Computer Security Essentials for Campaigns (and others)

I saw this interesting post by technical entrepreneur and social critic Maciej Cegłowski recently: What I Learned Trying To Secure Congressional Campaigns. It’s a long account, though entertaining and informative, of his efforts traveling the country, teaching political campaigns about basic computer security practices.

As if getting campaigns to meet with you wasn’t hard enough, there’s also the problem of what to tell them.

The limiting reagent here is people’s mental capacity for hassle. You have to take pains not to burn through it. It is possible, with whining, to get a campaign to do one or two things. If you catch them early enough, and can visit them multiple times, maybe they will do a third thing.

If you work with or know anyone who works on campaigns, there’s a lot of good, first-hand insight there.

For much shorter checklists of items to consider, there are also succinct resource pages on the website of his organization, Tech Solidarity. In addition to security advice for Congressional campaigns, there are also basic security guidelines for activists and journalists, instructions for using U2F security keys, and more.

Learning WordPress

Here are some recommendations for sites, books, and courses to help you get going and make the most of your WordPress site on Indivisible.blue. Suggestions and contributions always welcome!

Note: If your site is hosted here, you can skip info about finding a hosting company, installing WordPress, and registering a domain; we take care of all that for you.

How to add social media links

You want to make it easy for visitors to find you on social media networks, and here’s how to set that up. This process can be a little different with each theme. For starters, here’s how to set it up in the default “twentyseventeen” theme.

  1. From your Dashboard, hover your mouse over “Appearance”, and click “Menus”
  2. Click the link, “create a new menu”
  3. In the box by “Menu Name”, type a name, like “Social Links Menu” and click either of the “Create Menu” buttons
  4. Now that you have a menu, you can add custom links to it. On the left-hand side, click “Custom Links” to open up that section
  5. In the “URL” box, type or paste the URL of your Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or whatever social media page you want. It should begin with “http://” (or “mailto:” for email); you can copy and paste it from another tab to make sure it’s right
  6. In the “Link Text” box, type a name for the link. On some themes, like “twentyseventeen”, this won’t be visible, but it’s still required. Just enter “Twitter”, “Facebook”, “Instagram”, or whatever. Linkable networks with built-in icon support include: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, Medium, Snapchat, YouTube, Flickr, Vimeo, Reddit, and email
  7. Click the “Add to Menu” button, and the link will appear on your new menu
  8. To change or remove any links, click on them in the menu to open up the entry boxes again. You can also drag and drop those items to reorder them
  9. Click “Save Menu” to apply your changes
  10. Click “Manage Locations” to see where your WordPress theme lets you display menus (you have to display it somewhere)
  11. For the “twentyseventeen” theme, in the dropdown next to “Social Links Menu”, pick your new menu from the list, and click “Save Changes”
  12. Preview your live site, and you should see the icons for your networks in the footer of each page

There are other ways to display these – in “Widgets” in the side bar or footer, or in other menus – but this is one straightforward way that works well in this theme.