More on the multi-author Maghreb blog

So the idea of an English-language group blog focused on the Maghreb and Sahel is one that has shown to be not unpopular among readers and commenters. This is pleasing and I surprised by the volume of responses. There are still issues to be considered from a logistical angle: What blogging platform is most conducive to group activity, most accessible to those interested and most aesthetically pleasing at the same time? The subject matter I have imagined would be from a domestic and international relations perspective in a somewhat formal manner. The template I imagine is along the lines of the Middle East Strategy at Harvard blog, with open forums and less pretentiousness. I think the main areas of discussion would be domestic politics, economics/development, human rights, religion/religious politics and geopolitics. I think it would be a good idea to have brief book and article reviews and on a monthly basis (or in some other semi-regular interval). A core of regular contributors with many other contributors would be most desirable, I would imagine.

For discussion: There are readers from `Aqoul, Western Sahara Info. and other great blogs who have greater experience in this area than I do. What are the most common troubles that can be associated with this kind of project? (I am especially interested in the administrative and personal end.) Editing is also important: Does it make sense for there to be a grammar and spelling gendarme, or should posters be left to these duties themselves? (I favor the latter.) From the editorial end, I am curious as to how posts are managed in a multi-author setting. I have looked over several platform options, most of which are over my head in the technical sense. What the most user friendly platforms? Commenters involved with `Aqoul mentioned issues with design; In what sense is this a major challenge and how can it be avoided in a future project?

Those interested in participating should contact me (see the “Comments policy” page for contact info) and please post your thoughts publically.

More: I’ve set up a Word Press account and put a page, no content as of yet. Take a look and let me know if you’d like to be added as a contributor, editor, admin, or whatever and it can be done. I’ve also set up an email address for it.

Maghreb Politics Review

maghrebinenglish@gmail.com

Please contribute your thoughts!

4 thoughts on “More on the multi-author Maghreb blog

  1. Let me correct you right away: I have absolutely no experience with these things. The suggestions in comments at the last post seemed sensible, though. My own best hunch is that it’s better not to over-plan it. Someone should just be appointed boss, register an account and get it started. Design for a proper site and all that can be worked out later — there were already tech volunteers in the comment section.

    Rules, I suggest: everyone on board can write anything related to the Maghreb, no one is legally or morally responsible for what another author says, and the common language is English. Go!

  2. In case we have access to a host (including database) and we do want a unique design I’d be willing to set up a wordpress blog. WordPress will be able to do all we want and is pretty easy to handle. Couldn’t start before next week though.

    As for the blog format: I think it’d be a good thing to have two types of sections: one for larger (and perhaps more journal style posts) and one for shorter ones.

    As for the rules: I don’t think we need too much control. If someone writes rubbish (what I really don’t expect to happen) then the article just gets unpublished to the person can edit it a little or we let it get criticised in the comments and the author will do better next time. For longer posts it may be a good idea to have someone proof read it, but that’s very much possible as unpublished drafts will be accessible to the other authors.

  3. Alle, sorry for the confusion: I recalled that you had a piece on Mauritania contributed to Aqoul and assumed you had other involvement. Many apologies.

    I’ve set up a Word Press account and put a page, no content as of yet. Take a look and let me know if you’d like to be added as a contributor, editor, admin, or whatever and it can be done. I’ve also set up an email address for it.

    Maghreb Politics Review
    maghrebinenglish.wordpress.com
    maghrebinenglish@gmail.com

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