Safer Blogging

PrimaryBlogger is a free, easy to adopt Blog service for UK School teachers, pupils and classes. It is useful for publishing work online and uses Wordpress, the most popular publishing platform in the world, run by a community of dedicated teachers and educators.

PrimaryBlogger is the most popular publishing platform used by schools in the UK and has many safety features built in including:

  • Human moderation of posts, pages and comments
  • Spam plugins automatically catch any unwanted comments
  • Ability to  password protect posts and/or pages
  • Teacher management of users/class blogs
  • User rights management
  • Keyword blocking
  • External security to block known hackers/spammers
  • Save as draft and preview before publishing
  • Ability to hide from search engines
  • Ability to limit themes and plugins per user

Although PrimaryBlogger has many safety features it is ultimately up to the user to protect themselves and their blog online

The appearance of blogs can be changed to appeal to your target audience, both by the images you upload to your blog, and by the  themes that you select to base your blog on.

It is important to realise that inappropriate images can attract the wrong kind of attention; moderation of all images that are published on your blog is essential. Some themes available on PrimaryBlogger are geared more at the younger readers, with bold colours and fonts.

Normally your school will have a recommended e-safety policy, which would cover that, but the same essential values should be on all of them.

By limiting the audience of your blog through using key words and only blogging about the main subject will keep you more secure online. By doing this you limit yourself to being found via search engines for those points only. It is also worth nothing that the blog title should be directly related to the subject of which you are blogging about; never use your full name – try a pseudonym and stick to it

These tips are a great start for kids interested in blogging, although it would be wise for parents to add more guidelines to suit their particular needs.

  • Never post inappropriate pictures of yourself or anyone else, and be sure any images you provide do not reveal any of the previously mentioned information. Always remember to look at the background of a picture too.
  • Never offer any personal information including your full name, contact information, address, phone numbers, school’s name, email address, last names of friends or relatives, instant messaging names, age, or date of birth.
  • Assume what you publish on the web is permanent and instant. Anyone on the Internet can easily print out a blog or save it to a computer. Even if you remove a post there are chances someone could have already viewed it
  • Use blogging provider sites with clearly stated terms of use, and make sure they can protect the actual blogs, not just the user accounts,  with password protection. (Even so, it’s better to assume anyone can see it.)
  • Keep blogs positive and don’t use them for slander or to attack others.
  • Update your blog as often as you can to avoid you blog becoming stale and uninteresting

When writing posts or pages it is important to have an understanding of whether your content is suitable and appropriate for the subject you are writing about.  It is also important to realise that once information is published on your blog it is instantly available for all your readers to see, especially if they are subscribed to your blog.

To make your blog easier to find for new readers, using an easy to remember web address helps. This also makes it easier for your students to access their blog, for example, instead of having http://exampleschool.primaryblogger.co.uk you can purchase http://exampleschool.co.uk and redirect your blog to there. You can also easily publish posts from your blog onto social media websites, such as Twitter or Facebook, which helps broaden your target audience, and is easy to do using the plug-in’s already available through primary blogger.

To get started with PrimaryBlogger, all you need to do is visit http://primaryblogger.co.uk and register. Once registered you can create as many blogs as you like. For an up to date guide and more information on PrimaryBlogger please visit http://support.primaryt.co.uk/knowledgebase-category/primaryblogger/.

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