Seeking web platform for easy public, moderated contributions
September 3, 2019 12:55 PM   Subscribe

As part of an art project, we're looking for a web platform to build a moderated collection of short texts contributed to and read by the general public.

We're looking for a web platform that will let participants input relatively short texts (maybe 250 words), then let us moderate that submission, approve it, and have it automagically appear in a publicly accessible gallery of these texts.

For example, if you wanted to collect a bunch of sonnets that different people wrote, submitted, and then viewed in an online collection/gallery.

It would be great if it supported tags/categories. Moderation is a must but can be as simple as yes/no. Ideally the input screen would be structured, for example to put title, optional author, bio, etc, in the right place. It's possible that image uploading could be incorporated, but right now it looks like it will be text only that should fit into a shared structure.

We DON'T want something that requires signup or confirmation--we have to keep the barrier to participation to a minimum. MAYBE an email field, but if so better optional (and nonpublic of course).

It seems possible that this might be do-able with a plugin in an existing wordpress site--perhaps as somehow structured comments? But something that was more like separate postings that could be browsed, viewed by category/tag, more like an online book or wiki, or a really light version of Airtable with an open web-viewable output.

If need be we will hire someone to code something for us, but this seems to me like something that ought to be out there--I just can't find it. Thanks for any specific advice, but ideas that run in different directions also welcome.
posted by Mngo to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
It sounds like you want a wiki of some sort. Fully featured ones (which purists would say violate the essential spirit of wiki) have options for all the features you desire. It's been a few years for me but MediaWiki is a pretty good one
posted by cross_impact at 12:49 PM on September 4, 2019

Best answer: Maybe something like User Submitted Posts Wordpress Plugin would be a starting point.
posted by Sharcho at 1:41 PM on September 4, 2019 [1 favorite]

It would be pretty easy to set this up in Drupal:

* install Drupal (often available from cPanel)
* use one of the two existing content types (Article or Basic Page - let's say Article) for the texts (or create a new one, it's very easy to do)
* configure the Article content type to be Unpublished when submitted
* set the permissions so that anonymous users can create Articles (I would add a captcha or you're going to be overrun with spam)
* use Views to create a listing page that displays the entries once someone has approved and published them

You can easily add a Tag field for tags and add extra fields for bios and whatever.

I just built a considerably more complex site in less than 15 hours (including creating and researching the content). Drupal is really powerful and much easier to learn than it used to be.
posted by kristi at 4:43 PM on September 9, 2019 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Sharcho, USP plugin did the trick. We didn't get it to do exactly what we wanted, and ran into a bug that the developer was a great, patient help with but we ultimately had to just work-around. So it's sort of a beta version of the site we envision, but working just fine for us at this stage of the project.
If you're curious, it's It's still missing some of the contextual content, but participants are sharing and viewing and it's a fine backbone for the IRL parts of the project.
Thanks to all for the input.
posted by Mngo at 7:00 AM on November 29, 2019

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