Handy WordPress Tutorials for General Convention 2012

Good stuff to get you started being a General Convention blogger

 

–by Susan Kleinwechter, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

Whoopee! Found the handiest bunch of video tutorials to equip our deputation with the details of posting in our General Convention blog: WordPress101Tutorials 

WordPress 101 – What is WordPress
WordPress 101 – The Dashboard
WordPress 101 – Admin Bar
WordPress 101 – Exploring Settings
WordPress 101 – Posts vs. Pages
WordPress 101 – Creating Posts
WordPress 101 – Adding Links
WordPress 101 – Adding Images
WordPress 101 – Formatting Posts
WordPress 101 – Scheduling Posts
WordPress 101 – Categories and Tags

 Are there other WordPress resources you have discovered to help anyone getting started ? Please share them!

Diocese of Fort Worth Deputation

FW deputies and alternates and staff
The Diocese of Fort Worth’s deputation and alternates along with Demi Prentiss, ministry developer and administrator. L-R – Victoria Prescott, David Madison, Fred Barber, Demi Prentiss, Bob Hicks, Brent Walker (rear), Katie Sherrod, (front), Susan Slaughter, Norm Snyder and Kathleen Wells. Not pictured are Amy Haynie, ClayOla Gitane, Jim Reynolds, Lisa Neilson, and Bishop Wallis Ohl.   Also not pictured are the Episcopal Church Women delegates to the Triennial — Sandy Shockley, Lynne Minor, Jackie Meeks and Cynthia Hill.

 

 

Diocese of Fort Worth Goes to General Convention

It happens every three years. It’s a combination of family reunion, tent revival, legislation session, county fair, liturgical fashion show, and giant sing-along. It’s General Convention and the bishop and deputies from the Diocese of Fort Worth will be there. What’s more, the whole diocese is invited to come along — well, at least virtually.

The 77th General Convention of The Episcopal Church is July 5 through July 12 in Indianapolis, Indiana. General Convention is the governing body of our church.

Registration begins Wednesday, July 4, and legislative committees begin their work that morning. The first legislative session is at 8 a.m. Thursday, July 5.

Several people from the Diocese of Fort Worth will be attending General Convention. Below you will find who they are, what they will be doing, and how you can stay connected to them and to the news from Indianapolis.

WHO THEY ARE:

The Fort Worth deputation is led by Bishop Wallis Ohl. Lay deputies are Deputation Chair Kathleen Wells (Trinity FW), Victoria Prescott (ECPC), Katie Sherrod (St. Lukes’s FW) and Bob Hicks (St. Christopher FW). Clerical deputies are David Madison (All Saints, FW), Susan Slaughter (St. Luke’s, FW), Fred Barber (retired) and Amy Heynie (St. Martin, Keller).  First lay alternate is Lisa Neilson (St. Martin, Keller) and fIrst clerical alternate is ClayOla Gitane (ECPC).

Delegates to the Triennial meeting of the Episcopal Church Women are Sandy Shockley, Jackie Meeks, Lynne Minor and Cynthia Hill.

Ministry Developer and Administrative Officer Demi Prentiss also is attending. Lay alternates Norm Snyder (Good Shepherd, Granbury) and Brent Walker (St. Stephen’s, Wichita Falls) are paying their own way to attend.

 WHAT THEY WILL BE DOING:

Bishop Ohl will be attending legislative sessions of the House of Bishop. The Deputies will attend legislative sessions in the House of Deputies.(The two houses will meet in joint session on the July 10 for the presentation of the budget). The ECW delegates will be attending daily sessions of the Triennial. During the Sunday, July 8, worship service, they will participate in the UTO Ingathering.

Much of the business of General Convention in done in legislative committees and our deputation will be playing a role in several of them. Bishop Ohl is vice chair of the Constitution Committee, and Chancellor Kathleen Wells is a member of that committee. Deputy Katie Sherrod is the chair of the Communication Committee, and Deputy David Madison is on the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget & Finance.

Every resolution submitted to Convention is referred to one of the several committees or commissions. An open hearing is held on every resolution, and members of the Fort Worth deputation will be monitoring as many of the committees as they can and reporting back to the whole deputation each day.

