onteora.net website

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Diversity coalitions : One Thread

I'm in the process of moving the www.onteora.net domain to Erik's server.

As the one who is legally responsible for this domain, I'm going to need to approve anything that goes up on the site. It was originally intended by me to be not so much a partisan political site but more a site focused on Onteora district diversity issues, such as the mascot. I have a fair amount of mascot material in process to put up eventually, but I don't think it would be wise to put it up before the election.

This thread will be for discussing material to go on www.onteora.net.

-- Anonymous, April 08, 2001


I can set up another bbs here on greenspun for the candidates to answer questions -- public, rather than private like this one -- if the candidates are willing to be responsive (and if a number of us are willing to take the responsibility to be moderators to remove crank messages).

-- Anonymous, April 08, 2001

Can the question and answer part be on the Onteora website or linked to it? That way we can use the singular address for our publicity.

-- Anonymous, April 08, 2001

A bbs could be linked from the site map of onteora.net, so the single address would be used.

Who is taking responsibility for putting together content, especially keeping the site map updated -- has Erik volunteered for that?

-- Anonymous, April 08, 2001

Ted feels the content of the site should be what is in the the flyers in more depth perhaps, along with other position papers and information.

He points out, and I think rightly so, that if we do put a bulletin board in for interactive discussion that it could drag Meg and Tom into having to discuss the more controversial issues that they'd rather not bring up like the mascot. If it isn't interactive, then we keep control over the information being discussed being only what we want to be discussed.

-- Anonymous, April 09, 2001

I do not fear an interactive format for the proposed BBS nor do I fear addressing the controversial issues. I am prepared to make public my philosophy and opinions on any topic of interest to the community. I think the voters have a right to know. It's all in the delivery and there will be sufficient time to respond to questions prior to posting an answer. An interactive BBS of this nature will also be a good source of information as to what is on the minds of the community.

-- Anonymous, April 10, 2001

I'm happy to try and add whatever I can to the site. I can grab images from the videos if helpful...audio clips can also be put up at some point...For now I think Ted's idea of the expanded information points is the first way to go, along with bios, etc. Basically the flyer and a massaged board history...Especially since we have agreement on what's in them...

I think a way to ask questions is good for the campaign...As soon as it's ready we need to get major publicity about it being available..one important thing to emphasize is that this is a way for the public to reach the candidates for concerns and questions...Our candisdates are open an available! No secrecy here. We need to also email all our fiends to pass the word about the web site...

Maybe there should even be a letters to the candidates section...


-- Anonymous, April 10, 2001

as soon as the onteora.net site is ready, i think we should try to run some publicity from it. T.

-- Anonymous, April 10, 2001

as soon as the onteora.net site is ready, i think we should try to run some publicity that tells about it...I think it should give us some play as an innovation in school board elections...


-- Anonymous, April 10, 2001

The domain name, onteora.net, has been transferred and directly points to my server. I also made it so that the third-level domain www.onteora.net points to the same location.

We must now decide which name (with or without the www-dot) is more media-friendly. It may be easier to remember with the www-dot but it may be worth omitting if we can print in a larger size. Those who know about advertising should discuss this and quickly make a decision. Remember that regardless of how we advertise it, it will work either way.

Once this decision is made, all of the material we print (brochures, advertisements, etc.) should contain the chosen address. I am a tree hugger at heart and do not like to distribute more paper flyers than are needed. If we can distribute one printing worth of fliers with a link to the web site, it will save us the time, money, and paper that a second, updated flyer would have taken. All updates, news, and press releases, can be posed on the web site.

The other thing I would mention is that the dot-net extension should be emphasized, perhaps more than if it were dot-com or dot-org, because people are not used to typing it and it is not the most apparent choice.

onteora.com is owned and used by the Onteora Mountain House; onteora.org is owned (but not used) by the school district. Let us not send people to these addresses by mistake.

