Blog FAQ

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a blog?

A blog is a website intended for general public consumption that consists of frequently updated posts often presented in reverse chronological order. Subject matter can be diverse or focused and often includes pictures, video, and hyperlinks to accompany the text.

What is WordPress?

WordPress is the most popular blog publishing application in the world. It's used by over 202 million websites worldwide and allows anyone to create and manage a blog with very little computer knowledge necessary.

How do I create a blog if it's for personal use or a department or organization?

If you're creating a Brown blog that will be used for any reason other than a course, click here to get started.

You'll then be asked to login with your Brown username and password. After logging in you'll be taken to a blog request page. Select whether your blog is for personal use or for departmental use by clicking the button next to it and then click submit. On the next page you'll see a few pre-populated boxes with your brown username and email. Enter your desired URL for your blog into the corresponding box (this is the address that visitors will type into their search bar to find your blog, so try to make it easy to remember). If you're requesting a personal blog, the url box will be pre-populated with your brown username. Next, enter the title you would like for your blog inside the next text box and submit the page. After you submit the page, you'll see a confirmation page stating that your blog request has been received. The time it takes to have a blog request approved varies depending on how many people are requesting blogs at that time so please be patient. Once your blog is approved, you will receive an email notification with information about how to start blogging.

How do I create a blog for a course?

If you're a professor teaching a course at Brown, contact ITG@brown.edu to request a blog. Be sure to include the title and number of your course in the body of the message and put "Blog Request for Course" in the subject line.

I'm having trouble with something on my Blog. Where can I find help?

The Brown Blog Service uses Wordpress, a very versatile and very popular blogging platform. The solution to almost any problem can be found online through either a search engine, the Wordpress forums , or the Wordpress documentation.

How do I get started?

Before you make your first post we suggest reading this legal guide for bloggers

After you sign up for your blog and are familiar with some basic legal principles, we suggest reading a beginner's tutorial to Wordpress. Some popular ones can be found here:
Wordpress.org's lessons to get you started
An Introduction to Blogging
A Set of Tutorials for Beginners

How do I keep up with all the new information about WordPress?

If WordPress has their own blog powered by, you guessed it, WordPress. They include all major news about the platform and also include tons of tips and tricks for blogs. Wordpress' blog can be found here

CIS also maintains a site with important updates about the Brown Blog Service. Brown's site can be found [here]

What plugins are available for my blog?

A list of available plugins can be found here

How do I activate a plugin?

Instructions on how to activate plugins can be found here

How do I install this plugin on my blog?

As of now, the Brown Blog Service offers a number of preinstalled plugins which can be seen here. These are the only plugins currently available. If you'd like to learn more about requesting new plugins, click here.

How do I change what my blog looks like?

Detailed instructions on how to alter the look of your blog can be found here.

What is the file upload limit for files (media and pdfs) that I can upload to my blog?

Each file uploaded can be no greater than 20 MB and each blog has a total size limit of 1 GB.

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