Pulling a blog post to a dotCMS page

Sample code to pull events from a UAkron WordPress Blog (blogs.uakron.edu) to a dotCMS page

#pullRSSFeed('http://blogs.uakron.edu/bliss/feed/')
<h1>From the Bliss Institute Blog</h1>
#foreach($content in $list)
#set($rssTotal = 2)
#set($desc = "$!content.description")
#set($regex = '(\[\.\.\.\])')
#set($newstring = $desc.replaceAll($regex, "<a href=\"${content.link}\">&hellip;Read More</a>"))
<h3>
   <a href="$!content.link">$!content.title</a>
</h3>
 <p>$newstring</p>
#end

how to update OrgSync to grant permissions to update a group’s site

This is primarily to help the webteam gain access to a student group to facilitate updating the content for their site.

0. the webteam will need to request to join the site using the generic account.   The group admin will need to approve that account as a member.

1. Log into orgsync (http://www.uakron.edu/orgsync)
 
2. Go to Organizations, your organization
 
3. Click on People
 
4. Check the box next to the Webteam Orgsync account
 
5. On the permissions tab, select the Website, pages, photos and videos
 
6. Click Close to apply the changes.

Notify a member of the webteam so that site updates can be initiated.

How to create and post a poll from Qualtrics into your website

Log into your Qualtrics account at akron.qualtrics.com

Click Polls in the top menu

Click Create Poll

A range of options will be available on the left side of your screen. Make your settings accordingly.

After you are finished making your settings, look down under the poll settings and click the box that says save changes.

You will see a list of options for colors, size, font…etc. Adjusting these settings will adjust the overall design and look of your poll. When you are happy with your adjustments (if any), look for a box at the top of your poll that says add this poll to your website.

Click “add this poll to your website.”  Select and Copy the entire html code.

Remember, this is the HTML code you will need to paste into your website in order to embed your poll into dot cms.

Now, you are ready to paste that code into your department’s webpage.

WordPress Settings

Disabling Comments

We ran into an issue while creating the site for Hower House on the blog. We don’t want users to be able to comment on pages that are on a site when the information is purely informational, not interactive/blog related, etc. So, it’s not a perfect fix, but here is how we have disabled comments.

From the Dashboard go to Settings > Discussion. The two options we are changing in here are:

  • Under Default Article Settings – Uncheck the box saying “Allow people to post comments on new articles”
  • Under Other Comment Settings – check “Users must be registered and logged in to comment”
  • Under Before a comment appears – check “An administrator must always approve the comment”
From then on, comments must always be approved by an administrator before showing up, and nobody can comment unless they are able to sign in to wordpress. It’s quick and easy to do, although there is still a “Leave a Reply” area on each page. It just has a link to the login site there to allow you to try and log in for posting comments.

Photo Gallery Tutorial

This tutorial will cover how to set up a simple Photo Gallery in dotCMS. The photo callery will display as a listing of thumbnails that can then be clicked to display a full-sized image.

For an example of this, and a reference to the page that will be created throughout this tutorial, view this link: http://www.uakron.edu/webteam/tutorials/photo-gallery-example.dot

Step 1) Uploading the images for the photo gallery to a dotCMS folder.

Step 2) Place the appropriate code into the dotCMS web page to create a photo gallery.

Additional Options) More options that can be coded into the page to further add functionality to the Photo Gallery

Final Notes) Bugs and reminders about the Photo Gallery.


Step 1) Uploading the images for the photo gallery to a dotCMS folder.
Start off by navigating to the folder you have created in dotCMS to store images for this photo gallery. The screen should appear similar to this:

As the image suggests, we select +Add New in the top right corner:

Next, select Multiple Files to add files to this folder. The screen should appear similar to this:

Note: There are three items that are circled in red here.

  • First off, the Folder field needs to be written down for Step 2. For this example /webteam/tutorials/images/photo-gallery/ would be written down. Note: Make sure that to include have the final / in the Folder url or the Photo Gallery will not work.
  • Second, the Number of Files to Upload field is important. Set this to the number of images that need to be uploaded. (Be aware that only 19 images may be uploaded at a time. If there are more than that for the Photo Gallery, repeat this process until all photos are uploaded). For the example demonstrated 3 images will be uploaded.
  • Third, the Browse button, when clicked, opens a window that allows one to select the files on a computer to add to the folder.

