Many libraries don't really need a full custom-built website. The most important information is generally basic information like address, hours, a link to the catalog, and a way to post updates on new programs, events, and other on-going happenings. For these libraries, blogging software might provide all the website they need.
Library Blogs addresses the needs of such Online Libraries. Participating libraries get a WordPress site hosted on SELCO's webservers and training on how to use it. The blog can be customized with a wide variety of themes and plugins, with SELCO providing support as needed. WordPress is a well-established and powerful platform used by thousands of organizations to organize and present content online. Library Blogs helps Online Libraries leverage that power to reach out to their communities.
Mike F. has brought to my attention a WordPress Plugin that has been going round in the last month, it is called ToolPack. This plugin provides the author(s) with access to your site, where they can install files such as fake antivirus software that they use to phish for information from your users.
I have searched the WordPress sites that are hosted on SELCO's server and this plugin is not installed.
Please Do Not install this plugin!
If you are curious about using WordPress for the first time, these are some good starting points for looking at what WordPress can offer as a CMS.
This is a wiki for libraries using WordPress to share information.
An article from American Libraries Magazine on the advantages of using WordPress as a library CMS.
A WordPress compiled site highlighting some sites that have been built using WordPress as a CMS.
Q. What is WordPress?
A. WordPress is a very popular, free software platform for creating websites. It is open and very flexible, with thousands of community volunteers creating themes and plugins to extend the basic functionality of the platform. While the original purpose of WordPress was specifically for blogging, it has developed into a full-fledged Content Management System used as the background of hundreds of sites for commercial and non-profit entities.
Q. What is a blog and why would I want one for my website?
A. A blog (a blend of the term web log) is a type of website or part of a website. Blogs are usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. Entries are commonly displayed in reverse-chronological order.
Blogs provide a simpler interface for adding information, which often make them a better choice for those without extensive knowledge of HyperText Markup Language (HTML) and/or those who do not require a complex website. This interface can be used within a web browser, eliminating the need for any special software to edit the content or upload the changes.
Q. What are themes?
A. Themes are a set of files that control the way that a WordPress web site appears. Themes control the location and number of columns content is displayed, as well as the other aspects the way that content is displayed. There are many themes for WordPress, allowing many choices for the look and feel of your blog.
Q. What are plugins?
A. Plugins are ways to extend the functionality of WordPress. Popular plugins add search boxes, tag clouds, and display content from other websites such as flickr and Twitter.
Q. Can I change my own themes and plugins?
A. WordPress provides an easy way to change themes and add plugins via its administrator dashboard. Since plugins and themes are designed and coded by WordPress users, they are not guaranteed to work with all versions of WordPress or with other plugins and themes for that matter. Fortunately, it's easy to change themes and remove plugins that don't work.
Q. Where is my site hosted? Is it backed up?
A. SELCO hosts and maintains WordPress sites on their servers. SELCO backs up each of the WordPress sites each evening.
Q. Can anyone at my library write posts?
A. WordPress features a security system in which staff can be assigned varying levels of control. Online Libraries with WordPress sites may assign roles to staff as they see fit.
Q. What are "Supported" themes and plugins?
A. Supported themes and plugins are WordPress extensions that have been tested by SELCO on the currently installed version of WordPress to assure compatibility.
Q. What kind of training does SELCO offer?
A. SECLO offers two WordPress training classes, WordPress I and WordPress II. WordPress I covers the basic knowledge needed to operate a WordPress site. WordPress II covers the more advanced knowledge needed to administer a WordPress site. For training schedules and other details, please see Training.
WordPress sites hosted and administered by SELCO
- Albert Lea PL
- Caledonia PL
- Chatfield Music Lending Library
- Chatfield PL
- Grand Meadow PL
- Harmony PL
- Kasson PL
- Kenyon PL
- LaCrescent PL
- Lake City PL
- Lanesboro PL
- LeRoy PL
- Pine Island PL
- Plainview PL
- Preston PL
- St. Charles PL
- Spring Grove PL
- Spring Valley PL
- Wabasha PL
- Winona PL
- Zumbrota PL
Supported themes and plugins are WordPress extensions that have been tested by SELCO on the currently installed version of WordPress to assure compatibility.
- Unnamed 1.23 – Unnamed is a two/three column, widget-ready WordPress theme with some AJAX functions. The theme is easy to use and highly customizable, free and open source. NOTE: Should disable the Live Search and Live Comments AJAX options.
- Unnamed Lite 1.0 – Unnamed is a three-column, widget-ready WordPress theme. It is easy to use and highly customizable. NOTE: Side bar widgets do not show on pages. Lite-weighted version, without live search and live comments. Requires WordPress 2.5+)
- Twenty Ten 1.1 – The 2010 theme for WordPress is stylish, customizable, simple, and readable — make it yours with a custom menu, header image, and background. Twenty Ten supports six widgetized areas (two in the sidebar, four in the footer) and featured images (thumbnails for gallery posts and custom header images for posts and pages). It includes stylesheets for print and the admin Visual Editor, special styles for posts in the “Asides” and “Gallery” categories, and has an optional one-column page template that removes the sidebar. NOTE: Currently and issue with the drop down menu in FireFox.
- SELCO NYT Best Seller Aquabrowser Link Generator
- Configure SMTP
- Login LockDown
- Secure WordPress
If you have a favorite plugin or theme that you would like SELCO to consider for the list of tested themes and plugins please let us know.