Tag Archives: blogging

One Blog to Pool them All

Here are my initial ideas of how this could be organized.

Existing Infrastructure

We’ll take the current LISt blog, rename it to just “LIS” and grant all staff in LIS Editor access to the blog. Student workers and LIS-related people like department advisory groups will have Author access granted as needed.

Porting Content

Users and groups with existing blogs may move their content into the LIS blog by going to Tools -> Export -> Download Export file in their blog, then Tools -> Import -> WordPress -> Upload file and Import. After doing so, they should go to Posts -> Categories and use the Category to Tag Converter to change any custom categories their blog had into tags on the LIS blog.


The LIS blog will start with this set of categories:

  • Audience
    • External
    • Internal
  • Areas
    • Academic Consulting Services
    • Collection Management
    • Enterprise Technology & Infrastructure
    • LIS Administration
    • User Services
  • Institutions
    • Middlebury
    • MIIS
    • Language Schools
    • Schools Abroad
    • Bread Loaf
    • MMLA
  • Teams
    • Area Directors
    • Curricular Technology
    • Digitization
    • LIS Website

All other existing categories in the LIS blog will be changed to tags. In general, we’ll encourage the use to tags to mark things like posts that have photos in them, posts about particular workgroups, posts about particular projects, or other things that tend to have a more temporally mutable quality to them. Categories will be used chiefly for broad categories that change infrequently.

Private Blogs

The LIS blog will not be used to store private content. Groups, such as ACS, who wish to have a private blog should continue to use and maintain their blog in its present form or create new private blogs if one has not yet been set up.

Internal vs. External

Posts that are likely to be interesting only to LIS staff should be marked with the Internal category. Examples of this content might include a notice about LIS goal setting. Note that these posts would still be readable by the public, but that those subscribed to the public feed wouldn’t see them in the feed. Posts that are likely to have broader appeal, like a cookie party for students, should be marked with the External category, or both the Internal and External categories.

There will be links to both the External and Internal feeds on the blog homepage with a description of the content featured in each so that site visitors can choose how they will read about LIS.

Links to Resources for Consideration

I’ve added a section to the LIS Website Wiki with links to some resources we should look at as part of this project. Of special note are the strategic recommendations from White Whale, where I recommend reading the sections “Blogs dot Middlebury”, “Midd Search”, and “Managing content in an unpredictable environment” as those are the most relevant to our project, though the rest of the document is interesting as well. I’ve also linked to the test instance of Drupal that I set up for the Helpdesk. You can log in as yourself, but you won’t really be able to do anything, so you might want to log in as an admin instead (username is “admin” and password is “testpassword”). Poke around and have fun. Don’t worry about messing anything up, as I’ve got this whole thing backed up and can recreate a fresh copy in about 20 seconds. Just let me know if I need to. If you want to ask me questions about Drupal, feel free to do so here or stop by my office any time I’m not in a meeting and I can help you out. I’ve also listed our scope from the meeting and added a page to discuss the metrics and how we’ll measure success.

New Blog?

I’ve decided to set this up as my new blog, removing content from the old blog which was hosted on our local development copy of Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007. Nothing against that software, but it’s easiest for me to maintain this content offsite, since I don’t have to log in through the VPN to do my editing. Also, with upgrades and other software moves, I didn’t want to keep re-creating my blog when we moved the development server around.

I’ve imported some of the more public-friendly posts from the old blog, which were mostly updates on our development progress with various systems. There was some other old content having to do with visits to conferences, but the content skirted the line on what I’d like to have on a public site, which is where I’d like to focus the efforts of this blog from now on.