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Watchdog Wire 101: A Guide to Getting Started
Q: How do I sign up to write for Watchdog Wire?
A: It’s simple! Just fill out the “Get Involved” form here.
Q: Once I’ve signed up as a Watchdog Wire contributor, what’s next?
A: You will receive an email notifying you that we’ve received your information. This email states that by signing up for Watchdog Wire, you have agreed to our Watchdog Wire policy. You will shortly receive a second email from WordPress with your username and password to sign into your Watchdog Wire account. If you would like a team member to call you and assist with this process, please indicate that on the “Get Involved” page when you sign up or email us at Info@WatchdogWire.com.
Q: Are there article guidelines or requirements for my post on Watchdog Wire?
A: Your article must meet the criteria of our Watchdog Wire Style Guide and policy. Our friendly state editors will also be available to offer feedback and help ensure that the guidelines are followed. If, however, your post still fails to meet these guidelines, it will not be published.
Q: Where do I go to start writing my first post?
A: Once you’ve logged into your Watchdog Wire account, you will be brought to the “Dashboard” of your account. We use a WordPress platform for Watchdog Wire. On the left-hand sidebar under “Dashboard,” click “Posts” and then click “Add New.” This is where you start writing history!
Q: What do I do when I’ve finished writing my first post?
A: Once you’ve finished your final draft and you’re ready to submit it for review, click “Submit for Review” under the “Publish” section on the right-hand sidebar. Once you click this button, our editors will be alerted of a new post to be reviewed.
Q: If I can’t write my post in one sitting, can I save it to work on later?
A: Yes. Under the “Publish” section on the right-hand sidebar of your “Dashboard,” click “Save Draft.”
Q: Can I publish my own posts?
A: No. Our Watchdog Wire editors must review your content before publishing it to makes sure it complies with our Watchdog Wire Style Guide and policy. Our editors will communicate to you what needs to be edited or updated in your post before it can republished. If your post fails to meet these guidelines, it will not be published.
Q: How long does it take for my post to get published?
A: That depends. Posts are reviewed for publishing first thing each day. If you submit your post for review later in the work day, it is likely that it will not be reviewed until the following morning. Regardless, it should take no longer than 24 hours for your post to get published, assuming it follows the criteria of our Watchdog Wire Style Guide and policy.
Q: Can I choose the image to be used with my post?
A: If you have original photos taken from a public meeting, rally, etc., you can submit that image to our Watchdog Wire editors. But the image must be original so we fully comply with copyright laws. Simply attach the image you’d like to be paired with your post in an email with your name, the title of your post, and what Watchdog Wire site you’re writing for, and one of our editors will upload the image with your post. If you do not have an original photo for consideration, don’t worry. Our editors will select a relevant image that corresponds with your story topic.
Q: How are my articles archived?
A: All articles are archived on the “Dashboard” of your account. On the website, they are archived by “Topic” (i.e. “Policy”, “Education”, “Opinion”, etc.) on the main navigation bar.
Q: How do I come up with story ideas of what to write about?
A: We have a Watchdog Wire editor for each of our state pages who are familiar with the issues going on in your state. You can use them as a resource for story ideas. You can also contact our staff at firstname.lastname@example.org for story ideas if your state isn’t represented on Watchdog Wire yet.