Nearly 20,000 blog posts by 11 authors have been transported from TypePad to Word Press– a gargantuan task. Special thanks to Dave Safier (who was with Blog for Arizona when we started this project) who worked with TypePad, Word Press, and Go Daddy on the technical aspect of the transfer. I worked with Safier and BfAZ founder Michael Bryan to create the new masthead and the HTML for some of the features. (If you knew how long it has been since I coded HTML and how little I know of CCS, you’d be really impressed. I want to add a special shout out to the technical support offered by WordPress.org.)
Today new site can be found at BlogForArizona.net now but will eventually be back at the original address BlogForArizona.com. The old TypePad address will be an archive. [UPDATE: Things have been a bit glitchy today– a few technical difficulties moving from one url to another, but trust me, it will be really cool once it’s done.]
Major improvements in the site include…
More content. With 11 bloggers– six in Tucson and five in Phoenix– BfAZ has fresh statewide content 24/7. Do you want to know what happened at a City Council meeting, at the Legislature, at the Arizona Democratic Party meeting, at a Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) meeting, at a political event, at a school board meeting, or at a protest rally? You’re NOT going to find that breadth of news coverage from theArizona Daily Star, the Tucson Weekly, or those newspapers up north. Go to BfAZ for news, commentary, photos, and original video. Five of BfAZ’s contributors have had their own independent political blogs for years (and continue to cross-post)– Craig McDermott, Donna Gratehouse, Tom Prezelski, Steve Muratone, and me. Allowing independent bloggers to cross-post gives BfAZ a richness and variety of content that no other political website in Arizona has.
Visibility on mobile devises. This is one of the major reasons for transitioning from TypePad to Word Press. On a smart phone, the old BfAZ site displayed as a teeny tiny version of the entire website. Now, when you view the site on a smart phone you will see the most recent posts, with a link to the full site.
More ways to view the news. The old site had a standard blog format, which emphasized most recent posts. Unless you searched the site or used the category click-throughs, it was hard to find other content. The new site has the newest posts in the main blog stream column, but it also has an author section which shows the most recent post by each of BfAZ’s 11 authors. (Do we now have more writers than theArizona Daily Star or the Weekly?) In addition, there is a category cloud, the Donkey Feed with clicks to other stories, a list of 20 most recent stories, and most recent comments.
Easy social media sharing. The Word Press site has vastly improved social media sharing options. Each post has a widget which allows easy sharing on Facebook, Google +, Twitter, LinkedIn, and much more. Please share! BfAZ bloggers will also be linking their Twitter feeds to the site to provide even richer content.
Improved calendar. Between the AZBlueMeanie and Carolyn Classen, dozens of political and community events are posted on BfAZ. In the top navigation bar, there is a calendar link.
As we transition over the next few days, we’ll be working on broken links and technical aspects. Please be patient. Once the transition has completed,