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Welcome to Create Your Own Community Network! Our goal is to help you create your own community network using Our Community Network… The Ultimate Online Organizing Tool! This revolutionary new tool puts the power of the Internet in the hands of the people. Never in the history of our nation has there been a greater need for independent people-oriented communityorganizing social and political organizations empowered and built from the bottom up. For people to be able to join together, learn from each otherand participate effectively in an independent bottom up political and/or social movement requiresa well organized online structure. Having spent more than 30 years teaching courses in problem solving and team building, I understand the importance of building personal relationships in order to build trust and cooperation within any group. I have therefore created this tool for community organizing in order to help groups build and grow those important personal relationships. We call this tool Our Community Network.

There are several components of Our Community Network. Each member of the community has their own Profile Page where they can help others get to know them, their background, their interests and their priorities. There are also tools for members to post questions and comments on a community forum and still more tools for members to post comments on a personal blog and/or a community wall. Members can also create new events and/or sign up to attend community events created by others.

There are several more tools that take Our Community Network well beyond any previous online organizing tool. For example, community members can perform searches of other community members and organize their own groups not only by interest but also by zip code, legislative district, congressional district, city, county, school board district, state, or any other characteristic important to your group.

Also, you can create custom groups within the community to access different areas of the network website and perform different online tasks for the community. Moreover, each member of the community has their own private data folder, including videos, PDF files and other files stored in a folder that is automatically created for them as they enter data into the system. Different editors with different sets of folders can be created for different groups within the community. Finally, all of these tools are free open source tools. This means that once the system is set up, there are no ongoing charges. You are free to modify the system any way you want to meet the needs of your community.

It is this unique combination of more than 20 online web building tools that makes Our Community Network one of the most powerful online organizing tools that has ever been created.

Here is how you can create your own community network:

Begin with a Joomla foundation… Joomla is the only free open source web building platform that offers a process for building a complete and secure social network. Joomla makes large scale political organization possible because Joomla includes the ability to create Access Control Levels (ACL) allowing community members to be organized by categories within categories at many levels – all the way from local community organizers to state and national leaders – all on the same website! No other free web building tool offers this detailed ability to organize website participants.
Joomla can be duplicated by any campaign from running for the local school board to running for Congress. You can organize your own political and social campaigns in a low cost but extremely effective manner.
Joomla comes with many free tools that together can be used to create your own Community Network. One of the most important tools is called Community Builder which allows for custom registration of users and creates an automatic profile page for each user – allowing each user to play an active role in building the organization.

When a person first volunteers, they can be given the rank of Community Member with instructions on how to create their own page. As they create their page, they can enter their State, Zip Code and email address. As they volunteer for activities such as leading organizing events in their community, they can be given the rank of Community Organizer. As members help others learn how to lead events, they can be given the rank of Community Leader, City Leader, State Leader and/or National Leader.

Each member can not only post their own articles, images, documents and videos – but they can also form connections with other members of their community – much like Facebook. But better than Facebook, members of our Community Network can organize and reach out to other members of the community by searching fields of data entered by community members. For example, if there are one million members of the community, any member of the community can create a list of all of the members in their State, their City and/or their Zip Code. Members can also organize by topic or issue in addition to location allowing them to share data posted on their profile pages.
A second free tool, which integrates with Joomla and Community Builder is Kunena Forum – which allows groups to communicate with each other by location for community organizing and by topic for education and issue advocacy.
A third free tool is IddeIM which is a Private Messaging tool which integrates with Joomla, Kunena and Community Builder. A fourth free Joomla tool is ICagenda - a free events planner that allows the host to set a limit of event participants and allows participants to see who and how many have signed up for an event and how much space is left at the event.
A fifth free tool is AcyMailing – which integrates with the other Joomla tools to allow custom email newsletters to be sent to location groups or issue groups at the click of a button. Together, these five free web building tools are capable of empowering and expanding an entire social and/or political organization.
A sixth free tool called Wall Factory turns the website into a communication tool similar to Facebook – allowing individuals and groups to post to walls and share the posts of others from these walls. A seventh free tool we provide is an automated feedback system to insure that all comments to the website are answered in a timely fashion.
Together these seven tools, combined with the crucial Joomla Access Control system and numerous other tools, form a powerful community network that is actually superior to Facebook.
To help folks understand the potential of this community network, we have built a demonstration website called OurCommunityNetwork.org - which we invite you to visit.  Anyone who has used Facebook will have no problem at all learning how to post on their Community Builder profile page. Feel free to set up your own profile page and use the Meet Team Members function and Connections function to see the possibilities of this revolutionary organizing tool.
In the next section, we will review several advantages of Our Community Network over other online organizing tools such as Facebook and Wordpress.

