Article subbing

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Steven.
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Oct 11 2008 23:40
Article subbing

Just started a new thread for this, to let contributors know what changes we've made to articles submitted and why, to aid with future submissions.

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Oct 11 2008 23:51

The first thing I want to stress is that we are very very grateful for any contributions.

None of these things are having a go, and no one would be expected to know these things, apart from us Admins, so I hope none of this is taken as criticism, it's just some things about how the site works.

- I've shortened quite a few headlines of recent submissions. Be should be kept as short and punch as possible while making it clear what the article is about

- I've shortened some introductions as well. The should be a short as possible, ideally under two lines of text in the entry box. This should contain the basic details of the story, the who, where, when, what and maybe a brief why.
It should not contain details such as the location articles were originally published. This should be included at the bottom of the article, ideally in italics.

- tags, I've deleted some tags which have been applied. As a general rule, please do not ever add a tag to an article that does not already exist. Please choose a tag from an existing list. If the extra tags are needed, then an admin can add them. This is because superfluous tags can be created easily, and cause a lot of confusion within the site, but deleting them is very time-consuming.

Some tags which have been removed include "strike" - it should be "strikes", and "teachers" - it should be "schools". Also author names should only be chosen from the ones in the author field. Author names should not be duplicated in the tags field.

Okay that's all the ones so far. Please keep posting, and don't worry about doing anything wrong because we can fix it. Many thanks everyone!

Jason Cortez
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Oct 12 2008 12:02
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It should not contain details such as the location articles were originally published. This should be included at the bottom of the article, ideally in italics.

Yeah i noticed, you moved it. Will do so in the future. Thanks for the advice.

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Steven.
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Oct 12 2008 12:52

Cheers!

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Oct 13 2008 21:54
Steven wrote:
It should not contain details such as the location articles were originally published. This should be included at the bottom of the article, ideally in italics.

Why?

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Oct 13 2008 22:30
Ret Marut wrote:
Steven wrote:
It should not contain details such as the location articles were originally published. This should be included at the bottom of the article, ideally in italics.

Why?

iirc because the intros need to be short not to bugger up the formatting and they would prefer you to use the intro to describe the article rather than give a full reference to the source.

Mike Harman
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Oct 13 2008 22:44
jef costello wrote:
iirc because the intros need to be short not to bugger up the formatting and they would prefer you to use the intro to describe the article rather than give a full reference to the source.

This is pretty much it. I really should've made intros plain text only as well (i.e. no links or other html), but it's too late for that now.

Basically - it looks alright when you view the article by itself, but it's pretty useless to just have a publishing reference when it's shown in a side-block etc. Having said that, I don't see a particular issue with having publishing details just after the introduction itself - apart from consistency maybe.

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Oct 13 2008 22:52
Mike Harman wrote:
I don't see a particular issue with having publishing details just after the introduction itself - apart from consistency maybe.

I agree - it helps decide if it's something you already read elsewhere. And it looks better than having it hidden away at bottom of page.

Jason Cortez
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Oct 13 2008 23:05

oh, great now i don't have a clue, what to do! grin

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Oct 13 2008 23:15

My recommendation - short intro, followed by publication and/or source details.

Mike Harman
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Oct 13 2008 23:19

As long as it's not in the actual introduction field, I don't think it matters too much. We have dozens, if not thousands, of artices which break Steven's specific guidelines, so if we end up going with that, then you posting a few things which break it won't make it much worse wink

Jason Cortez
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Oct 13 2008 23:22
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I don't think it matters too much. We have dozens, if not thousands, of artices which break Steven's specific guidelines

A complete lack of literary and gramarical unity, you guys are so lifestylistic, this might as well be crimethinc

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Oct 14 2008 06:02
Jason Cortez wrote:
oh, great now i don't have a clue, what to do! grin

Time for a return to the class I think wink

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Oct 14 2008 13:17

Generally references are published near the bottom so they don't break up the flow of reading the article. An alternative is to do something like write the intro par, then in the second par start with:

"[source with link] has reported that..."

followed by their article.

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Oct 14 2008 18:07

As Rob Ray says, it's better to have it at the bottom so that it doesn't break up the flow of reading.

Failing that, putting it at the top of the main body of text, in italics, would be next best.

Putting it in the intro field makes the introductions far too long and unwieldy, making them difficult to use consistently throughout the site to drive traffic to them.

The contents of the intro field are also used to explain to search engines what the article is, and is displayed when people use search engines like Google. Usually these display only about 140 characters, so it is important to explain very clearly in those characters what information someone will glean from reading the article.

The historical publishing information of the article is of secondary importance to this.

Furthermore, with much of our content with the publishing Journal and or author will also be credited in the tags at the top of the article anyway.

Of course, as Rob Ray suggests you can combine some of the authoring information into the introduction. For example:
Ret Marut examines the reasons behind the recent strike wave in the textiles industry in Bangladesh.

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Nov 6 2008 18:14

Rob Ray, many thanks for posting the RMT article. I made some slight changes to it.

