The .GOP domain name extension is operated by
Minds & Machines the Republican State Leadership Committee (see Mike’s article for more details). For those outside the United States, “GOP” is an acronym that stands for “Grand Old Party,” which is a nickname for the US Republican Party. The general idea behind the extension is that people associated with the party could use .GOP domain names for political related websites, although I do not believe their are any registration restrictions.
The other day, I saw a retweet on Twitter mentioning a newly launched website, DonaldTrump.GOP. I thought was interesting because it used a .GOP domain name, which I don’t see regularly:
— Matt Ortega (@MattOrtega) October 8, 2016
The registrant of DonaldTrump.GOP is not using this particular .GOP domain name in support of Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump. In fact, the domain name is owned and operated by Matt Ortega, a former staffer on Hillary Clinton’s Presidential campaign (Hillary for America).
When you visit DonaldTrump.GOP, you can see a list of “Donald Trump Republicans.” These seem to be mostly prominent elected officials and members of the Republican party that the website identifies as supporters (past and/or present) of Donald Trump. The website was created to “stand as a testament to Republicans putting power and party over principle and country, and may they never live it down.”
I reached out to the website’s creator to learn about why he launched this website. I was particularly interested in learning why he chose the .GOP extension, although it seems pretty clear based on the branding. Here’s what Matt had to say to me:
“I have built websites, designed graphics, and produced videos going back to 2012 presidential election.
I decided to build the site because I refuse to let Republicans run away from their support of Donald Trump in the future.
I chose .gop to screw with the Republican Party.”
According to nTLDStats.com, there are currently 2,076 registered .GOP domain names. This number has been declining since August’s high of 2,259 registered .GOP domain names. DonaldTrump.GOP was registered on October 8, 2016. It is certainly an interesting way to use a .GOP domain name.