Campus Blogs: Advanced Tips

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One benefit of choosing WordPress as a platform is the way it interacts with other web tools, media sites, and mobile devices. After you’ve mastered the basics, here are a few hints for adding features or simplifying updates to your blog.

#1 Adding Other Types of Content

#2 Post by Email

#3 Posting Content Quickly

#4 Managing Users on Your Class Blog

#5 Changing Privacy Settings

 

#1 Adding Other Types of Content

The real power of WordPress is the variety of content that can be added to posts and pages. Posts can contain images, links to documents or media files, or content from external sites like YouTube.

First, you can upload content of your own to posts or pages from the Text Editor window. Look for the Add Media icon just above the editing window.

If you’re not afraid to copy and paste a little HTML, you also can create links or embed content from other websites into a blog post or page. *Though there are dozens of social media sites hosting online videos, iPhone and iPod touch users should have the easiest time with YouTube clips.

How-To Podcasts:

Add Images or Media to Posts

Embedding YouTube Clips

Creating a Poll on PollDaddy

 

#2 Post by Email

Perhaps the easiest way to post new content to your blog is by email using the Postie plugin. New blogs at ACU are automatically set up to accept new posts sent by the administrator to the blog group email address. This capability can also be granted to others based on their WP Roles.

Ways to use Post by Email

  • Quickly publish a post.
  • Upload images of interest to the blog.
  • Send a YouTube link (automatically embedded in a YouTube player).
Picture 31

Post by Email screencast

When sending attachments from your laptop, remember that any file types compatible with the iPhone should be accessible from the blog. This includes most document file types (pdf, doc, ppt, or xls, txt, rtf) as well as QuickTime media formats (mp3, mp4, mov, m4v, m4a).

For iPhone or iPod touch users, this also means content created on the device can be sent to the blog as well since photos, weblinks, YouTube links, and now audio and video recordings can be shared via email.

*One caveat: There is a 25mb limit to Gmail attachments and a 100mb total for each class blog, so if you’re working with large files talk to someone in the Adams Center or Team55.

How-To Podcast:

Post by Email on ACU Blogs

 

#3 Posting Content Quickly

In addition to post by email, several bloggers have recommended the Press This applet as a quick way to share weblinks back to the blog. In the Tools section of the Dashboard, you’ll find instructions for adding the applet to your browser’s bookmarks bar, then whenever you run across a useful site while on the web you’re just one click away from posting it to WordPress.

One other option for posting a short note is the Quick Press box on the front page of the Dashboard. Think of it as a stripped down version of the full text editor; from Quick Press you can add content, tags, categories, and images or media immediately after logging into admin panel.


How-To Podcast:

Getting a Post Out Quickly

 

#4 Managing Users on Your Blog

When a blog is created, only the administrator is added. The administrator will then need to add others who may need access to edit, author, contribute or subscribe.

In the Users section of the Dashboard, you’ll be able to add people to your blog. Each has a certain level of access or what WordPress calls a Role.

  • Administrator – has access to all admin features (the blog owner)
  • Editor – can publish and manage posts as well as manage other people’s posts
  • Author – can publish and manage their own posts
  • Contributor – can write and manage but not publish their own posts
  • Subscriber – can read content and add comments

Finally, if you choose, you can also change post by email settings in Postie to allow blog member to post drafts or publish posts to the blog using the same class email described in #2.


How-To Podcasts:

Adding Users to a WordPress Blog

Removing Users from Your Blog

 

#5 Changing Privacy Settings

One final setting for your blog is Privacy. By default blogs are set to private. However for some types of blogs, you may choose to make content more broadly available, either to users with a campus login or to users across the web.

  • Visible to everyone OR Allow normal visitors (available widely on the Web)
  • Visible only to registered users from blog community (everyone behind MyACU login)
  • Visible only to registered members of this blog (only your blog members)
  • Visible only to administrators (basically just you)

The ACU Blog Guidelines give recommendations for privacy settings.

If you as the blog administrator choose to allow non-ACU users to post comments or contribute blog posts, set posts to be approved before posting to the blog.

If you have questions about privacy policies and blogs, feel free to talk to someone in Web Communication.


How-To Podcasts:

Setting Posts or Entire Blog to Private

Setting Your Discussion Settings