California joins other states in allowing online voter registration

A dozen states are now simplifying the process of registering to vote by letting users complete the whole procedure online.

Maryland's online voter registration Web site

The number of states that now allow online voter registration is growing. And it only makes sense that Silicon Valley's home would be on that list. As of today, California is the newest state that lets its residents register to vote on the Web.

California Secretary of State Debra Bowen announced the news today.

"Today, the Internet replaces the mailbox for thousands of Californians wishing to register to vote," she said, according to the Los Angeles Times. "Today we are taking the next step in the never-ending evolution of democracy and reaching every Californian."

Within the first 12 hours of the launch of California's new system, 3,000 people had already used it to register to vote.

Eleven other states already allow online registration, according to TechCrunch, including, Arizona, Colorado, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Nevada, Maryland, and New York. Apparently, Connecticut, Delaware, and Hawaii are also in line to set up online voter registration systems.

Some tech companies are also joining in to get users to register to vote. Facebook and Microsoft partnered with Washington State in July to create an app that lets the state's residents register to vote via the social network. Facebook also recently partnered with CNN to create an " I'm Voting " app, which shows information on users' timelines about the specific candidates and issues they endorse.

With the new online system, Californians can register to vote up to 15 days before the election, so the cut off for the November 6 presidential election is October 22.

About the author

Dara Kerr, a freelance journalist based in the Bay Area, is fascinated by robots, supercomputers and Internet memes. When not writing about technology and modernity, she likes to travel to far-off countries.

 

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