Headlines Plugin


This plugin displays RSS and ATOM feeds from news sites. Use it to build news portals that show headline news.

Note: Syndic8.com ( http://www.syndic8.com/ ) is a good site listing many RSS feeds.

Syntax Rules


Parameter Explanation Default
"..." source of RSS feed; this can be an url (starting with http) or a web.topic location for internal feeds None; is required
href="..." (Alternative to above) N/A
refresh="60" Refresh rate in minutes for caching feed; "0" for no caching Global REFRESH setting
limit="12" Maximum number of items shown Global LIMIT setting
header Header. Can include these variables: - $channeltitle, $title: title of channel (channel.title)
- $channellink, $link: link of channel (channel.link)
- $channeldescription, $description: description (channel.description)
- $channeldate, $date: publication date of the channel (channel.pubDate)
- $rights: copyrights of the channel (channel.copyright)
- $imagetitle: title text for site (image.title)
- $imagelink: link for site (image.link)
- $imageurl: URL of image (image.url)
- $imagedescription: description of image (image.description)
Global HEADER setting
format Format of one item. Can include these variables:
- $title: news item title (item.title)
- $link: news item link (item.link)
- $description: news item description (item.description)
- $date: the publication date (item.pubDate, item.date)
- $category: the article category (item.category)
Global FORMAT setting

The header and format parameters might also use variables rendering the dc, image and content namespace information. Note, that only bits of interest have been implemented so far and those namespaces might not be implemented fully yet.

Rendering the dc namespace

The following variables are extracting the dc namespace info, that could be used in header and format. Nnote, that some of the variables are already used above. This is done by purpose to use different feeds with the same formating parameters. If there's a conflict the non-dc tags have higher precedence, i.e. a <title> content </title> is prefered over <dc:title> content </dc:title> .

  • $title: channel/article title (dc:title)
  • $creator: channel creator (dc:creator)
  • $subject: subject text; this will also add an image according to the subject hash list, see above (dc:subject)
  • $description: ... (dc:description)
  • $publisher: the channel/article publisher (dc:publisher)
  • $contributor: ... (dc:contributor)
  • $date: ... (dc:date)
  • $type: ... (dc:type)
  • $format: ... (dc:format)
  • $identifier: ... (dc:identifier)
  • $source: ... (dc:source)
  • $language: ... (dc:language)
  • $relation: ... (dc:relation)
  • $coverage: ... (dc: coverage)
  • $rights: ... (dc: rights)

Rendering the image namespace

An image:item is converted into an <img> tag using the following mappings:

  • src: image url (rdf:about attribute of the image.item tag)
  • alt: image title (title)
  • width: image width (image:width)
  • height: image height image:height)

Rendering the content namespace

The variable $content is refering to the <content:encoding> content </content:encoding>.


Slashdot News


  header="*[[$link][$title]]:* $description" 
  format="$t* [[$link][$title]]"
to get the latest Slashdot news as a bullet list format:

Business Opportunities Weblog


%HEADLINES{"http://www.business-opportunities.biz/feed" limit="3"}%

to get the latest postings on the "Business Opportunities" weblog:

Wed, 24 May 2017 04:50:17 +0000
The original blog about business opportunities and business ideas for small business entrepreneurs
Wed, 24 May 2017 02:43:28 +0000 Bizop Team

10 Ways a Blog Will Build Your Online Reputation

Your company's online reputation is a key factor in its success. More people than ever are using the internet as their sole source of information for all aspects of life, including consumer choices. If your online reputation isn't defined, or it's poor, you'll have a lot of trouble attracting new business. One of the best online tools that companies can use to show themselves in a better light is a blog. Here are 10 ways a blog can help build your online reputation.


  1. Position Yourself as an Expert

A blog will help you position yourself as an expert. Blogging about your business or industry over time will help your organization develop a history of informative articles or opinion pieces that demonstrate your knowledge about what you do. This show of expertise will improve the public's perception of your company.


  1. Promote Products and Services

A business blog will give you opportunities for promoting specific products and services. Instead of a general promotional call, narrowly focus blog posts on one product or service at a time. Place pictures in your blog, too, to tell a compelling story about that product or service.


  1. Interact with Clients

Bloggers enjoy the benefits of connecting with their audience. Encourage blog visitors to comment on your posts, and you will spark meaningful interactions with potential clients or current customers. These open conversations will position your company as a personable organization and promote positive attitudes.