In response to Carol's comments about her being legally responsible for the domain, possession is nine-tenths of the law and, despite her owning the pointer, I possess all of the data on my server. If someone were to be sued for the material posted, it would be me. However, if she wants to review all material before it is put up, that is fine with me. Although I am the only person with permission to upload (i.e. add and modify) data to the site so I will necessarily be the final screen.

My last concern is our dividing Internet presence. We have this password-secured BBS which has been used to discuss internal matters in private. Another interactive BBS has been proposed for public questions to the candidates. Should this new service be integrated into http://(www.)onteora.net? (I think it should.) Let us not forget http://www.memo.cx/ocs/, which provides a calendar of events, links to past Board of Education minutes, future Board of Education agendas, and policy decisions. Should these be incorporated into the new site or should they remain separate? If we incorporate them, who should receive the email for this site? Me (erik@memo.cx), Jim (pumpkin@ulster.net), or the new address Tobe created (sosocs@yahoo.com)? From which address should we send responses? It would look most professional if all responses came from the same address. For this, it would be best to use sosocs@yahoo.com. Maybe Tobe, Jim, and I can share the password to this account and sort mail into folders. This e-mail address should also be placed on all advertisements.

Let me know what you want and I can get moving on the design work (Ted said he could help with this). Start sending me content that you would like to appear on the web site so that it can be formatted properly and uploaded quickly. If someone (Ted) has a digital copy of the brochure and candidate bios, please send them to me, but only if they in their final form. I will also need (Toby) the final wording for legal dissociation from OCSD before anything can be posted. There may need to be a place for content before it is approved (maybe onteora.net/unapproved or someplace at memo.cx) where it will sit for a day before it is made public. We must at least appear to be organized.

Let me know if I should start to work on coding an interactive BSS. There has been some concern that this feature may drag our candidates into having to discuss their stances on issues that may be politically unpopular. If need be, I could code an approval or filtering mechanism before the questions are posted (if name="Barbara Clare" then question.send_to="trash") but we should not fear the public's questions for our candidates (only CARE's candidates would be afraid of that). Let us give our candidates an opportunity to respond to the public's questions and concerns. If there is really a question that Meg or Tom does not want to address, they do not have to respond, but overall an interactive BBS should be a good thing.

-- Anonymous, April 11, 2001

Erik: Thanks for the thoughtful, cogent info on this...I am in favor of using sosocs@yahoo.com for email from the web site, and of course the password is available to those who should have it (I'll pass it on as soon as the decision is made to whom it should go.)

I am also in favor of any OPEN points of contact being on the same web site. let's make this easy. I personally am not at all afraid of the barbara carols of the world making their silly questions known.

I am not the one to word any legal disclaimer, but it should be bold and obvious. I thought Carol had it about right (I'm not a lawyer, and I don't even play one on TV.)

Is there an even better choice for the site name than Onteora.net? By that I mean a nickname that makes it easy for anyone to remember, and not get confused with the "other" Onteora sites???? Perhaps S.O.S. Onteora? I'm not sure of how this best works technically, or if it's worth bothering with.


-- Anonymous, April 11, 2001

The Onteora.net address is already at the printers for the brochures. I will be sure it gets onto the postcard mailer but, unfortunately, it is not going to be on the signs. So let's leave the address at Onteora.net.

I have no preference which address is used for e-mail as long as it works properly and is linked to the site.

I do not think we should link the calendar to the Onteora.net site because that is primarily for our use in the campaign. Although we should have an area on the site where the candidates will be appearing in public, if we ever can get that together, such as candidates night...

My 2 cents.

-- Anonymous, April 11, 2001

No other name to remember other than www.onteora.net should be necessary. You don't want people trying to search for SOS on the search engines, as it won't necessarily be caught in time. Person controlling the email address should email onteora.com and onteora.org webmasters to let them know mistaken emails may come their way and that they should forward to us please.

Should be as www.onteora.net, not just as onteora.net, simply as that is the form the more unsophisticated users will understand. Definitely more media-friendly, but I don't think we need to emphasize the -.ne.

Calendar: make one accessible from the site map and clearly labeled "public calendar," let our people know on BBS that the our calendar is different in whatever ways.

