Headlines Plugin

Show headline news in TWiki pages based on RSS and ATOM news feeds from external sites


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/ ) lists 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
touch="..." Touch (edit/save) topics if the feed has updates. Specify a comma-space delimited list of TopicNames or Web.TopicNames, such as "%TOPIC%, NewsLetter". Useful to send out newsletter using MailerContrib, showing new feeds since last newsletter. To update feeds, visit topics with feeds in regular intervals (using cron with wget or the like). N/A
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


%HEADLINES{ "http://slashdot.org/slashdot.rdf" 
  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="2" }%

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

Sat, 20 Jul 2019 10:23:39 +0000
The original blog about business opportunities and business ideas for small business entrepreneurs
Sat, 20 Jul 2019 10:23:37 +0000 Carrol Strain

Are you taking the proper marketing steps to ensure you’re getting the most effective return for every dollar you spend?

11 Marketing Steps You're Probably Skipping (But Shouldn't)

Only one-fourth of small businesses invest in online marketing. Is yours one of them?

If so, are you taking the proper marketing steps to ensure you’re getting the most effective return for every dollar you spend?

There’s no one-size-fits-all method for marketing a company. How you get the word out about your product or service depends on the type of business you have. However, there are vital steps you might be skipping that can benefit any company.

While cutting corners saves time, you’ll likely miss out on the potential to grow your consumers. Keep reading to help get your marketing plan back on track.


1. Posting Engaging Content

One of the best ways to steer consistent eyeballs to your website is a blog section. However, this requires a commitment to keep it up. Articles marked “Posted 7 months ago” give off a stale look.

So start a series or collection of posts that builds an audience who will remember to come back week after week for more content.

2. Maintaining a Social Media Presence

With that said, the best place to spread the word about these posts, along with company news in general, is on social media accounts. And don’t be discouraged if your number of followers or likes is low when you get started. If you frequently post relevant material, the numbers will grow.

You can even get creative and make your own hashtags. Or post contests to get consumers buzzing around your business, besides just around its website.

3. Using Eye-Catching Graphics

Take a look at your company’s logo. Does it define your business with an eye-catching look? Do the colors complement each other?

Professional-looking graphics go a long way. In fact, many consumers will make an assumption about your business when they first glance at its logo. If art isn’t your strong suit, enlist a graphic designer’s help.

4. Identifying a Target Audience

You might already be taking the proper steps to market your business, but do you know who your target audience is?

Rather than focus on marketing your business to every person on the planet, home in on a specific demographic that’s most likely to use your product. Further refine your targeting by taking a look at your current customer base. This will help you to determine the type of people you should be reaching.

5. Structuring a Budget

Spending money on marketing can sometimes be frustrating. It could feel like you’re flushing money down the toilet when you see no results for your efforts.

Therefore, sit down and analyze your budget. Which areas are working and which aren’t? For example, you could be shoveling out money to air television or radio commercials when most of your target audience is on the Internet.

6. Enhancing Your Website

Two decades ago, it was impressive just to have a website, but that's no longer the case. Today, on average, you have 10 seconds to entice a visitor to stay on your website a little longer. Otherwise, they’re likely to close the tab.

Therefore, fix up your site. Make it look inviting. Feature landing pages you can post on social media. If you’re unsure about which design is most effective, do research. For example, learn more about what is A/B testing.

7. Utilizing SEO

Usually, when most of us think about digital advertising, we think it’s just paying to have your company’s advertisements featured on sites as people surf the web. However, the capabilities of digital advertising go far beyond this simple idea.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a great way to target an audience without the gimmicks of cheesy ads. It uses relevant content and keywords that attract users organically. In this way, the right people discover your business. Learn more about SEO and begin to rely more on search engines to build your business, instead of buying those annoying pop-up ads.

8. Researching the Competition

As you spend all of this time improving your marketing approach, take a look around to see what rival companies are doing.

Of course, never copy or plagiarize someone else’s work. However, it helps to see how other businesses in your field approach marketing. What's more, their methods can inspire ideas that might work for you.

9. Writing Guest Posts

As you build a blog section, the content you write doesn’t have to just be for your website. Ask other companies with relevant products or services if you can write guest post articles for their blog sections.

This is a great way to freely advertise your brand to a whole new audience. Then, return the favor and ask others to contribute guest posts on your website. This will strengthen your blog section.

10. Showcasing Reviews

Don’t waste too much time aimlessly typing away about why your company is superior. Let satisfied customers do it for you!

Have a designated review section on your website. Additionally, use reputable sources like Google or Yelp to highlight the positive things people have to say about your business.

11. Setting Goals

As you combine these various steps into a strategic marketing plan for your business, create benchmarks. Having goals provides a reassuring boost toward successful results.

For example, have goals for increasing numbers such as social media followers or website visitors. These are good places to start. Plus, your new goals will enhance your continuously evolving marketing plan.