For demonstration purposes, three images have been selected. The following example shows the third image being selected for upload. In any situation, the screen should appear similar to this:

Once all images have been selected, click Save and Publish to upload the files to the folder in dotCMS.


Step 2) Place the appropriate code into the dotCMS web page to create a photo gallery.

Open the page where the photo gallery will be placed. The screen should appear similar to this:

In the top right corner select +Add and then select New Content.

There are four items that are important here. As with any content, be sure to name the Title appropriately. The Body section is where the code goes. Notice at the bottom that Code is selected instead of WYSIWYG. These two lines of code must be entered in Code view. The fourth item circled is the actual code. Be sure to place this in the page:

#set($showPhotoTitle = false)
#photoGallery('/webteam/tutorials/images/photo-gallery/')

Notice that the Folder field that was written down earlier is placed between the two quotation marks. If the path to the folder was /example1/example2/example3/ the code would look like this:

#set($showPhotoTitle = false)
#photoGallery('/example1/example2/example3/')

Click Save and Publish once the Folder path has been correctly entered to finish the Photo Gallery. Example:

Before an image is clicked:

After an image is clicked:

For an example of this, visit the link: http://www.uakron.edu/webteam/tutorials/photo-gallery-example.dot

Additional Options) More options that can be coded into the page to further add functionality to the Photo Gallery.

The line of code that reads “#set($showPhotoTitle = false)” is what is called an additional option. It allows for further control of the Photo Gallery. The following are all additional options for the Photo Gallery:

showPhotoTitle: Set to false to hide the photo names from the listing. Default: true.

showSubgalleryTitle: Set to false to hide the sub galleries names from the listing. Default: true.

photoWidth: Width used to display the full image. Default: 600.

photoHeight: Height used to display the full image. Default: 450.

thumbnailWidth: Width used to display the thumbnails. Default: 90.

thumbnailHeight: Height used to display the thumbnails. Default: 90.


And this is how the code would look with these options:

#set($showPhotoTitle = false)
#set($showSubgalleryTitle = false)
#set($photoWidth = 600)
#set($photoHeight = 450)
#set($thumbnailWidth = 90)
#set($thumbnailHeight = 90)
#photoGallery('/webteam/tutorials/images/photo-gallery/')

Final Notes:

  1. As mentioned earlier in this tutorial, be sure to add the ending / to the Folder when placing it into code, or the Photo Gallery will not work.
  2. To add images to the Photo Gallery, simple repeat Step 1, uploading more images to the gallery’s folder. To remove images from the Photo Gallery, simply unpublish them from the folder that they are in.

Image Rotator Widget Tutorial

This tutorial will cover how to set up an Image Rotator using the Image Rotator widget in dotCMS. An Image Rotator is a simple slideshow that rotates through all the images in a folder and shows them on page.

Preparation: Make sure that you have saved all images you will be using for the slideshow to your computer. The images should all be of the same width and height or else the Image Rotator will not display correctly.

Step 1) Adding files to a folder that you have created. This folder is specifically used for images you want in your slideshow.

Step 2) Creating a new image rotator widget on your page and filling out the appropriate fields to make things appear properly on screen.

Final Notes) Limitations, bugs, and final thoughts over the widget.

For Reference: Throughout the tutorial I will be referencing the link below:
https://www.uakron.edu/webteam/tutorials/image-rotator-example.dot


Step 1) Create a new folder in dotCMS. This folder is where images will be uploaded to for the slideshow. Example:

Next, double click the folder to enter it. Then at the top select +Add New:

As the image shows, select Multiple Files. Next a screen will appear similar to this one:

Note: Two items have been circled in the above image. The Folder option is something that needs to be written down for Step 2. For the image above, /webteam/tutorials/images/rotator/ needs to be written down.

*Note: You must include the ending / when you write down the Folder option. /webteam/tutorials/images/rotator/ will work as a folder path while /webteam/tutorials/images/rotator will not.

