Thanks for your participation in Conciliaria, a project to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council. If you’ve been invited to submit content, these guidelines are for you. If you would like to submit content, please review these guidelines and contact Deacon Eric Stoltz at info [at] conciliaria.com.
To maintain a consistent voice and wide access to our content, please review these tips before posting your article.
A Vintage Viewpoint
Although we may rarely publish an editorial, the vast majority of Conciliaria content will be free of hindsight. All posts will be reported as though they are taking place on that particular day exactly 50 years ago. The writer cannot refer to anything that will later result from such an event except perhaps when reporting on the speculations of others at that time. In this way we will avoid taking sides in debates interpreting the legacy of the Council; we desire to provide a comprehensive and insightful presentation of what happened.
An exception to this approach are posts designated as “links.” These typically link to contemporary coverage about the Council, which of course are not limited by the same concept as Conciliaria.
Please do not copy and paste from Word (or similar word-processing program) or a web page. These files will bring over undesired formatting data along with the text that will break the design of the page or introduce inconsistent styles or gibberish characters. Some negative effects may not even be visible on checking the web site; they could show up in the iPad or phone versions, or on Facebook or Twitter, as all posts are automatically posted to both.
To avoid these complications, if you need to copy/paste from Word or a web page, please first paste the text into Notepad (or, on a Mac, TextEdit) set to plain text (.txt), not rich text format (.rtf). That will strip out the invisible formatting. Then copy from Notepad (or TextEdit) and paste into WordPress. More information from WordPress support
Also, please do not add additional inline styling, as that may affect the way content is displayed in devices such as iPads and smartphones. If you need special styling or design of your post, just let Eric know what you need.
Please do not use ALL CAPS for anything, especially not titles. If you need emphasis, please use italics or boldface. Do not underline text; that is an Internet convention for a link.
Use any of the formatting options available in the text editor in either Visual or HTML mode. Here are some other formatting options:
Subheads If you need subheads, use this code in the HTML mode:
<h3>Sub Subhead Text</h3>
Footnotes You can also include footnotes in HTML mode. To insert a footnote, immediately where you want the superscript number to appear, enter brackets with a number, a period and the text of the footnote, like this.
[1. This is the footnote text.] The number will be inserted at that spot and the footnote text at the bottom of your post.
Excerpts To allow easy browsing on the home page, we want to not include the full text of a long article. So we use an excerpt and a “Read More” link to go to the page for that full text. You can write a custom summary by entering it in the Custom Excerpt textbox. That’s what will appear on the home page with the headline. To use the first part of your post, put the following where you want the “Read More” link to appear (use HTML mode):
Quotation Sources At the bottom of a Quote post, you may want to indicate the source of the quotation, such as the book or document with author and page. To do so, enter HTML mode and use:
<p class="source">This is the source text.</p>
Introductory text If you would like to preface archival or other cited text, please put it in the present tense (if posted on the same date 50 years later) and italicize it, like this:
Today Pope John XXIII announced the date of the Second Vatican Council with the following official document.
If you miss the date by a few days, you can backdate it in the authoring environment (look on the right side of the page). If you’re writing the post before the anniversary date, you can schedule it to appear on the proper date in the same place.
Making Content Findable
No doubt you’ve been dismayed by the sort of crazy conspiracy theories and polemics that pop up in a Google search for “Vatican II.” We want people to find accurate information, such as is contained in Conciliaria. One way to achieve better search results is for each contributor to include categories and tags with his or her post. Choose any relevant categories from the list on the right of the authoring environment. Then add tags (found below the categories).
Categories are broader topics, like “Interfaith” or “1962.” Tags provide further detail, like the names of everyone mentioned in the article, the city where the event took place, the name of a document mentioned. and so forth. Using categories and tags will make it easier for visitors to find content on the site and will also improve search rankings on Google and other search engines.
If no category fits your post, feel free to add one. Just make sure it’s not too specific. For that, use tags and create as many as you like. When you start typing a tag, WordPress may suggest a common tag as you type. Go ahead and select that if it matches, to keep consistency so that we don’t have different tags for the same thing like “Cardinal Bea,” “Cardinal Agustin Bea,” “Agustin Bea,” “Cardinal Agostino Bea, S.J.,” and so forth, when we really need a single tag “Agustin Bea” to make it easy for people to find any content about the ecumenical leader.
Images, Video and Audio
For images, place the cursor where you want the image to appear and click the “Upload/Insert” link right above the main textbox where you input your story. Upload the image and add the title and, most importantly, the caption. Choose your size and format. For the image to cover the width of the content area, choose the largest option (larger images will be scaled down by WordPress automatically). Then click “Insert into Post.” The caption will be included for you.
For video, we want to ideally make it available on all platforms. That means using an embed code that begins with the tag
<iframe>. That means it’s HTML5 compatible and will work on iPads and iPhones. Try to avoid using any embed code that begins with
<embed>. Those videos will not work on the iPad or iPhone. Most sites such as YouTube generally give you an option. Inside the embed code you’ll see some dimensions, like
height="00" width="00". Delete that part of the code so the video will also work on the home page.
If you need to embed an audio file, please ask Eric. We don’t have any framework for that, but it can be added if needed.