Eucharist will be celebrated everyday day at 8:30 am Central, except the final day (July 12) when it will be celebrated at 10:30 am Central. Each day, Eucharist and the sermons will center on an important figure from Holy Women Holy Men, a listing of saints who are commemorated in the calendar of the Episcopal Church.

General Convention worship services will be featured live on the Media Hub athttp://episcopaldigitalnetwork.com/gc2012/

There are many other events held in conjunction  with General Convention — seminaries have banquets, various church-related organizations have events (films, tributes, dinners, breakfasts, etc) and various ministries have gatherings. The Exhibits Hall is enormous and is always filled with interesting and enticing goods and information.

HOW TO STAY CONNECTED:

Diocesan website: Episcopaldiocesefortworth. org – This will be the place where you can get connected to everything else we will be doing, or you can go directly to any of the other places we will be posting content. See below.

General Convention blog: FortWorth.GoesTo.EpiscopalGeneralConvention.org This will be our primary publishing vehicle while in Indy. You can visit it, or subscribe to it to receive updates. Feel free to ask questions and add comments.

Social media: Follow breaking news and engage in the conversation on

Facebook (www.facebook.com/DioFW),

Twitter (twitter.com/DioFW or follow hashtag #GC77)

Tumblr (http://www.tumblr.com/blog/diofw general for diocese or http://diofw-gc2012.tumblr.com/  for diocese at General Convention)

YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/user/DioFortWorth)

Pinterest (pinterest.com/diofw/episcopal-general-convention-2012/)

We also will be posting content on a site set up by the Diocese of Maine that will feature 3-minute video updates — http://indy300.net/

The Media Hub presented by the Office of Communication of The Episcopal Church. Will include Episcopal News Service reports, videos, blogging, Twitter feeds, photo galleries, live webcasting, legislation tracking and commentary. The Media Hub will be available July 1 at   http://episcopaldigitalnetwork.com/gc2012/  

Policy wonks can see every resolution filed at Scott Gunn’s blog Seven Whole Days

http://www.sevenwholedays.org/2012/06/22/resolutions2012/ Scott will be blogging daily during convention.

The General Convention website http://www.generalconvention.org/ run by the General Convention Office, provides no subscription content, but you can get information on legislative committees, download the Blue Book and schedules, and track the progress of resolutions as they move through committees and onto the floor of the House of Bishops or House of Deputies. Tracking will become available July 5, the first legislative day.

Tweeting about the Episcopal General Convention

A short primer on Twitter, suitable for any deputation, but written for @diofw tweeps

by Susan Kleinwecher, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

Convention deputies and anyone tweeting about convention will use a personal accounts, not our diocesan twitter account @diofw. We want a lot of voices tweeting!

@DioFW on Twitter!

Getting Started: At twitter.com, create an account, select a username, and in your profile, upload a photo that looks like you.  In your account settings, do NOT protect your tweets (you may change that in a month).

Tutorial: Good Twitter Tutorial from gcflearnfree.org

Connect with the diocese: search for and follow @diofw. @diofw will add all tweeters in our deputation to a public, subscribable twitter list: @diofw/GC77. The list aggregate our voices. Other people can subscribe to it. Here’s how! to subscribe to/follow other people’s lists:

At the start (starting now): Start listening to the conversation! Search  #gc77 in the twitter search box. Follow people you want to hear more from, find other hashtags that interest you #episcopal #tweeps.  Learn how to retweet (RT), reply & mention (@reply & @mention), send a direct message (DM), subscribe to a list.  Go to twitter help  https://support.twitter.com/ and search for an unfamilar term.

https://support.twitter.com/articles/49309-what-are-hashtags-symbols
https://support.twitter.com/articles/20169873-how-to-retweet-a-tweet
https://support.twitter.com/articles/14023-what-are-replies-and-mentions
https://support.twitter.com/articles/20169555-send-and-receive-direct-messages
https://support.twitter.com/articles/76460-how-to-use-twitter-lists

Contribute to convention dialogue:  When we are tweeting about General Convention, we will use the hashtag #CG77 in every tweet. Every. Single. Time.  In fact, lead with it, so you don’t forget (voice of experience).

