IAC logo

The world of non-commercial film and A-V

Events Diary Search
The Film and Video Institute find us on facebook Join us on Facebook

 

DON'T PANIC:
Beginner's Guide to Building a Club Website

by Dave Watterson

Your club needs a website. You're willing, but new to this ... let's take it step by step ... and make a website ...

First hints

You are reading this page with a web browser. It may be called Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox, Opera, Chrome for example. All web browsers let you open two or more tabs at once. Often you do this by clicking a + sign near the top left of your screen. In Safari right-click on the top of the window and choose "New Tab" from the pop-up menu.  In the illustration below we see the BBC weather page and the IAC website. To switch from one to the other, click on the name of the one you want to see.

 Screen capture  of the status bar showing two browser windows.

Why have two views of the web? So that you can read these notes in one window, while creating your new website in the other.

Desperate for Print ?

Do you prefer instructions on a printed page?

OK. We have printable versions of these notes. They are in the common pdf form, which means they look and print out the same on every system. Click here to get the printable notes.

Your computer probably already has a pdf reading program on it. If not , you can download and install one free of charge. The people who invented pdfs are Adobe and you can get their reader program here.

My personal preference is Foxit Reader which is much smaller and quicker than the Adobe version - click on its name to get it. Both are free. Take care to untick the boxes beside any extra toolbar or program offers when you download and install them.


Copy and Paste

It is often useful to copy text and pictures from somewhere and paste them into your website. For example you might draft the text for a page on a word-processor. The simplest way to do this is to click your mouse cursor just before the start of the first word, keep the mouse button down and drag the cursor along to the end of the last word. That selects the text.

On a PC you then hold down the key marked Ctrl and press C to copy it. Click to the window with your website design on it, click where you want the words to go, hold down the key marked Ctrl and press V. (Logically it should have been C for copy and P for paste, but the P was already being used to mean print.)

For Mac users it is almost the same but instead of "Ctrl" key use the Command key (marked with an apple or four scrolls making a square) and press C or V.)


You have to start somewhere !

Producing a website is an repetitive process batting ideas back and forth. But you have to start somewhere so that others can react. Also you might be impatient like me - so I suggest we make a start right now. Once your first rough website is up ... then have a planning session with others and adapt the website to suit. That way your planning group has something to start from. And you have proved that you can do it.

Tools?

You can spend hundreds on professional web creation tools. You can download umpteen free web making tools. Guess which type I suggest? Neither!

For this course we will use Weebly. Yes, it is a silly name. Yes, it is full of American enthusiasm. Yes, it invites you to pay for the "pro" version but with the free Weebly system you can build attractive websites quickly - and many movie making clubs have done so. Using a common system allows us to give specific notes instead of vague generalised ones.

  • You do not need to download any programs. The work is all done online.
  • Weebly "hosts" your website (see box on the right).
  • It is free and does not add adverts other than a discreet mention of its own services.
  • It does not matter whether you use Windows, Apple, Linux or any other computer system.
  • If necessary you can see and change the code that is behind-the-scenes,
  • but mostly all the technical stuff is handled by them without us having to worry about it.
  • It helps keep page designs consistent.

And no, we don't get paid by them for recommending you to try Weebly!

Hosting

Any website must be "hosted" (stored)  on a computer which is always on and always linked to the internet.

It is not practical to do that on your own home computer, so you keep a copy of the website on a computer owned by a specialist company.

Companies which supply this service are called "web hosts". You can find companies to host your website for a fee. Some host free but usually with adverts.

Weebly is unusual in being both free and without adverts.

One small problem

Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser (version 6) sometimes has problems with Weebly websites. We do not regard that as a big issue. In March 2014 fewer than 5% of web users worldwide and fewer than 1% in UK worked with that version of the browser and the percentage is dwindling sharply. Most people have moved to later versions of Internet Explorer or use other browsers.

That is the background information, next we make a start on a website. Click here for part 2 - signing up to Weebly


Jump to: Getting started | Weebly sign up | your first page | additional pages
pictures & words | Coming Soon | forms, emails, maps & videos


Share your passions.

Audience silhouette.

Share your stories.

Page updated on 08 March 2015
Contact Webmaster
find us on facebook Join us on Facebook
Bookmark and Share
UNICA information UNICA member
Company Limited by Guarantee No. 00269085. Registered Charity No. 260467. Authors' views are not necessarily those of the Institute of Amateur Cinematographers. Website hosted by Merula. JavaScripts by JavaScript Source. Menu by Live Web Institute. Art work by Tony Kendle.