In Media Magnet, entities represent a group that produces digital content or manages content distribution channels (web sites, social media accounts, etc.)

An entity may be a college, academic department, or business unit. It can also represent looser collections of individuals producing content about similar themes. An entity may be created for a single person, but this is a rare circumstance.

An organization is not limited to one entity, and is free to choose a structure that best represents their content.

Example: The Department of Athletics would be an entity containing various web feeds and social media channels
Example: The College of Arts and Sciences may be an entity. The Department of Mathematics and the Center for Languages, Literatures, and Culture may also create entities to better organize their content channels.


Channels are the digital communication vehicles published by an entity. A channel contains individual content items and publishes those items in a format Media Magnet can understand.

There are seven content sources (or channel types) that can be added to Media Magnet:

RSS Feed

Content hosted on a traditional website that is periodical or regularly updated. This often takes the form of a blog or news section. Media Magnet requires the URL of an RSS feed to make use of this type of content.

Most popular content management systems such as Wordpress and Drupal can produce an RSS feed out of the box or by using popular plugins.

Example The university newsroom publishes regular news articles on their website. The RSS feed can be found here.


Twitter is a popular micro-blogging platform used to post short status updates and messages. Media Magnet will pull in any tweets from your timeline and any linked images. To add a Twitter channel, you'll need the account name or handle.

Example @OhioState is the university's main Twitter account. It's handle is "OhioState"


Even Media Magnet is on Facebook! If you have a Facebook page (not a personal account), Media Magnet can pull in its content. Simply create a Facebook channel and provide the page name.

Example The Ohio State Facebook page could be added using the page name "osu"


To make sure we all have access to the latest viral videos, Youtube playlists can be imported into Media Magnet. They will provide the title, description, and embed code for each video.

To create a Youtube channel, you'll need the playlist ID you would like to add. Media Magnet will also ask you for permission to access certain parts of the Google account associated with the playlist.

Example The Best of Ohio State playlist ID is PL85bdQbcuF0RU9XdBT6Icnw-wE2wVK1A7


Upload your photos to Instagram, pop on a Kelvin filter, and boom! Instant Media Magnet selfie sensation. An Instagram channel will pull in the image/video and caption from a post. Adding an Instagram channel just requires the account name.

Example The Ohio State Instgram account can be imported with the account name "theohiostateuniversity"

Events RSS

Media Magnet has a basic level of support for events. Events occur at a specific time and place. Examples of events include a visiting faculty lecture, theatre production, or job fair. Recurring events are not currently supported.

You can inform Media Magnet about events by publishing them in an RSS feed. This is similar to the format of standard RSS, but with a few special extensions for time and place data. You can add events by providing the feed URL.

iCal Events

In addition to RSS, Media Magnet can import events from an iCal (iCalendar) feed. This allows you to use a Microsoft Exchange or Gmail calendar as a source of events. Note that there are some limitations to this content source. It will provide less data to Media Magnet than an events RSS feed. You will need the calendar URL to create an iCal channel.


Items are the beating heart of Media Magnet. An item represents a single piece of content published in a channel. An item could be a tweet, post, photo, web page, or event. Media Magnet imports items from channels on a regular basis and stores their normalized content. This allows you to retrieve items without needing to know their original channel.

When items are imported, they are also given tags and keywords using tags from the items themselves and from their channels and entities.


Keywords are a taxonomy of terms that describe and categorize the content in an entity, channel, or item. They are a set of tags whose meaning has been agreed to by content producers using Media Magnet. This ensures that, for example, content tagged with "althletics" refers to sports at Ohio State rather than the Department of Athletics or simply the general idea of participating in sports. Keywords allow editors to express the meaning of their content and for other users to find content relevant to their interests.


Some keywords are grouped into specific categories:

  • Audience: The intended autdience for the content. These are generally cross-discipline groups who have a particular affiliation with the university. Example: A content item tagged with the "audience-alumni" keyword is intended for alumni. It does not indicate that the content is about alumni.
  • College: Each college has a keyword that indicates the content is related to the college's faculty, students, staff, research, or other activities.
  • Location: The content is geogrphically based, or is more relevant to a certain location.
  • Format: Describes the content's media type. Example: The "photo" keyword indicates the content, like an Instagram feed, is photo-driven. Similarly, Youtube content uses a "video" keyword.

Using Keywords

Keywords are the foundation of Media Magnet. These keywords define the content. Keywords can be added to entities and channels from directly within Media Magnet. Always apply keywords to content, but apply the tags appropriately and sparingly. Using too many keywords may dilute or inaccurately reflect the content's meaning.

Keywords are inherited. A content item inherits keywords from its channel. And channels inherit the keywords applied to their parent.

To apply keywords to an individual content item, see the tagging methods in the next section. The source system will need to contain a tag that matches the machine_name of a keyword. Case does not matter ("Alumni" and "AlUmNi" will both add the keyword "alumni") but spaces, dashes, and slashes must be correct.

In most cases, keywords are intended as an internal reference. Avoid using keywords as hashtags within actual content. Example: This use of the keyword "Business/Industry" would be incorrect: "MBA Leadership Conference, June 19-20, Register today! #business/industry"

Using Tags

Tags are custom words or terms used to define content items. While fully searchable and filterable, unlike Keywords, tags don't have defined meanings. There is no assumption that content producers will use tags in consistent ways. Tags are useful for organizing content in customized ways beyond the scope of Media Magnet's general keywords.

Applying Keywords and Tags to content items

Keywords and tags can be added to channels and entities directly within Media Magnet. It's also possible to apply keywords and tags to individual content items outside of Media Magnet. The method varies by channel type:

Channel type Tagging method
RSS Use "category" elements in the feed
Twitter Hashtags
Facebook Hashtags
Youtube Add tag in video edit screen
Instagram Hashtags
Events RSS Use "category" elements in the feed
iCal Not supported

Example: If a tweet uses the hashtag "#cats", the content will automatically be tagged "cats" within Media Magnet.

Remember: Avoid placing Media Magnet keywords into publicly viewable content, like a Twitter hashtag.


Generally it is not desirable to publish keywords within the content itself. Mappings can help keywords be applied to individual content items. Entities and channels can have public tags mapped to Media Magnet keywords. When an item uses a mapped hashtag, the corresponding keyword will also be applied. Mappings apply only to items within a given entity or channel. You can use your existing tags as custom vocabularies within Media Magnet.

Example: The hashtag "#gobucks" could be mapped to the keyword "Buckeye Pride" since they both usually connote spirit messaging
Example: The hashtag "#osunews" could be mapped to the keyword "News"