How to Submit Your Content
How do I submit content to this website? These guidelines explain all...
This site is designed to allow you to submit your own articles and content for publication. The following guidelines outline the kinds of content we're looking for, and offer advice on submitting your article. These guidelines are followed by more detailed practical tips on how to use the article submission form.
For information on the subjects covered by the site, see our guide to Topics & Interest Groups.
Content Guidelines: Quick Reference
- Length: Anything from 300 to 1500 words is ideal.
- Content: Relevant to digital media industry, broadly learning-focused.
- Tone and Style: Whatever suits you best and is appropriate to the subject.
- Comments: Stimulate debate.
- First Paragraph: Summarises article, provides hook.
- Abstract: Concise summary.
- Benefits: Have your say, raise your profile, make new contacts.
- Selling: Don't lay it on too thick!
- Legal: Observe copyright, cite sources, don't libel.
Anything from half a side of A4 to around 1500 words is ideal. Readers on the web generally prefer content that is short, focused and scannable. But if you have already written longer reports, white papers or articles that explore your subject in more detail, we are happy to consider those too.
Content should be broadly focused on learning (although not in a narrow or formal sense), helping readers to improve their knowledge about an aspect of working with digital media or running a business supplying new media products and services. The subjects you choose are likely to reflect your own areas of expertise. Case studies, examples of good and bad practice or explanations of specific techniques and technologies work well in this context.
If you don't have much time, you could try writing short, snappy pieces centred around lists or bullet points. These are probably quicker to write, but work well (even if only half a page long) because they will be focused on a specific subject or issue. For example, 'Top Ten Tips for Marketing Your Business', or 'Five Things You Should Know About Usability'.
We also welcome topical stories about what's going on in the industry, and think-pieces or essays about cultural and social issues affecting digital media. These can be more light-hearted, opinionated or discursive, and less focused on practicalities.
3) Tone and Style
Write in the style that suits you best. Often, the subject matter will dictate the tone - an explanation of data protection law needs to be clear and precise, but a story about disastrous pitches would suit a more entertaining, informal style. If you don't fancy yourself as a future Pulitzer prize winner, use lists and bullet points to outline the main points of your article.
Other registered users will be able to add comments after your article in the 'Your Comments' section. To stimulate discussion, try expressing controversial viewpoints, raising questions of your own and inviting feedback from your readers.
5) First paragraph.
Aim to summarise your article in the first paragraph so that readers know what it's about, and try to provide a hook at this point. It's often a good idea to write or re-write the first paragraph after you've finished the rest of the article.
6) The Abstract
Aim to convey as much as you can about the substance of the article in one concise sentence - e.g. "Ten mistakes to avoid when pitching for new business".
7) What's in it for You?
Why should you spend your valuable time writing articles for www.nmk.co.uk - especially when we're asking you to do so for free? Apart from earning the undying gratitude of the NMK team, you'll be helping to educate your peers and raise standards across the industry. And if that's not enough, we're providing you with a platform to have your say, raise your profile, demonstrate your expertise to a wider audience and make contacts - some of whom may bring you work, directly or indirectly. Contributors are encouraged to create a personal profile in which they can promote themselves and their companies, and are welcome to include links to their company's websites with articles they submit.
Many contributors will see writing for www.nmk.co.uk as an opportunity to sell their products and services, but if you have this in mind, please do so in the right spirit. The idea is that you will be promoting yourself and your products indirectly, that by demonstrating your ideas and expertise you will be creating a positive association with your business. If you feel the need to plug what you do more explicitly, then please be open about it, keep it short and present the sales-orientated material separately from the rest of the article - at the end. The NMK readership is an informed audience, and it won't respond positively to a blatant sales pitch.
If re-using or adapting content that you have previously published on another site or in another publication, please ensure that you own the copyright, and include a footnote mentioning where and when it was originally published. If quoting another writer or article, remember to cite the source. Please be accurate, and be careful not to libel. If writing about case studies, particularly when used as negative examples, think carefully about what you're implying. Do you really want to identify specific individuals and companies? By submitting content, you agree to the terms outlined in NMK's Publishing Disclaimer.
(Here's a rather heavy definition of libel - don't let it put you off, but it's worth bearing in mind: Libel means to defame, or take away a good name. Libel can be proven even when the plaintiff is referred to indirectly. The tests of defamation include: hatred, ridicule or contempt; causing the subject to be shunned or avoided; 'lowering a person in the estimation of right-minded people'; and - most relevant here - implying a lack of qualification, knowledge, skill, capacity, judgement or efficiency to conduct business. Malicious falsehood means the publication of a false statement which damages a person. In criminal defamatory libel one publication could be the subject of both civil and criminal proceedings and the defamer could be sent to prison and made to pay damages.)
