Posted on Tuesday, May 29th, 2007 at 12:46 pm under HOWTO

In the course of publishing content on your blog you may come across the need to allow others to contribute content. WordPress provides tools to handle situation of this type with its user role system. Users are assigned different roles, which dictates what actions they are able to perform. Below is a listing of the roles available in WordPress:

  • Administrator: Somebody who has access to all the administration features.
  • Editor: Somebody who can publish posts, manage posts as well as manage other people’s posts, but can’t configure blog options, change themes, or activate/edit/deactivate plugins.
  • Author: Somebody who can publish and manage their own posts.
  • Contributor: Somebody who can write and manage their posts but not publish posts.
  • Subscriber: Somebody who can read comments/comment/receive news letters, etc.

Here are some typical situations you might encounter and solutions using WordPress user roles.

I need to allow a colleague to make contributions
If you want to allow a colleague to make contributions to your blog there are really two roles to consider. If you want your colleague to be able to create static pages or have access to modify your posts then the you should add them as an Editor. If you only want them to be able to create/modify their own posts then you can add them as an Author, but keep in mind this will prevent them from creating static pages.
I want to allow students to make contributions
If you want to allow students to make contributions to your blog there are most likely two roles you’ll want to consider. If you do not care to have oversight over what is being written before it is posted you can simply add them as an Author. If you care to review the content of their posts before they are publicly viewable, adding the student as a Contributor will allow them to create draft posts but will require the intervention of an Editor or Administrator to publish.

In order to attach a user to the blog they must have an account already. User roles/addition can be reached via the Users->Authors & Users menu option. Below the User List by Role display there is a section titled Add User From Community. Here you can enter the e-mail address of the user you’d like to add and the role type you’d like them to be added under.

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