Take the Right Marketing Steps

There’s no specific order or formula required for applying these marketing steps in your marketing strategy. In fact, not all of them will work for every business.

The best approach is to determine which marketing steps will make the best use of your time and investment toward boosting your brand. Think quality over quantity.

How strong are the marketing steps you are taking to improve your company's business? Browse our marketing section for further tips and articles.

The post Marketing Steps You’re Skipping (But Shouldn’t) appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Sat, 20 Jul 2019 01:25:13 +0000 Carrol Strain

Over the last few years, the social media advertising landscape has changed dramatically, and the obstacles that prevented small businesses from investing in social video ads are no longer a challenge. This is because tools like Yala have made it easier for small businesses to hop on the trend of video and succeed on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

In this article, we take a look at some of the main features on offer with Yala and help you understand how your business can benefit from it.


What Is Yala?

Video ads are the most common way customers learn about new brands before buying their products. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are among the top social media sites influencing audience behavior through social video ads.

Yala - social video ads 300w, Social-video-ads-2-768x441.png 768w, Social-video-ads-2-696x399.png 696w, Social-video-ads-2-732x420.png 732w" sizes="(max-width: 866px) 100vw, 866px" />

Most Social Media Users Watch Social Video Ads

According to Statista, 85% of social media users in the United States watch online videos. Moreover, Nielsen reports that the time spent watching video content has been on a steady increase over the past few years.

Yala is a powerful yet simple social media creation and scheduling tool. It supports integration with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram. Also, it brings together video ads with smart schedule posting features. This increases reach and improves brand engagement.


You'll Be Able to Easily Organize Your Ads

Additionally, Yala allows you to easily organize your posts and ads. It enables you to efficiently design high-performing video ads and assign posting schedules, all from one place.

Now that you know what Yala is and what it can do for you, let's dig deeper to learn more about its key features and how your business can benefit from them.

Key Features on Offer with Yala

Here we'll step through some of the standout features on offer with Yala. This way, you can see how it fits into your existing social media marketing tech stack and whether you think it might be a worthy addition.

Video Ad Creator

Yala features a neat, point-and-click video creator that makes it incredibly easy to render stunning videos without any technical know-how. Also, for each social video ad, you'll be able to enter your own marketing copy. Additionally, you can select a custom color palette and choose from a library of backgrounds, animations, and clips to add visual appeal.

Yala - social video ads 300w, social-video-ads-3-768x390.png 768w, social-video-ads-3-696x354.png 696w, social-video-ads-3-827x420.png 827w" sizes="(max-width: 1000px) 100vw, 1000px" />

Notably, Yala is designed for users who don't have experience with video production. This means that you won't have to invest time and money into learning new software. Instead, you'll be able to focus on increasing your social media presence with social video ads.

A Library of Video and Graphic Design Templates

It also gives you access to a library of video and graphic design templates. These will allow you to quickly create, design, and edit video posts that evoke emotion and engage viewers. You'll be able to reuse professional-looking graphics and artwork to create social media ads, memes, gifs, and other types of visual content.

Yala 300w, social-video-ads-4-768x388.png 768w, social-video-ads-4-696x351.png 696w, social-video-ads-4-832x420.png 832w" sizes="(max-width: 1000px) 100vw, 1000px" />

With Yala, you can create an unlimited number of videos. Moreover, you can custom-label them with your own branding-in both mp4 and gif format. Then, you can upload them to your social media profiles within seconds.

Yala is an ideal tool for both freelance and in-house marketers. Yala's wide range of resources are especially useful for businesses that are looking to gain visibility for their products and services on social media in an easy and cost-effective way.

Automated Branding and Animations

Yala lets you upload your business's logo to your account. Then it automatically detects the brand colors in your logo and pulls up a matching color palette. Therefore, you'll have your colors as the primary color options for your social video ads. However, you can also tweak these settings manually. Also, the animations you add to your video ad will automatically adjust to your brand settings.

Yala 300w, social-video-ads-5-768x387.png 768w, social-video-ads-5-696x351.png 696w, social-video-ads-5-833x420.png 833w" sizes="(max-width: 1000px) 100vw, 1000px" />

Yala enables small businesses to create the same sort of stunning social video ads as the big-budget corporations do.

A Wide Range of Tools for Creating Engaging Social Video Ads

Do you want to increase your social media engagement, get more followers, or simply send out a message to promote your new product? Whatever your purpose, Yala's automated branding and animations can help you create an engaging social video ad. Moreover, your new ad will boost brand recognition and generate customer interest.

social video ads 300w, social-video-ads-6-768x388.png 768w, social-video-ads-6-696x351.png 696w, social-video-ads-6-832x420.png 832w" sizes="(max-width: 1000px) 100vw, 1000px" />

Most social media tools let you create colorful static content. However, you need something that catches your target audience's attention right off the bat. To this end, Yala gives you a number of animation options to choose from. Use these tools to add life to your video ads. For example, take your pick of Sprinkles, Rubik, and Interstellar.

