News Page Policies and Best Practices

From Wikipedia of the Dark Jedi Brotherhood, an online Star Wars Club
Real World Perspective.

How to write a good news post

  • Use images, but do not overuse images
    • Try to limit your use of a picture to 1 picture for every 300 words of actual content.
    • Posts that have too many pictures, especially unrelated ones look gaudy, busy, and unappealing. But posts that have too few pictures look barren and boring.
    • Avoid the use of GIFs wherever possible. GIFs function poorly in many mobile browsers, and even on some desktop browsers.
  • Do not simply link to another article as the entire content of your news post
    • The purpose of having a website is to have people visit it. It is not to immediately redirect people away from our website.
    • If you find news, or information from another website: copy it or paraphrase it and include your own thoughts and commentary.
    • Always include a link as a courtesy to where you found the information (referred to as your source)
    • When you are linking externally, do your best to link to the ORIGINAL source.
      • Example: If you found an article on FinnsTrooperNews.com that talks about an announcement on the official Star Wars twitter feed, include a link to FinnsTrooperNews.com but quote the information directly from the Star Wars twitter feed.
  • Make use of calls to action, or opinion openings to engage readers.
    • In the body of your text, prompt your reader to discuss their opinions, or ask them what they think of the post itself. The Brotherhood is a community, and encouraging lively discussion is one of the primary purposes of writing news posts.
  • Do not write posts that are inherently biased towards your own perspective or viewpoint, or at least if you do write those points make sure it is obvious that what you are writing is an opinion piece (and invite people to share their own opinions).
    • We are a Star Wars club, so obviously Star Wars related news will be sought after and greedily consumed. However not all Star Wars fans are the same. Some people loved the Prequels. Some people hated Empire Strikes Back. Some people want to read all the spoilers before the movie is out, and some people want to stay spoiler free.
  • The Brotherhood tries to maintain a Spoiler Free environment, anything that could be considered a spoiler for upcoming movies, books or product releases should be clearly marked.
  • Respect intellectual property and copyrights
    • The Brotherhood respects copyrights. When it comes to material on the web, there are any number of unconfirmed rumours and leaked photos. Those photos will often find sites who traffic them on the receiving end of legal takedown notices from LucasFilm and Disney, and any number of other companies. If you are sharing photos on the website, make sure it is legal to share. What that basically means is: use officially released photos and information in your posts, not snaps from @TheJediPaparazzi on twitter who happened to break into Skywalker Ranch and steal a bunch of information.
  • Cross-Link your posts
    • Have you discussed a particular subject before? Include links to your previous posts.
    • Referencing earlier posts creates an in depth link trail for out of club readers, and search engines, to follow that will help show the Brotherhood as a robust and in depth source for Star Wars and Gaming news.


The Anatomy of a News Post

Title

  • This is the title of your news post. It should be relevant to the content in the post.
  • For reports, you should include your unit and position in the title.

Category

  • DJB News
    • The News pertains to every single member of the Dark Brotherhood, Rogue, in Clans or Dark Council. Examples of this include DB Wide competitions, or positions being open for applications.
  • Reports
    • This should be self explanatory. Are you doing a report on your unit/position? It's a report.
  • Star Wars News
    • It's Star Wars news. All of the things that qualify for this category also qualify for DJB news. But not all DJB News is Star Wars news. This is for books, rumours, cool reviews, or anything relating to Star Wars.
  • Gaming News
    • It's like Star Wars news, but focused solely on games. Even if it's a Star Wars game, it's Gaming News.
  • Other
    • Multi-unit (not Brotherhood wide) competition results or fiction updates. Individual unit fictions that are not reports. Anything else that doesn’t in any other category goes in Other. Examples of this include the results of a plot update for one of the Clans, or the results from a Clan feud.

Context

Context is defined by the positions you happen to occupy. More importantly though, context and position, in conjunction with the post type defines who can see your post by default.

Only certain positions post news that is immediately visible to all members of the Brotherhood. If you are not in one of these positions, consider emailing someone higher so that the news post is visible for all members to see.

The following is a list of positions and post types that have their posts visible to all members by default, and people who are not logged in.

  • DJB News Visibility: Dark Council, Dark Council Praetors, Society Leaders, Tribunes, Consuls, Proconsuls
  • Star Wars News Visibility: Dark Council, Dark Council Praetors, Society Leaders, Tribunes, Consuls, Proconsuls
  • Gaming News Visibility: Dark Council, Dark Council Praetors, Society Leaders, Tribunes, Consuls, Proconsuls
  • Report Visibility: Dark Council, Dark Council Praetors, Society Leaders, Tribunes, Consuls
  • Other Visibility: Dark Council, Dark Council Praetors, Society Leaders, Tribunes, Consuls

When people are logged into the site, they also start seeing posts that are relevant to them within their unit, such as Battleteam reports and House reports.

Rolling News Banner Image (Position Based)

  • Certain positions are granted access to use the Rolling News Banner at the top of the website to accompany their posts. Select the banner that is appropriate, and try to aim for some variety if possible. Custom News banners may be requested from the Herald.

Contains Spoilers Checkbox

If enabled, no abstract will be shown, which means you do not need to worry about moving any spoiler information below the fold. Expansion is required to view the news post or report in more detail.

Body

  • This is where you write the content of your news post.

Tag List

  • Tags are the things that link various news posts together by category. By using tags properly you can link similar posts by theme and content, and find other content similar to it by News Post by tag functionality. https://www.darkjedibrotherhood.com/news/archive#tag-box
  • The first three tags are the most important. Every tag after the first three is equally less important.
  • Remember the big buzzword tags: "Star Wars", "Jedi", "Lightsaber". Also make use of seasonal tags, like tags dedicated to the release of a new movie, tv series, or event. For example, during the time around the release of Episode VII "The Force Awakens" and "Episode VII" were common seasonal tags. In and around Star Wars celebration there is usually a devoted tag for that event as well. Be mindful of what is currently happening in the greater fandom.
  • Recycle your tags: Tags are not hashtags on twitter or other social media. They are not meant to be throwaway one time jokes. They are categories that your post fits into.
  • Speaking of hashtags, don't include #, or other special characters in tags. Tags are comma separated lists, for example “star wars, jedi, episode vii” would result in three distinct tags: [star wars], [jedi], and [episode vii].

Comment Method

  • Choose between the three types of comment methods
    • Local: Comments are stored on the main news page and immediately viewable by expanding the news article.
    • Discourse: Comments will be posted to the DB’s Forums, and livelier and more thorough discussion can be used there.
    • Disabled: No comments will be allowed for your news post. While we want to encourage community, this is the internet and sometimes it’s best to just not let people air their dirty laundry in public.