Customize Acceptable Upload File Types

February 21, 2011 | No Comments Yet

WordPress Garage points out that there’s a limited list of allowed file types that you can upload via the WP admin. For certain custom sites, since WordPress is being used for everything these days, that may need to be modified and Chris Meller shows us how.

As of WordPress 2.2, there are 35 allowed file types configured in the default install. While there’s no admin-based tool for editing this list (nor any plugins that I’m aware of), it’s not at all difficult to add your own…

The idea is to add a custom function inside your theme’s functions.php to be used as a filter. In that function you can then add specific file extensions and their corresponding mime types. On the other hand, to remove a file type that’s allowed by default, use the function unset().

Sounds simple and painless! Of course, keep in mind that limitations are put in place to keep WordPress secure, so tread carefully. Also, for reference, there’s a list of the accepted filetypes at the WordPress.com Support section, but that may vary on a self-hosted install.

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Tip: use shortcodes anywhere

October 15, 2010 | No Comments Yet

Shortcodes are meant to be used for post and page content, but with a little custom code you can make them work elsewhere, as shown in this article:

  • Text Widgets
  • Template Files
  • Comments
  • Excerpts
  • User Descriptions
  • Category, Tag, and Taxonomy Descriptions

I think the most crucial piece of code to remember here is the one for theme files. Just add the line do_shortcode('[foo]'); and that will obey shortcode syntax. Super convenient! Also check out this list of custom shortcodes. For WordPress.com users, there are a bunch of media shortcodes already built in.

See also: how to use widgets anywhere.

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WordPress in Google Summer of Code 2010

March 30, 2010 | No Comments Yet

WordPress is once again participating in the annual Google Summer of Code, whose application period just opened. For the unfamiliar, GSoC gives initiatives for student developers to work on open source projects (such as WordPress) in preparation for their foray into real-world software development.

Here is this year’s list of ideas for WordPress:

  • BuddyPress
  • GlotPress
  • bbPress
  • Media
  • Widgets
  • Blog Import/Export
  • User Roles
  • Template Versioning
  • Comment Moderation
  • Move WordPress
  • Enhance Profiles.WordPress.org

The WP GSoC also gathers some of the biggest names in the community to act as mentors to the participants. IRC chats will be held on March 31, April 3, and April 7 to interact with them.

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New in WP 2.9: Transform URLs to embed codes

January 28, 2010 | No Comments Yet

A very useful new feature in WordPress 2.9 is oEmbed support, which lets you display video and other embed objects with less hassle: all you need to do paste the URL and you’re all set.

First, make sure this feature is enabled under Settings > Media > Attempt to automatically embed all plain text URLs. There’s also an option to set a maximum width and height for the embed objects. Next, create or edit posts like you normally would, and enter the URL in its own line. Save your post and hit the Preview button to check if it’s working.

For example, pasting a YouTube URL (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mKtdTJP_GUI) automatically generates this:

If you don’t want WordPress to create embed codes from URLs automatically, use the shortcode.

WordPress has a list of sites you can do this with, which includes sites like YouTube, Flickr, and WordPress.tv. More information about adding support can be found at the Codex page.

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WordPress Multi User becomes WordPress Multi Site

January 8, 2010 | No Comments Yet

The road to the merger has begun. And the first step is a pretty major one: WordPress Multi User (WPMU) has now been renamed to WordPress Multi Site (WPMS). I mentioned in a previous post that the WPMU term “multi-user” in the context of a typical WordPress install could be confusing, so it’s great that they got this out of the way immediately. “Multi-site” is much better.

Another major change that’s been made: the old WPMU term “Site Admin” has also been renamed to “Super Admin”—again, to erase confusion between WordPress single-user and multi-site jargon.

These and other important topics were discussed in the January 7 WordPress Dev Chat on IRC, and WordPress Tavern has a fantastic report on it. Some tidbits:

  • There is no ETA on WordPress 3.0 yet
  • WordPress MU MS 2.9.1 is just around the corner
  • Work on The Merge has begun
  • Canonical plugins “need a community of developers like the core to survive”
  • Priorities for WordPress 3.0 include: The Merge, menus, custom post types, the new default theme, core plugin integration; Media “will not happen” in said version
  • WordPress.org will be redesigned starting “sometime in late February”

Exciting times for the future of WordPress, and it’s all happening this 2010!