  1. Network Within the Industry

Your blog can also be a place for conversations with your industry colleagues. Networking with other experts, or even your competitors, can benefit your online reputation over time. Down the road, if you need to partner with another business or recruit for your team, a steady history of networking within your industry can help you get some viable leads.


  1. Define Your Marketing Plan

A solid marketing plan is essential to building your profits, and your business blog should be a key element of that plan, along with social media, your other websites, and any and all of your online transactions. Additionally, the work of setting up a blog and planning your content strategy will help you get closer to a more cohesive internet marketing plan that solidifies your online reputation.


  1. Give Your Organization a Voice

Another great thing your company's blog will do is to give your organization a voice. The writing style and content you publish affect your online reputation, so it's important to be consistent with the way you write and deliver your message. If you struggle with finding the right voice, you may need to outsource your content.


  1. Improve Your Search Engine Position Listings

One of the best reasons to start a blog for your company is to boost your search engine listings. The more content your company creates, the greater chance you'll have of improving your search engine listing results so that customers can find you.

This method is also helpful in turning around problems with your online reputation, such as bad reviews or a public relations crisis. You can learn more about how to refocus your company's internet marketing strategy in these situations by checking out Reputation.com and following their advice.


  1. Develop New Business Directions

Your blog can also help you think of new directions for your business, such as new products or services to offer. Writing a blog and brainstorming ideas for content topics can help keep your mind focused on creativity and innovation within your business, which will keep customers flocking to you.


  1. Keep up with the Latest Industry Trends

As a company blogger, you will enjoy greater knowledge about industry trends and news. That's because in order to write great content, you'll have to read as much as you can about everything that's going on in your industry. All of the great things you read about will keep you ahead of the curve for your own business.


  1. Focus on the Heart of Your Business

Most of all, blogging for your organization can help you stay focused on the main purpose of your company. It's tough running a business and dealing with the daily stresses and tasks. Taking time to blog about things can help you get back to the industry you love so much and get you excited about what's coming up next.

If your company doesn't already use blogging in its arsenal of internet marketing tools, it's time to consider this valuable practice. Your company's reputation online could finally be exactly where you want it to be-once you build a history of blogging.

The post 10 Ways a Blog Will Build Your Online Reputation appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Wed, 24 May 2017 02:40:37 +0000 Bizop Team

6 Strategies for Growing Your Online Business's Online Presence

Brand awareness is crucial to your business's long-term success. One of the ways to create brand awareness is through a strong presence online, but that's easier said than done. When you have a large online presence you attract more organic traffic through search engines, people share your content more often, and you generate a lot more sales.

There are a number of ways that you can build your brand's presence online, but it's important to know what your strengths are and run with them. If you love to write and don't have that much money, then blogging will be a more viable option for you than buying advertisements. If you're a social media god, then running an engaging social media account might be more worthwhile than offering promotions.

Understanding the type of marketer you are is a key part of being successful at marketing. Once you have this understanding, you will be better able to build up your online presence and generate more income. Take some time with the marketing strategies in this list and see if you can pick out the ones that suit you best.


A Link-Building Campaign

Link-building is an incredibly effective form of online marketing and it's fully measurable so you can track how your campaign is coming along. Link-building is a simple idea. You're essentially putting your website's link in as many websites as possible that have a Google search engine reputation.

What does it mean for a website to have a search engine reputation? That just basically means it's a website that doesn't appear to be spammy. If you publish your link on a spammy site, it will earn you negative karma with search engines like Google.

There are two reasons to do a link-building campaign no matter your marketing strengths. The obvious reason is that it will bring in more people to your website because they will directly click your link. The second reason is that this campaign will help you to rank better in search engines. Google has ''site crawlers'' which index the internet. The more links you have that the site crawlers find, the higher ranking you earn. The key, though, isn't to spam your link just anywhere. You need to get on high profile websites.

There are a number of ways you can go about putting your links on sites. There are easy things you can do today where you'll notice results and more long-term strategies. The easy way is by publishing your links on social media, commenting on other blogs (but not spamming them!), posting on Quora, and so on. The harder way is through guest posting for other bloggers and as a reward gaining a link on their website. Both the easy and harder versions are worth doing and will create a snowball effect to increase your online presence.


Write a Blog

If you love to write, create a blog. Your blog will fulfill your desire to write and generate a big online presence at the same time. Blogging is awesome because it allows you to write about your niche, which helps to make you a leader within that industry.

