Newsletter going away???

Discussions about the Newsletter Tool at LDS.org.
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wrigjef
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Newsletter going away???

Postby wrigjef » Sun Dec 11, 2016 6:57 am

With the lesson schedules feature being discontinued our ward is planning to build a document with lesson links, post it as a newsletter item, and advertises heavily during Teachers Councils, classes, bulletins, and meetings. Lesson links are the most requested function and using the calendar or a printed schedule just doesn't do it for us. The Bishop prefers not to go outside of LDS.org and use another online resource. I've heard that the newsletter might be next on the chpooing block, if this is true we need to discuss reconsidering or just giving up on publicizing lessons. Can someone help validate?

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sbradshaw
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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby sbradshaw » Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:17 pm

Yes, that is correct. I don't know the timeline, but the LDS.org Newsletter will also be going away. See the comments section on this blog post by a Church employee:
http://ldsmediatalk.com/2016/11/22/lesson-schedules-tool-on-lds-org-discontinued/
Samuel Bradshaw • If you desire to serve God, you are called to the work.

russellhltn
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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby russellhltn » Sun Dec 11, 2016 7:41 pm

sbradshaw wrote:Yes, that is correct. I don't know the timeline, but the LDS.org Newsletter will also be going away. See the comments section on this blog post by a Church employee:
http://ldsmediatalk.com/2016/11/22/lesson-schedules-tool-on-lds-org-discontinued/


"The Newsletter has similar technical problems and there are only 550 wards and branches (out of 30,000) that use the Newsletter. Therefore, will will be discontinued as well. We will announce that within a few weeks. "
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wrigjef
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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby wrigjef » Sun Dec 11, 2016 8:10 pm

Looking for the best option to make lesson schedules available. It seems like units are being enticed even forced into utilizing other web options be it google docs, Facebook or something else. If there was the ability to add links to calendar items I'd be tempted to create a lesson schedules calendar but right now that's not an option since active links was the most attractive aspect of the lesson schedules tool.

scubadox
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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby scubadox » Wed Dec 14, 2016 7:14 am

We're disappointed to learn that they're doing away with the newsletter function. This was our Ward "website" where we could post information and keep members updated. I think the reason it hasn't taken off among Wards is the fact that it can't "push" information. If someone posts to the newsletter there should be a way to automatically notify those who wish to get notified that there's new information there, rather than expecting people to come to the newsletter to see what's new. We'll need to come up with an alternative. We're thinking about Facebook or a blogging site. Do any of you have any suggestions as to what you're going to do or what you're currently doing to keep Ward members informed?

mevans
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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby mevans » Fri Dec 16, 2016 8:22 am

When I went to the Newsletter today, I see they have the official discontinuation notice. They're blaming it on us, the church members, for not using it. I wonder why there is no looking at the church's incomplete job of implementing the tool that makes it so unused? It doesn't feel like it's ever exited the "beta" stage. I know ward leaders were very excited about it until they found out there was no push mechanism--then they lost interest.

It's also sad because this is the only way units can post information that they know will only be accessible to unit members.

There are many things that are underutilized by church members. What's next on the hit list?

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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby lajackson » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:09 am

mevans wrote:There are many things that are underutilized by church members. What's next on the hit list?

Well, I hope not the Scriptures site. [grin]

I hardly ever use it, except to cut and paste verses of scriptures into an occasional talk.

drepouille
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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby drepouille » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:39 am

I believe the main reasons why the Newsletter and the Lesson Schedules were not widely adopted by units:
- Not visible in LDS Tools
- No push or notification capability
People generally do not like to use applications that require them to "go look and see" what has changed.
Dana Repouille, Plattsmouth, Nebraska

scubadox
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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby scubadox » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:46 am

Exactly! If the newletter had a push feature where you could subscribe to updates via e-mail, I think it would have been much more popular. It was also quite buggy. I remember going through weeks at a time where it didn't work correctly, and even today I've tried to update the categories and it won't take the updates. As someone mentioned earlier it was like a "beta" version with bugs and problems that never seemed to get fully resolved. We really enjoy using the newsletter as our web page for the Ward, and it was behind the Church firewall so people felt safe having pictures and other information posted there. Not sure where we'll have to go now to do these functions. Any others out there using alternatives that work well?

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Re: Newsletter going away???

Postby russellhltn » Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:41 am

Even in it's less than great implementation, it was useful for things like various forms the ward or stake wanted to make available to it's members. For example, a form to request use of the building for family events.
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Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.


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