The Importance of Organizing a Campaign By Interest and Location
Here is just one example of how Our Community Network is different. Our Community Network offers the ability to build teams and allow team members to make connections in very powerful ways that are not possible with Wordpress, Facebook or any other web building platform. For example, when a person registers with Our Community Network and becomes a member of the network, they and or other members (depending on permissions set by administrators) can search the entire community network to instantly find other members of the community that live near them and share their interests.

Below is a screen shot of the Community Network search tool in action. Members can filter by interest, city, state. Zip code, legislative district, congressional district – or any other field that an administrator wants to build into the system!
While Wordpress offers a basic social network tool called BuddyPress to turn a Wordpress website into a scaled down version of Facebook, there is no Wordpress plugin that offers anything close to this ability to empower volunteers into self organizing groups.

Imagine if volunteers in your State were able to connect with all other volunteers in their zip code or legislative district based on interest. They would not only be more successful but they would be able to continue these connections in their own communities to build a true local community organization for future events.

How to Create Your Own Community Network
While the tools to build Our Community Network are free, and while using our community network is no more difficult than using a Word document or posting to a Facebook page, the process for building your own community network is somewhat complex. Setting up a fully functioning Joomla website requires a higher level of knowledge than setting up a simple Wordpress Blog. For example, while Wordpress has only 4 menu item types, Joomla offers 32 menu item types. While Wordpress offers only one type of website tool add-on process (called Plugins), Joomla offers three types of add-on tools, called Components, Modules and Plugins. Most important, as we have mentioned above, Joomla offers a secure access control system that Wordpress does not offer. It is easy to use this access control system after it is set up. But it can be difficult to set it up because it requires a detailed understanding of the interaction rules between Joomla Permissions and Joomla Access Levels.

To learn more about how to build a fully functional Joomla website, go to our website “Create Your Own Interactive Website dot com. ” More than 100,000 people have used our free guide to build their own Joomla personal, social and business websites. .

Creating your own community network is more complex than creating a basic interactive Joomla website. To create your own community network, it is also helpful to know four website building languages, HTML, CSS, PHP and JavaScript. To make the dozens of Joomla components, modules and plugins work together requires altering some of the HTML, CSS, PHP and JavaScript settings in the back end of the Joomla website. These changes do not affect the Joomla core. But they must be made correctly for the system to work. We have explained in detail what all of these changes are – as well as every step for creating your own community network on our website: “Create Your Own Community Network (dot) org. However, it is important that these changes be made by a detail oriented person as even a minor coding error or skipping even one of the more than one hundred steps can prevent the interactions from working as intended.

If you are not comfortable making these changes yourself, you can hire us to build this system for you. Email us with a description of your project and we can set up a video conference to discuss how much it would cost to build the system you are interested in.

We have built hundreds of Joomla websites for small business owners and non-profit communities. I am one of America's leading experts on building Joomla websites. I have also served on the international Joomla Certification Committee. I have also taught courses in HTML, CSS, Wordpress, Joomla, Dreamweaver and several other web building platforms during the past 20 years. Even with this level of experience, it takes me about one hundred hours to build a fully functioning community network.

What Our Community Network does not come with is an Online Store for selling products or a Donation System for raising funds. We describe how to set these systems up using free Joomla compatible open source tools up in a different website – Create Your Own Online Store (dot) org. Nor does Our Community Network comes with a video channel or video conferencing system. We explain how to set these up using free open source tools on another website called Create Your Own Video Channel (dot) org.

How to Learn More about Our Community Network or How to Create Your Own Community Network
Many of the advantages of Our Community Network are hidden from public view in the back end interface - which organizes group members not only by location and interest but also by access groups such as Community Members, Community Leaders, State Leaders and National Leaders. To gain access to the back end of our Community Network Demonstration website, send us an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Even better, we can set up an online video conference where we can demonstrate all of the functions of Our Community Network and how it can help you organize your own community network.

In the following pages, we will provide a more detailed summary of the power of Our Community Network.As always, we look forward to your questions and comments.

David Spring M. Ed.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Our Community Network (dot) org
Create Your Own Community Network (dot) com
Create Your Own Interactive Website (dot) com
College in the Clouds (dot) org 

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