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Blogging On MyCopper
Tips and Helps for blogging on the MyCopper portal.
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Customizing your MyCopper Feed Panel

1) While logged-in, select Profile next to your login status display.


Note: If you are not a logged-in portal user, you will not be able to customize the Feed Panels on the home page.

2) Select the Feed Panel Settings tab.

Feed Panel Settings Tab

3) Enter a new Panel Title and click the Add Button.

Add New Feed Panel

4) Make sure the newly added panel is selected. The selected panel will be highlighted.

Select Panel

5) Under the RSS Feeds section, enter the URL for the RSS Feed you want to add.

Click “add” next to the URL line to make it stick and to open a new line.

Note: Adding more than one feed will add Tab Controls to the feed panel with each feed under a separate tab. In this case, you will want to have a Name for the feed. “Name” is what will show in the tab.

When finished adding feeds, click the Save Panel button in the footer of the Edit Panel.

Feed Panel Options

Warning: If you forget to Save the Panel, your newly added feeds and setting changes will be lost.

When you Save your Panel, you will see a Panel Preview towards the bottom of the page. This is how it will appear on the Portal Home Page. Adjust the panel settings as needed and Save Panel to view your changes.

Panel Preview

6) Reposition your feed panels by dragging and dropping the panel icon.  This determines the order the panels appear on the Portal Home page.

Move Feed Panel

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Adding a Blog Post

You must be a logged-in user and have set up your blog to make a post. If you have not done this yet, please read Getting Started - Setting Up Your Blog.

1) Navigate to your blog by clicking “My Blog” in the Header Navigation Menu.

2) Click on “Add Post” in the Admin menu.

Admin Menu

3) Enter a Post Title in the text box provided.

4) Enter a URL-Friendly Name. Usually this is your title with the spaces removed. You can assign your blog a shortened name if your title is lengthy. For your convenience, you can have the URL-Friendly name automatically generated by clicking the Extract from Title button.

Post Interface

5) Select the Categories this blog post falls under. Assigning categories helps the viewer quickly navigate to the post content that interests them. If your Category list is empty or does not contain the appropriate Categories, you can add new Categories to the list by entering a Category in the text box and clicking the Add Category button.

Note: Selecting multiple Categories is possible by using Control+Click (PC) or Command+Click (Mac). Selected Categories will be highlighted.

Note: You can always come back and modify this list at a later time.

6) Enter a list of Tags separating each word with a comma. Tags can be keywords that are found in your post that help define the relevant content. Adding Tags will help your Tag Cloud be more effective.

7) Check the Published button when this post is ready to be made public. If this post is a draft, leave this unchecked.

8) Use the Editor Control to build your blog content. By default, the Editor is in Design mode which is a WYSISYG interface. For more specific control or customization you can edit in HTML mode.

Warning: Some experience working with HTML is needed for working in HTML mode. Breaking this code by using invalid HTML can cause your post to not render correctly.

Note: Further information on using the Editor Control can be found here [link coming soon].

Editor Control

9) Click the Save Post button to submit your post. You will be taken to the Home page of your blog. If the Published Checkbox was checked, you will see your newly created post in your blog.

Note: If you do not see your newly created post, chances are it remains unpublished. Navigate to the list of Unpublished Posts under the Admin menu. Select your new blog then check the Published Checkbox and click "Save Post" again.

RSS, What is it and How is it used

RSS is a great way to link to blog content with a feed reader such as Microsoft Outlook, Google Reader, MyYahoo, NetNewsWire, SharpReader, or even the customizable feed panels on the MyCopper portal home page. 

Definition: RSS means “Really Simple Syndication”

Setting up Microsoft Outlook to receive RSS feeds:

1) Select menu item Tools > Account Options…

Outlook - Account Options

2) Select the RSS Feeds tab. Click New…

New RSS Feed

3) Enter the URL for the blog feed you want to receive. Click the Add button.


4) In the RSS Feed Options screen, the Feed Name should auto-populate with information Outlook receives when it connects to the feed. You can change the Feed Name if you desire. This will be the name of the feed folder under the Outlook directory: Mail Folders > RSS Feeds.

Click the OK button.

RSS Feed Options

Setting up Google Reader to receive feeds:

1) Log in to Google Reader  with your Google account or select Create an Account. You can log in using your Gmail account if you have one.

2) Click Add a Subscription and enter the RSS feed URL in the textbox and click Add.

Google Reader

Note: Further help can be found at http://www.google.com/support/reader/?hl=en.

See CopperBlog article “Customizing your MyCopper Feed Panel”

Note: When adding the URL for an RSS feed, be sure you are viewing the XML document. Your browser will recognize this as a feed and display a yellow feed panel at the top of the page. MyCopper blog feeds will end with “?feed=rss2” example:http://www.mycopper.net/blogs/CopperBlog/?feed=rss2.

XML Document

Ping Services

Ping Services, also known as Update Services, are a way for you to let other people know when you have updated your blog. Each time you submit a blog post, MyCopper will submit a notification to any of the Ping Services listed in this interface. This can help your search engine ranking by having multiple sites referencing your blog. People browsing a Ping Service site like Technorati or Sphere will be able to find your most recent blog posts.

Ping Service Interface

To add a Ping Service, simply enter the service URL in the text box and click “Add Service”. Once added, a ping service can be updated or deleted.

Note: Each Ping Service will need to be added individually.

There are many Ping Services available. Here is a list of some of the most common or widely used XML-RPC Ping Services:


Using Categories and Tags

When creating posts, if you are confused about how to use Categories and Tags, perhaps this post will help.

By selecting Add Post or Editing an Existing Post, you will see the following interface:

Add Post Interface

Here you will have the option to select Categories your post belongs to as well as declare several Tags. This can be confusing to the beginning blogger, but using Categories and Tags correctly can greatly improve the experience of your blog’s visitors.

Categories are a useful way to provide thoughtful structure to your blog. Posts of similar content should be categorized under the same Categories.

Example: If you were to post many recipes on your blog, you could have each recipe belong to a category such as “Main Dish”, “Side Dish”, “Desserts”, “Drinks”, “Salads”, “Soups”, etc. and every recipe could belong to a general “Recipes” Category.  This way someone interested in finding a good dessert recipe could view at just your post under the Dessert category.

Tags are keywords found in your post content. 

Example: A recipe post for Banana Cream Pie may use the keywords: banana, pie, dessert, award winning, easy bake, low calorie.

Note: Tags will appear in the Tag Cloud view in the sidebar of your blog.

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