Five major problems with the Newsletter

Discussions about the Newsletter Tool at LDS.org.
RayFroess
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Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby RayFroess » Fri Mar 28, 2014 8:34 pm

When trying to create a newsletter article, I have these problems. Some have existed for over a year. In general it has gotten worse.

• I cannot use Internet Explorer, I have to use Google Chrome as the browser for submission.
• Pasted text will lose its formatting. When I tried to paste a poem, all the lines are merged into one big paragraph.
• I cannot wrap text around a picture or do anything but the most basic formatting. For nice formatting I have to create the layout, save it as a jpg image and insert the image into the article.
• Frequently when saving the article it fails to post. Five times in a row I got "Not Available - This page is unavailable. Error code 2-1919." When this happens, clicking the back button returns to an empty document. All has been lost.
• I cannot edit an article. I have to create a new one and delete the one I would like to have edits. Articles are listed in chronological order, so the new article is posted at the top of the list instead of in the location it formerly held.

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aebrown
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Re: Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby aebrown » Sat Mar 29, 2014 11:49 am

RayFroess wrote:When trying to create a newsletter article, I have these problems. Some have existed for over a year. In general it has gotten worse.

In general, it is problematic to report multiple issues in one post. It leads to a confusing discussion when multiple issues are involved. The Code of Conduct says: "Do not start a new topic in an existing thread; instead start a new thread."

RayFroess wrote:I cannot use Internet Explorer, I have to use Google Chrome as the browser for submission.

I am able to use Internet Explorer (although I don't usually use IE). What leads you to say that you can't use it? What errors do you see, or limitations do you experience? In this post, you indicated that you were using IE for Newsletter. Has something changed since then?

RayFroess wrote:• Pasted text will lose its formatting. When I tried to paste a poem, all the lines are merged into one big paragraph.
• I cannot wrap text around a picture or do anything but the most basic formatting. For nice formatting I have to create the layout, save it as a jpg image and insert the image into the article.

It's true that the the editor has limited capabilities.

RayFroess wrote:• Frequently when saving the article it fails to post. Five times in a row I got "Not Available - This page is unavailable. Error code 2-1919." When this happens, clicking the back button returns to an empty document. All has been lost.

This symptom has three different causes (see this post). But the good news is that in just the last couple of days, the most common cause (editing an article containing an image) has been fixed (see this post).

RayFroess wrote:• I cannot edit an article. I have to create a new one and delete the one I would like to have edits. Articles are listed in chronological order, so the new article is posted at the top of the list instead of in the location it formerly held.

I have no problem editing an article (except for the image problem listed above that was fixed this last week). Unless you're talking about that issue (which you mentioned as a separate bullet point already), I don't understand why you would have to create a new article and delete the old one.

The issue of chronological ordering has been discussed before (for example, here).

RayFroess
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Location: Saratoga, CA

Re: Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby RayFroess » Sat Mar 29, 2014 6:13 pm

I apologize for multiple problems in one post. I will search for each problem separately and include "Five major problems with the Newsletter" in the body so they can be found.

RayFroess
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Location: Saratoga, CA

Re: Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby RayFroess » Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:57 pm

STATUS:
• For the browser, pasting, and formatting issues I posted "Browser issue: Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox"
• The limitations on formatting are unchanged.
• It appears that both the failure to post and the ability to re-edit an article have been fixed.

rb_bolin
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Re: Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby rb_bolin » Sat Jul 05, 2014 5:23 pm

The lack of formatting in the newsletter can be overcome by attaching a document and just pointing to it on the newsletter page. Attached is a sample newsletter for our stake. The attachment is a PDF file but in our stake, I also include a word version for those who want to edit for their own use.

In the PDF file, I have two columns. The left column has an attractor and the right column has the details. If the newsletter is viewed on a tablet, the reader can zoom onto the details and still read it on a smaller display.

Note: attachment removed as it contained real person data. If you would like to upload a sample, please create one with obviously fake data.

russellhltn
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Re: Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby russellhltn » Sat Jul 05, 2014 7:45 pm

rb_bolin wrote:Attached is a sample newsletter for our stake.

You sure that's a sample? It looks like "live data" to me, including emails and phone numbers. Please keep in mind this is a public forum. No login is required to see anything posted.
Have you searched the Wiki?
Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

mevans
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Re: Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby mevans » Wed Jul 09, 2014 2:02 pm

We have some ward organizations posting a PDF of their newsletter. That seems to work relatively well. Another pointer someone gave is to embed an image because people can see the image when viewing the article without having to open something. I do this sometimes with images of flyers for events. This technique may not work as well for newsletters with lots of text. It also isn't helpful to people with disabilities who need screen readers. If you include both an image and a PDF, that will help.

McLaughlinES
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Re: Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby McLaughlinES » Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:11 pm

Our ward has decided to make the leap to posting our newsletter on LDS.org. One of the advantages is the ability to use color and not have to squish lots onto fewer pages to save on printing costs. I would like to be send some samples from other wards if you can send them directly. I understand they cannot be posted in the forum.

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johnshaw
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Re: Five major problems with the Newsletter

Postby johnshaw » Wed Jul 30, 2014 12:04 pm

The newsletter app was rushed to production so we could get rid of the Wards and Stake's Web 1.0 tools. It is nowhere near what it needs to be and the lack of feature-rich editor and the requirement to put in your username and password keep most of the ward and stake leaders I deal with from using it. Basically, people have to be assigned to use it.

The result is: facebook pages and websites/blogs are used instead of the Newsletter solution.
“A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom.”
― Thomas Paine, Common Sense


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