How to share admin responsibility for a neighbourhood's online forum
October 28, 2019 9:42 AM   Subscribe

For several years I’ve run an online forum for my neighbourhood and I’d like to make sure I’m not the only person who has the virtual keys to the website, in case I go under the proverbial bus. But I’m not sure how best to manage this.

This isn't solely so that someone else can fix/move/update the site should I die, but also so that it's possible for me to easily step away from running the site and let someone else have a turn.

Currently, the domain name is registered in an account with several of my other domain names. And the site is hosted on a hosting service where I have some of my other own sites.

At a minimum, I plan to move both the site’s domain name and web hosting to a single service, with no other names or sites involved. I could then share the login details with a trusted co-admin (who already exists).

However, this account would still be registered to my personal email address. So I thought about using a dedicated gmail address and sharing details of that with the other admin... but gmail accounts appear to require a cellphone number to be attached which would still leave a single point of responsibility with me.

Am I over-thinking this? Have you set up something like this for a group? Any thoughts on how best to manage it?
posted by fabius to Technology (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Do you need to share login details at all? Can you have someone else set up a login for themself and give them admin permissions?
posted by mskyle at 11:59 AM on October 28, 2019

Response by poster: Do you need to share login details at all? Can you have someone else set up a login for themself and give them admin permissions?

I can give other people admin permissions on the forum software but, as far as I can tell, domain name services and shared web hosting usually have a single admin user. They might allow you to create other users with permissions to do certain things, which would be OK for a lot of the time... but it would still mean no one but me could have the overall admin responsibilities.
posted by fabius at 4:36 AM on October 29, 2019

Best answer: check this out:

What I would do is set up a dedicated email account for the admin of the site, use your own phone number, etc, and then delegate the account to yourself and the other admin(s) (you should think ahead to 2+ others being in this group, maybe)

Then I would move domain and hosting to standalone instances as you described, with the org-specific email being the owner. This should allow someone to pay your DNS and hosting charges if you are unable to do so.

I would then document this all in google docs in a folder and share the folder with the others in the group.

In the docs you would want to write a step by step for how to transfer ownership and access from your name to someone else's.
posted by n9 at 9:30 AM on October 29, 2019

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