The difficult thing with blogging, though, is getting people to see your blog. If you write an epic post about Health Canada consultants in Toronto or how to buy Toronto condos, you want your words to be seen. You want it shared and engaged with!

What I love about blogging is that it's an incredibly versatile marketing tool. Every new post that you write is a new website page you can promote. You're also able to market every post in a new way, based on the topic. So if you write about widgets, you can share it in circles online such as forums, FB groups, et cetera who love widgets. Blogging is a unique and special way to market your site, but it doesn't work by itself. For every twenty minutes you spend writing, you need to spend eighty minutes marketing to gain the most success.


Promotions and Giveaways

Offering promotions and giveaways is a great way to create engagement on your website and endear yourself to customers. People simply love free things and good deals. To offer a giveaway, select a product of yours and hold a competition. This competition should be geared towards whatever you'd like to see on your website.

If you want to see more growth, tell customers to do something that will bring in new clients. This could be a share on social media, getting a friend to buy a product or sign up on your site, or sharing an e-mail of yours. Then one lucky person gets your product for free. If you wish for more website engagement, you can cater the giveaway to increase blog comments or replies to your e-mail.


Create Engaging Social Media Accounts

Social media is difficult for a lot of people because it takes a long time to grow. However, it's worth the effort, because once you have a great social media profile you can share your content and get hits on it every time. To start off with social media, simply focus on what your message is and post often.

If you'd like to create a Twitter following, one of the best strategies is to follow people who follow you. Look for lists and people in your niche. Begin by following around 150 people per day and unfollow those who don't follow back after a day or so. This will help you to keep in line with your demographic while also building your follower base quickly. One tip to keep in mind is that there is a follow limit of 10%. This means that if you have a hundred people following you, you cannot follow 112 as it's more than 10% of the people who are following you. This restriction is annoying for the first few thousand followers, but after that it's more manageable.

As for Facebook, it's a bit harder to grow your account. Focus your attention on being active in online discussions about your niche and promote your Facebook page on your website with an accessible ''like'' button. Most of your Facebook likes will probably come directly from traffic to your website.


Create Creative Advertisements

Even if you don't have much (or any) money for marketing, you can still create advertisements. Head over to a website like Canva and you can build beautifully designed advertisements with few skills and no money, although there is a paid option if you choose.

If you're a travel blogger for instance, you can create a beautiful travel image with a quote about adventure or how the road holds meaning for you. From there you can include a link to your website and publish your ad on sites such as Reddit or Imgur. Of course, publish it on your social media account, too.

Another cool way to market a website is by developing an infographic. These do take a bit of skill and some research, but people love them. Create an engaging infographic that's colorful and flows smoothly and it will have viral potential.


Key in on Search Engine Optimization

Lastly, you need to focus on search engine optimization. It's important to create a link-building strategy, but it's also important to focus on SEO, too. SEO is in part keywords that will help people online to find your website. If you sell postcards, then look up keywords and phrases people use when they're looking to buy postcards, such as ''cheap postcards online'' and ''postcards for sale.''

Through Google Analytics you can track how often these keywords and phrases are used in order to see which ones are the most successful in terms of usage and how much traffic they might bring in. Once you have your list of keywords set, write them into your website. Place them in any blog posts and on your home page. Put them internally in your WordPress frame and promote posts on social media using them.

A strong keyword strategy will go far in terms of increasing online presence by ranking you higher in search engines as well as bringing in more organic traffic. This will take time, though, so don't expect it to work as quickly as a link-building campaign.

Building your online presence is a large task, but one that can be accomplished using the above strategies. All of these strategies should be tried a few times to see how you feel about them. It's important to go with your strengths over weaknesses, however, so don't waste time blogging if you hate writing. However, link-building and a well developed SEO strategy are a must and can't be ignored.

Whatever tactics you choose to use will help to increase your website's traffic and create long-term brand awareness. Just be sure to stay focused and keep learning as you go. This will help you to increase sales, gain more unique hits per month, and take your website to the next level.

The post 6 Strategies for Growing Your Online Business's Online Presence appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Wed, 24 May 2017 02:33:09 +0000 Bizop Team

4 Ways to Improve Your Small Business's Online Presence

Even if your small business is a brick-and-mortar one, it just makes sense to build an online presence, too. No matter what your business specializes in, whether it's a service or a line of products, you need a marketing strategy that optimizes online customer traffic so that you can expand and remain competitive. However, online marketing is a lively art, and the only way to determine if a strategy is working well is to try it, test it, change it if it's not working, and try it again. We offer here four strategies for you to try and test on your website.


