What is happening?
As many of you will be aware I have been maintaining the club website since 2010 but the basic structure of the site is based on another site I used to administer from 2003. Over the past 10 years a lot has changed on the internet; in general terms there has been the explosion in social media and in Athletics we have the Power of 10 to track results and rankings across the UK. The BAC website has been redesigned with the following goals:
- More community involvement. Having myself as the single update point of contact strongly discourages member contributions as well as acts as a bottleneck for updates from those members who do give me content to upload. The new website will allow any vetted member to update the website but the club will still maintain administrative control (initially updates will be possible by committee members or team managers, the process is still self-registering, as described below).
- Any updates made by members are reflected immediately on the site and do not have to wait several days for me to get around to uploading the change.
- The update mechanism is simple, using a third party ‘blogging’ tool users can log in to the site and create articles in one of the pre-defined sections.
- Cost: When I was approached by a company with a similar proposal 5 years ago or so I was quoted £5 per member to achieve something similar. Times have moved on and the total cost of the website to the club will remain unchanged at £30 per year, less than half the cost of a full subscription.
- Social Media Integration: Although it feels like ‘jumping on the bandwagon’, it will be possible to tweet or post articles to Facebook. I can add other social media sites on request.
- The ability to comment on contributions and have a discussion on the post. If something was accidentally omitted or there was some other error then a conversation can happen in the comments and the original post updated if required.
How does it work?
On the front page the menu structure has changed, there are now 3 main drop downs:
- Official Content – Published by the Club. Information such as membership pages and consolidated track / field fixtures will continue to be administered by the club. The community is not expected to have to make changes to these pages but if necessary please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be happy to make any changes.
- Community Content – Generated by Members. These are the pages which consist of consolidated contributions from club members such as road running reports, cross country reports, track reports etc. The news items are now also generated by the community but the club reserves the right to produce ‘featured’ items which may remain shown for longer.
- Links. With the rise of Power of 10 and other athletics results services it is a duplication of effort for me to maintain the results / rankings aswell. This was a move I made last year, to just maintain a list of links to the Power of 10 site for track results / rankings but this redesign makes it more obvious.
How do I contribute?
Firstly, remember anybody can read what you publish in news articles and posts. What you write will appear online immediately and should not reflect poorly on the club (e.g. no swearing etc.). I will administer the site to ensure there are no inappropriate articles.
- To contribute, log in to the site. Select ‘Login’ from the community content drop down.
- You will be presented with the ‘WordPress’ log in screen, this is the third party software which enables community contribution. You can register for an account and then log in. Your details will not, under any circumstances be used to send you spam.
- Once logged in you will be re-directed to the administration screen. Depending on your role you will see different options here but by default you will have the ability to create content on the site and comment on existing articles.
- Create a new post. (Posts –> Add New). Write a title and the body of your post. You can include anything you want here, downloads (Add Media), links to external sites etc. and format your post as you see fit. If you are creating a post for the Photos page just include all your photos as media items.
- Very Important: Before publishing you must assign your content a Category, by ticking the appropriate checkbox beside the desired category. The category you select here will determine which page your post appears on, for example ‘News’ will show your post on the news page as well. Links to the most recent content are published on the homepage, sorted by last date modified.
- If you do not see your item on the website it is probably because you did not select a category.
- Select ‘Publish’. If you want to edit your post you can select it from the ‘All Posts’ link, modify it and select ‘update’.
- You don’t need to be logged in to reply to articles but if you are it makes it clearer who is posting the comment. There is a ‘Reply’ button above each article if you want to comment on it and it is also possible to have a discussion here. Please don’t be afraid to ask questions, correct content or talk about the article here.
|News||News Items. Create news items that you think will be of interest to other members. Highlight selection of your team mate into some big race, appeal for help finding a missing set of spikes or let everybody know about an upcoming race. Use your imagination. The most recent stories will be listed on the home page but club news (e.g. notification of upcoming AGM) may take priority.|
|CrossCountry_Reports||Cross Country Results / Reports|
|Photos||The Photos page|
|Road_Results||Road Results / Reports|
|Sportshall||The Sportshall page, add sportshall fixtures, results and reports here.|
|Track_Reports||Track Results / Reports|
|Uncategorized||No associated page. Your post will only be available when searching the site.|
Some content is created by the community but is not available to be modified by everybody, for example the Road Championship tables. In order to modify this content you will need to have more privileges on your account which I can provide.
These changes are being made to encourage contribution by members and more of a sense of club spirit. Please let me know if there are any other features which you feel would be useful or any problems with the existing setup (email@example.com). This is a big redesign so please be patient whilst we work out the kinks.
I’ve made the video below to walk through the process of creating an account and making contributions, hopefully it will help.