The number of files to upload is self explanatory. This tutorial will be using three images. When 3 is selected a page similar to this appears:

For each file, an option is given to Choose File to upload. When that button is clicked the screen will look similar to this:

From that open window files to upload are individually selected.  Once all files have been selected, click Save and Publish.

The images uploaded now appear in dotCMS:



Step 2) Creating the New Widget

Open the page that the Image Rotator widget will be placed on. At the top right corner of the page select Add:


Next select the Add Widget option. The page will look similar to this:

As the image suggests, select Image Rotator. The screen will look similar to this:

In the top right corner click Create New Image Rotator to be taken to this screen:

All of the options circled above should be set in accordance with the needs of the individual slideshow. A brief explanation of each option:

Widget Title: The widget title is just the name used to identify the widget. The above example is using Example Image Rotator. Name appropriately.

Width and Heigh in Pixels: The width and height options are used to define the size of the widget, not the images. Set these options to the height and width of the images you have uploaded to dotCMS. The above examples uses 800 and 600 for width and height.

Path to Image Folder: This is the Folder option that we wrote down in step one. For the example /webteam/tutorials/images/rotator/ is used.

Randomize Images: Whether images appear randomly or in alphabetical order. Default is set to use alphabetical order.

Delay: The delay in seconds between rotation of images.

Once all options are configured, select Save and Publish to complete the creation of an Image Rotator widget.


If everything went as planned, a completed slideshow will be on page similar to the one found on this page:  https://www.uakron.edu/webteam/tutorials/image-rotator-example.dot


Final Notes:

1) Images should always be of the same size in a slideshow. The widget places them each back-to-back inside the page. For this reason, if an image’s width is smaller than the images around it, more than one image will bleed into the screen at a time, making the slideshow look bad.

2) As stated earlier in the tutorial, make sure to include the final / when writing down the Folder field from Step 1. The reason that ending / is so important is that it identifies the final word as a folder and not a file. /webteam/tutorials/images/rotator <– Notice the lack of an ending / in that folder path. dotCMS will identify rotator as a file and not a folder unless the final / is used. Like this: /webteam/tutorials/images/rotator/

Accordion Menu Tutorial

Today this tutorial will be explaining how to set up an accordion menu in dotCMS. An accordion menu is a menu with individual headings that, when clicked, expand to display additional information that relates to the heading. For reference to what an accordion menu looks and acts like, visit the link below. The link below also uses the exact code used  in this tutorial.

http://www.uakron.edu/webteam/tutorials/accordion-menu-example.dot

There are two steps in this tutorial.

Step 1 is accessing the Page Metadata section of your page and inserting code. This is a behind the scenes step and is something that does not get seen by users. Once step 1 has been completed, you do not have to repeat the step in order to effect the accordion menu in any way.

Step 2 is the actual code that will be creating and working with the Accordion Menu. Step two may need to be repeated in order to add more headings to your Accordion Menu.

Step 1) Accessing the Page Metadata.

Right click the page you wish to create an accordion menu on and select Page Properties. Your screen should look like this:

Click Page Properties

Click Advanced Properties next. The screen that appears will look like this:

Paste the code below into the Page Metadata section of your page:

<script type="text/javascript" src="/global/js/q_a.js"></script><script type="text/javascript" src="/global/js/jquery-ui/jquery-ui-1.8.2.accordion.min.js"></script>
<script type="text/javascript">// <![CDATA[
    $(function() {
        $("#accordion").accordion({ collapsible: true, active: 0, autoHeight: false } );
    });

// ]]></script>

Save your setting and move on to step 2.

Step 2) Page Code
Create a new piece of content on your page. Then, set the view mode to Code instead of WYSIWYG. Paste the code below into your page:

</pre>
<div id="accordion">
<h3><a href="#">Heading To Click and Expand</a></h3>
<div>Any and all content you want displayed after we click the heading</div>
</div>
<pre>

Note: The part that reads “Heading To Click and Expand” is where we will put titles of our headings for the menu. The part that reads “Any and all content you want displayed after we click the heading” is the actual content that will be under the heading when we click it. Example:

Before heading is clicked:

After heading is clicked:

Some Final Notes:
1) If you want to add more headings to your menu, it would look like this.