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Embed media using only URLs in WordPress 2.9

October 16, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Here’s another great feature coming up in WordPress 2.9: easy media embedding using just the URL of the photo or video you want to place in your blog posts.

The catch is the URLs must be enclosed in shortcodes, and that the media must come from one of the predefined media providers: YouTube, Blip.tv, Flickr, Hulu, Viddler, Qik.com, Revision3, Google Video, PollDaddy, DailyMotion.

Of course, there are methods for adding more providers: using (a) wp_oembed_addprovider() function for oEmbed-compatible website and (b) defining a handler/callback function that checks the URL and generates the necessary embed code in its place.

Finally, wp_expand_dimensions() lets you resize the media to the largest dimensions possible given an example width-height ratio.

Read more about these in Viper007Bond’s post.

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the_post_image() in WordPress 2.9

October 15, 2009 | No Comments Yet

In WordPress 2.9, users will now be able to set a representative image per post, one of the most popular features found in advanced or premium WP themes.

The image can be added via the function the_post_image(), with possible parameters 'medium' and 'thumbnail' to indicate the size.

I’m still on the fence about this. On the one hand it’s one of the biggest things that’s missing in in the WordPress core for anybody who wants to transform their websites to more than just a blog. But on the other hand other smart solutions, like the Get the Image plugin, exist. I would love to see the_post_image() expand its feature set to extract the first uploaded image within the post automatically, and provide the option of setting that as the featured image for that post.

Either way, we’re seeing a huge focus on the media management aspect of WordPress in this upcoming version.

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WordPress 2.9 media features survey results

August 3, 2009 | 2 Comments

Results of the WordPress 2.9 media features survey are out. Aside from the detailed breakdown of votes for each feature, what’s interesting is the list of alternative plugins you can use right now while these proposed new features have not been implemented natively.

But rest assured that the development team is attending to the WordPress community’s requests:

The top-voted feature, standalone photo albums, is being worked on as a Google Summer of Code project by Rudolf Lai, under the mentorship of WordPress Lead Developer Mark Jaquith. The “pencils down” date for GSOC is in less than two weeks, at which point we’ll be assessing the state of Rudolf’s project. Hopefully, we’ll be able to incorporate it with 2.9 development, do some testing, amend the code and/or UI as needed, and have this launch with the 2.9 release (in core or as plugin TBD). Undoubtedly, additional functionality will be contributed by core contributors who have also been working on media plugins.

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WordPress 2.8.1 Release Candidate 1 & WordPress 2.9 Media features poll

July 9, 2009 | No Comments Yet

WordPress 2.8.1 is almost good to go with Release Candidate 1. Check out the changes since the last revision (which is beta 2).

On the WordPress 2.9 front, Automattic is holding another community poll, this time with regard to the media manager.

Last Wednesday, the core development team and a number of contributing developers met in the IRC #wordpress-dev channel to talk about which features should be included in version 2.9, which is now entering the development phase. We’ve been planning to focus on media features in 2.9 for some time, and unsurprisingly, it was media features that dominated the discussion.* A large percentage of the requests we get from users are for more/better media features, so we’ve decided to focus 2.9 on building an infrastructure for improved media handling that we can continue to build on in versions to come. In that vein, we need your input to determine which features to prioritize and build sooner rather than later.

There are a whole lot of suggested new features, so choose wisely! WordPress is well on its way to becoming a heavy-duty media management machine, and it’s all up to you. Poll permalink is here. Voting ends on July 10 at midnight, UTC time.

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Keep your blog credibility amidst sponsored events (redux)

April 1, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Marcelle Fabie has written his own version of the previously featured blog credibility tips by Jayvee Fernandez, and his strategies are, shall we say, more aggressive:

  1. You are a VIP. Act like one.
  2. Don’t attend if the freebies are not worth your while.
  3. Never shell out!
  4. No matter how compelling, don’t blog about the event! You have better things to blog about!
  5. Always invite a MOB with you when attending these blogger events!

Bottom line: you’re the customer, you’re the one with the purchasing power, so it makes sense for companies, PR people, and the media to be at your beck and call, right? I’m sure the event organizers will agree as well.

