Weekend assignment: Learning WordPress

Because we’re jumping into the group blog project next week, now is the time to make sure you are familiar with WordPress, the basic content management system (CMS) that we’ll be using. (As I mentioned early this semester, I have toyed with using other kinds of blogging software—including Tumblr—but feel that WordPress gives us the most flexibility and bang for our buck.)

So, this weekend I’d like you to take a practice spin through WordPress doing the following:

1) Set up a blog—whether you keep it up after this exercise, it’s up to you. But it can be a dummy blog.

2) Add at least 2+ widgets, including an RSS button.

3) Make 3+ posts on a consistent topic, and all with appropriate use of links

4) In one or more posts, use a photo with caption … as well as an embedded video in at least one post

5) build an “about” page

6) practice tagging and categorizing everything

7) finally, leave a comment here on your experience, making sure to include a link to your blog so we can see your work

And, not to worry, but I don’t think this will take you as long as it sounds, particularly if you’re already somewhat versed in WordPress. (By the way, if you already have a WordPress blog, then just continue to use it during the weekend in the way I’ve described above.)

18 Responses to “Weekend assignment: Learning WordPress”

  1. 1 Holly MacRossin February 14, 2010 at 8:51 am

    I thought wordpress was a little difficult to use at first but after playing with it for a while, I actually really like it. If I didn’t know how to do something (like embed video for example) I just typed into google how to do it and I got a lot of good answers. I am confused because the “add video/music/image” buttons don’t seem to add these things successfully to your blog post. I had to find html codes online. Then again, I could be missing something. I also added two widgets that show up on the bottom of my page, RSS and Twitter. I am not a big fan of this because it is asking to make my Twitter account public. All in all though, I like wordpress and am ready to start our class blog. Here is my link:


  2. 2 Donnie Hogan February 15, 2010 at 10:35 am

    I like wordress. I think once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty easy to use. I’m still playing around with all the different options and tools available, but here’s my link if anyone wants to take a look.


  3. 3 akgenuske February 15, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    I have used WordPress before and like it for the most part. It took me a few times to get a hang of the RSS widget (I hope it actually works). I enjoy reading blogs but have never wanted to have one myself, I will stick to a publication to write stories. Below is the link to my blog.


  4. 4 Jordyn Davenport February 15, 2010 at 7:59 pm

    I already had a WordPress blog and I like it but I’d never done anything special with it. I still don’t think I got the RSS feed thing right but as I messed around with it I learned about a lot of interesting stuff I could add. Unfortunately I didn’t really have time to post much due to an extreme lack of time in my weekend schedule, but I feel like I understand the main points. I’m looking forward to our class blogging project as a way to learn how to narrow down the focus of my blog posts. I’ve never really tried to write about a specific subject on my blog because I just basically write it as a way to keep track of my own thoughts so I would like to work on a more organized blog.


  5. 5 katiemyung February 15, 2010 at 9:00 pm

    It is my first time to use a blog and I like it. When I initiated this blog I was little bit confused to add widgets. However, after I posted some stuffs on my blog it became comfortable to use it.


  6. 6 Kurt Mitschke February 15, 2010 at 11:37 pm

    WordPress definitely seems a lot more professional than Tumblr or Posterous, but with that comes a lot more options and add-ons. I can definitely see the benefits to using WordPress for our group blogging project though. It was not really difficult, but I have a lot to learn about it and I feel that I just need to play around on it a bit more. Here is the link to my blog:


  7. 7 Yolande Yip February 15, 2010 at 11:53 pm

    I found WordPress more complicated than Posterous and Tumblr. I actually had to google some directions on how to use aspects of WordPress, which I definitely didn’t need to do for the others. Despite this, I really like the options available.

    I can’t quite figure out how to find my “About” page from my blog, though.


  8. 8 Sean Beherec February 16, 2010 at 1:31 am

    I’ve been using WordPress for a while and got pretty used to it last summer. I like the interface and all the options. Trying to come up with three posts about the same thing can be a little tough though.


  9. 9 danicwilson February 16, 2010 at 1:50 am

    I still have no clue which RSS widgit I’m supposed to use. I consider myself pretty tech-savvy and quick to learn new interfaces, and I am still not really comfortable with everything WordPress has to offer. I can tell it’s great, but need more time to figure out how to use all that it has to offer.

    More about my frustrations in my first blog post:


  10. 10 Ryan Murphy February 16, 2010 at 2:51 am

    Well, I’ll just come out and say it; things like Posterous and Tumblr just plain spoil you. WordPress comes right out and lets you know it is going to be up to you to make the magic happen. Overall, that is a good thing. When you want to throw something together quickly as a “junk” blog, it can end up being a little more extended.

    Seeing as I own a domain, I went ahead and tried my luck with a server side installation of WordPress, instead of using WordPress.com because I’ve done that a couple of times before. It is pretty much an extension of that, although I think it can be a little disjointed.

    I think the biggest thing I had issue with when it comes to WordPress is the flexibility, but again this has to do with other things I have used in the past. I’m a pretty big Drupal fan, and even though it takes a lot longer to get everything ready to go with Drupal, you have so much control over how to present things. But the structure WordPress provides definitely has some advantages.


  11. 11 Kyle Carpenter February 16, 2010 at 3:29 am

    WordPress is nice, probably my favorite blog site. Definitely offers a more professional appearance if that’s what you’re interested in.

    Not that my blog is by any means…


  12. 12 John Lee February 16, 2010 at 4:31 am

    I have used wordpress before but this exercise was nice getting acquainted with all the gadgets and such. I think my most interesting moment was playing with the various widgets available, esp the Twitter widget.

    I just wish they had some more themes that I liked. I really struggled finding a theme that I liked. There weren’t that many themes to choose from (about 81?). Other than that, I enjoyed playing around on WordPress and exploring its many options.


  13. 13 Hannah February 16, 2010 at 4:54 am

    I currently blog on blogspot, and I really like it. This was a little different to use, since I had to start from scratch, but not too much. For my job, I blog for different companies all day, so I was already familiar with the tagging, categorizing, posting, etc. system. Thus, for those two reasons (I already have a blog, and I blog separately for my company all day), I didn’t put a lot of effort into personalizing this.


  14. 14 Emily February 16, 2010 at 7:08 am

    I really like wordpress because it’s easy to use and it looks professional. I’ve never tried to blog about a certain theme before, but it’s something I’m working on.


  15. 15 Doug Luippold February 16, 2010 at 8:08 am

    While I am a little late, I am excited about the prospect of wordpress. It is easy enough to use so it does not require advanced computer skills, but has the potential to make blogs very intricate and important. As I said in my Tumblr practice blog, blogging is something I have always been apprehensive about, but I am honestly excited to give wordpress a try.


  16. 17 Will Anderson February 16, 2010 at 12:49 pm

    Oops, forgot to add my blog to the class list. Hope no one notices I’m writing this in class:


  1. 1 We’re off and blogging! « The Future of Journalism Trackback on February 18, 2010 at 1:49 pm

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