Changing the World Wide Web, One Language at a Time

I grew up in Ukraine and studied English in school every day from age 7. Speaking English fluently was by far the most valuable skill I acquired during my school career. It provided access to better education and a wider range of career opportunities. It enabled professional development beyond what my own country and my native language could offer.

When I built my first website in 1995, it was in English and in Ukrainian. Back then, 80% of all online content was in English, and I was determined to fit in with this trend. I wanted my website to be accessible to anyone in the world, and going global meant writing in English.

Fast-forward 20 years, English is still the most-studied second language in the world and the most popular language online. More people speak and understand English today than ever before. This might give an impression that publishing useful, usable content in English is a good strategy to acquire new customers globally, but is this really the case? Let’s take a look at the numbers.

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SharePoint at a Glance

EContent Magazine - Spring Issue 2018If you work in digital marketing, IT or internal communications, chances are you’ve heard about SharePoint. Perhaps you’ve heard that SharePoint is difficult to use, ugly and immobile – so bad in fact, that it’s pretty much a dying platform. Or maybe you’ve heard that SharePoint is a market leading product, adopted by many large organisations and supported by one of the most talented and active development communities in the software industry.

So which one is it?

As I’m midway through the migration of the University of Leeds faculty intranet from legacy platforms to SharePoint, let me share some first-hand experiences of what SharePoint has to offer its customers today.

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Web Content Management systems in Higher Education (UK)

What content management systems are Universities and other Higher Education institutions in the UK use? Here are some examples:

  • University of Cambridge – Plone
  • University of Manchester – TERMINALFOUR
  • University of Edinburgh – EdWeb (Drupal)
  • London School of Economics and Political Science – Contensis
  • Cardiff University – Squiz
  • University of South Wales – Wagtail

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Content Strategy for Ultra-Large Digital Presences

The world is overwhelmed with web content. Yet many organisations publish content blindly and operate without a documented content strategy, exposing themselves to business risks and missed opportunities. Content strategy is planning for the creation, delivery, and governance of useful, usable content. It guides web content management projects to deliver business value. Effective content strategy relies on a variety of skills and disciplines, including marketing, communications, editorial planning, web development, user experience and analytics.

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How to Write a Business Case for a WCM System

An opportunity to make a business case can be a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, it’s an indication that the project is taken seriously. On the other hand, it formalizes the intentions, emphasizes responsibility, and implies approval by multiple stakeholders (smell internal politics, anyone?). Writing a good business case requires a pragmatic approach, strategic thinking, and persuasive language. Done well, it can convince the top management to invest in your project. Done poorly, it can cause delays or even stall the initiative entirely.

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Content Quality in Devolved Authoring Environments

In the beginning, there was the word. It wasn’t content managed. There was no HTML, no templates, no workflows. Things were easy. But then there was a paragraph, a heading; there were links, images, and interactive content. Before long, things got complicated. Updating websites became hard work.

CMSs made this hard work easier. People without specialist knowledge of web development started to create web content too. It became possible to publish more content faster—except there was a catch. The CMS didn’t produce quality content. It simply published whatever it was that people entered into the system.

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The Elusive Definition of an Enterprise CMS

Many web CMS vendors and open source communities describe their web content management (WCM) systems as enterprise. But what does enterprise mean? Are there Web CMSs out there that are not enterprise? Does it matter? Is it beneficial for organizations to invest in an enterprise web CMS, or is it just a fancy marketing buzzword that carries little meaning?

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Web Design Trends 2017

First impressions are important… Presentable clothes, matching accessories, getting to meetings on time – it all matters. It shows people around you that you care. Online, first impressions matter too. Website visitors make judgements about website credibility in as little as 50 milliseconds, and one in five website visitors will leave your website, not giving you a second chance. Staying on top of the current trends makes it possible to create a website that will impress your audience, and will hold users attention for the first crucial 10 seconds, and beyond.

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What to Expect from JBoye Aarhus Conference

As much as attending industry conferences is considered a must for mid- to senior-level digital professionals, few can afford to go to more than two or three events a year. In this article, I will go through five key considerations that web managers and digital leaders can use to help them determine whether an industry conference is worth their time and money. I will then explain what JBoye Aarhus Conference delivers in each of these categories (from my experience of attending JBoye conference annually since 2011), so that you can decide for yourself whether JBoye conference is right for you.

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