As a result, you'll be able to easily create consistent-looking and visually appealing video ads for your business.

Library of Human-Centric, Social-Media-First Footage

Yala has a built-in library of original, human-centric video footage. Users can utilize this footage to create engaging social video ads. All of the videos in its library feature people who are relatable and clips that are meant to stir up emotions in viewers.

This is especially important. That's because emotions are what get people to stop swiping and start paying attention. Also, people are more likely to remember and reshare clips that are emotionally driven. In fact, a study by Unruly, along with the UK Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, found that ads that touch people's emotions have twice as much business impact as ads that appeal to logic.

Yala 7 300w, social-video-ads-7-768x371.png 768w, social-video-ads-7-696x336.png 696w, social-video-ads-7-1068x516.png 1068w, social-video-ads-7-869x420.png 869w, social-video-ads-7.png 1474w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" />

Therefore, Yala offers an extensive library that features different clip categories for different sorts of emotions such as frustration, excitement, calm, confidence, and attention.

Yala 8 300w, social-video-ads-8-768x376.png 768w, social-video-ads-8-324x160.png 324w, social-video-ads-8-533x261.png 533w, social-video-ads-8-696x341.png 696w, social-video-ads-8-857x420.png 857w" sizes="(max-width: 1000px) 100vw, 1000px" />

While most social media marketing tools only let you add over-used stock clips, memes, and emojis, you need something that's unique to your brand. That's because you need to speak to your customers in a direct way.

Perfect for Humanizing Your Brand

Another benefit of making social video ads human-centric is that it enables you to humanize your brand. More and more brands are trying to be personal and human-like in the way they communicate with customers. Seeing people in video ads allows viewers to imagine themselves as the person in the video, using your product, or going through the same experiences.

Therefore, if you're looking to transform your business into a story-driven brand, Yala is a perfect fit for your social media marketing tech stack. It can help you easily create a stream of cleverly crafted videos and graphics to keep customers engaged with your brand.

AI-Based Scheduling

Yala's auto-schedule feature allows you to post video clips to multiple social sites when your target audience is most likely to see your content. This gives your ads more exposure and better engagement rates.

How this works is by tracking which times and posts result in the most likes, shares, and clicks. The AI engine then allows Yala to automatically make corrections, improve itself, and identify patterns that predict the best posting schedule for your videos over time.

Accordingly, you can choose to set the time (or day) when you'd like to post your content. Then, Yala will handle the rest. Additionally, you can configure it to focus on distinct audience segments and engage them with targeted content based on their previous behavior and interactions.

Plans and Pricing

Yala offers three different pricing plans. Here's a full breakdown of what you get with each.

social video ads 8 300w, social-video-ads-9-768x678.png 768w, social-video-ads-9-696x615.png 696w, social-video-ads-9-476x420.png 476w" sizes="(max-width: 1000px) 100vw, 1000px" />

There's a ''free forever'' plan, as well as plans for $10 or $39 per month. All features are available to all account levels, with two exceptions. With the free plan, you can only post directly from Yala to one social media profile, whereas the others have no limits. And only with the ''premium'' plan can you remove the ''Made with Yala'' bumper from the end of your clips.


Yala is a social media video creation and scheduling tool. Yala makes it easy for small businesses to build and post visually stunning, branded video ads, even if they have no design skills. This is because it gives you access to a library of social-media-friendly templates and human-centric clips. What's more, you can animate these tools to bring life to your ads.

Let's quickly recap some of the ways your business can benefit from using Yala:

  • It's amazingly easy and affordable to get started with, which means you won't have to spend time learning how to use video creation software.
  • It comes with a library of human-centric clips that you can add to social video ads to rouse emotions in your viewers and social media followers.
  • It's the perfect tool for marketers who are looking for a way to boost social media engagement through visually-rich social video ads.

The post Yala: Easiest Way to Create Social Video Ads 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: © 2002-2010, Peter Thoeny, Twiki, Inc.; 2005-2007, Michael Daum http://wikiring.de
License: GPL (GNU General Public License)
Plugin Version: v2.6 - 2010-05-16
Change History:  
2010-05-16: TWikibug:Item6433 - more doc improvements
2010-04-25: TWikibug:Item6433 - doc fix: Changing TWIKIWEB to SYSTEMWEB
2010-02-27: TWikibug:Item6313 - fixed bug in ATOM feed with <link ...></link> instead of <link ... /> -- Peter Thoeny
2009-09-30: fixed bug in lastBuildDate of feeds affecting touch parameter functionality -- Peter Thoeny
2009-08-29: added touch parameter -- Peter Thoeny
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: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/HeadlinesPlugin
Feedback: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/HeadlinesPluginDev
Appraisal: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/HeadlinesPluginAppraisal

Related Topics: TWikiPlugins, AdminDocumentationCategory, TWikiPreferences

Topic revision: r1 - 2010.05.17 - TWikiContributor
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