What are hashtags? Hashtags, indicated by the hash or pound mark “#” provide a way to track messages associated with a topic; think of them as a keyword to search for. Consider your target audience when using hashtags; they are there for tracking, not for fluff, although that does not inhibit creativity! Use #gc77 for information related to the 2012 Episcopal General Convention. See what hashtags others are using, either from twitter or using a web service like (twittterfall.com) – you will see #churchgrowth #drama #budget #conventionprobs #PHOD

“Dang!” you exclaim when you grapple with the fact that Twitter limits your messages to 140 characters. You’ll get the hang of it without looking like a teenager; most of it is phonetic, so moving your lips helps.

Best Practices: One of the best uses of Twitter is to tweet about blog entries, with a “topical tease to read” introduction and a shortened URL link to your blog entry. Typical URL shorteners are bit.ly http://bitly.com/ and goo.gl http://goo.gl/ Copy the shortened URL into your tweet, so it looks like this: “Light bulb ON at #gc77 lunch http://goo.gl/9agxG & now I undrstand the lingo”

Use #diofw if you want us to track your comments there or track comments about us.

Subscribe to our public deputy list @diofw/gc77. Subscribe a list of tweeters employed by TEC using  @diofw/TEC-Tweeters. This tells article describes how to subscribe to lists: https://support.twitter.com/articles/76460-how-to-use-twitter-lists

Go Mobile: When you’re comfortable with using Twitter in your browser, get it on your smartphone by downloading the app for Android, iPhone, Blackberry, or Windows Phone 7. No smartphone? You can still tweet – read https://support.twitter.com/articles/14589-getting-started-with-twitter-via-sms and http://support.twitter.com/articles/14020-twitter-sms-commands. However, there is no mechanism to search for hashtags using SMS (probably because the message volume would be overwhelming).

Handy Tips: Consider a handy service called Twitterfall at twitterfall.com. In Twitterfall’s searches box, type #gc77 and “add” it. You can change the color scheme if you like, making searches and lists different colors. Add list @diofw/gc77 and @diofw/TEC-Tweeters. Updates come every 30 seconds or so.  Many find that tracking #episcopal is overwhelming!

What other handy tips do you have to share about Twitter for General Convention?

Who, me? You say I should “be social” at General Convention?

The Strategy of Using Social Media at the Episcopal General Convention

by Susan Kleinwecher, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

The 77th General Convention of the Episcopal Church brings the opportunity for participants to share so much of their experiences in the governance of TEC and the shaping of the future of the church. And it is vital to do so, in ways perhaps unfamiliar to many. It’s insufficient in 2012 to simply go home and write a 2-page article and publish it along with the rest of your July news and email or snail-mail it to your normal recipients. Yes, by all means, do that, but do more, and do it during General Convention.

The “more” is important. It is vital to the life of our church in a time that we so clearly need to grow and reach further, especially to younger audiences, ones that will become the leadership of our church. It is vital to help “folks at home” understand the topics and discussions and decisions that shape our church.  It is important that we do this in a social context, because that’s where our reach is both strategic and effective.

It is heartening that so many dioceses have launched their convention publishing initiatives and sites, realizing why social media coverage is so important now:

  • Social networking has twice the click-throughs as email, reaching more of your audience.
  • Conversation about a subject engages more people than reporting about a subject.
  • Pictures and videos elicit more engagement than other forms of digital publication.
  • Social networking is a powerhouse for encouraging online engagement, improving and driving how people connect to your information.
  • When people feel more connected, they participate more and give more.

When we embrace and follow a new model of engagement and conversation, while not abandoning less timely, traditionally authoritative ones, we won’t leave any listeners behind, and we’ll grow new ones. It’s win-win.

