What You Really Ought To Know About Emails!

The most common questions I’m asked and problems I have to deal with daily always relates to emails. To help with your email frustrations, let me explain the answers one at a time.

Do students need to use an email address?

It depends.

If you only want your students to write comments on the posts, you can change your settings so an email isn’t required. Simple as unselecting ‘Comment author must fill out name and e-mail in Settings > Discussion.

Image of removing email required in comment

On your posts the comment may still show author and email required but with these settings changed they definitely aren’t!

An email address is needed when:

  1. You want to add students to a class blog so they can write posts
  2. Your blog is private i.e. only visible to logged in users or logged in registered subscribers
  3. You want students to have their own blogs

Why is an email address required?

To create usernames or blogs you need to use a ‘real’ email address because:

  1. When you use the Edublogs signup page an email with a link to activate your username or blog is sent to your email address. If you don’t click on that link the account isn’t created.
  2. To reset your password when you forget it.
  3. To receive email notifications of new comments and any comments held in moderations.
  4. When you delete a blog you’re sent an email to the address attached to the blog URL; you can’t delete the blog without clicking on the link in that email.

Each username needs its own unique email address whereas you can have lots of blogs attached to the same email address.

It won’t allow you to create several usernames with the same email address because the system resets your password based on email address. But you can trick it using the gmail+ method.

Please Note: Don’t ask me to delete blogs; I won’t! Deleted blogs can’t be undeleted.

Do students need to use their own email addresses?

No! You can trick the system by using the gmail+ method.

How it works is Gmail ignores anything in the first half of an email address after a plus sign so if you create each email with the format [email protected] all emails will be sent to the inbox of [email protected] .

This also means that if you want to moderate comments on all student blogs they will be sent to your one email address.

Just remember if you use this method:

  1. You must first create a ‘gmail account.’
  2. All aspects of managing that blog and/or username is attached to that email address including password resets.

TIP: The gmail+ method can be used for creating accounts on most websites.

I signed up for a blog but I haven’t received the activation email!

The activation email is sent when you sign up using the Edublogs signup page. It normally arrives within 30 minutes and includes a link which you use to activate your username/blog.

The username and blog won’t exist in the system until you click on that link to activate the account. You have 48 hours to activate otherwise you need to reset up your account.

Unfortunately spam filters, especially strict ones for education email addresses, often block these activation emails. Try checking your spam folder. If it doesn’t arrive you will need to create a new account using a free web based email such as gmail, hotmail or yahoo.

Please note:

  1. When you create blogs using the Blog & User creator the accounts are automatically created i.e. doesn’t need activating.
  2. Make sure you test your email system before creating a large number of usernames/blogs to ensure your spam filter doesn’t block the emails
  3. Don’t ask me to send you the password and blog URL if you don’t receive the activation email — I can’t help you — your account doesn’t exist in our system

When I click the link for “Lost my password” I don’t receive my new password!

Unfortunately spam filters, especially strict ones for education email addresses, often block the password emails. Occasionally people will receive an email with the link to reset the password but not the second email with the new password.

If this happens you will need to contact us at Edublogs support (support[at]edublogs[dot]org) with your username and blog URL so we can manually re-set your password.

Once we’ve changed your password you will need to:

  1. Re-set it to a better password
  2. Change your email address to a free web based email such as gmail, hotmail or yahoo (Users > Your Profile)

I’ve sent an email to Edublogs Support and got no response!

Erm we do respond to emails but if you have used a school email address there’s a good chance your email filters are blocking all of our different emails.

Where possible don’t use a school email address unless you know it won’t block our emails!

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Sue Waters

Edublogs Support Manager @suewaters on Twitter

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22 Responses

  1. Marcin says:

    Why are there so many such funny mistakes in today’s entry? Too hot there? :-)

    • Sue Waters says:

      @Marcin, Must have been having one of the grammar days. Thanks for letting me know and I got others to read through to spot the mistakes. Plan to fix them later in day.

      Too hot? Sadly not hot enough. Is winter here.

  2. suz01 says:

    Hi Sue, I’ve been meaning to ask for ages – how do I delete a Blog I do not need? I had 100 student blogs, and I have deleted 98 successfully, but there are two left that didnt work last time and now I cant find how to delete them at all. I will go the class blog in future, individual blogs dont work for me.

    I know you said above you wont delete blogs for people :) but I really want thses gone. :)

    • Sue Waters says:

      @suz01, Log into the dashboard of each blog. Go to Settings > General and check what email address is attached to that blog. That is where the email is going to delete. Then click on Delete blog. If you can’t delete and they are annoying you – then you could always remove yourself as a user attached to the blog.

      • suz01 says:

        @Sue Waters, Thanks Sue, but actually, its the delete button I can no longer find.

      • suz01 says:

        @Sue Waters, Once I log into a secondary blog’s dashboard, there is no ‘settings’ option in the menu. There is only Posts, Media, Links, Pages, Comments, Profile, Tools and stats.

  3. suz01 says:

    I set these blogs up, so was the administrator. These 2 kids seem to have worked out how to remove me. They are form last year – I would be quite happy just to be removed as a user, I just need to work out how to do that. :)

  4. jeannebp says:

    The gmail+ method no longer seems to work to create student emails. Gmail tells me the + isn’t a character that can be used. Is there another suggestion for creating student emails?

  5. 407blog says:

    I am setting up my blog so students can only comment. My question is, will anyone be able to view their comments? I don’t want them to use their names if our class blog is not private. Can you tell me if the free blogs are private?

    • Sue Waters says:

      @407blog, Most teachers only allow their students to use their first name, first name plus initials or a pseudonym.

      They also spend a lot of time explaining to their students what is appropriate to say online and what isn’t. I suggest you check out the comments on this post as there is information that teachers use to explain these aspects to their students.

      You can only make Edublogs Supporter blogs private. However if you want specific posts or pages to be private you can password protect them.

    • suz01 says:

      @407blog, if you are concerned about your students comments being private, perhaps an internet blog is not the best medium to use? Perhaps a blog or discussion forum on your school intranet, or a Ning site might work better?

      One of the advantages of a public blog is the potential for real world discussions and feedback for your students. As long as they are taught not to reveal personal information, there are a lot of pros to having their blogs open to the public.

  6. Donna says:

    New tech. teacher here! I’m familiar w/Blogger, not edublogger and I’ve already spent a ton of time in that format only to discover that the kids aren’t allowed to have gmail accounts.

    They can only use Eudora (UGH! I know, I know) at school. I want to set up one class blog (for each class) and then have the kids create their own individual blogs. Is it OK for them to use ANY email address (their school address) for this to work?

    THEN, is there a way to allow the kids to be contributors to their own class’s class blog?

    If this format seems possible, I will begin to put my efforts here! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!

    d

    • Sue Waters says:

      @Donna, yes they can use any email address. The only challenge with school emails is sometimes they block the emails from our system – which can cause problems. Alternatively you can use the gmail+ method to create the accounts for them – there is a link to that in the post.

      If you want the students to be contributers – i.e. write posts you need to add them as users. Refer to these instructions

  7. Mrs. K says:

    I would like to begin a new blog while keeping my existing ones. I’ve tried searching through all the help pages but didn’t find the info I need. Please help.

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