Calendar 356

January 2011
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Old stuff

Blog right in

Each week there will be a post or two that will make up our schedule for the class. Blogs, of course, add the most recent post to the top, so take a look at the date of posting to find the post to start with.

The first week, we are going to:

  • introduce the course and the syllabus/blog
  • discuss the journalistic content/theme (Germantown and The Great Migration)
  • talk a bit about blogs and online journalism
  • set up your individual blog at
  • talk about optimizing and posting photos
  • give you an orientation to Germantown for your first (photo) assignment

My blog is hosted at (note the URL), which was done with a “manual installation.” You might want to do that after this course if you have a Web host such as that will give you your own URL.

Here are the steps for today and next week:

  1. Go to and open an account. See this Introduction about what blogging is, and this Getting Started page. We’ll try and pull some some relevant videos from WordPressTv as well such as this one on signing up. When you do this, think about your user name, password and URL as this can’t easily be changed. For example a blog on regional table tennis might be You might want to make it about you as this blog should be used to show your work in journalism, even beyond this course. So maybe
  2. Log in and you will see the Dashboard. You will see this a lot. Go to Settings and change the title of your blog, and add a Tagline. Obviously, this is something you can do again later.
  3. Experiment with new themes. If you can get a thumbnail to add later, do that (right-click Save Picture As). Start reading my blog from the earliest posts (third page in) to see how I did along the way. Take a look at this video on Themes, and use the link that should come with your initial blog under Blogroll. There are lots of other sites that supply free WordPress themes such as Dynamic Guru , BogOHBlog and BytesForAll, where I got mine (Atahualpa, which is fairly common).
  4. Create a post with three photos of “Signs of Hope. Explain the blog first—you are creating content about Germantown & the Great Migration, but also may be commenting about the process, adding other content later, etc. You need one graf as intro and one or more about the photos. Spellcheck your posts. See Briggs Chapter 2. Go to Posts>Add New on the left side of your Dashboard.  Also take a look at the HTML view.

When it’s up (today, we hope), send me the URL of your blog.

Journalist's Toolkit

For general reference, the Journalist’s Toolkit is a great site where Mindy McAdams of U. of Florida has compiled her teaching resources. Here’s her intro to Blogging.

You might want to get to know, which you can subscribe to for $25 a month. Take a look at some of the free WordPress 3.0 videos to get an idea:

  1. Set up an account
  2. Edit your profile
  3. Posting
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