What's the difference between Network and Blogs MU

CONTEXT:
One of my projects is an authority site. I want the primary site to gather it's content from a network of sites. Each site could possibly have a different theme because the content source and type will vary. Each site will likely be managed by a different person, likely overseas.

WHAT I NEED:
I want the design and functionality of The Daily Theme because its primary purpose is to mash-up the content from various sources but I need the network features of Network or Blogs MU.

FIRST PROBLEM:
I'm not quite sure what the difference is between Network, MU and BuddyPress but for this project I'm not interested in the membership features.

SECOND PROBLEM:
I can't tell what the difference is between the "Network" theme and the "Blogs MU" theme. They seem to be the same thing, or at least solving the same problem. I can't figure out the tradeoff. Can I do the same as those using The Daily Theme?

Please help.

  • Timothy Bowers

    Hey there.

    What's the difference between Network and Blogs MU

    They're both very differently designed themes.

    Network has options to pull in articles from the network.

    The list could get quite lengthy depending on the detail you actually want here?

    FIRST PROBLEM:
    I'm not quite sure what the difference is between Network, MU and BuddyPress but for this project I'm not interested in the membership features.

    I'm really not sure what you mean here?

    You comparing a theme with multisite and a social networking plugin BuddyPress...

    Network which you posted in is a theme.

    MU as in WPMU is the old term for WordPress Multisite.

    BuddyPress is the social networking plugin.

    I can't tell what the difference is between the "Network" theme and the "Blogs MU" theme. They seem to be the same thing, or at least solving the same problem. I can't figure out the tradeoff. Can I do the same as those using The Daily Theme?

    They are totally different designs. Network has features to pull in network wide posts.

    If you want network wide posts and comments you might also like to look at the following and the associated plugins on those pages:

    https://premium.wpmudev.org/project/post-indexer/

    https://premium.wpmudev.org/project/comment-indexer/

    Then you can have network wide articles in just about any theme.

    If you need further answers and could further clarify/elaborate for me what you need thenI should be able to help further :slight_smile:

    Take care.

  • lightbee

    That's really great feedback. Thank you. I have a few more questions.

    First I'd like to clarify my dual use of the word Network. I have read many articles about Wordpress Networked sites referring to Multisite of course but I've never figured out the correct terminology. I'm assuming from your answer that the only correct term is WordPress Multisite.

    I'm starting to get the BuddyPress thing. I see so many networked/MU/Multisite references and many of them talk about "social" like features that I'm often confused about what is what, who does what and how anything relates to whatever. Membership to WPMUDEV is already helping me sort out many questions though so I'm on the right path.

    I love the idea of those 2 indexer plugins. Will I be missing anything if I choose the plugin route instead of the Network Theme? My goal is to curate content from internal sources. I want to set up multiple blogs, each using different themes to capture content of different types and each with a different focus and have the main theme display a summary/abstract of the top posts from each site. I really like The Daily Theme for the main site so I'd like to use the indexer plugins to pull the top posts from each site in the network.

    Is this a reasonable objective? Do you have any advice for me in this regard?

    In regards to curating external content and adding my own abstracts, I haven't found anything on wpmudev. Are there any plugins you recommend? Or people who might know better than me? I'd love to add a few sites to the network that pull from a selection of RSS feeds and allow my clients to add their own abstracts.

  • Timothy Bowers

    Hey there.

    First I'd like to clarify my dual use of the word Network. I have read many articles about Wordpress Networked sites referring to Multisite of course but I've never figured out the correct terminology. I'm assuming from your answer that the only correct term is WordPress Multisite.

    To give you a brief history, once there was WordPress and WordPress MU (Multi User).

    MU allowed you to create a network of sites.

    They both then merged in version 3 of WordPress, MU was then dropped as an abbreviation and became WordPress Multisite and the MU Admin area is known as Network.

    The theme you refer to here is just a theme and not to be confused with WordPress Network although it does have extra Network features like pulling in network wide posts and displaying on the front of your site.

    I'm starting to get the BuddyPress thing. I see so many networked/MU/Multisite references and many of them talk about "social" like features that I'm often confused about what is what, who does what and how anything relates to whatever. Membership to WPMUDEV is already helping me sort out many questions though so I'm on the right path.

    Well if you break down your questions and just keep posting them, we can help further :slight_smile:

    I love the idea of those 2 indexer plugins. Will I be missing anything if I choose the plugin route instead of the Network Theme?

    The Network theme will bring in those posts for the front page but it doesn't index them, in other words you can't search them, just see and click them whilst there on the front.

    If you look on those indexer pages then you'll see a number of other plugins that work with them, for example Global Search, so your members can search all those network posts.

    And these can be used with the Network theme as well.

    I use both Network theme and Indexers on one of my sites.

    In regards to curating external content and adding my own abstracts, I haven't found anything on wpmudev. Are there any plugins you recommend? Or people who might know better than me? I'd love to add a few sites to the network that pull from a selection of RSS feeds and allow my clients to add their own abstracts.

    The closest thing we have to pulling in RSS fees is our AutBlog. So you could create a site and then import those RSS feeds:

    https://premium.wpmudev.org/project/autoblog

    Hopefully this helps.

    Take care.

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