  1. Reposition Your Opt-In Offers

You need permission before you can send anyone an email. That's a given. The places on your website where you ask for this permission are called ''opt-ins.'' You need to make your opt-ins easy to find and attractive so that people will click them and fill them out for you.

When they do, over time you'll build a great list of leads that you can send emails to again and again. And if you write compelling emails, as well, making those leads practically salivate to purchase your products and services, you can't help but increase your sales. And that's what this is all about, right?

The best position for your opt-in is the most prominent spot on your homepage, so test your opt-in there first. Typically, website visitors' eyes navigate first toward the top left of any page before they begin to scroll down and wander.

But you don't need to limit yourself to only one opt-in location. You could also test having an opt-in somewhere on each page of your site to see which opt-in gets the best results.

Add some power to an opt-in by placing it in a ''hover ad'' on at least one page. (We talk a little more about hover ads below.) To give it a fair test, place an opt-in on each page, but put it in a hover ad it on only one page. That way, you can see whether the hover ad was more popular with website visitors or not.


  1. Unclutter Your Home Page

If your homepage is cluttered with too many offers and products, your website visitors won't stay long. Too much clutter is just confusing and annoying, and no one wants to deal with that.

Instead, offer only a few products on your homepage, or maybe only a single one. In tests with other websites, many businesses have reported higher rates of customer follow-through and sales when they offered fewer products on their homepages along with better product descriptions.


  1. Install a Hover Ad or Two

As promised, here is a further discussion of hover ads.

These types of ads have taken the place of the pop-up ads that people found to be so distracting and annoying a few years ago. As a matter of fact, some software engineers got so annoyed that they developed software designed to block pop-ups automatically.

Hover ads are a type of pop-up ad, but they're less intrusive, because the website visitor can usually choose to close them after a few seconds. And they're harder to block, so they serve the purpose of advertising your products and services, but in a somewhat friendlier way.

Some companies that have tested hover ads saw increases in their online sales by as much as 162%.


  1. Build Credibility

Short testimonials from customers placed near product descriptions go a long way toward building credibility for your company and your products. They let website visitors know how much others loved what they purchased from you.

Also, somewhere on your homepage, describe your qualifications in a well written paragraph or two so that potential customers will know that you can provide the services they're looking for.

But the best way by far to build credibility is to provide quality products and services backed up by great customer service.

The post 4 Ways to Improve Your Small Business's Online Presence appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Plugin Settings

Plugin settings are stored as preferences variables. To reference a plugin setting write %<plugin>_<setting>%, for example, %HEADLINESPLUGIN_SHORTDESCRIPTION%. Note: Don't modify the settings here; copy and customize the settings in Main.TWikiPreferences. For example, to customize the USERAGENTNAME setting, create a HEADLINESPLUGIN_USERAGENTNAME setting in Main.TWikiPreferences.

  • One line description, shown in the TextFormattingRules topic:
    • Set SHORTDESCRIPTION = Show headline news in TWiki pages based on RSS and ATOM news feeds from external sites

  • Refresh rate in minutes for cached feeds. Disable caching: 0, default: 60
    • Set REFRESH = 60

  • Maximum number of items shown. Default: 100
    • Set LIMIT = 100

  • Use LWP::UserAgent, or fallback to TWiki's internal getUrl() method. Default: yes

  • Timeout fetching a feed using the LWP::UserAgent. Default: 20

  • Name of user agent. Default: TWikiHeadlinesPlugin/2.21
      * Set USERAGENTNAME = TWikiHeadlinesPlugin/2.21

  • Default header: (variables are explained in the syntax rules)
      * Set HEADER = <div class="headlinesChannel"><div class="headlinesLogo"><img src="$imageurl" alt="$imagetitle" border="0" />%BR%</div><div class="headlinesTitle">$n---+!! <a href="$link">$title</a></div><div class="headlinesDate">$date</div><div class="headlinesDescription">$description</div><div class="headlinesRight">$rights</div></div>

  • Default format of one item: (variables are explained in the syntax rules)
      * Set FORMAT = <div class="headlinesArticle"><div class="headlinesTitle"><a href="$link">$title</a></div>$n<span class="headlinesDate">$date</span> <span class="headlinesCreator"> $creator</span> <span class="headlinesSubject"> $subject </span>$n<div class="headlinesText"> $description</div></div>

  • Values taken from configure: (only supported if CPAN:LWP is installed)
    • $TWiki::cfg{PROXY}{HOST} - proxy host, such as "proxy.example.com";
    • $TWiki::cfg{PROXY}{PORT} - proxy port, such as "8080";
    • $TWiki::cfg{PROXY}{SkipProxyForDomains} - domains excluded from proxy, such as "intra.example.com, bugs.example.com";

Style sheets

The default HEADER and FORMAT settings use the following styles. See the style.css file defining the default CSS properties (indentation illustrates enclosure).