</pre>
<div id="accordion">
<h3><a href="#">Heading</a></h3>
<div>Content</div>
<h3><a href="#">Heading</a></h3>
<div>Content</div>
<h3><a href="#">Heading</a></h3>
<div>Content</div>
</div>
<pre>

The above example would have 3 heading items in the accordion menu. Each new heading item is specified with the <h3> tag.

2) You must use the <h3> tag to create heading items. No other tags will work, as the <h3> tag is specifically defined for this purpose in the CSS that is loaded onto the page.

3) It’s also important to mention than when you paste the page code into the new piece of content you’re creating, you will not actually see the accordion menu. You must save and publish content pieces before you may view them on the page in menu form.

4) There are more ways to increase functionality of the accordion menu. If you would like to know what these additional functions are/how to access them, send an email to web-team@lists.uakron.edu

dotCMS to upgrade in December 2011

The WebTeam

dotCMS will be upgraded December 12th through the 19th.

The plan is that the website will remain up and serving pages throughout the process. However, from the morning of Monday, December 12th until the morning of Monday, December 19th. There will be no editing allowed. (see Emergencies, below)

Forms will continue to work, gather data, and send email notification as usual. All data collected during the period between December 12 and 19 will be migrated to the new version of the website and will be available for reporting, etc.

Why an Upgrade?

Like all software, things move forward. The current version will no longer be supported in the near future. Also, there are many, under the cover, improvements that we believe will enhance the experience for both content providers and for the everyday visitors to our sites. Capabilities that we did not have previously will also become available in the area of customized development that will translate to modernized and extended capabilities that we can offer visitors to UA’s web sites.

What is changing?

All of the changes are in the back-end, visitors to our web sites will not notice any change.

Editors of websites will see a new interface for editing their pages, not a dramatic change but a better organization of the information and hopefully improved navigation throughout.

Training Available

Beginning January 1st 2012 all dotCMS training offered through Software Training Services will be conducted in the new version.

For current users, Software Training Services will provide a delta guide to help you see what has changed. While we believe that this guide will suffice for most current users, anyone who feels that they need more is welcome to attend the regularly scheduled training sessions available through Software Training Services

Emergencies

Please plan for the timing of this upgrade and have all your changes made PRIOR to Monday December 12th.

In case of a real emergency need, the WebTeam will be able to change content that is on the web. However, any changes made between December 13th and December 19th will NOT be preserved when the new version of the site becomes available on the 19th. Approved changes made during this period will have to be reproduced on the new site. The reproduction of this content will be the responsibility of the requesting college or department.

The Schedule

1. Day One: Monday December 12th

* Stop editing
* Send backups to dotCMS
* Run upgrade scripts

2. Day Two: Tuesday December 13th

* Scripts will run for up to 10 hours (it only took 8 hours in staging)
* Link new database with 1.9 installation
* Test login via LDAP
* Deploy all upgraded plugins (they need to be upgraded before the process starts)
* Start testing

3. Day Three: Wednesday December 14th

* Make changes to containers in all templates
* Check category permissions
* Check Host cms anonymous permissions
* Create CMS tabs for roles in dotCMS
* Manually fix recurrent events end date
* Apply all changes manually to VTL files

4. Day Four and Five: Thursday December 15th and Friday December 16th

* Test frontend
* Test all plugins
* Finish applying permissions

5. Day Six: Monday December 19th

* Go live
* Testing by all users and content providers.

Black Hats, The Man in the Middle and protecting yourself

Dirty Tricks and Larceny

An overview of why and how the Bad Guys do it, what it’s called, and what you can do to protect your computer. Re-Printed with permission from the SANS Institute OUCH security newsletter. SANS is widely considered the premier site for training and research in the area of online security.

Blackhats.
Hackers who use their skills for explicitly criminal or other malicious ends, such as writing malware (malicious software) to steal credit card numbers and banking data or by phishing; a.k.a. the Bad Guys.

Whitehats.
Hackers who use their skills for positive ends, and often for thwarting blackhats. Many whitehats are security professionals who spend their time identifying and fixing vulnerabilities in software that blackhats seek to exploit for criminal or other malicious purposes.

Man-in-the-middle.
An attack in which a criminal hacker intercepts information sent between your computer and the website of your financial institution and then uses that information to impersonate you in cyberspace. The hacker is able to defeat even very sophisticated security measures and gain access to your account.