Serious nonprofits use the social web in intentional ways, not as a gimicky playground, but as part of a larger communications strategy, driven by solid content.  Add to the content.  Be social at General Convention, on social media, perhaps in ways that are new to you.  Check in using Facebook or Foursquare so your peeps know you made it. Blog; perhaps enjoy the brevity of Tumblr. Post to Facebook, and Tweet about it all with hashtag #gc77. By all means, point us to your blogging on Twitter using #gc77 and a link shortened with bitly.com or goo.gl. Pin your good visual stuff, and tag it so we can find it. Add your ideas to the commentary every way you can.

The Church will be richer for the experiences and information you share in a timely manner and in newer ways.

 

Writing About Episcopal General Convention

Who, me? Write? I’m not a Reporter!

by Susan Kleinwecher, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

It might have gone down like this: the bishop said, “You guys are all going to write during General Convention, and we are going to publish it. We’re not waiting until we get home.” Blank stares around the room, curt, affirmative nods, except from the excited communications director, who worked late into the night to get a small team very busy on the how. (There will be more on that). Did something like that happen with your convention possee?

For the next few weeks, deputies and alternates from all over the country are asked to become content creators and to publish things digitally. So here are some basic instructions for folks who are writing and publishing:

You must contribute.
Write about what is going on.
Write about the context surrounding what is going on.
Write what you think about what is going on.
Write about how you feel about what is going on.
Write about your spiritual experiences, connections and revelations.
Take pictures and video of what is going on.
Use the pictures and video to help people understand and connect to what you are writing about.
Write about what other people say is going on, and comment on their writings.
Quote other people.
Link to content that will help people understand what’s going on.

These are 10 basic instructions for writing about any event, to be re-used over and over. (Yeah, right; did the communications director make you say that? Is that director hinting that some of us are expected to do this for our ministry meetings and diocesan convention, too? )

words and voices by Design Decoration Craft, John Hopper

Few among us are news copywriters, but that’s OK. The largest shift that has occurred in communications lies in how much everyday people in the world, versus official reporters and designated authorities, are now publishing useful information to eager audiences.  News is not just broadcast at 6 pm and talked about at the dinner table, or read about in a morning paper or monthly newsletter.  It’s not just done by “the official source” who can always be expected to be fair and balanced.  It’s done by people watching and participating in what’s going on.

Another subtle difference and new communications concept is the opportunity to talk about a subject, not report on it. There is more to convention than governance discussions and outcomes; smaller stories matter, too.  Adam Wood, the up-and-coming Director of Online Development for the The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth offers:

“We need to lay aside the outdated assumption that the only things worth talking about at General Convention are issues of finance, governance, and church polity. Sharing reflections on homilies and keynote addresses, revealing new ideas about mission and evangelism, conversing about the evolving theology in our church – it’s all worthy content.”

Recalling her previous participation at General Convention, Diocese of Fort Worth Communications Director Katie Sherrod shares, “There is so much, much more than governance, although reporting on what is done is important. What’s more important are the relationships the deputation develops and shares. The daily Bible study, the daily worship services have always been, for me, the best part of General Convention. To worship with 10,000 Episcopalians is a powerful experience. To get to do Bible study with an Episcopalian from Haiti, or Taiwan, or from the European Convocation of Churches, or Puerto Rico, or Honduras enlarges one’s perspective in all sorts of ways. Many Episcopalians may not realize The Episcopal Church has congregations in 16 countries.”

So, yes, YOU, write! All of you! Everywhere! Photograph! Record! Publish! Comment! Dive in! You’ll find your voice.

 

Using Facebook for Episcopal General Convention

Admittedly, this is a timid approach to using Facebook

by Susan Kleinwecher, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

What Facebook is:

Facebook it’s the largest social  network in existence, used more than any other on the planet.

Getting Started: Go to facebook.com and create an account. Set up an account, upload your image/avatar.   Find some friends! You’ll find people you know on Facebook, along with organizations you care about.

Tutorials: https://www.facebook.com/help/?page=260315770650470&ref=hcnav http://www.gcflearnfree.org/socialmedia   http://www.gcflearnfree.org/facebook101

Connect with the Diocese:  Go to facebook.com/DioFW and “Like” the diocese page. This will allow you to receive updates to the page and post to the page.