  • headlinesRss: output of the HeadlinesPlugin (div)
    • headlinesChannel: channel header (div)
      • headlinesLogo: channel logo (div)
      • headlinesTitle: channel title (div)
      • headlinesDate: channel date (div)
      • headlinesDescription: channel description (div)
      • headlinesRight: channel copyright (div)
    • headlinesArticle: one news item (div)
      • headlinesTitle: article title (div)
      • headlinesDate: article date (span)
      • headlinesCreator: author of article (span)
      • headlinesSubject: subect category of the article (span)
      • headlinesText: article text (div)

Plugin Installation Instructions

  • Download the ZIP file
  • Unzip it in your twiki installation directory. Content:
    File: Description:
    data/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin.txt plugin topic
    pub/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin/style.css default css
    lib/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin.pm plugin perl module
    lib/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin/Core.pm plugin core
    Check if above examples show a news feed instead of variable.
  • Optionally, run HeadlinesPlugin_installer.pl to automatically check and install other TWiki modules that this module depends on. You can also do this step manually.
  • Alternatively, manually make sure the dependencies listed in the table below are resolved.
    Digest::MD5>=2.33Required. Download from CPAN:Digest::MD5
    LWP::UserAgent>=5.803Optional. Download from CPAN:LWP::UserAgent

Plugin Info

Plugin Author: TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny, TWiki:Main.MichaelDaum
Copyright: © 2002-2009, Peter Thoeny, TWIKI.NET; 2005-2007, Michael Daum http://wikiring.de
License: GPL (GNU General Public License)
Plugin Version: v2.21 - 12 Feb 2009
Change History:  
12 Feb 2009: {PROXY}{HOST} supports domain with and without protocol -- Peter Thoeny
06 Feb 2009: added {PROXY}{SkipProxyForDomains} configure setting, added USERAGENTNAME plugin setting -- Peter Thoeny
11 Dec 2008: added {PROXY}{HOST} and {PROXY}{PORT} configure settings -- Peter Thoeny
13 Sep 2007: fixed parsing of content:encoded
23 Jul 2006: improved atom parser; if a posting has no title default to 'Untitled'
26 Apr 2006: added lazy compilation
10 Feb 2006: packaged using the TWiki:Plugins/BuildContrib; minor fixes
03 Feb 2006: off-by-one: limit="n" returned n+1 articles; make FORMAT and HEADER format strings more robust
23 Jan 2006: released v2.00
05 Dec 2005: internal feed urls must be absolute
02 Dec 2005: added web.topic shorthand for internal feeds
29 Nov 2005: fixed CDATA handling
21 Nov 2005: added ATOM support; extended RSS support; added dublin core support; added content support; optionally using LWP to fetch feeds to follow redirections; corrected CPAN dependencies ; recoding special chars from html integer to entity encoding to increase browser compatibility; added css support; use getWorkArea() if available
11 May 2005: TWiki:Main.WillNorris: added DevelopBranch compatability
31 Oct 2004: Fixed taint issue by TWiki:Main.AdrianWeiler; small performance improvement
29 Oct 2004: Fixed issue of external caching if mod_perl or SpeedyCGI is used
02 Aug 2002: Implemented caching of feeds, thanks to TWiki:Main/RobDuarte
11 Jun 2002: Initial version (V1.000)
Perl Version: 5.8
TWiki:Plugins/Benchmark: GoodStyle 100%, FormattedSearch 99.5%, HeadlinesPlugin 94%
Plugin Home: TWiki:Plugins/HeadlinesPlugin
Feedback: TWiki:Plugins/HeadlinesPluginDev
Appraisal: TWiki:Plugins/HeadlinesPluginAppraisal

-- TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny - 12 Jan 2009
-- TWiki:Main.MichaelDaum - 13 Sep 2007

Topic revision: r1 - 2009-02-13 - 03:55:45 - TWikiContributor
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