Phishing.
The practice of sending out fake email messages that look as if they come from a trusted person or institution-usually a bank-in order to trick people into handing over confidential information. The emails often direct you to a website that looks like that of the real financial institution. But it is a fake and has been rigged to collect your personal information, such as passwords, credit card numbers and bank account numbers, and transmit them to the Bad Guys.

Botnet.
Botnets consist of large numbers of hijacked computers that are under the remote control of a criminal or a criminal organization. The hijacked computers-a.k.a. “zombies” or “bots” (short for “robots”) -are recruited using viruses spread by email or drive-by downloads. Worms are used to find and recruit additional computers. The biggest botnets consist of thousands and even millions of computers, most often unprotected home computers.

Virus.
A malicious program that usually requires some action on the part of a user in order to infect a computer; for example, opening an infected attachment or clicking on a link in a rigged email may trigger a virus to infect your computer.

Worm.
Self-replicating malware that, for instance, hunts down unprotected computers and recruits them for criminal or other malicious purposes. Unlike a virus, worms do not require any action on your part in order to infect your computer.

Fake Anti-Virus.
Fake anti-virus software purports to be a helpful program than can find and remove malware, but in fact it is malware–the very thing that it’s supposed to eliminate. After taking over your computer, it pretends to do security scans, tells you it has found malware, and then asks you to pay to have the non-existent malware removed. Whether or not you pay, fake anti-virus is likely to install more malware.

Drive-by Download.
A kind of malware that installs itself automatically when you visit a booby-trapped website. Symptoms of a drive-by download
include: your homepage has been changed, unwanted toolbars have been added, and unfamiliar bookmarks appear in your browser.

Anti-virus and anti-malware.
Helpful software applications that scan your computer for certain patterns of infection. The patterns they scan for are the signatures, or definitions, of known forms of malware. Since Bad Guys are creating new forms of malware continuously, it is important that you keep your anti-virus and anti-malware definitions updated. See the “Patches and Updates” section below.

Security suite.
A set of software applications designed to protect your computer that consists of anti-virus, anti-malware and a personal firewall.

Personal firewall.
Software that monitors incoming and outgoing traffic on your computer and checks for suspicious patterns indicating the presence of malware or other malicious activity. A personal firewall alerts you to these threats and attempts to block them. Like anti-virus and anti-malware software, personal firewalls require frequent updates to provide effective protection.

Updates.
Security software relies on frequent updates in order to be able to counteract previously undetected forms of malware. Consequently, your computer may suffer a “window of vulnerability” between the time a new form of malware is identified and the time when your security software can block it or remove the infection. Set your security software to update automatically.

Patches.
Operating systems, like Windows and OS X, and software applications, such as Internet Explorer and Firefox, may be found to contain security flaws or holes that make your computer vulnerable to attack. Their makers release patches to plug the holes. The fastest and surest way to get these installed quickly is to use auto-updating via the Internet. Some software applications require manual updating. See the “Patches and Updates” section below.

Black Tuesday a.k.a. Patch Tuesday.
On the second Tuesday of each month Microsoft releases security patches for Windows, Internet Explorer, Office and its other software products. You can have these installed automatically using Microsoft Update. See the “Patches and Updates”
section below.

Auto-updating.
A software tool built into Windows (“Microsoft Update”) and OS X (“Auto Update”) and many other applications which can download and install important security updates and patches for software installed on your computer automatically. See the “Patches and Updates”
section above.

Enjoy your computing experience by staying up to date and safe!
Should you have questions regarding products available through the University or questions regarding your PC use on the campus, contact the Support Desk at (330) 972-6888 or visit the Support Wiki

-The WebTeam

More information:
http://www.binaryfarm.com/jargon.html
http://besafe.more.net/sam/resources/jargon.pdf
http://ittraining.iu.edu/workshops/win_security/terminology.html

***********************************************************************

Patches and Updates Roundup

Operating Systems & Applications

Windows & PC Office: http://update.microsoft.com & http://www.microsoft.com/security/updates/bulletins/201010.aspx

