Using the PressForward Plugin to Create and Maintain Web Publications

workshop / tutorial
  1. 1. Stephanie Westcott

    George Mason University

  2. 2. Joan Fragaszy Troyano

    George Mason University

Work text
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With the PressForward plugin, the power to publish a curated site that highlights work from the open web is available to everyone. A WordPress plugin that enables users to aggregate and transform web feeds into a site that republishes blog posts, news, and reports, the PressForward plugin streamlines the process of creating web publications. PressForward publications build communities, direct attention to often-overlooked work, and stimulate discussion of ideas, methods, and news. In this half-day workshop, participants will learn to use the PressForward plugin to create their own publications, track workflow through aggregation, review, and nomination, and to publish content from select RSS feeds.

Developed by the PressForward Project at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media, the PressFoward plugin is the heart of the RRCHNM publication Digital Humanities Now. In addition, the publications Global Perspectives on Digital Humanities, Dh+Lib and the forthcoming Environmental Humanities Now all use the plugin to maintain a community-driven website that offers readers and participants an opportunity to engage in relevant conversations about their field on the open web. The plugin was developed with an eye toward eventual dissemination and replication, and the timing of DH2014 corresponds with the public release of the plugin and the availability of its documentation.

To get the full benefit of the workshop, participants should bring a laptop, create a WordPress site (directions will be provided prior to arrival), and collect five to ten RSS feeds to begin populating their site. Groups intending to collaborate on a community-driven publication are particularly welcome, and discussion of how to structure and organize a community publication will be included in the schedule.

Intended Length and Format of the Workshop:
8:30 – 9:00: Introduction of class and participants

9:00 – 9:30: Discussion of how the plugin functions for Digital Humanities Now

9:30 – 9:45: Break

9:45 – 10:30: Installing the plugin and adding feeds

10:30 – 11:15: Using the plugin to publish/getting your site up and running

11:15 – 12:00: Discussion of work flow for a group publication and other uses of the plugin.

Description of Target Audience:
This workshop is open to up to 20 participants of all skill levels with an interest in developing websites that include a component of aggregating and curating work found on the open web. This could include a community of DHers who want to create a publication like Digital Humanities Now to highlight the work they believe deserves wider dissemination. Users could also include grad students using the plugin to highlight work on a single topic of interest, a scholar who would like to compile the work they themselves have done elsewhere onto a single site, or professors who may find the plugin a convenient way to highlight work for their students to read on a course site. Given the flexibility of the plugin, the target audience is diverse. There is no need for an advanced call for papers.

Full Contact Information of workshop leaders:
Stephanie Westcott Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media George Mason University, MSN 1E7 Fairfax, VA 22030 703-993-9277

Stephanie Westcott is Research Assistant Professor at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University. As a member of the PressForward team, she is Managing Editor of Digital Humanities Now and Journal of Digital Humanities and researches scholarly communication on the open web. A cultural historian with expertise in the history of gender and sexuality in the twentieth-century United States, she received her PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2012.

Joan Fragaszy Troyano Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media George Mason University, MSN 1E7 Fairfax, VA 22030 703-993-9277

Joan Fragaszy Tryoano is a Research Assistant Professor and Director of the PressForward project at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University. With PressForward she is researching the sourcing, evaluating, publishing, and crediting of scholarly communication from the open web. She also edits two experimental publications — Digital Humanities Now and the Journal of Digital Humanities — and oversees the development of the PressForward plugin to facilitate the aggregation, curation, and dissemination of scholarship. Joan also is a practicing and teaching public historian with experience working on the September 11 Digital Archive and Echo projects at RRCHNM, as well as museum exhibition research and education at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History and National Portrait Gallery. At Indiana University she studied music performance and earned a BA in History and Latin. Her PhD is in American Studies from George Washington University, where she researched immigration history, visual culture, and public understandings of the past.

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Conference Info


ADHO - 2014
"Digital Cultural Empowerment"

Hosted at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Université de Lausanne

Lausanne, Switzerland

July 7, 2014 - July 12, 2014

377 works by 898 authors indexed

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Conference website:

Attendance: 750 delegates according to Nyhan 2016

Series: ADHO (9)

Organizers: ADHO

  • Keywords: None
  • Language: English
  • Topics: None