So what's the big deal with the new platform?

We have finally arrived at OrangePolitics, version 3! You may be wondering how the site is changing, and I hope to explain that here. The biggest change is to the entire framework of publishing - on the new site every registered user has her own blog! This comes with a few other changes, for example every new piece of content does not necessarily appear on the front page. There are several ways to dig in and find the stuff you want, including: the Latest content page, which shows everything that has been published; Keywords (at right), which allow users to label and organize posts any way you like; and the Watchlist, where you can keep up with the bloggers you are most interested in.The front page of the site also shows the 10 most recent comments (as before), as well as 5 recently popular posts (based on your ratings), and 3 random entries from the archives. All of these are available in the left sidebar. Right now, the people designated as "editors" have the ability to decide what goes on the front page. But we will be following the community voting so that if something receives positive ratings (with the 5 star rating system) it may get "promoted" to the front page. Or we may promote posts just because they're informative, interesting, and local. Other things you asked for and/or will like a lot:

  • Clearer user identities. Each registered user has her own profile with some personal background and through which you can track her comments and blog entries. All content will show a small icon for the user who authored it. You can also see a list of exactly which users have which roles (such as "editor" or "troll").
  • Content rating. You can now rate blog entries and users on a 5-star scale. Your personal vote is not recorded or shown anywhere, the average score is visible to all users.
  • Site stats. You can now see some general information about the community's participation. Keep in mind that some of this information only counts activity on this new site, and that data imported from the old site did not always accurately associate content with it's creator (you'll notice this where it says "(not verified)" next to a commenter's name).
  • Discussion groups. A place for all OP users to have conversation outside of the blog framework. The discussions can be read on the web or by e-mail. You can even create your own discussion groups on other topics! This feature is postponed until we can work out some kinks.
  • Calendar. We now can see and subscribe to events in a natural calendar format.
  • Threaded comments. You will now be able to see which comment a particular commenter was responding to, and have the option to collapse or expand the view of comments.
  • Terms of service. There are also updated guidelines for participation which we will be asking all new and old users to agree to.
  • Dozens of other improvements such as comment preview, rich text editing, and more. (Spell checking is also coming soon.)

Things that we had before, such as the Weekly Digest and OP Junkies e-mail lists are evolving. You can now join or leave those group from your profile or from the mailing list page. (There may be some issues getting these working correctly as we have not had the opportunity to fully test them yet.) Similarly, I am still working on importing the old list of local blogs, but when I do you will be able to see not just blog titles, but the latest entries from each one!Anonymous comments will still be permitted, but will be automatically moderated by the "editors." Unmoderated commenting and many of these new features are only available to registered users, so please reactivate your OrangePolitics account or start a new one today!


...but the system couldn't find me.  I just created a new account if that's ok...

The main drawback is you lose the connected history of your previous posts and some of your previous comments, and you also won't look as "senior" in any listings of members.

Anyone who can't get to their old account can also just contact me and I will make sure it has your current e-mail address.

Hi, Ruby -- I'm not sure what to do about the subscription feeds now. I tried re-enrolloing, but it downloads an XML file and asks me to id a program to run it, rather than just asking which system I want to use to maintain my subscription. Ack! Are other people having this problem, or is it just me? I love having OP on my RSS page on google...



I assumed that without a much larger stream of content, just about everything would wind up on the front page of OP. I posted earlier this week, but haven't seen it on the front page yet.

Did I do something wrong? Or, is my post not rated high enough? How does the front page work?


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