Mac Office:
http://www.microsoft.com/mac/help.mspx?CTT=PageView&clr=99-0-0&ep=7&target=ffe35357-8f25-4df8-a0a3-c258526c64ea1033

OS X: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1338

iPad: http://www.ehow.com/how_6256127_update-restore-apple-ipad.html

iPhone, iPod & iPod touch: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1414

iPod: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1483

Windows Adobe Reader:
http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/product.jsp?product=10&platform=Windows
OS X Adobe Reader:
http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/product.jsp?product=10&platform=Macintosh

Flash Player: http://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/

Firefox: http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/update/

Safari: http://www.ehow.com/how_2033324_update-safari.html

Opera: http://www.opera.com/

Chrome: http://www.google.com/support/chrome/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=95414

Java: http://www.java.com/en/download/manual.jsp

Windows iTunes: http://www.ehow.com/how_2016273_update-itunes-pc.html
OSX iTunes: http://www.ehow.com/how_2016270_update-itunesmac.html

Security Suites

Symantec:
http://service1.symantec.com/SUPPORT/sharedtech.nsf/docid/2002021908382713

Norton:
http://www.symantec.com/business/security_response/definitions/download/detail.jsp?gid=n95

McAfee: http://www.mcafee.com/apps/downloads/security_updates/dat.asp

Kaspersky: http://www.kaspersky.com/avupdates

AVG: http://free.avg.com/us-en/download-update

Panda: http://www.pandasecurity.com/homeusers/downloads/clients/

PC Tools:
http://www.downloadatoz.com/pc-tools-internet-security/smart-update.html

BitDefender:
http://www.bitdefender.com/site/view/Desktop-Products-Updates.html

Avast: http://www.avast.com/download-update

Webroot: http://support.webroot.com

Trend Micro:
http://esupport.trendmicro.com/Pages/How-to-update-Trend-Micro-Internet-Security-Pro-2010.aspx

Microsoft Security Essentials:
http://www.microsoft.com/security/portal/Definitions/HowToMSE.aspx

Safer Social Networking

The SANS Institute is widely considered the premier site for training and research in the area of online security. From time to time, we will reprint news from them when we think it will be of interest to our communities. We hope you’ll find this post, from their monthly OUCH! newsletter, of interest.

The WebTeam

OUCH!
July 2010
SANS Institute Security Newsletter for Computer Users
***********************************************************************
Get security advice online at http://www.sans.org/newsletters/ouch/updates/
Safer Social Networking
Patches and Updates Roundup
***********************************************************************
Safer Social Networking

[Editor’s Note (Wyman): The number of Facebook users has surpassed 400,000,000, dwarfing its sibling MySpace, and making it No. 1 of the Top Ten social networking sites worldwide with a 55% market share. (1) While the world has fallen in love with Facebook, its popularity is not without problematic consequences. For example, psychotherapists and Facebook users alike talk openly about being addicted to Facebook (2), and a recent study suggests that 21% of women ages 18-34 get up to check Facebook in the middle of the night (3).

Articles about Facebook tips and tricks are proliferating (4), as are lawsuits alleging, among other things, that Facebook’s operators misappropriate its users’ personal information for commercial purposes and change users’ security and privacy settings arbitrarily. German authorities are looking into Facebook’s practice of saving information about people who do not even use the site. (5) Facebook is illegal in China (6), has been outlawed for blasphemy in Pakistan (7), taken Africa by storm along with Colombia, Argentina, Venezuela, Mexico, and Chile (8), and recently opened an office in Moscow (9).

Any online organization with nearly half a billion members worldwide is bound to be the subject of curiosity, controversy and mythology, as well as a too-good-to-pass-up target for hackers, crackers, spammers and scammers. This month we offer some security tips for safer social networking with special attention to Facebook.]

Think about how you want to use social networking. Facebook is an all-purpose, come-as-you-are social medium. The community is gigantic, and anybody with an email address can join. It’s best to limit your use of Facebook to sharing news, photos, music, videos, etc. casually with friends and family. For business, consider using a service like LinkedIn that caters specifically to professionals.

Follow the Golden Rule. Assume that the personal information and photos you display are available to everyone and anyone, not just to your friends.

