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NIST Voting Research Group General Information

In the course of performing the R&D necessary to support the voting domain, at one time or another, the NIST Voting Program periodically creates new groups to perform particular roles in supporting organizational mission objectives. Sometimes those groups and roles involve the creation of new guidelines (such as specific role served by the now defunct VVSG 2.0 public working groups in the formation of VVSG 2.0). At other times, groups may be created to perform particular research tasks or to explore in promising research directions. NIST has been creating additional research groups, since the adoption of VVSG 2.0, in order to pursue R&D in these sectors of continued need in the voting domain, regardless of whether or not they are covered by VVSG 2.0.

Each research group typically has its own webpage to describe the group, its goals, and its activities.

Recent group (and related subgroup) pages include the following:

When individuals participate in these groups, it is usually through the use of specific group communication channels, such as group email lists and group meetings. As necessary, the NIST Voting Program creates these kinds of resources to support a given research group, based on their particular activities. For email lists, the NIST Voting Program uses Google Groups whose archived discussions can be seen publicly by anyone. In addition, anyone is free to join these groups and/or participate through these communication channels or meeting venues so long as they abide by the rules of etiquette that are required of all involved.

General information regarding the hosting, membership, and rules of etiquette for a given research group are provided below.

Group Usage

Google Groups Hosting

The group uses Google Groups for managing the email lists. If you have a Gmail address or Google account, you can join a group and post to the mailing list and access the email archives; non-Google users can still post and access the email archives but to join, you must send an email to the group administrator. A Google account permits you to continue using your non-Gmail address but signs you in to Google; for information on how to obtain a Gmail address or Google account, please see https://accounts.google.com/SignUpWithoutGmail .

How to Join a Group or Manage your Membership in a Group

If you do not have a Gmail address or Google account, please send an email to the following address and include your name and preferred email address(es) and which group(s) you wish to join:

voting@nist.gov

If you do have a Gmail address or Google account:

  1. Go to the following URL: https://groups.google.com/a/list.nist.gov
  2. Click on the “Browse all” button to find groups to join, and click on the name of each group you wish to join.
  3. Click on the “Join group to post” button and set up your email account preferences. You’re done!

Here is a useful article with further information about Google groups:

https://gsuite.google.com/learning-center/products/groups/get-started

         How to Read a Group’s Email Archives

Google and non-Google users can read a group’s email archives. Do the following:

  1. Go to the following URL: https://groups.google.com/a/list.nist.gov
  2. Click on the “Browse all” button to find the group whose archive you wish to access.
  3. Click on the name of the group.

         Group Mailing List Policies

  • No Proprietary Information Exchanged
  • Overall Group Guidance
  • Standing Rules
  • Rules of Etiquette

Group Guidance

  • Formation and Scope:  This group is established by the NIST Voting Program through a combined public-private effort. Input from government, commercial, and academic sector individuals and entities is considered by the Program in evaluating the formation or dissolution of a group.
  • Membership: Participation in the group is open and free to all interested parties; there are no membership fees.
  • Leadership: Research and discussion groups are led by NIST staff and/or its designated representatives.
  • Meeting Frequency: The group will establish its own schedule for meetings and teleconferences.
  • Products: The products of the group, prepared at the direction of NIST staff and/or its designated representatives, are subject to NIST review and may be made available for public release at NIST's discretion.
  • No Proprietary Information Exchanged: All information exchanged within the group will be non-proprietary. Group members should assume that all materials exchanged will be made public.

Standing Rules

  • All documents shall be made available to all group members.
  • For some meetings, a queueing system will be used to facilitate participation. For discussions, the moderator will establish a queue and each participant in the queue will be allocated time to speak on a topic. Time allocated per person will set by the moderator.
  • For some meetings, outside of discussion periods all participants will be muted. To request an opportunity to address the group, the participant will use the teleconferencing system chat feature to indicate a request to speak.
  • This a moderated, public forum, not a consensus standards committee. As such, there is no official voting on requirements for consensus for any given topic. This forum allows NIST to gather technical input from the community to help ensure that our recommendations are as well-considered as possible.
  • NIST reserves the right to block individuals from participating in the group if they do not abide by the groups' basic rules of etiquette. While, in general, up to two warnings can be issued prior to anyone being blocked from participation, it is up to the sole discretion of the moderator and group chair.
  • Participants blocked from the calls and the mailing list may still provide input to NIST by sending written comments to the group chair.

Rules of Etiquette

  • Be respectful of other group members. Ensure your comments are on topic, relevant, and accurate. Do not berate others for their views or prevent others from participating by repeatedly providing the same input. Refrain from profane, sexually explicit, threatening, or otherwise offensive language.
  • State concisely and clearly the specific topic of the comments in the subject line. This allows members to respond more appropriately to your posting and makes it easier for members to search the archives by subject.
  • Only send a message to the entire list when it contains information that everyone can benefit from.
  • Send messages such as "thanks for the information" or "me, too" to individuals, not to the entire list. Do this by using your e-mail application's forwarding option and typing in or cutting and pasting in the e-mail address of the individual to whom you want to respond.
  • Do not send administrative messages, e.g., "remove me from the list", to the mailing list. Instead, use the links on this page to change your settings or to remove yourself from a list.
  • This group is not a place to sell products or to provide a platform for individuals to repeatedly convince others of a specific point of view.
  • NIST does not discriminate against any views, however, we do reserve the right to block participants who send messages that:
    • Are violent, obscene, profane, hateful or racist
    • Are sexually explicit or sexually harassing
    • Threaten, harass, or defame any person or organization
    • Spread misleading or false information/accusations
    • Are inappropriate or offensive
    • Are irrelevant or off-topic
    • Suggest or encourage illegal activity
    • Are copied and pasted multiple times
    • Solicit, advertise or endorse any financial, commercial or nongovernmental agency

In short: Please be respectful of others. Do not abuse the privilege of participating in our public, family-friendly forums -- users who do risk being blocked from general participation.

Created April 6, 2021