(Happy April Fool’s Day!)

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Keep your blog credibility amidst sponsored events

March 19, 2009 | 1 Comment

Jayvee Fernandez of A Bugged Life has written a very timely article on blogger credibility and sponsored events in the Philippines. I think this paragraph is one of the most important thoughts to take away from his piece:

If you want to be known, be known for only one or two things, and make sure you do these well. To the SEO and blogging industry, having many blogs is absolutely normal. But when you start to engage marketers, you don’t say “hello, I write for twenty blogs.” They won’t see you as a brand. They’ll see you as a production house. You’ll know this when they give you a sheepish grin. Trust me, I’ve seen it before.

See also Markku Seguerra’s comment below:

Let’s just say there’s more to blogging than just blog events. I guess that’s a good reminder for everyone.

While it’s true that companies have started tapping the blogosphere for marketing their products via events and contests, you don’t have to be pressured into participating or providing 100% positive feedback all the time. Again, there’s more to blogging than marketing and PR.

Why do you blog? What do you bring to the table?

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Looking for a blogging philosophy? Try these on for size

February 2, 2009 | No Comments Yet

One of the biggest issues traditional journalists and people who do not understand the internet have against blogging is how easy it is to publish articles with filled unverified facts, lopsided views, and that narrowmindedness one develops in middle of an uproar.

While I don’t agree that all bloggers should be held up to certain standards similar to that of journalists and other members of the media, you might have started wondering how to best approach blogging about a burning topic next time.

Let’s have a look at three philosophies on blogging and writing on the web:

  1. SpeedBlogging: The idea is to always be prepared with ideas, so you can always pick from one of them later. Now expound out by listing key points and mind-mapping. In the words of that famous sports brand (or that former Health Secretary), just do it.
  2. Slow Blogging: In the simplest sense, it’s the “rejection of immediacy”. If you can help it, don’t get swayed by the hype and choose to write when it makes most sense for you to.
  3. Blogging without Obligation: Somewhat leaning toward the Slow Blogging manifesto, BWO also rejects immediacy and every other expectation put in place by the so-called experts. On your blog, you’re the expert.

You might want to ponder on why you started blogging in the first place. If you’re an aspring new media journalist, you probably have to brush up on reporting ethics and whatnot. Try updating your “about me” blurbs to clarify objectives to your audience. Or not, if you don’t care what anybody thinks.

So how do you blog? Do you scramble to hit the publish button ASAP? Do you sleep on your post and come back to it the next day? Or do you raise your middle finger and yell, “screw the rules, I’m doing this my way!”

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Pangandaman-De la Paz golf mauling incident: from local blogs to international news

December 30, 2008 | 10 Comments

Philippine blogs are buzzing over the golf mauling involving Masui, Lanao del Sur Mayor Nasser Pangandaman Jr., his father Agrarian Reform Secretary Nasser Pangandaman, Delfin de la Paz, and his family. It started with this blog post by his daughter, Bambee de la Paz.

At around 1:30 PM today, at Valley Golf and Country Club, Antipolo City, Mayor Nasser Pangandaman, Jr., Mayor of Masiu City, Lanao del Sur, his father, Secretary Nasser Pangandaman of the Department of Agrarian Reform, and company, beat my defenseless 56-year-old dad and my 14-year-old brother to a pulp because of some stupid misunderstanding on the golf course.

The news of this altercation spread around the blogosphere, microblogging services like Twitter and Plurk, and traditional media (read Noemi Dado’s entry for the list of links).

It’s even reached international news sites like Fox News, News.com.au, and The Straits Times. Now that’s the powerful effect of blogging for you.

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Filipino bloggers disrespected by TV station & PR agency

November 28, 2008 | 1 Comment

Between all the blogging parties, awards, and conferences, you’d think Pinoy bloggers have gained equal footing with mainstream media. Noemi Dado’s and Arpee Lazaro’s and recent experiences prove otherwise.

Noemi Dado vs. ABS-CBN

The first is already familiar: ABS-CBN show TV Patrol World used a photo from her blog without asking permission first. It was even worse this time because it was a photo of her daughter. It took 3 weeks for news anchor TJ Manotoc to apologize to Noemi.

