Introducing the new

Introducing the New

Do you have digital photos of a really great bike ride you'd like to share? Or perhaps you are involved in your local BPAC and need to announce upcoming events and meetings ?

Previously, it was difficult sharing this type of information. The ebbc-talk listserv does not allow multimedia attachments (to protect against virus infection). And submitting material for publication in the newsletter and website involved an often complicated process of sending material to the EBBC website administrator, and to the rideOn editor.

This month, the EBBC is inaugurating a new "Content Management System" (CMS) on A "CMS" is a dynamic, democratically-run webserver where the membership provides and manages content. This is a vastly different model from our old, static website scheme where a single administrator put up material.

Capabilities of the new web server include:

-Online Events calendar. EBBC members can post and track BPAC, City Council, and other cycling-related public meetings and events.

-Gallery: Users can create an album gallery of images. Post and share images of recent rides, pictures of bike facilities in Europe and Japan, or anything else of interest to the EBBC membership

-Discussion Forums: The ebbc-talk listserv will continue to operate as usual, but will also be mirrored on the new webserver. For participants who don't want to deal with large volumes of email, they can now read/post to the forum through the web site. Unlike email, the web interface allows multimedia attachments. Moreover, posting through the webserver guards your email identity, providing much better protection against spammers.

-File management: Registered users may upload files to the webserver, including pdf's, images, podcasts, and Word docs. This capability greatly improves EBBC workflow procedures, enabling ad-hoc groups to collaborate on projects.

-Film clips: "Youtube" movies can be embedded directly into web pages, for broadcast of video content.

-Blogging: registered users can write and maintain Web "Blogs" (and are encouraged to do so if they are working on a local cycling issue).

-Tagging: all information on the website is categorized with a geographical jurisdiction. Given the large volume of data on the server, tagging simplifies information filtering and retrieval.

-RSS Feed: Automatic notification (via email) whenever new content is available on the webserver. Using the tagging feature, users can filter notifications based on geographic classifications.

In order to prevent abuse and inappropriate content from being posted, a website policy is being developed. Users must register with a validated email address before submiting material. There are also designated website "editors" who will moderate content. If inappropriate or offensive content is posted to the server, editors may contact the author to request changes and/or remove the offending material. The system is also configured to allow users to "flag" inappropriate content.

This style of management is a major departure in how the EBBC has managed website facilities, making this something of an experiment. However, the democratic approach to website management has been wildly successful for many grassroots organizations, and has the potential to revolutionize EBBC outreach efforts. Ultimately, the success of this venture depends on YOU -- the EBBC membership -- to provide the organizational material that will make an exciting and dynamic website that motivates and informs.

If you would like to participate in development, start off by clicking on and selecting "Register". Provide a username and valid email address. You will receive a confirmation email to validate the login.