This article describes how to archive user-created content in a community. If you want to archive an entire community, see Hiding and Archiving Communities.
Over its lifetime, your site's various communities will accumulate a lot of content in the form of discussions, blogs, and other user-created content. Not all of this content will remain relevant forever, so...what do you do with it? You don't want to delete it, but you also don't want it "muddying" search results, which makes it difficult for users to find the more relevant and recent information.
You can archive old and outdated discussions, questions & answers, and blogs to "take them out of circulation."
NOTE: Archiving is not deleting; the content is still in a community and can still be accessed by Super Admins. When content is archived as described in this article, it is no longer publicly available, so it's not surfacing in searches.
Higher Logic's two-step best practice for archiving content is to:
- Create a "hidden" community that will be used exclusively for housing your account's old and outdated content.
- Move discussions, questions & answers, and blogs into the "hidden" community so they're no longer accessible in their original community.
NOTE: If you have several communities with content that you want to archive but you want to keep each community's content separate from the others, you can create multiple hidden communities. If you decide on this option, consider creating an "archive" Community Type as described in Hidden Community Type, below.
Create a hidden community
Creating a hidden community is no different than creating any other community; the Join and View Permissions are what makes a community hidden.
To create a hidden community:
- In the Admin Toolbar, click Admin.
- Navigate to Community > Communities > List.
- Click the plus symbol to the right of the page title to create a community.
- Give the community a unique name and complete any other settings.
TIP: This community is going to contain archived content, so consider including Archive and the name of the source community in the title.
- Set the Join and View Permissions to Invitation Only. This effectively "hides" the community.
- Scroll down and click Save, and then verify that the new community is in the Communities list.
NOTE: Repeat these steps if you have other communities with content that you want to archive separately.
Archive-specific Community Type
If you have several communities with content that you want to archive and you want the archiving for those communities' content to be in separate hidden communities, you could create an "archive" Community Type.
See Community Types to learn how to create a Community Type, but below are a few tips.
- Qualify the Community Type name with "hidden" or "archive" so that its purpose is obvious.
- Consider populating the Description and Text to show when Creating a New Community of this Type fields with info about the Community Type's purpose being to archive content.
- Set the Join and View Permissions to Invitation Only.
- Disable any unnecessary Features and Permissions.
Now, when you create hidden communities for your archived content, base them on this Community Type and they'll automatically inherit the Join and View Permissions as well as any other default settings.
Next, you have to determine the criteria for what content you're going to archive. This will be unique to each organization and could be based on, for example:
- date (e.g., archive all content created before MM/DD/YY),
- age (e.g., archive all content older than x years),
- a retired feature/aspect/practice (e.g., archive all content pertaining to door-to-door membership drives).
After you've decided on your archive criteria, you can set about archiving the threads and blogs that match that criteria.
Threads are, collectively, discussion posts and questions and their answers.
- In order to archive threads, you'll have to have created a hidden, archive community, as described above in Create a hidden community.
Once a hidden, archive community is available, you're ready to archive threads by moving them to it via the Move Threads tool:
- In the Admin Toolbar, click Admin.
- Navigate to Community > Discussions > Move Threads.
- From the first dropdown, select the community containing the discussion or question thread you want to move.
- Next, select the thread type: Discussion Threads or Question Threads (depending on the selected community, only one thread type may be available).
- (Optional) Check the Filter by Date box to enable a Date Range field. Use this if you want to move threads within a specific date range. This option is especially useful for filtering the threads in communities that have a lot of content, making it much easier to find the one(s) you're looking for.
- In the Choose Thread(s) to move dropdown, select one or more threads; as you click threads, they'll be displayed in the field (you can remove one via its X button).
- Lastly, select the community to move the thread(s) to.
NOTE: If you do not see the community listed in the menu, it may be associated to a hidden Community Type. If this is the case, there are additional steps you'll need to follow.
Refer to the Moving threads and hidden Community Types section below to learn more.
- Click Move to move the thread(s).
Moving threads and hidden Community Types
If the community you want to move threads to isn't available in the Choose community to move to menu (Step 7 above), this likely means that community is associated to a hidden Community Type (likely an archive-based Community Type). Let's walk through the steps to resolve this.
- First, you need to (temporarily) make that Community Type visible.
- Navigate to Community > Communities > Types.
- Click to select the Community Type in the list.
- In the expanded Preview Panel, check the Show communities of this type in the Communities List box at the top.
- Click Save at the bottom of the Preview Panel. You'll now notice the Visible column displays a checkmark for this Community Type.
- Navigate back to the Community > Discussions > Move Threads page (if you kept this page open in another browser tab, reload the page). Now that the Community Type is visible, the community will appear in the Choose community to move to menu. (If it doesn't, try typing the name of the community in the search field.)
- Use the Move Threads tool to move the threads to that community.
- When finished, navigate back to Community > Communities > Types and uncheck the Show communities of this type in the Communities List box to once again hide the Community Type.
You can easily archive entire blogs to prevent them displaying.
- In order to archive a blog, you'll have to have created a hidden, archive community, as described above in Create a hidden community.
- You can archive entire blogs only; you cannot archive individual blog articles.
- You can archive blogs individually; you cannot simultaneously archive several blogs.
To archive a blog:
- Navigate to the blog that you want to archive and select Edit.
- Scroll down and from the Associate this post with a community dropdown, choose the hidden community that you created.
- Choose Selected Community from the Who can read your blog entry? dropdown. You're selecting the community that you set in the previous step.
- Click Save.
By setting this up, you've essentially made the entire blog visible to only that community and its members, all of whom should be Super Admins.
TIP: To reverse this, simply revisit the blog, associate it with the original community, and update the visibility setting (steps 2 and 3 above).