worldcup_mods: The four quadrant suits (clubs, spades, hearts, and diamonds) are shown with the words "HSWC 2014." (Default)
HSWC Mods ([personal profile] worldcup_mods) wrote in [community profile] hs_worldcup2013-05-22 10:56 am
Entry tags:

Welcome to Dreamwidth! (or: how do I use this site omg)

A lot of HSWC participants are new to Dreamwidth (DW), so we decided to create a detailed tutorial/walkthrough for you. Hopefully this post will make your time here a little smoother and easier.

Part 1: Joining DW
Part 2: Joining the HSWC Community
Part 3: Friending, the Reading Page, and Tracking
Part 4: Commenting and Posting on Dreamwidth
Part 5: HTML Basics
Part 6: Homestuck Fandom on DW


Part 1: Joining DW

You've probably already created a DW account, but in case you haven't, click here to start the sign-up process.

Please verify your DW account! Use this page to check if you're verified and, if you aren't, to ask for another verification e-mail. It's very easy and VERY IMPORTANT. DW Private Messaging may be the only way your teammates can contact you, and they can't use it unless your account is verified.

You can enter as much or as little information as you want during the sign-up process. The only thing we recommend is uploading an icon to your DW account. That way, people have a visual tag with which to identify you.




Part 2: Joining The HSWC Community

Here's a trick. Throughout the site, you will see links that look like this: [community profile] hs_worldcup (for community accounts) or [personal profile] worldcup_mods (for user accounts).

If you hover over the planet (for comms) or the little gray person (for journals/users), a contextual menu will appear with some very handy links. These links include joining and subscribing to a comm.

Test it out now by trying to use the hover menu to join and subscribe to [community profile] hs_worldcup!

If you don't want to do it that way, though, you can also use the Join and Subscribe links on our profile; they're on the right side at the top. These links will also be available in the profiles of your teammates' accounts and your team-specific communities (when they're created). In general, people's profile pages can hold lots of useful links and information, so be sure to take a peek at them and feel free to embellish your own.




Part 3: Friending, the Reading Page, and Tracking

On tumblr, you have followers who show up on your dashboard, and on twitter you have a timeline. On DW, you have friends who show up on your reading list (or friendslist).

DW friending is divided into two sections. Your "access list" is able to see your privatized (or friendslocked) posts. People you "subscribe" to are people who show up on your reading list. You can choose to subscribe, give access, or both from a person's profile page (THEIR_USERNAME.dreamwidth.org/profile) or from their contextual dropdown menu.

You can find your reading page by going to any profile page or to DW's main page and selecting "Reading Page" as shown below:



If you're resistant to the idea of fully embracing DW, however, there are two ways to keep track of the posts in your team's comm and the main comms without having to check your reading page all the time.

The first way is through the RSS feed. A link to the RSS feed is usually located somewhere on the main page of every DW journal and comm. For
[community profile] hs_worldcup, it's located on our left menu bar—scroll down a bit and look for the orange "RSS" button. However, this method doesn't notify you of privatized (or friendslocked) entries.

The second way is through e-mail notifications. Again, on the profile page of every journal and community you should see a bell icon with the word "Track" next to it:



If you click on this, you'll be brought to a page where you can select what updates are e-mailed to you.




Part 4: Commenting and Posting on Dreamwidth

Commenting

At the bottom of most entries you'll see a "Reply" or "Leave a Comment" link.

A demonstration of where to click to leave a comment to a post.

A demonstration of where to click to leave a comment to a post.


If you click on this link, it will bring you to a text box where you can type in responses to posts. Most importantly, this is how you post your prompts and fills during the bonus rounds—as comments to the bonus round posts.

Comment boxes use HTML. (That's covered in part 5.)

Posting

For the purposes of the HSWC, the majority of your posting will be taking place in your team-specific communities. There is only one posting page for entries on Dreamwidth. You can access the posting page through two links. One is accessed by going to the top of any profile page or log in page and mousing over where it says "Create." The first option is "Post Entry."

The second way is the "Post" link in the upper right hand corner.



The posting page itself looks like this:



This is not that different from tumblr's posting page, but there are a couple of very important differences. (The numbers below correspond to the numbers in the image above.)
  1. Near the top you'll see a drop down menu where you can select where to post. You know the menu in the top left corner of your tumblr posting page where you can select which blog to post to? This is Dreamwidth's equivalent of that, except the only individual journal you can post to is your own. All the others will be communities you've joined and have posting access to (namely, your team's comm, and the HSWC round comms for friendleaders).

    Another method you can use to ensure that you always post to the right comm (instead of your personal journal by accident) is to go directly that comm and use the "Post" links there, as shown below:



  2. You can leave your post's subject blank, but it's recommended to say something so people can anticipate what your post will be about.

  3. In the upper right corner, you can select whether you use the HTML editor or the Rich Text editor. The "Rich Text" editor is very similar to tumblr in that it uses a WSYIWYG system. The HTML editor view allows for a lot of customization in your entries, but is heavily reliant on HTML formatting. (Again, HTML formatting basics are covered in Part 5.)

    If you're very uncomfortable with HTML, you can use the Rich Text editor. However, we do suggest that you try the HTML editor with the information listed in Part 5—you might find it's easier than you expect. Additionally, it's highly recommended that friendleaders use the HTML format when submitting their round entries because it allows for greater customization and control, which means your team's entry is shown in the best possible light.

