Documentation

Requirements

Newsplate requires WordPress 5.5 or above.

You need a self-hosted WordPress installation, ie. WordPress software installed on your own web hosting (not wordpress.com).

If you need help choosing or setting up hosting, or with migration from another platform, you might want our bespoke services.

Installation

Newsplate is supplied as a .zip file containing two folders, plugins/ and themes/

Each of the components can be installed individually in WordPress:

  • To install our plugins (including blocks), browse to Plugins in your wp-admin, click Add New and follow the instructions
  • To install our themes, browse to Appearance in your wp-admin, click Add New and follow the instructions

If you need help with setting up a site or setting up Newsplate, we offer a one-off service to get you up and running.

What’s included?

The current version of Newsplate includes the following tools.

componentvupdatedtypesummary
Newsplate Defaults0.0.812/10/20pluginConfigures opinionated settings and categoriesdocs
Fabrica Dashboard1.0.1212/10/20admin pluginShows a much better summary of content and activity as soon as you log in to editdocs
Fabrica Sitemap0.0.212/10/20admin pluginLists all the content / URLs on your site in one place in the admindocs
Fabrica Article Preview Block0.0.312/10/20blockAllows you to generate a compelling preview of any articledocs
Fabrica Headline Block0.0.412/10/20blockAllows you to design impactful headlines with granular control over typographydocs
Fabrica Article List Block0.0.212/10/20blockAllows you to show an automatically-updating list of articles from any category (or manually select the articles)docs
Fabrica Reader Actions Block0.0.312/10/20blockAllows you to insert customised calls to action in your articlesdocs
Fabrica Funding Block0.0.812/10/20blockAllows you to create tiered campaigns to take payments via Stripe or PayPaldocs
Newsplate Foil0.0.312/10/20parent themeProvides layouts and front-end functionality, ready for styling in a child themedocs
Sevilla0.0.012/10/20child themeSample child theme with preset fonts, colours and geometrydocs

(Fabrica is the common name for all the WordPress components built by us at Yes we work, some of which are included in Newsplate but available separately.)

Newsplate Defaults

Configures some opinionated default settings and categories for optimum use by an editorial team

Features for editors and writers

  • renames Posts to Articles
  • establishes Sections as the primary taxonomy (rather than Categories) and [TODO] allows you to choose colours for sections which your themes can use
  • establishes Categories as the secondary taxonomy (rather than Tags)
  • creates a Kickers taxonomy which can be used to add editorial signposting to your articles (eg. typically, BREAKING / LIVE / EXCLUSIVE)
  • automatically sets an article’s Featured Image to the first image used in its content, to speed up editorial workflows
  • disables WP commenting features, which have not kept pace with the platform’s other development
  • disables WordPress’s Tags functionality (it dates from the early days of blogging and promotes sprawl)
  • creates a shortcut to allow Pages to be set as the homepage via a quick link in the Pages list (as long the homepage Page option is activated)
  • registers some useful shorts for the Columns block (currently: Row of 2 and Row of 4) to speed up the creation of grids on editorial pages
  • adjusts WP’s default permissions to give Editors the ability to manage Users, the idea being that Editors should have control over editorial staff, but still don’t need all the technical options that an Admin has

Features for designers / developers

  • adds additional markup to archive/list template titles to make them easier for themes to style usefully; the new elements available to style are .archive-title-slug, .archive-title-colon, .archive-title-label
  • cleans up the front-end <head> tag from unnecessary markup

Instructions

  • Install and activate (see Installation). That’s it. There are no settings.

Article Preview Block

Show a compelling preview of any article or (soon) page. Perfect for building editorial pages (like a homepage) fast using content that’s already in your site — or for curating recommendations for related reading within articles

Features for editors and writers

  • Design: choose whether to show or hide the kicker (see Newsplate Defaults), author name, publication date, lede/summary paragraph and image
  • Layout: choose whether to put image above the text elements, below them, or us it as a background; choose how to align text
  • Colour: choose a background and text colour, from a predetermined palette or custom colours (according to your theme settings)
  • Uses Headline Block (when installed and active) to allow granular customisation of the headline design

Instructions

  1. Install and activate the block (see Installation)
  2. From the WordPress block inserter choose Article Preview
  3. The placeholder will invite you to select or search for an article on your site; once chosen, the preview will be automatically inserted
  4. Customise the design using the settings in the Block sidebar (Content, Layout and Colours sections)
  5. Customise the content by using the text / image fields in the editor itself

Headline Block

Design impactful headlines with granular control over each line of typography

Features for editors and writers

  • Line size and height: lets you divide a headline into several discrete lines, each of which can be formatted individually
  • Additional formatting per line: bold, italic, all-caps
  • Colour: supports your theme’s colour options
  • Alignment: headlines can be aligned left, right or centre