Boilerplate of "The www.onteora.net website is not affiliated with the Onteora Central School District" should appear on every page.

How about instead of a bulletin board we have an "ask the candidates" feature? That way we get to screen and cherrypick questions they email in, and it looks more interactive. We can seed them as much as we want, too. You've seen all the incoherent comments made by those who reply online to the Freeman articles, and you can guarantee that a board would rapidly get filled up with those. I trust most of you have been on other bulletin boards and know the general abysmal calibre of public discourse on them.... And we do NOT want to be seen as censoring Barbara Clare, so let's not put ourselves into a position where she could take that and make political hay out of it.

"In response to Carol's comments about her being legally responsible for the domain, possession is nine-tenths of the law and, despite her owning the pointer, I possess all of the data on my server. If someone were to be sued for the material posted, it would be me."

You could be pro-active about things and submit your car information to CARE in advance so they know where to put the nails. "Legal" retribution isn't the half of it... ;)

"Let us not forget http://www.memo.cx/ocs/, which provides a calendar of events, links to past Board of Education minutes, future Board of Education agendas, and policy decisions. Should these be incorporated into the new site or should they remain separate?"

I'd suggest that you just link to memo.cx and have those there. That's your baby, and if/when we lose you to college unless you've got a disciple who will take on the task it will fade into the mists.

I agree that the sosocs@yahoo should be the response address for correspondence. Just make sure you coordinate it so that nothing falls through the cracks.

Ted's not going to be available much in the next few days, and utterly unavailable after Tuesday for about a week due to the NY Book Fair. Email him, he's not following the board. He'll send you a PDF file on the candidates' brochure, Erik.

-- Anonymous, April 11, 2001

The www-dot is more media friendly because of the way that it visually offsets the commercial domain extension dot-com in advertising material. Companies frequently center their name between these two identifiers without explicitly having to declare their web address as such. More unsophisticated users understand this format because they are accustomed to seeing it advertised this way on television and in magazines. According to Jim, the onetora.net name (sans www-dot) already went to print for our brochures and postcard mailers, so let us forget about the www-dot and move on. (Remember that users may type the www-dot and it will work, it is just a matter of how we do our promotion. It is also much easier to say without the www-dot.)

I like Carol's idea for an "ask the candidates" feature. I think it will work better than a BBS. I can create a form that will allow questions to be sent via email to sosocs@yahoo.com (or maybe directly to Meg and Tom). Responses can then be sent to me, along with the questions. I will format them to fit the web and then post them transitionally at onteora.net/unapproved for Carol's approval. Once her approval is given, they will be posted to the appropriate destination on our web site. This seems like it could work. (My comment about censoring Barbara Clare was meant as humor but it may have been necessary under the old system to prevent a flood of questions, this new system should fix that problem.)

-- Anonymous, April 12, 2001

Can they come to sosocs and then automatically get sent to meg and tom...just to have a central address available. (and to carol as well)

-- Anonymous, April 12, 2001

Erik, thius is an elegant solution and a form sounds like th eway to go.

As soon as we have something ready for the premiere, I'll get a press release toegther and ready...We have 4 weeks left for an election impact. I love that it launches ontera.net, which I think will be a real asset in short and long term. Tobe

-- Anonymous, April 12, 2001

I was not sure whether to post this message under this thread or the onteora.net website thread but I figured this one had broader readership (and this message pertains to email, not the website). Perhaps someone can create a thread for correspondence about email (this may seem redundant, but in fact, it is not).

Tobe has sent me the password to the email account. I logged in and created the following folder architecture: Public Relations, Questions Asked, and Questions Answered. I also created folders for Jim, Meg, Tom, Ted, and myself. These are the people who I have identified as needing access to the account. If you are one of these people, and do not have the password to the account, post your email address here and Tobe will send it to you. If you are not one of these people, but feel like you should be, (I am sorry if I have forgotten you), please post a message here explaining why you will need access.