Do not display your full birth date. Listing a full birth date – month, day and year – makes you an easy target for identity thieves who can use it to obtain more of your personal information and potentially gain access to bank and credit card accounts. Choose to show only the month and day, or even better, no birthday at all.

To protect children from online predators, do not post a child’s name in a photo tag or caption. If someone else does, delete it if you can, or ask the member who owns the photo to remove the name.

Do not mention being away from home. Doing so is like putting a “Nobody’s Home” sign on your front door. Be vague about the dates of your travel plans and vacations.

Restrict searches for your information. Find out what your options are for restricting public searches. At a minimum, you should be able to prevent your information from being searched for by anyone other than your designated online friends.

Do not permit youngsters to use social networks unsupervised. Most sites limit membership to ages 13 and older, but children younger than that find ways to use them anyway. If there’s a young child or teenager in your household using Facebook, an adult in your household should become one of their online friends and use their email as the contact for the account in order to monitor their activities.

Think about whom you are allowing to become your online friend. Once you have accepted someone as your online friend, they will be able to access a lot of information about you, including photographs and other material you have marked as viewable by your friends. Find out if and how you can remove a friend in case you change your mind about someone or discover they aren’t who they claim to be.

Make sure you have an up-to-date web browser and comprehensive security software on your computer. This includes anti-virus, anti-spyware, anti-phishing, and a software firewall.

Adjust your privacy settings to help protect your identity. Facebook and some other social networking sites provide options to protect you online, but it’s up to you to understand what they do and how to use them, and to be aware that they change over time.

Set and review your privacy settings regularly. Familiarize yourself with the site’s current privacy policies. For example, with the latest changes in May 2010, Facebook forces some of your information (e.g., your name, profile picture, gender and the networks to which you belong) to be publicly accessible.

Make only a cut-down version of your profile visible to everyone. Reveal the rest of the information in your profile only to people you choose to have as online friends.

Disable options, and then add them in one by one. If you are using a social network just to keep in touch with people, consider turning off the bells and whistles you don’t need or use. Disable unfamiliar options until you understand what they do and have decided that you do need and want them.

Join groups and networks cautiously. Assume that all members of a group will be able to see all of your information unless and until you restrict access to it deliberately.

Understand what happens when you quit the site. It’s usually easy to deactivate your account, but some sites, like Facebook, will retain all your information including pictures, friends, etc. even if you do. Find out how you can delete all of your information. You may have to request that the operators of the site delete it for you. When quitting Facebook, you must submit a deletion request, and that, too, comes with some gotcha’s.

* There will be a delay of unspecified length between submitting your delete request and the actual deletion.
* If you login to Facebook after submitting your request, your deletion request will be cancelled automatically.
* There’s no easy way to confirm that your deletion request has been completed.
* Even after deletion, copies of your photos may remain on Facebook servers for technical reasons.

More information: http://www.takesontech.com/?p=16952
http://www.facebook.com/security?v=app_7146470109
http://www.sophos.com/security/best-practice/facebook/
http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/the-complete-guide-to-facebook-privacy/
http://learn.linkedin.com/what-is-linkedin/

Notes: (1) http://www.marketingcharts.com/categories/social-networks-and-forums/
(2) http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/04/23/ep.facebook.addict/index.html
http://newsfeed.time.com/2010/07/08/its-time-to-confront-your-facebook-addiction/
http://blog.guruofnew.com/featured-home/seven-signs-you-may-be-ready-for-a-social-media-detox
(3) http://mashable.com/2010/07/07/oxygen-facebook-study/
(4) http://www.hongkiat.com/blog/20-facebook-tipstricks-you-might-not-know/
(5) http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=116330
http://www.betanews.com/article/Class-action-suit-in-Canada-only-the-latest-of-Facebooks-woes/1278621631
(6) http://www.utilitycomputing.com.cn/china/facebook-blocked-in-china
(7) http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Facebook-blocked-by-blasphemy-regulations-18452.html
(8) http://www.rnw.nl/africa/article/facebook-taking-africa-storm
http://www.examiner.com/x-30835-South-America-Headlines-Examiner~y2010m3d22-Facebook-increase-productivity-and-popularity-in-Latin-America
(9) http://en.rian.ru/world/20100409/158494575.html