TJ Manotoc, the reporter of the segment called me an hour later after this was posted (oh do I have to blog to get a reply?) but I was unable to pick the call. I just talked to him a while ago. He explained how he got the photos. He interviewed Rhett Eala for the Philippine Flag segment and was told that he could use any of the publicity photos. His team googled for the images and my daughter’s photo came about. Since they were in a rush, they didn’t bother to get the source of the photo. Ooops, not a good idea I said.

Arpee Lazaro vs. Jayce Perlas

The second is another version of awful: Jayce Perlas of the Perlas and Luna PR agency barred him from registering at a Samsung event because his invite could not supposedly be confirmed. A few moments later, two other people asked Arpee which publication he was associated with, and when he explained that he was a blogger, they were confused. They did not know what a blogger is.

Bloggers attend events all the time and understandably, some of us do behave badly. But if it is necessary for us to be humiliated please give us just cause. The lot of us are mostly decent, have above-average spending power and should be treated with respect as you would traditional media people. Bloggers are member of the new media and we are not a hype that will go away anytime soon. I ask PR agencies to please do your homework about bloggers before you have us invited to your events. As far as I know, I never emailed any company asking them to invite me; they’ve always emailed me to attend and even email me again to thank me for going. Mr Perlas and those like him should try to have a bit more PR in their PR work.

You have been warned

If there’s a type of industry that should be properly informed, it should be the media and press relations! You keep acting like you’re better than what it means to be a third world country, and yet you dismiss intellectual property rights, invade other people’s privacy, and have no initiative to stay informed.

You don’t know what copyright infringment is? Funny how you complain every time your shows are uploaded on YouTube (yet use clips from the website—most likely without permission—on your segments anyway).

You don’t know what blogging is? That’s just sad and ironic, since you’re a tech company.

And yet you consider yourselves better than bloggers, or everyone else?

Learn to show respect. A blog can share all the bad moves you’ve made to the whole world. And wait ’til traditional media fades into the background and blogs become as influential as they are abroad. You’ve probably heard that several newspapers and magazines in the US have shut down print production and have gone exclusively online.

Considering the Philippines is so in love with America, it’s only a matter of time for us to “imitate” them. The question is, will your fancy media company or PR agency survive the layoffs by then?

Ample warning, folks.

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Philippine Blog Awards and blogging covered by mainstream media

October 9, 2008 | No Comments Yet

Coy Caballes has posted a partial video of an interview about blogging and the Philippine Blog Awards in Mornings @ ANC. In the video, TJ Manotoc interviews Juned Sonido, Ferdz Decena, and Karlo Licudine. Watch out for part two!

Also check the links in the post for more coverage by other stations including GMA, QTV, and TV5. Who says the “old” and “new” media can’t get along?

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WordCamp Philippines a success!

September 8, 2008 | 26 Comments

WordCamp Philippines

WordCamp Philippines 2008 is finally over, and I’m sure everybody had a blast. It feels futile to do duplicate it, so get the comprehensive list of blog posts about the recently-concluded event from Jehzlau. Both old (newspapers) and new (bloggers) media coverage can be found there, as well as photos from the event itself and the after-party.

Congratulations to the organizers, volunteers and speakers! And thank you to the sponsors! And of course, it was an honor having Matt Mullenweg fly over to the Philippines and grace this occasion. It won’t be the same without him!

Looking forward to another WordCamp next year—hopefully sooner!

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Photographer-blogger sues Manila Bulletin for copyright infringement

June 11, 2008 | 4 Comments

Filipino photographer and blogger Anton Sheker has filed a lawsuit against Manila Bulletin for copyright infringement and damages.

In October 2007, Sheker presented proof that this major daily publication used his photos of Vigan. They appeared in a Travel & Tourism article in March 2007. He got featured in the Picture Perfect column as artist of the week, but without his photos.

