Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Location: New York
|Posted: Sat Nov 24, 2007 12:46 pm Post subject: Background / Introduction
|In the spring of 2006, the AFM Freelance Services Division undertook a study to determine: (i) why more than one hundred and twenty-five of our Locals lacked any Internet presence (ii) how the Federation might assist its Locals to achieve this increasingly important presence.
When speaking with Local Officers, several impediments to establishing a website were identified. They included:
• A general lack of technical knowledge regarding the process of registering a Domain Name, choosing a reliable website hosting firm, and designing/building the website itself.
• A lack of financial resources necessary to outsource the tasks identified above to a professional/commercial entity.
• A concern that regular/ongoing updates to the website would require the services of a professional Webmaster and would therefore become financially prohibitive over time.
When asked to identify the website features Local Officers felt were important; the most popular responses included:
• Ease of use/navigation
• An uncluttered/clean layout
• A private, members only area
• On-line booking referral capabilities
• Discussion forums/blogs
• Easy content maintenance/updating
Based upon the information collected, the concept of the AFM Quartet Software Suite was born. It quickly evolved to become an extremely cost-effective and highly efficient product that addresses many, if not all of a Local’s requirements. It is particularly well suited to the needs of Locals wishing to establish their first website, or in cases where replacing an existing site with the AFM Quartet Software Suite would provide improved benefits/features.
The AFM Quartet Software Suite currently offers Locals the following:
Module 1: A complete website with ample features.
Module 2: Automated on-line administration (registration and membership status verification) of a Private Members’ Area of the website.
Module 3: An on-line booking referral service utilizing data “served” from the AFM’s GoPro Music database.
Members of your Local currently listed on the Federation’s GoPro Music website (http://www.gopromusic.com) will automatically and simultaneously appear in your AFM Quartet Software Suite Booking Referral section. Should you or any of your members require assistance regarding the GoPro Music registration and listing procedure, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to request an electronic copy of the “GoPro Music Help Guide”. This step-by-step .pdf document will clarify the process in an easy to follow format. An on-line HTML version is also available at http://www.afm.org/private/gopro/artist_help.php . Note: Access to the on-line version of the GoPro Music Help Guide requires a valid afm.org Username and Password.
Module 4: Full on-line content management of all text/graphics from *any computer, anywhere in the world.
* Currently, full compatibility with this module requires the use of a Windows based operating system (95/98/ME/NT/2000/XP/Vista) and Internet Explorer 5.5 or higher.
** MAC Users supporting OS X Leopard have recently reported success in accessing and using the module.
Unlike conventional software that requires a client-side (on your computer) installation, the AFM Quartet Software Suite is installed server-side (installed on an Internet server); and is commonly referred to as “web-based.” As such, Locals are not required to install and configure any additional software on their computers to take advantage of the many benefits afforded by “Quartet”. The software is installed by AFM staff and can be accessed by any computer with available Internet access. Another advantage of the web-based installation is that updates and improvements can be implemented by the Federation at any time without any action being required by the Locals using the product.