Instructions

  1. Install and activate the block (see Installation)
  2. From the WordPress block inserter choose Headline
  3. Insert your headline text as in normal text input. Then:
    • The Return / Enter key will give you a new line within your headline that can be formatted independently
    • Range sliders in the toolbar allow you to change the font size and line height of each line individually
    • The B, I, TT toolbar buttons allow you to toggle bold, italic and caps per line
    • Horizontal alignment for the whole block can also be set in the toolbar
    • Background and text colours can be set from the block’s sidebar panel

Tips

  • You can convert to and from a regular Heading block by clicking the far-left icon in the block’s toolbar and choosing TRANSFORM TO > HEADING (or HEADLINE)
  • Headline Block is automatically included within the Article Preview Block when both plugins are installed and activated

Article List Block

Show a list of latest articles, optionally filtered by Section or Category – or curate lists manually

Features for writers and editors

  • Shows a list of your site’s latest articles, which stays up to date wherever inserted without further intervention. Perfect for keeping your homepage, or any editorial page, updated with relevant new content after publication
  • Can be filtered by any of your Sections or Categories, which makes it perfect for combining curated content with a list of what’s most recent on overview pages for a particular topic or investigation, where you can keep introduction / explainer pieces in sight, while also showing latest developments
  • Alternatively, lets you manually select the articles for a more curated but usefully compact round-up
  • Lets you specify the maximum number of articles in any list
  • Multiple lists can be used on the same page, if you want to show content from different Sections or Categories

Instructions and tips

  1. Install and activate the block (see Installation)
  2. From the WordPress block inserter choose Article List
  3. That’s all you need to do for a block showing the latest 5 articles published, but you can also then (from the Block sidebar settings)
    • Filter the list to a particular Section or Category
    • Change the maximum number of entries in the list
    • Hand-pick the articles manually instead

Reader Actions Block

Invite and encourage your readers to take further, targeted actions, including, but not limited to, sharing to social media platforms

Features for editors and writers

  • In the default basic mode you can quickly add a block to any article or page, in any location, with links to share via email, Twitter or Facebook. No settings or configuration required.
  • In extended mode (a quick toggle in the block sidebar) you can both customise the calls to action of the share buttons, and suggest additional actions
  • A settings screen allows you to set the default call to action for each platform in share mode.

Instructions

  1. Install and activate the block (see Installation)
  2. From the WordPress block inserter, choose Reader Actions
  3. If all you want is share links, stop there. But if you want to suggest more targeted actions for your readers, and/or customise the calls to action for sharing, choose Extended from the block sidebar. The block layout will change allowing you to customise each text individually.

Funding Block

Collect payments via Stripe or PayPal. Conceived and originally built for crowdfunding, but not limited to that application

Features for editors and writers

  • Create unlimited campaigns, each with unlimited pledges/tiers
  • Optionally set a target amount for each campaign, to reveal a progress bar
  • Optionally collect addresses for pledges that need to be sent in the post
  • Allow pledges to be gifted

Instructions

  1. Install and activate the block (see Installation)
  2. Enter your Stripe and/or PayPal API keys in Settings > Fabrica Funding
  3. Go to Campaigns > Add New
  4. Define your campaign – enter the campaign name and the available pledges, then Publish
  5. In an article or page, in the WordPress block inserter, choose Funding
  6. Choose the campaign you want to show
  7. Save the post

Dashboard

Overhauls the default WordPress Dashboard to give you a better overview of content and activity as soon as you log in

Also available separately

Features for editors and administrators

  • Editorial Overview: top-line counts of publications and users help you to keep track of your site’s growth from one login to the next.
  • Content Breakdown: see what your site is made of, what’s scheduled, what’s still in draft, and what has been trashed. Quickly spot what needs your attention.
  • Content Activity: catch up on all the recent editorial activity on your site, across all content types. Filter activity by post type, user or time period, and distinguish edits of existing content from new additions.
  • Media Breakdown: Keep server space in check, spot outdated, unwanted and malicious file formats, and get early warning of any security issues with flags for any file formats not allowed by your WordPress configuration.
  • Site / You: A quick reminder which site you’re working on, and a note about the most recent activity. Make sure you’re logged in with the right account, and check no unauthorised use has been made of your login details.

Instructions

Sitemap

Shows you all of your site’s content and URLs in a single list

Also available separately

Features

  • Single list of all site pages/endpoints allows you to see how much content you have and almost immediately spot problems like malformed or orphaned URLs or categories

Instructions

  • Install and activate (see Installation). That’s it. There are no settings.