The number of people with access to this account needs to be limited for security reasons and because multiple simultaneous logins are permitted (so if messages mysteriously move or you are unexpectedly logged out, do not be surprised).

Please, let us be organized with this. All new messages received will come into the Inbox. I will take responsibility for sorting messages into the folders I have created and will do so as follows:

If you notice copious messages in the Inbox and feel inspired to sort by the above guidelines, please do not hesitate to do so. If you think a new folder should exist, feel free to create it and post a description of its purpose here (or under the not-yet-existent email thread). If you notice something improperly sorted into your folder, please either put it where you think it belongs, or return it to the Inbox to be resorted.

The interface for moving messages is fairly simple: First, place a check in the box to the left of the message or messages you would like to move. Second, select a destination from the "Choose Folder" pull-down menu and lastly press the "Move" button. To delete a message, place a check in the box to the left of the message or messages you would like to delete and press the "Delete" button. Please do not delete messages unless you are sure that nobody will need them again. I will be responsible for deleting spam.

Our "From Name," that is, the name that appears on the "From" line of outgoing mail, is "S.O.S." Yahoo Mail prevented me from using "Support Onteora Schools" because the word "support" is a reserved word (I cannot imagine why).

I also created a signature that will be attached to the bottom of every outgoing email. This makes our messages look more official and prevents us from having to insert contact information. The signature is comprised of the following text, (please let me know if this needs to be changed): ===== Support Onteora Schools Call: 657-2914 or 688-2214 Web: http://www.onteora.net/

Do not forget to type your name at the bottom of the message so that the recipient knows from whom the message is coming (the signature feature will not do this for you).

Yahoo mail represents new (unread) messages by making them bold, but they may lose their status as new if I open them for the purpose of sorting, so make sure to read any message in your folder that does not look familiar (even if it is not bold).

Any changes made to the account should be documented here (or in the not-yet-existent email thread). It is important that everyone knows what is going on.

From now on, for official SOS business, please do not use personal email accounts to respond to messages. Instead, please login at http://mail.yahoo.com.

-- Anonymous, April 13, 2001

good going erik..any idea when the site will have the first info?

I wonder if we should also post the "history' info I emailed last week, with perhaps the "ads" we have run for those who do not read the local papers... Anything else? Tobe

-- Anonymous, April 13, 2001

Erik, would it be possible to have an invisible hit-meter on the site?

I notice the CARE page is up to at least 22 hits, but I know that at least 2 of them are mine since they put up the meter.

-- Anonymous, April 21, 2001

I believe I too have logged at least two hits on the CARE site and noticed the counter. But just because they have one does not mean that we need one.

There are three reasons why it makes sense to count hits: It allows the maintainer of the site to decide if the exposure a web site amasses is worth the investment, it is used to bill advertisers, and lastly, the information gathered could be analyzed to better route traffic.

None of these reasons are compelling: Our investment is zero, we do not have any advertisers to bill, and there is not enough time to evaluate the results and redesign the site accordingly.

If I have overlooked a good reason to count hits, feel free to implement the counter yourself and send me the code. We will have some sense of how much traffic is passing through by the number of "Ask the Candidate" questions received. It would be interesting to know exactly how many hits we are getting but it is not important. I have already devoted much time to the site.

-- Anonymous, April 21, 2001

Erik has done a great job and I agree with him. He has done what was needed to be done and now there are more important things to do such as make phone calls, meet and greets, phone calls, meet and greets, phone calls...

-- Anonymous, April 21, 2001

Merely idle curiosity.

-- Anonymous, April 21, 2001

Just for the record, 2 of Care's counts were mine.....I think it was at 25 last time, but there had been no change at all in the site....this was about a week ago

-- Anonymous, May 05, 2001

I probably count for another two or three since. ROFL Why don't we just have them email updates to us directly and save themselves the bother?

-- Anonymous, May 08, 2001

I was just wondering why none of Perry's ex-athletes from his coaching days have come forward with a backing. From what I am hearing, he was not well liked at all.

-- Anonymous, May 11, 2001

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