Post to our Diocesan Facebook Page: Our page allows posts by fans. Go for it! Post your resources, information, and links to blogs on our page; post to your personal profile as well.  Page admins may re-post your information to extend its reach.

Where are the tags? Facebook does not tag content. It’s quite different from WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, Twitter, and Pinterest. It focuses on people connections, not content connections. Tag your content everywhere else, but not facebook.

Go Mobile: When you’re comfortable with using Facebook in your computer browser, know that every major mobile platform has a good, free Facebook app.

Why this is timid: I could make all our deputation a level of admin that facebook calls “content creator”  (see Facebook’s admin roles). I’m leery of that.  Somehow it changes the voice of the page from an official one to a more chatty, less-predictable one.

What comments do you have on my fearful approach- of NOT opening up Facebook and allowing our deputies to have admin roles, yet having the existing page managers and content creators re-post what our deputies share on the page?  What are other dioceses and organizations doing on Facebook, considering a flood of content from new sources? What approach do you recommend?

 

Using Pinterest for Episcopal General Convention

You mean I can Pin about GC77? Sweet!

by Susan Kleinwecher, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

What Pinterest is: CNET says, “If Tumblr and StumbleUpon had a baby, they would likely give birth to Pinterest. Pinterest is a virtual bulletin board with pins; users grab things from around the internet and pin them to boards. Boards, owned by a user, possibly with other contributors,  are the organization tool, organized loosely around a topic or inte
rest.  The shareable content is called a pin; it is usually an image of some kind, with a description, links, and descriptive tags. In Pinterest the focus is on on quality images. It’s about (1)content (2)sharing and (3)sharing & commenting.  Got that? Sharing is real big on pinterest.

Getting Started: Go to Pinterest.com and request an invite; Pinterest is invitation-only now, but don’t let that be intimidating; it helps them manage their exponential growth without overloading their infrastructure and disrupting your access.  The email address you use is the one Pinterest will issue an invitation to.  Activate the invitation following the instructions in the email you will receive. Set up an account, upload your image/avatar.

Tutorial: http://pinterest.com/about/help/   http://www.gcflearnfree.org/socialmedia

At the start: After you create an account, create at least one board. Search for “Episcopal Diocese Fort Worth” and find the General Convention board. Follow it. By following it, the owner can allow you to contribute to it by authorising you and sending you an email. Follow any other boards you see that you like.

Get ready to Pin: Install the pinterest pin button (bookmarklet) in your browser (chrome, firefox, safari, IE)  http://pinterest.com/about/goodies/

Connect with the diocese:  search for “people” named “diofw” and follow the diocese at http://pinterest.com/diofw/. Follow the diocesan general convention board: http://pinterest.com/diofw/episcopal-general-convention-2012/.  Once you follow the boards, an admin may invite you to become a contributor.

Become a contributor to our convention board: Our convention board is set to “Me + contributors.”  Our convention pinners need to follow the diocesan GC pinboard http://pinterest.com/diofw/episcopal-general-convention-2012/, and be allowed as contributors, to contribute to it. Users added as contributors will receive an email notification. They can choose to remove themselves at any time.

Go Pin: You can find things to pin on most websites, or on Pinterest. In Pinterest, it’s easy – you search, and you RePin, or you comment.  You may find great resources on other sites; for example, the Episcopal Diocese of Maine will have a daily video blog on their convention site http://indy300.net/.

Good descriptions are essential content: Regarding pin descriptions, what you should ask yourself each time you write the description for a new pin is, “what would I search for if I was looking for this pin?” and “what do I say about this pin to convey the story I want to tell?” The more descriptive your pin is, the easier it will be for users to find, and for search engines to find, and the more valuable your pin is.  Add URLs whereever you can.  Also, it is very impotant to ADD TAGS (hashtags, keywords beginning with #)!  You can add multiple hashtags at the end of your description. For example, you might use any or all of these tags for a pin about convention: #gc77 #episcopal #church #worship #event #deputy #deputies #bishop. Add as many as you want, but keep them relevant to the image.