Even ABS-CBN, who has allegedly done the same thing to several bloggers, reported about this. According to the article:

The law does have its say on the matter. The country has a Copyright Law under the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines that protects literary and artistic works, including photos. In one of its sections, it is noted that “Works are protected by the sole fact of their creation,” an automatic copyright protection, as some may view it. Penalties for violators may be subject to fines ranging from P5,000 to P 150,000, and P1,000.00 for every day of continued violation, among others. (A copy of the Intellectual Property Code can be read here: http://www.lawphil.net/statutes/repacts/ra1997/ra_8293_1997.html)

Does Anton stand a chance in court? Will the small-time Pinoy blogger leave a scar against a mammoth media outfit?

The same newspaper that threatened to slap me with a criminal case if continued my claim.

If Manila Bulletin has nothing to hide, why are they being defensive?

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Malaysian blogger arrested and goes on hunger strike; Could this happen to the Philippines?

May 9, 2008 | 3 Comments

A 57-year old Malaysian blogger (Raja Petra Kamaruddin) was arrested for writing an article implicating a top official (Deputy Prime Minister Najib Razak) to the murder of a Mongolian woman (Altantuya Shaariibuu), and soon after began a hunger strike in jail. Inquirer has picked up this news item and it’s now circling around the local blogosphere.

Do Filipino bloggers worry that what they write could lead them to their arrest, torture, even salvage? We’re all familiar with stories about the families of activists, journalists, and witnesses crying for the justice never given to them after their loved ones’ threats, arrests, disappearances, and deaths. It’s happened way too many times in this country.

Could Philippine bloggers be next?

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When Blogs Become Unacknowledged Mainstream Media Sources

April 5, 2008 | 7 Comments

Blogs being scraped and plagiarized by other blogs is one thing, but what do you do about the beast that is mainstream media? It’s very disappointing for this type of thing to happen, since television and newspaper companies often consider themselves far more legitimate and reputable than anything that comes from the Internet.

Yet we are experiencing an emerging culture of taking things without asking permission, much less giving proper attribution. It could be a bunch of different reasons, mostly revolving around ignorance, but what does that say about supposedly educated professionals in the fields of journalism and mass media? Where are these people’s ethics?

This is a lesson for both providers of content and those who are in need of it: Just because you can find it on Google doesn’t mean you can use it for yourself. If the TV stations strongly oppose putting their shows on YouTube, then they should treat online content with the same respect they expect. Konting respeto lang.

Similarly, if you put anything on the Internet, it is bound to be plagiarized. Certain measures can be taken to avoid this, but the most desperate of people will still find a way to steal your content: remove watermarks, paraphrase sentences, et cetera.

I’m sure bloggers would be honored for their writings, photographs, and other creations to be featured in “the real world”. There’s a reason why Creative Commons emerged as a more generous alternative to copyright. And for those who don’t already know, we have a local group that has ported the Creative Commons licenses into the Philippine legal context, so creators are more protected than ever. The problem is, people don’t read. We don’t read street signs, we don’t follow instructions. We just go online and take whatever it is we need without worrying about the consequences. CC licenses are already easy to read, but we don’t take time out to understand what “non-commercial use” even means! Because chances are, we won’t get caught anyway.

Then again, the Philippine blogging community is growing more assertive and formidable each year. And this dilemma is one of the best ways we can prove that. Act now, fellow Pinoy bloggers!

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PinoyPress

February 26, 2008 | 4 Comments

PinoyPress

We’re still in a current events mood here at WordPress Philippines and so it’s no surprise to have PinoyPress as our featured website of the week. What makes this Philippine news website different from the rest? Easy: it’s powered by WordPress.

It’s a feat to turn a piece of blogging software into a content management system to handle oodles and oodles of content as newspapers usually do. But as many people are slowly discovering, WordPress is equipped to handle that job. We commend PinoyPress’ forward thinking and ability to do that while at the same time diligently cover what’s going on in the Philippines.

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INQUIRER.net Blogs

February 18, 2008 | 1 Comment

Inquirer Blogs

This week, we’re featuring not just one but twenty-three blogs! All of them are under the Philippine Daily Inquirer website, INQUIRER.net.

Inquirer is arguably the most popular, most up-to-date, and most high-tech Philippine publication online. And they’ve taken it a step further through its roster of blogs that cover topics like video games, Apple, music, sports, science, TV, real estate, travel, girls, and even—you guessed it—blogging. It looks like they’ve drawn inspiration from the New York Times and its WordPress-powered blogs.

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