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California State University, Long Beach

WDC Blog Terms of Use

This branding guide will help DAF Blog users better understand what the brand is and to successfully market the Division of Administration and Finance. It explains our marketing tactics, including use of graphical elements, and how we communicate verbally with our audience, the Division of Administration and Finance and beyond.
These are some of the things that you need to consider before any work is done.

Images

Photo Library

The Publications Office has binders full of photographs that you can choose from. Please call Gloria Reasbeck at 562/985-5453 to set up a time with one of the photographers to come to the Publications Office and go through the binders. A CD can be burned containing the images you select for $10 each.

The Web Development Center has a library of images of people and places on campus that can be used as well. Please contact the WDC to request photos.

Should I Use Stock Photography?

Use ‘real’ CSULB people and ‘real’ CSULB places in our photography as much as possible for an authentic representation of the University. The following are stock imagery websites used by the University:

http://www.istockphoto.com/index.php
http://www.sxc.hu/browse.phtml

Once you have chosen an image from any of these sources send them to the WDC so that we can properly size and position the images in your post.

Should I Use Clip Art?

If you wish to use clip-art in your publication make a request via the WDC request system.

Should I Use Animation?

Clip art animations may not be used. If you wish to have animation in your publication contact the WDC Web Designer for custom animation.

Guidelines for photo shoots

If you need portraits taken or other custom photographs the following guidelines will help you organize your own photo shoot.

1. Plan

The better you plan photography, the more efficient the process will be and the more effective the end results.

  • Brainstorm concepts, carefully considering what you want the image to communicate and how you can best achieve this. The simplest ideas are usually the most effective to execute well.
  • Look at stock photography websites for inspiration and clever ways to represent your ideas. Try to avoid visual cliches that have been used to represent particular ideas, e.g. a light blub for an idea.

2. Find the right talent

We would prefer to feature our own CSULB students and graduates wherever possible in our photography.

  • When selecting talent consider their academic or professional achievements, their overall suitability and their availability for the photo shoot and/or interview. Contact the Publications Office to schedule a photo shoot.
  • The person you select will represent CSULB to the wider public, so it is vital that they are briefed on presentation. Ideally, talent should:
    • dress in a neat, professional style
    • wear neutral colors e.g. white, grey, beige, charcoal, navy, brown or black
    • not wear clothing with strong patterns or writing/large logos other than CSULB’s
    • only wear jeans and/or sneakers that are neat and clean
    • have neatly groomed hair and suitable makeup
    • not wear beanies or caps for individual profile shots
  • Anyone who will appear in CSULB photography must sign a release form. If the WDC is taking the photo, we will provide one at the shoot.

3. Use the Photographers in the Office of Publications

Speak with a professional photographer in Publications (http://www.csulb.edu/divisions/urad/papubs/publications.htm) for advice, quotes and photography needs.

  • Meet with the photographer to brief them on what you require and to share your concepts. The photographer can help develop your ideas and make suggestions about the best way to proceed.
  • Consider asking the photographer to do a “reccy” (reconnaissance) to scout out possible locations and to take some test shots. The location you select will have an important bearing on how effective the image is, and reccys will save you time and give you options.

4. Attend the shoot

It is a good idea to attend the photo shoot to ensure it runs smoothly, to help make the talent feel comfortable and provide direction, if necessary, to help achieve your desired result. Our preferred photographers use digital cameras, allowing you to review images as the shoot progresses.

Photoshop Work

For any custom edits to images please make a request via the WDC request system. Any collaged imagery must be created by a member of the WDC design team.

Text

Many internal and external authors, editors and designers contribute to marketing content, so it is essential to ensure written materials are consistent and appear in the appropriate context.
This section outlines recommended text conventions and standards, and contains key phrases and statements to use when producing marketing materials. These guidelines can simplify the writing and editing process, and add quality to our diverse range of marketing communications.

Audience

Are you writing for graduates, business people or the general public? Who else could read it? What do they need to know and what do they already know about the topic? How do you want them to read the piece and what do you want them to do after reading it? Will they read it in a print publication or on the web?
It is vital to consider these questions to ensure that your message is clearly communicated and easily understood. Thinking about your potential readers, their needs and their background knowledge will help you determine the most suitable language, tone and level of formality for your message and for the context.

Language

The language you use, and how you use it, will affect the readability of your writing. For a standard level of readability, keep sentences relatively brief. Diversity in sentence construction also contributes to readability, though, so try to incorporate a mix of sentence length and complexity.