Best practices: Pin from the original source, pin from permalinks, give credit and include a thoughtful pin description, using URLs where you can.  If you pin from OUR blog or website, please remember to attach the URL to the pin and link the pin to relevant pages of our website.

@Mention: To mention another user in a pin description, use the form @username.

Go Mobile: When you’re comfortable with using Pinterest in your computer browser, if you are an iPhone user, you can download the Pinterest iPhone app.  There’s no official app for other mobile devices. Instead Pinterest implemented a HTML5 experience  inside of your mobile browser. Pinterest seems happy with that interaction; others find it clumsy and unsatisfying and wanting an app.

What tags do you recommend for GC77? How will you use Pinterest at  Convention.

Using Tumblr for Episcopal General Convention

Tumblr – Multi-media blogging with little moderation responsibility!

by Susan Kleinwecher, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

TumblrWhat Tumblr Is: Tumblr is a microblogging service providing a short-form blog, or tumblelog, with an array of features allowing easy posts of text, quotes, photos, links, audio, and video posts. The multimedia platform is adaptable and easy to use. According to DigitalSherpa, “You can set up a Tumblr blog and be posting in the time it takes you to brew your morning coffee.” UnlikeTwitter, on Tumblr you don’t have to battle an uncomfortable 140-word character limit and you may freely post graphics with your posts. Tumblr combines all  the traditional elements of a blogging platform with the social and sharing features of popular social media networks, in a simple and concise platform.

Ahah! Tumblr does not have a comment feature. Wow, that simpifies moderation responsibilities!

Getting Started: At Tumblr.com, sign up for an account. Get familiar with your dashboard, which is where new posts of blogs you follow will be. Upload a portrait photo that looks like you for your primary blog, and a relevant image to represent any secondary blog like one you might have for the Episcopal General Convention.

Post text, photos, quotes, links, audio, video. Re-blog. Chat with others on Tumblr. Give it a try!

Tutorials:
http://www.pcworld.com/article/253487/how_to_get_started_with_tumblr.html
http://www.tumblr.com/tips

Connect with the Diocese: Go to  diofw.tumblr.com and follow the blog on Tumblr. Go to http://diofw-gc2012.tumblr.com/  and follow the blog on Tumblr. If you are in our deputaton, the blog admin(s) will manually invite you to contribute to the diofw-gc2012 blog. After you’ve been invited to contribute, write a test post in any format – text, photo, quote, link, audio, video.   When that works, you’re off and running!

Blog admins, you may invite others to contribute to your blog, from the blog dashboard under Members. Submit email addresses, and invitees will receive an email with instructions to join the blog and register if they are not a Tumblr user yet.  New members can post, but not change blog settings unlesss you promote them to an admin.

Best Practices (soooo good that we’d really like to mandate them): For each post : tag, tag tag – You don’t need to put a tag in quotes or start with a hashtag. Hit return on your keyboard to enter a tag. Then add another one! These keywords make your blog search-friendly, your content findable,  and they will promote SEO.  They are essential.

You’ll want to fill your content with links, not just to your website and other social sites, but to other blogs or people in your network. Each time your post is ‘reblogged’ it will carry these links with them. That’s good for SEO.

Engage with Others: Your way of engaging on Tumblr is to:

  • ‘Follow’ – Click in a particular Tumblr blog where it says ‘Follow’
  • ‘Reblog’ – Find a blog you enjoy that you would want shared and share it on your own Tumblr blog by cliking ‘Reblog’ at the top of that post.
  • ‘Like’ – Click on the heart on a post to ‘like’ the post.

Each Tumblr blog has its own URL, so audiences don’t need to be a member of the Tumblr community to view your posts. The URL makes your Tumblr page available to everyone. Tweet your Tumblr posts by URL.

Use a Tumblr bookmarklet (button on your bookmarks bar) to quickly share things you find on the web.

Go Mobile: When you’re comfortable with using Tumblr in your browser, get it on your smartphone by downloading the official Tumblr app for Android, iPhone, or Blackberry.

Add your ideas and comments on Tumblr!

The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth's Deputation to Episcopal General Convention

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