Introduction: How open Social works

Open Social • 5 April 2017

Welcome to Open Social.


To help you understand the platform better we will give you a short introduction to the structure of Open Social.



The actions that can be performed on the platform are related to the role a User has within the community. There are several user roles in Open Social:

  • Anonymous user (AN). Users who have not logged in. They are not allowed to perform actions on OS. They have only limited access to content and are not able to search for members.

  • Authenticated or logged-in user (LU). Users who have logged in to the platform. They can post comments, create and edit content, and groups. They can join groups and events.

  • Content manager (CM). Users who are in charge of the daily operation of the platform. They can delete and unpublish any content, posts, comments and groups. Editing content is limited to guarantee that editorial rights stay by the original author of the content.

  • Site manager (SM). Users who are in charge of the configuration and management of the platform and are able to manage all user accounts.



If a user can see content or not is not just defined by the roles but also through the Visibility of content. All content created can have two visibility settings: Public or Community. Public content is visible for all users including Anonymous users. Community content is only visible to logged-in users, content managers and site managers. If content is public or not is defined by different factors:

  • First, by the context the content is created in

  • Second, in some cases the user creating the content can decide which level of visibility is applied

  • Third, the settings the Site Manager chose for the community


For more information about how to set content visibility go to


Different entities

Entities is used here as an umbrella term for all the different categorisations on Open Social. There are 3 different entities on Open Social:

  • Content; types of content you can create in OS

    • Topics; this is umbrella term for the three content types that users can create. All three have the same basic structure but the label differentiates. This way users are able to structure content as they create it and find relevant information more easily with the search function. You can define your own topic types, the default ones:

      • Blogs

      • News

      • Discussions

    • Events; these can be created by all users. The start date is mandatory, all other fields are optional

    • Basic pages; this is the only content type that only CMs and SMs can create. This is a good place to add static content to your community like ‘About Us’,  ‘Contact us’ and a Code of Conduct for example

  • Comments

    • Post; can be created by all users within or outside a group. The visibility is either community wide or public.

    • Comments; all users can comment on all content types and posts. The visibility is linked to the visibility of the parent item.

  • Groups; can be created by all users. The creator is simultaneously the manager of the group. Content and Comments can be created within those groups as well as outside of them.


All the above mentioned entities can be managed and deleted by SMs and CMs


For more information about the Content, Comments and Groups go to our Open Social manual


The Users


Open Social is meant to be a community driven platform. This means that most of the content and interaction should come from the community and should grow organically within said community. This is why we’ve put as few limitations and restrictions on the Users as possible. They can create content and join groups freely and personalise their profiles.


The Structure

Open Social has three instances:

  • The Community

  • The Groups

  • The Users


This structure allows us to organize content in a meaningful way and reach only the users that are interested in specific types of content.


The Community has a stream that shows all activities that are taking place on the platform. In the sidebar users can see upcoming events, topics that have been created and new users.

Groups and users form micro-cosmoses within the community. They have both a dedicated stream that shows what is happening within groups and/ or the activities of a specific user. In addition both have an About-page that gives more information and overview pages of their events and topics.

For tips on how to manage the community go to  “Community Management: Some Basic tips to get started” or reach out to us on Twitter or Facebook if you have any further questions!