Many thanks! If you have any further questions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
How Do I Submit an Article?
Any registered user can submit an article to NMK - look for the 'Add an Article' box that appears on all Topic and Interest Group homepages, or in the title bar of all articles on the site.
Articles are submitted via the Add Article submission form, which contains the following fields:
The title of your article will appear in a number of places throughout the site: please keep it relevant and short.
This goes on the end of the URL for your article, and must not contain spaces - use hyphens to separate words instead. For example, in the URL http://www.nmk.co.uk/article/2003/08/14/online-branding , the Article ID is "online-branding".
Search terms for relating articles
When your article is published, a list of articles on similar subjects will be displayed at the side of the page. These are selected according to the search terms you specify in this field. Enter two or three words (not phrases), separated by spaces, e.g. "marketing email viral" (without the quotes).
Summarise your article in one or two sentences. Focus on one or two main points only - whatever you want your readers to think the article is about.
Paste or write your article in this box. Future versions of the NMK site will provide tools to help you format the text, but for the time being you will have to mark up your copy in HTML. If you prefer, you can convert a Microsoft Word document into HTML and paste the source code into the content field instead. See below for instructions.
Publication and Expiry
You must enter a publication date before your article can be posted on the site. If you want to embargo your piece until a future date, enter that date in the 'Publication' field. If you want your article to be taken off the site automatically at a future date, enter that date in the 'Expiry' field; otherwise, 'Expiry' can be left blank.
Previewing and Submitting Your Article
After completing the Add Article form, click on the Preview button to see how it will look when it is published. (If you click on Cancel at this stage, everything you have written will be lost.) You now have three main choices:
Submit - if you are happy with your article, clicking on Submit will send it to the NMK editors for approval. The editors will usually publish your piece on the site shortly afterwards, but sometimes they will email you to discuss making one or two revisions.
Edit - this will take you back to the Add Article form, so that you can make changes and revisions to your article before submitting it. You can Preview and Edit your article as many times as you like until you are happy with it.
Save - if you aren't ready to submit your piece, but don't have time to finish writing it immediately, you can save your article as a work in progress, for completion at a later date.
How to Find Saved Articles
To access your saved articles, sign-in with your email and password, then click on 'Your profile / admin'. Next, click on 'Articles you can edit' in the 'Admin Options' box. Find the article you want to finish writing, and click on 'Preview / Edit' to open the unfinished article. If you have submitted a finished article, but the NMK editors have not yet published it on the site, you will also find it under 'Articles you can edit'.
Marking Up Your Article in HTML
Future versions of the NMK site will provide tools to help you to format your articles, but until then some basic HTML mark-up is required to format the articles you submit. The tags permitted are: paragraph <p>, line break <br>, anchor (hyperlink) <a>, bold <strong>, italics <em>, heading 3 <h3>, bullet list <ul> and numbered list <ol>.
<h3>Use The <h3> Tag for Headings</h3>
<p>Use the <p> tag to create paragraphs. Please make sure you include both opening tags and closing tags, like this.</p>
Use <strong>the strong tag</strong> for bold text. Use <em>the emphasis tag</em> for italics.
<h3>Use <h3> For Sub-Headings Too</h3>
- <li>Use unordered list</li>
- <li>to create</li>
- <li>bullet points</li>
- <li>Use ordered list</li>
- <li>to create</li>
- <li>numbered lists</li>
<p>If you want to start a new line <br>
without creating a new paragraph, use the break tag<br>
Converting a Word Document into HTML
If you don't want to mark-up your article yourself, you can convert a Microsoft Word document into HTML and paste the source code into the NMK website. Here's how:
- Write your article in Word.
- Select File / Save As, and select Save as type: Web Page from the drop-down menu. The Word document will be saved as an .html file.
Open the HTML version of your article and view the source
- In Microsoft Internet Explorer, select View / Source;
- In Netscape or Mozilla, select View / Page Source;
- In Word, select View / HTML Source.
- Select and copy all of the source code for your article (including <html>, <head>, <title>, <body> and all the font formatting). Paste this into the main 'Content' box on the 'Add an Article' submission form.
That's it. When you preview your article, the NMK website will automatically remove any formatting and HTML mark-up that isn't required.