Updating an old dinosaur of a site to WordPress (3.5.1), one of the more popular pages on the old site is a “Related Links” page with links for and about kids. (e.g. fitness, nutrition, education, bicycle safety etc. ). We frequently receive email from teachers all over the U.S. indicating that — as the result of some sort of class project — their students have found sites they think relevant, asking if we would include the link(s) they’ve found on our “Related Links” page.
On the new WordPress site we would like to improve on the old “Related Links” page, providing users a means of submitting a request for inclusion ( something like moderated comments? ) with a text-area to input the details of the request ( comments? ) a field for the suggested link, a field to suggest tags ( or categories ) as a means of categorizing the links, and a user email field for contact/validation.
Ideally, approved link submissions would be sortable by category, age or popularity ( via Google Analytics ), with a credit line for the submitting user e.g. …
( Courtesy of Little Suzie Smith, Mrs. Jones 3rd Grade Class 2012-2013 )
I fear this may require developing a plugin specifically for the case, but would sure feel silly re-inventing this wheel if there already exists the means to accomplish it without.
Any Suggestions as to how this might be implemented ( or approximated ) using an existing plugin and / or existing WP functionality ?
Well… it might be a bit hard since you are already using a page, and I suspect you already have a lot of content?
If I was starting this from the beginning I would probably establish a custom post type (CPT) for user submitted links (I code my CPTs, but there are many plugins to handle this for you with a search) http://codex.wordpress.org/Post_Types
So these CPTs act just like regular WP posts, but they exist beside them so to speak, you can display them however you like. The important thing here is that these CPTs are posts, but they don’t go automatically to your main post page – so you can sort and handle them differently. Here, I would have a page set up that just displays the submitted links. The ability to show an archive page just for your CPT is built into WP.
You can even establish custom taxonomies (think tags and categories) to help you sort them. These work the exact same as WP tags and categories but again work outside of them. (again, I code my own, but there are many plugins) http://codex.wordpress.org/Taxonomies
The final piece to the puzzle here would be a form plugin which allows for front end posting. These are basically contact form plugins that allow for more. You can set up a form for folks to input all the data you would need and it would become a WordPress post, using your CPT and custom taxonomies. This can be set up, of course, so that anyone can input a submission but the must be approved before appearing on the site.
I personally use gravity forms, it’s 100% amazing – but it also costs money. There’s also Ninja Forms which is free, but I believe an extension to allow front end submissions might cost $$. There are many form plugins out there, I’m not sure which all allow front end submissions.
None of these listed features probably existed on your old WP version, but they are quite handy now!
So that’s how I would go about it…. but there may also be plugins that suit your fancy if you look for user submitted links, or community links. Not sure to be honest!
FWIW, no time to roll-my-own, I found WP User Frontend which (with a little tweeking) I managed to utilize to the desired effect. I also added Right Now Reloaded to facilitate dashboard notification of pending (new) user posts. Eventually plan incorporating both into my e-commerce plugin but for now… this works.
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