In the new ballot paper (stembiljet) for the Dutch general election, 2017, some parties have logos whereas others do not, as shown below. Why?

Dutch ballot for voters abroad
Source: http://www.stemmenvanuithetbuitenland.nl

Translation of the ballot paper (Stembiljet):

Ballot paper for the election of members of the Second Chamber of the States-General on Wednesday 15 March 2017.

Step 1: in step one, colour the white circle for the list of your choice red, black, blue, or green.

Step 2: Colour at step two the white dot at the number of the candidate of your choice red, black, blue, or green.

Names of candidates are listed in the candidate overview.
Be careful: first choose a list in step 1 or your vote will be invalid.

The actual ballot (stembiljet) I received in the mail looks identical.
NB: I am voting from abroad and this is a new layout for the ballot paper (stembiljet). I believe voters in The Netherlands receive the old version, which does not include logos for any party.

I suspect it is because those parties did not register their logos but that is just speculation.

  • 2
    I'm tempted to point out logos on StackOverflow policy (those who pay get to have a logo on a tag :)
    – user4012
    Commented Feb 26, 2017 at 20:13
  • Is stembiljet the dutch word for ballot? Commented Feb 27, 2017 at 4:52
  • @DavidGrinberg Yes
    – user11249
    Commented Feb 27, 2017 at 7:38
  • I deleted some comments which were asking about other aspects of the Dutch election system which were not relevant to this question. But some of these were interesting and should be asked as new questions.
    – Philipp
    Commented Feb 27, 2017 at 16:30
  • 1
    @JJJ Kiesraad plans to change the Stembiljet for elections to the linked design, and at the last elections, voters abroad were trialing the new design.
    – gerrit
    Commented Apr 7, 2019 at 17:17

1 Answer 1


You've already answered your own question: parties didn't register their logo, or didn't do it on time. This is really the only possible answer, since the only other possible answer would be that the government chose to give some parties a preferential position on the ballot.

This is confirmed by D66 MP Eelco Keij, who got the following reply from election office in The Hague (which is responsible for elections from abroad) when he asked this question:

Why are the logos of some parties missing on the voting ballot?
The parties should have registered their logo. Some parties have not done this, or did not do this on time.

Why didn't some parties do this? Probably for the same reason that many a company has found their website to have gone dark after they forgot to extend the registration period of their domain names: unclear responsibilities, someone forgetting to do it, or "lost" in the bureaucracy.
Furthermore, registering logos is new, and in 2017 this ballot was only used for voters from abroad as an experiment (a regular Dutch ballot looks like this; no logos), so many parties probably don't have standard procedure for it yet, and given that it applies to a small percentage of all ballots it may not have been a huge priority either.


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