men, masculinities and gender politics

Authors

Volunteering - Key ways in which you can contribute

XY is delighted to accept the help of volunteers. We need people to do all sorts of things. We’re happy to name your contribution too, by listing you among the volunteers and supporters on the XY site, or to keep your contribution anonymous.

The following are some of the things which need doing. Of course, we’d welcome any further ideas you’ve got.

Uploading existing content

One of the simplest things you can sign up to do is to help add content. I've got about 40 or 50 further guides, manuals, and publications on men and gender I'd like to add to XY. It's easy to do so, but it just takes time. So I'm hoping that some people may sign up to help. It's easy. I'll make the files available online via a 'drop' site (or I can do it the old-fashioned way, e-mailing attachments or even sending you a CD). I'll send some simple instructions, and away you can go.

Writing and blogging

XY always is keen to publish new content. Please see the “Publish” page for more detail.

Maintaining the XY links page

The XY links page includes over 600 links. One of the tasks in maintaining XY is to keep this list up to date and to expand it. To keep the list up to date, you can (a) run the links page through a ‘links checker’, and then manually check the ones which come up as problematic, or (b) work your way through particular sections, checking that each link goes to the correct site.

The links page can be expanded as new sites come online. We’re very happy to take suggestions for websites to include.

Promoting the site on Facebook, MySpace, and through Twitter

We are in the process of setting up an XY page on Facebook, and probably another one on MySpace. And soon we'll be using Twitter as well. People are needed to administer and contribute to these. So you might volunteer to take or share responsibility for XY-related activities on Facebook, MySpace, or Twitter.

Promoting the site in other networks, forums, lists, and sites

XY is one of the most widely linked-to sites on men and gender in the world. But there are always sites, lists, and other forums where it could be linked from. So the job here is to write to other websites and ask that they include a link to XY. So, this task involves wandering through related websites and checking that they link to XY. If they don’t, then write a nice note asking if they can.

A related task is to update existing links to XY. When we relaunched the site in August, some URLs changed, such as those for the profem list, the profem FAQ, and all the downloadeable items.

So, the task involves the following:

Search the internet for any of these old, mistaken URLs. (E.g., search for

http://www.xyonline.net/misc/pffaq.html;
http://www.xyonline.net/misc/homophobia.html; http://www.xyonline.net/misc/profem.htm

Also search for any listings which use URLs which include the following two forms, as these are all redundant:

http://www.xyonline.net/misc/[…]
http://www.xyonline.net/downloads/[…]

Then correct the URLs yourself, if you can, or write to the relevant person and ask that they be updated. You will need to provide the correct URL, from the new XY site.

Of course, use your judgement here. If the outdated URL is itself on a site which is out of date and unlikely to be used, then updating the XY link is less of a priority than doing so on widely used websites.

Soliciting new content or reprinting existing content

XY is always after new content. There are two ways in which you can solicit new content:

  • Find existing pieces to reprint on the XY site.
  • Invite potential authors to contribute their material to XY.

If you’re soliciting content, please read the “Publish” section of the XY site. Note for example that copyright stays with the author.

XY also is after graphics: photos, cartoons, and so on. So if you come across images which could be used on XY for example on Flickr (a photo-sharing site), in an exhibition, or somewhere else, then you could contact the artist and ask their permission to reproduce the image(s) on XY. Note that images on XY can be captioned, and can include a link to the artist's own site.

The following is sample text for use in writing to authors or artists.

Dear

I am writing to ask if we can reprint your article [DETAILS] on the website XY. XY (http://www.xyonline.net/) is one of the foremost profeminist websites in the world. It has a comprehensive collection of articles and resources on men and gender issues, and a thorough resource of links to other key sites and publications. We would love to add your piece to the collection.

We would of course acknowledge its source and, if appropriate, provide a link to your site.

Please note that XY is not-for-profit and run entirely by volunteers.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes,

Soliciting advertising, sponsorship, and fund-raising from appropriate organisations and bodies

As you know, XY is run entirely by volunteers. However, XY does involve financial costs. The person who designed the site, David Houlder, is still owed some money for his work. We pay annually for the web hosting and domain name. And we will need funds down the track to further design and develop the site.

So, another crucial task is to raise money for XY. There are several obvious ways in which to do this:

  • Solicit advertising for the site. XY will accept advertising from institutions and services with principles similar to its own, on a case-by-case basis.
  • Solicit sponsorship.
  • Organise a fund-raiser

This is one of the least well-developed areas of XY. So one of the first tasks here is to actually identify some rates for advertising. And to identify how XY might accept sponsorship: an ad or logo on the front page, or what?

If you’re interested in doing some fund-raising, please contact us and we can talk about ideas and strategies.