Removed the word "Unionist" because its interpretations are unclear; also I believe that the labelling of workers as "trade unionists" is politically damaging, as it legitimises the trade unions as representatives of workers, when in fact, at least partly due to the legal frameworks in which they exist, they act against workers interests.

Also, please do not create any new tags, just try to match the story to existing tags. This goes for authors as well as normal tags. Tags should only be used when we are going to have loads of articles about the same subject, or by the same author. And furthermore have to be consistent, so if we add a tag for "victimisation" for example, our choice is to either go through the entire site and tag every victimisation dispute with the new tag, or else just not have the new tag. As victimisation disputes are very varied, and not that inherently different from other types of disputes then I think on balance it is not worth having a specific tag for it.

With the authors, again an author tag should only be created if we are going to have loads more articles by the same person.

I hope you don't take this as being critical, or having a go, we don't expect anyone to know how we run a tagging system or anything, it has taken us a few years to get used to it ourselves!

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Dec 11 2008 12:34

How do I put Rob's story back on top?
I tried to feature it but that didn't work, I put up a bit of a nothing article and it shouldn't be top.

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Dec 11 2008 12:48

Don't bother, mine's dated now anyways, needs a new story up there.

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Dec 11 2008 13:17

I thought today was the 10th!
No wonder that bacon was only 30p in the coop yesterday smile

With the Greec stuff are we linking to it elsewhere like we did with the CPE blog? Because a lot of people looked for us on google etc but we also got a lot of traffic by linking to it ourselves in a variety of places. Catch, Steven and alibi did most of that so I'm not sure really how to do it effectively (apart from sticking up links to articles I've translated in the comments (but I tend not to translate articles any more.)

Also there are a couple of french things I could write up but I could also look at Greece stuff. Is it better to keep the momentum up with Greece or have a variety of stuff? Or are there enough people on Greece as it is?

Mike Harman
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Dec 11 2008 13:30

At the moment the front page does all featured stuff, and whatever's first goes up top. It's temporary, but still figuring out workflow for something more permanent.

Jef - anything you want to write about is great smile

Cross-link/re-post is OK, but to be honest if we spend the time on the content instead I think people will do that for us.

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Dec 11 2008 17:00

Jef, I think that the Greece stuff is okay for the minute, me and Rob posting news and various people are posting stuff to the forums. Getting back on the France stuff would be great, or anything else you fancied doing!

To avoid bumping things off the front page, you would have to you un-feature the article that bumped it. That index page is only temporary though, we should have a better system soon.

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Dec 11 2008 20:06

Joseph, those credit crisis articles are great. However, I think putting the date they were written is superfluous for the teaser. That would be better at the bottom of the article in italics.

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Dec 11 2008 20:10

Can someone have a look at the one I just put up?
It seems a bit rambling, I'm out of practise.

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Dec 11 2008 20:16

Okay cool will do. Actually one thing - and we are at fault here because we haven't updated our content guidelines - but it would be best if news articles didn't start "country name: headline". This is because we are going to have the country name automatically displaying from its tag. However for Google purposes it is still useful to have the country name in the headline somewhere. So "demonstrations by French school students continue to grow" or something.

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Dec 11 2008 20:18

Mate that articles great. It's now featured.

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Dec 11 2008 21:49
Steven. wrote:
Joseph, those credit crisis articles are great. However, I think putting the date they were written is superfluous for the teaser. That would be better at the bottom of the article in italics.

i dunno, they date so quickly i think it's useful... but if you want to edit go ahead, i'm not that fussed.

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Dec 20 2008 13:27

Ret's Greek Fire article: nice one for posting, it's really good

Made a couple of minor changes - removed brackets from article header to match site style guidelines
moved information about where the text was from to the bottom of the article for teaser/search engine optimisation

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Dec 31 2008 02:41

The evolution articles: all interesting stuff. Made a couple of minor changes, mostly to do with tagging.

As we already have an evolution tag we should put all articles related to creationism in there, rather than have a separate creationism tag.

Also, authors only need to be tagged if we are going to have lots of articles by the same author, so I removed a couple of them, and the National science Centre tag.

The sectors fields for universities/education for articles about those employment sectors - so disputes in universities, or government education policy. So general scientific or academic documents shouldn't be tagged with this.

This isn't a criticism mind, the tagging system is highly complex and pretty subjective as well. Please keep posting!

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Dec 31 2008 02:49

Of course, if you have time pictures are always nice as well, something vaguely related to the article on the topic is fine, or failing that a photograph of the author or something is cool.

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Dec 31 2008 03:13

I had pictures for every single one and tried uploading them 2/3 times each, they were small files so don't know why they didn't show up sad

Cheers for the other tips smile

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Dec 31 2008 03:22

That's very strange, the size of the image it shouldn't matter. I just put one that was 2000 by 2000 pixels on the Chomsky article.

This isn't meant to be patronising, but you know you have to click "upload" after selecting the file after clicking browse? Then the picture should display on the page, then you can fill in the rest of the field is like intro, body, etc then click submit at the end.

I'm just thinking that might be the problem, because we haven't had any problems uploading images...