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Getting the vote out: Concordia students create electoral app

Students walk by Concordia University's Sir George Williams campus in downtown Montreal, October 24, 2011.
Students walk by Concordia University's Sir George Williams campus in downtown Montreal, October 24, 2011. Concordia University

MONTREAL – Are you one of those people who doesn’t know where to go vote?

Or maybe you don’t know what to bring when you go?

Maybe you’re not even sure if you want to vote.

Well, to help answer those questions and more, a few Concordia University students have launched VoteNote, an electoral mobile and tablet app.

It compiles everything you need to know about this year’s federal election and puts it straight into the palm of your hand with just the touch of a button.

“A lot of people don’t vote because they don’t understand,” said Thierry Tardif, VoteNote‘s media relations director, and one of the students involved with the project.

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The free application uses GPS technology to direct voters to the nearest voting station, informs them what they need to bring with them, provides them with the profiles of each candidate and even gives them a countdown to the election – which is scheduled for October 19.

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“It’s hands-on, it’s easy, simple and you can access it at any time,” said Tardif.

“It’s a different way for both users and candidates to get involved in the election.”

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But the application isn’t just for voters.

Candidates can also download it and customize their profiles by signing up through the VoteNote website.

A view of the Vote Note application, Thursday, August 6, 2015.
A view of the VoteNote application, Thursday, August 6, 2015. Thierry Tardif/Vote Note

The first package comes at a price of $300 and it allows the candidate to provide a photo of themselves and a message to users.

The second package goes for $500 and gives the candidate weekly updates on their popularity through the application.

“It’s a way for candidates to get involved with us and voters,” said Tardif.

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“It’s also a good way to create a personal relationship.”

VoteNote was designed for the millennial generation, specifically the 18-30 age bracket.

Tardif said that because young people are always on their phones, the app is perfect for them.

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“We decided to create the app to have a bigger voter turnout because right now youth turnout is dismal,” said Tardif.

The app took the students about five to six months to create and Tardif said it’s the first of its kind in Canada.

VoteNote is already available for Android users and will be available Thursday for Apple products.