Campsite a Hearty Content Management System for Journalists

by Ostatic Staff - Sep. 06, 2010

While the newspaper industry is scrambling to find ways to engage -- and keep -- readers, a team of developers has been quietly creating a free, open source content management system (CMS) to help online news Web sites reach their audience. Campsite is a CMS specifically designed for news organizations big and small, and contains features that are near and dear to a journalist's heart.

Although Campsite is designed for multiple users, articles undergoing editing are locked so writers and editors can't inadvertently trample on each other's work. The WYSIWYG editor supports text formatting, image insertion, mutli-page posts, and more. Articles can be grouped into sections, then sections can be grouped into single issues or editions, much like the layout a traditional newspaper. Campsite also permits scheduled (post-dated) publishing and multiple article formatting templates.

Readers are the lifeblood of any publication and Campsite offers some terrific subscriber management tools. Support for trial subscriptions and and sliding subscriber pay periods is available, as well as the ability to lock down certain sections of the site for pay-only viewing.

On the developer side, Campsite is built on the LAMP development stack and includes an object-oriented API so users can create their own plugins or alternative interfaces. There's a robust developer community surrounding the app, but there are also a team of full-time developers working on the project who will quickly create additional features for a small fee.

To get an idea of what Campsite looks like in action, have a look at the Media Development Loan Fund Web site, or one of these European-based news outlets. The app's full feature list, extensive documentation, downloads, and demos are all available online.