can get .democrat names at some registrars. Some registrars are also accepting .gop registrations, but it’s not clear what they’re doing with the information. DotGOP is taking names if you want to be poised to grab your favorite.
We foresee some hijinks and plan to watch with interest and see what happens. If anything.