  4. Your standard content entry area. It uses the format style you've selected (Rich Text or HTML) as explained previously.

  5. After the content entry area you'll see another familiar feature: the tags box. This works pretty much the same as tumblr except that your tags will only work on your own journal or community—you can't search on them the way you do on tumblr. (Instead, DW uses communities to gather content and fans of a topic or fandom.) Still, tags are a very useful way to organize the contents of your own journal or community, so feel free to be as specific as you want.

  6. Below the tag box is an area for a lot of optional entry details. The important ones are the ones to the right concerning "comments." If you want, you can choose to disable comments on your post, or "screen" them so that only you (and, if you're posting to a comm, the comm admins) can see comments made to your post. You can also choose to unscreen these comments later on, and choose whether everyone is screened, only anons are screened, or whether people not on your access list are screened. Because team communities will be closed, there is no reason to change these from the default, but it's worthwhile information.

  7. Finally, at the very bottom you will find the privacy settings. There are three settings for this depending on whether you are making a journal post or a community post.
    • For individual posts, they are Everyone, Access List, or Private. It means either your posts are completely public, like on tumblr; visible only to people you have given access to or "friended"; or only visible to you.
    • For community posts, they are Everyone, Members, or Administrators. This means you can make your posts completely public; visible to all the community members but only to community members; or visible only to community administrators.
    • A couple of important notes: If you have given someone access to your journal, that does not mean they have access to your community entries. If you decide to allow a tumblr friend access to your DW journal but you're on different HSWC teams, you don't have to worry that they'll see the posts because you gave them access to your journal. Only members of that community can see the post.
    • If you make an access-only post on your journal, members of communities you are in cannot see them, so if you want to make a post to your DW about something but don't want your team to be able to see it, it will be safe behind the "Access List" privacy option.
A further note about tags: By clicking a little button on your post (as shown below), you can edit your post's tags.



will take you to


The Edit Tags page helps to remind you of what tags you've used before so you can keep them organized.




Part 5: HTML Basics

DW uses HTML to format and stylize posts. This link lists the HTML tags that are accepted on DW. You can look the tags up on W3C Schools to get a better idea of which ones do what, but here's a quick rundown of the ones used most often on DW:
<strong>bold text</strong> = bold text
<em>italicized text</em> = italicized text
<u>underlined text</u> = underlined text (not recommended; save underlining for links)

<small>smaller text</small> = smaller text
<big>bigger text</big> = bigger text

<a href="a website's full url, including http://">link text</a> = link text

You can include images in your post with <img src="direct link to an image's url" alt="a brief description of the image" />

To create quadrant symbols: &lt; = < and &gt; = >

Fancy text such as Small Caps, font color, font face/family, etc., require <span>. I'll spare you the long explanation of how the span tag actually functions, but it looks something like this. The text between the quotes (<span style="THESE QUOTES">) is the stuff that actually acts on the formatted text. As to what commands you can put there, you can use most of the things from this page or this page, separated by semicolons.

Example: <span style="color:blue;font-family:'courier new';font-size:12pt">will make font look like this</span>.

However, please remember that readability should always come before beauty. It's more important that your text be easy to read and understand than be heavily formatted.
This second link lists DW-specific markup language, the most important of which is probably the cut tag: <cut> text you are cutting </cut>.

The cut tag is the equivalent of a "Read More" on tumblr with two important exceptions. The first is that you can end a cut and return to the main content of the entry. This works just like any other HTML tag with a closing tag and then you can continue the rest of your entry outside the cut.

The other difference is that you can specify the text you use to describe the content behind the cut. It looks like this: <cut text="Informative title!">. That's completely optional, but it's a useful feature.

The other important DW tag is user name, as demonstrated below:
<user name="worldcup_mods"> = [personal profile] worldcup_mods
<user name="hs_worldcup"> = [community profile] hs_worldcup
<user name="hswc-announce" site="tumblr.com"> = [tumblr.com profile] hswc-announce




Part 6: Homestuck Fandom on DW

DW's a wonderful place because its commenting, tagging, and HTML customization systems are much easier to use and more powerful than tumblr. If you plan on sticking around after the HSWC is over (and we hope you do), here are some other major Homestuck communities on DW to help you get started with making friends and having conversations within the fandom.

[community profile] pose_as_a_comm - main Homestuck community
[community profile] whatpumpkin - other main Homestuck community

[community profile] mspa_updates - tells you when Homestuck updates so you don't have to check yourself

[community profile] homesmut - Homestuck kink meme (run in a fashion very similar to our bonus rounds—people leave prompts and other people fill them. Highly recommended that you take a look!)




That should be enough information to get you started. If you have any questions, we'd love to hear them! Just leave a comment to this post and we'll get back to you. (Also, we'd really appreciate feedback!)
doombelle: (Default)

[personal profile] doombelle 2013-05-28 01:30 am (UTC)(link)
Thanks for setting this post up! I'm totally new to DW and this answered a lot of my questions.
lowwbloods: (Default)

[personal profile] lowwbloods 2014-04-08 01:26 am (UTC)(link)
(ignore me please just trying out the whole comment thing hehe)
sydnick: (Default)

[personal profile] sydnick 2014-05-15 08:44 pm (UTC)(link)
fantastic and helpful, thank you very much!