Education/News/Newsletter Guidelines/archive

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Archived as of 21:56, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Newsletter content preparation[edit]

Why do we write newsletter posts?

The education newsletter will focus on sharing: your ideas, stories, success and challenges. It will help us learn from each other and celebrate each other's successes.

How to write a good newsletter post?

A newsletter post shouldn't be so short that it doesn't communicate a story. For example, if the post is about an event, it shouldn't be one or two lines saying that the event was held. The reader should get answers to several questions, like when was the event held, where, who attended, what was interesting about this event? A good post will not leave the reader with many questions in their mind. On the other hand, the post shouldn't so long that it looks like a blog post. If you have a lot of ideas, details, lessons learned that will take several pages on paper, you would better think about writing a blog post.

A good newsletter post will be accompanied by photos, links to pages about the event, course pages, user pages, etc. You can also include quotations from some people you are talking about or someone who is attending the course, event, etc.

The newsletter content leaders will be happy to review your drafts, co-write the post with you, or even write the post for you after you give them some details about the topic you would like to cover. To get help with your post drafting, please contact one of the content leaders listed on this page.

How to prepare "Education in other publications" section?

The "education in other publications" section of the newsletter lists news shared about Wikipedia in education in different media publications. Google alerts can help you get these news when there are any. To do that, please follow the following steps:

  1. Go to google alerts website.
  2. In the search box type a key word for the alert to track, like "Wikipedia Education Program", "Wikipedia in Education", "Wikipedia student", "Wikipedia school", "Wikipedia university", etc. You can create more than one alert for as many key words you want to track.
  3. You can edit every alert to choose how often do you want to get emails from this alert, what source do you want google to use: news only, blogs only, all, etc, and many other options.
  4. Google when send you emails whenever there is something published on the web about the key words you logged.
  5. Open the articles google found and sent to you, make sure each one of them is mainly talking about Wikipedia in Education and dismiss articles that don't meet this criteria.
  6. Go to the newsroom and add a link to the article you found to the "Education in other publications"
  7. You can add a very short summary about the article you are adding. One or two lines will be great.

Newsletter publication[edit]

Newsletter pages creation steps

This section is to document how to create the various versions of the newsletter.

Starting with the June 2014 issue, we published three different versions of the newsletter: Headlines, Highlights, and a Single page edition. The Headlines edition includes a linked list of story titles. The Highlights edition includes Signpost-style snippets. And the Single page edition contains all of the content in the issue.

Headlines edition[edit]

The Headlines edition includes a bulleted list of story titles. The titles are linked to each article's wiki page. For example:

* [[outreach:Education/Newsletter/June 2014/Wikipedia Education Project in Uruguay|Wikipedia Education Project in Uruguay]]

That list goes inside the table, above the closing </div> tags.

Highlights edition[edit]

The Highlights edition includes Signpost-style snippets.

However, the Signpost snippet template is somewhat different from the Education snippet template.

In the Education snippet template, the parameters are as follows: 1 = month_year/article | 2 = country | 3 = article label | 4 = snippet or one-sentence description. For example:

{{Education/Newsletter/Snippet|June_2014/Wikipedia Primary School Project|Africa|Wikipedia Primary School Project|The Wikipedia Primary School project seeks to understand whether or not Wikipedia articles meet the needs of primary school education.}}

The snippets are currently displayed in three columns. The center column includes an image file that relates to the article listed immediately below it. The image file should be centered and not larger than 350px. For example:


Currently, the highlights edition is featured on the main News page of the Education portal here on Outreach wiki. See: How the current newsletter gets posted to the news page.

Single page edition[edit]

The Single page edition contains all of the content in the issue, including the full text of all articles and any accompanying graphics and multimedia.

It uses anchors. M:Help:Link#Anchors had a guide.

How the current newsletter gets posted to the news page[edit]

The new way:

  • Go to Education/News
  • Below the __NOTOC__ update the month in the following line of code: {{:Education/Newsletter/June_2014/Highlights}}

The old way:

  • Search for: :Education/Newsletter/Issue
  • Update the month to be the current month in this line of code: {{:Education/Newsletter/May 2014}}

Either way: Go to the current month's issue, and edit the page. Make sure that the month is the current month twice in the 7th and 8th lines of code, which look like this: <div style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Times New Roman; text-align: center; ">[[outreach:Education/Newsletter/May 2014|<font color=darkslategray>This Month in Education – Volume 3, Issue 5, May 2014</font>]]</div>

How to edit the news feed on the main page[edit]

  • The Latest news section on the homepage of the Education portal does not actually contain the headlines, but rather, it is transcluding them from {{Education Portal/Newsletter/Headlines}}
  • Search for: Template:Education Portal/Newsletter/Headlines
  • Then edit the Headlines page
  • Replace the previous issue’s links with the current issue’s links
  • Save the Headlines page
  • The Latest news section on the homepage of the Education portal will automatically update. You may, however, have to purge the page/bypass the cache.