Plain English

Plain English promotes clarity, consistency and efficient language use in professional communications. Using plain English will help to communicate your message as simply and as effectively as possible, helping to create a credible and favorable image of the University.

Some basic recommendations:

  • remain aware of your reader and their needs
  • use familiar, everyday words
  • be concise: e.g. affect NOT impact on; explain NOT provide an explanation
  • use the active voice: e.g. Rachel baked the cake not The cake was baked by Rachel
  • keep sentences to an average length of 22 words
  • remain focused on the key points of your message
  • avoid jargon, cliches and euphemisms
  • Present information in clear format with a logical organization of ideas.
  • University policies and guidelines on Academic Misconduct and Equal Opportunity apply to all email communication.
  • Contracts and agreements made using email are contractually binding. Defamation and copyright laws also apply and litigation is possible.
  • Attachments within emails should be kept to a minimum, particularly to avoid spreading viruses.
  • Messages should be restricted to one screen in length whenever possible, in order to assist the reader.
  • Contents should be clear, brief and complete as for memos and faxes - especially when setting timelines.
  • Text should not contain SHOUTING! Do not use all-caps.

Inclusive language

Ensure that the language you use represents all people regardless of gender, race, age, religion or any other factor.
Using inclusive language will help you avoid ambiguities in your writing and will reduce the risk of projecting any presumptions about the roles of different groups in society.

Posting Blog Text

Please refer to http://codex.wordpress.org/Write_Post_SubPanel#Quicktags for editing the content of you blogs.
Do not use any HTML tags that are not in the QuickTag bar.
To add an image to your post you must first upload the image. http://faq.wordpress.com/2006/07/16/how-do-i-upload-pictures/
Then you can go to the post section and use the QuickTag bar to add the image that you uploaded.
The standard layout makes it imperative to place the image in the post first. Then put relevant text after the image.

Editing

Allow enough time to revise your work thoroughly. When assessing your own writing or someone else’s, look for anything that will compromise clear expression. Repetition, wordiness and poor grammar, spelling and punctuation can distract the reader and detract from your message.
It can be difficult to remain objective when reviewing your own writing so, if possible, have someone else read over it or allow yourself time away from the piece before revisiting it. It can also be useful to read your work aloud.
Don’t rely on spell-checkers or ‘auto-correct’ utilities to accurately or thoroughly review your work as they:

  • may not be based on an American English dictionary
  • won’t pick up a correct spelling that has been used incorrectly in a particular context (e.g. there and their)
  • can’t identify quoted text and may alter spellings or phrasing within quotes that shouldn’t be changed

Ways in which blogs are open to abuse:

  • by being so instantaneously available that messages can be sent without due thought given to their necessity, impact etc.
  • by presenting the possibility of sending to large groups (e.g. CSULB all)

Checklist for emailing your blog:

The following checklist may help limit use of email to appropriate occasions. Before sending an email to publicize your blog, ask the following questions:

  • Is email the best form of communication to use?
  • Does the message need to be sent to all these people?
  • Will all these people have time to read it, or should it be sent to another person?
  • Have you set its status (confidentiality and importance)?
  • Have you selected a short explanatory title?
  • What is the appropriate greeting to this/these recipient/s?
  • Is it unlikely that you will be able to contact the recipient personally or by phone?

Layout

Fonts

For everything other than the logo the official University typeface is Arial. It is a San Serif font. Do not use Seriffed fonts in your blogs. Times Roman should not be used.

Text Styling

Do not underline text in your blogs. Underlining indicates a web link and can confuse the user.

Do not use curly quotes in your blogs.
Example of what will happen: The word “curly” is in curly quotes here - ‘curly’.

Font Color

The official web color for fonts is #333333. Variations on this should be determined by the WDC design team.

Headers

Do not use headers in your blogs. If you have another topic to discuss, start another blog entry. That way the hierarchy of posts will remain consistent.

Bold Text

Use bold text to emphasize a word or string of words.

Indenting

Do not indent. The lists “ol” and “ul” indent as default.

Custom Classes

Classes may be added by the WDC for custom layouts and styles. If you edit a blog after the WDC styles the page, you could lose these custom styles.

Review

As stated above when you post a blog entry the WDC will be notified. If we see anything that violates the rules set forth in this guide, we will edit the entry and repost it to fix any ADA compliance, editorial, or layout problems. If you repeatedly ignore the rules set forth in this document we will take action.