What are some of the best examples of section (or division) web sites or newsletters? What features could make them better?
I may be biased, but I think the new Midland section website, http://www.midlandacs.org, is really good. Ann Birch, our webmaster and newsletter editor really does outstanding work.
You are right Connie. This is a great web site.
It is important to have an easy to remember address, even if you use the ACS facilities or your university web. The web adress is cheap and can link to your well hidden sites that have long addresses. We use www.njacs.org or www.marmacs.org as an example for our local and regional sites. www.njacs.org had over 1.8 million hits last year.
Group information for individual interests. Presently Careers and Earthday are the most frequently searched sites for us. But ACS is a group of Silo thinkers, hence organic chemists, teachers, polymer chemists and many other interest groups will spend more time if they find their info easily.
Use the web site for work that an administrator might do. Registration for meetings, collecting funds and surveys are really helpful. By registering on line and paying, name tags can be done almost automatically. The site can database registrations so that planners can make adjustments as needed by checking the database as needed. Name tags can be printed using Excel and the Avery wizard in word. The little bit that PayPal would charge is alway made up when only one person fails to show up who has prepaid. Because they paid, they are more likely to attend. Surveys are also easily done using one of the free links.
One does not need to do everything on one site. Often interest groups can share information with their group using automated facilites like yahoogroups. Under our site at njacs.org the teachers share at firstname.lastname@example.org and job seekers and employers at email@example.com which are easily found from our main site. The multiple daily postings at these sites would drive a web master crazy. Yet the information can be grouped for members at their preference; at once, daily, weekly or upon visiting the site.
Finally, share lots of photos and reports on the events. It is amazing how people will return to see their photo, or others will comment that they saw your photo.
The simple URL is an idea that the national organization could help with. Very often it is hard to find the "simple" URL for a National ACS page because it does not appear in the URL line at the top of your browser window (something long and complex appears). For example the ACS member network login page has a simple URL but it take some work to find it. Similarly the page to change your contact info.
Posting photos is excellent. It is a way to bring people back to the site and you can advertise your next event while people check out he photos from the last one.
Do any of your Local Sections or Divisions have standing monthly columns in your Newsletters or on your web sites? I am sure you all give updates on meetings and upcoming events but do you, for example, have columns on careers, what your councilor is doing, available on-line tools or upcoming events at local, science related museums etc? Do you think these types of column would be interesting to ACS members?
I'd like to recommend every webmaster and newsletter editor get on the distribution list for Cut & Paste. Cut & Paste is a bi-monthly selection of timely news and articles created specifically for webmaster/editors to use within their website/newsletter as they see fit. If you want to be on the distribution list (every two months you will get an email alerting you of when a new issue has been posted), just let me know @ firstname.lastname@example.org and I will add you. Hope this is helpful!
Department of Local Sections and Community Activities
I agree, Cut & paste is very useful. The Indicator (Newsletter for North Jersey and New York) routinely uses material from Cut & Paste. Sometimes it is used "as is" but we try and edit it slightly so it conects with our members and we try to incorporate references to our local events and activities. The editing is trivial, taking 5 minutes, and really helps us add value to our Newsletter.
A new question for ACS is "Can the material in Cut & Paste be posted to the Section web site"? The info on the cut and paste site suggests not but is that just because it has not been updated to reflect increasing use of the internet etc?
Yes - Cut & Paste can be posted to the Section web site. I've edited the verbiage on the site to make this more apparent (should be published by the end of the day).
Cut & Paste is great and this will make it clearer that it can also be used to enhance our web site as well as our Newsletters.
The newsletter of the North Jersey and New York Sections (The Indicator) contains a number of interesting columns that might be of interest to other sections. I am sure other newsletters have similar original content. Is there a way to share these other than via Cut & Paste? Could Cut & Paste be use to distribute this type of material.
If you want to share your newsletter or web site, I suggest posting it to this group (either as a PDF or sharing the URL). For articles pertaining to specific topics, consider posting it under a relevant Forum within the Network - that way people can post comments/feedback.
The newsletter of the North Jersey and New York sections, The Indicator, can be found at:
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