How old newsroom content gets cleared out for the next month's draft stories[edit]

You need to clear out the newsroom from the previous month's content so that there is a clean place, an empty sandbox, if you will, where new stories can be added. You want to leave behind one story as an example. Select one that is fully developed and includes an image. You also want to leave behind one article summary in the section at the end called "Articles of interest in other publications." Here's an example of how the cleaned out newsroom page should look after an issue is published.

How the past issue of the newsletter page is archived[edit]

Open the archives, edit the section for this year, and add a link to the most recent past edition. Make sure that you are not on the main newsletter page, but actually on the page for that specific issue; you're in the right place if there's a month and a year in the URL, like this:

Publication checklist[edit]

  1. Make the new newsletter (See: Instructions for creating the various versions of the newsletter)
  2. Dump the newsroom (See: How old newsroom content gets cleared out for the next month's draft stories)
  3. Update the news page (See: How the current newsletter gets posted to the news page)
  4. Update the news feed on portal main page (See: How to edit the news feed on the main page)
  5. Archive the old issue (See: How the past issue of the newsletter page is archived)

Newsletter distribution[edit]

Sending the newsletter to talkpages[edit]

  • There are several methods to get the content of the Headlines, depending on the type of page and what you want to send:
Non-translatable page Translatable page, but send English-only version Translatable page, send multilingual version
  1. Go to Education/News and click the link for the headlines edition.
  2.  Click edit and copy all of the code.
    • Don't forget the second |} in the template.
    • But don't include the category, which is the last line. It looks like this: <noinclude>[[Category:This Month in Education]]</noinclude>.
  3. Format as per the examples at Newsletter mass message template.
  4. Remove any and all translation tags and extra div tags and make sure the title isn't in there twice!

If you have a translatable page, it's full of translate tags, tvars, etc. so you can't just copy/paste the content. You need the clean version of the page, and that's very easy to get.

  1. Go to Education/News and click the link for the headlines edition.
  2. Once on the headlines page (called something like "Education/Newsletter/July 2014"), open the edit window. The URL in your browser will look like:
  3. Change the URL in your browser to access the /en subpage by adding this bit:
  4. There shouldn't be any translate tags in this version. Copy the content as you would do for a non-translatable page, leaving out the <languages /> at the top.
  1. Go to Education/Newsletter/Newsroom/Multilingual message and open the edit window: You'll see something like:
    {{#invoke:Assemble multilingual message|assembleMessage|marker=education-newsletter|page=Education/Newsletter/June 2014|es|fr}}.
    This is the script that assembles all existing translations into one big text.
  2. Replace the page= parameter with the page you want to send, for example:
    page=Education/Newsletter/July 2014
  3. After the page, insert the language codes of languages in which your page has been translated, for instance |es|fr|uk if your page has been translated to Spanish, French and Ukrainian. Do not add "en" for the English version: as the default language, it is automatically included.
  4. Your code should now be something like:
    {{#invoke:Assemble multilingual message|assembleMessage|marker=education-newsletter|page=Education/Newsletter/July 2014|es|fr|uk}}.
  5. Save your edit, and copy/paste the content you see.
  1. To send the newsletter across wikis, you need the "MassMessage sender" user right (see the list of people who have it). You can request it at m:WM:RFH.
  2. Once you have the MassMessage sender user right, to send the message, go to: m:Special:MassMessage
  3. In the page containing list of pages to leave a message on, type: Global message delivery/Targets/This Month in Education
  4. In the subject of the message (also used as the edit summary), type: This Month in Education: [Month Year]
  5. In the body of the MassMessage, paste the code (i.e. what you have obtained above with one of the three methods).
  6. Remember to sign the MassMessage with the delivery system's signature and timestamp, using 4 tildes: ~~~~.
  7. Add the following copy at the bottom:
    <div style="margin-top:10px; font-size:90%; padding-left:5px; font-family:Georgia, Palatino, Palatino Linotype, Times, Times New Roman, serif;"> If this message is not on your home wiki's talk page, [[m:Global message delivery/Targets/This Month in Education|update your subscription]]. </div>
  8. Click "Preview" and then, if it looks good, send it! :)
     Note: Even you're sending a multilingual newsletter, you'll only see the English version when you preview, because Meta is in English.

Sending the newsletter to email subscribers[edit]

  1. There is a Gmail account for the education newsletter. Log in to the account using this username:, and contact the education team at the Wikimedia Foundation to get the password at
  2. When you are logged in to the account, please check whether there are any subscribe/unsubscribe requests and add/remove them to the group of contacts called "newsletter mailing list".
  3. Compose a new message in which you should copy the message you sent to talk pages. You may want to include a brief message to the readers before the template.
  4. Send the message to the group of contacts named "newsletter mailing list"
  5. You can send the same message to some Wikimedia mailing lists like:,,,

Sharing the newsletter on social media accounts[edit]

  1. Post a link to the WEP Facebook group. The highlights edition only.
  2. Send a message to to request sharing it on the Education Program Twitter account.