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NC for Hire

I really should keep this a secret, but this just may be interesting enough to piledrive me right into the Superstar category, so I'll share it (hint hint)...I am going to show you how to add a new background to groups when using the new design studio.  I see a couple of NCs are frustrated trying to find this answer and even Eric says its not possible, but here is the proof of concept that yes you can change the background of a group using CSS.   Its a hack, so as with all hacks, use it at your own risk..

(btw..i know superstars is not a contest, but it inspired me to share nonetheless)

For Those NCs Who Previously Changed Groups Backgrounds

First, for those of you out there who had successully managed to change backgrounds of groups using the old editor, you remember that by adding a style sheet linked through the Groups description text module, you could change the background.  The CSS of that stylesheet looked something like this:

and gave you something nifty like this:


NOTE:  If you previously added backgrounds to groups then thought they were lost when you converted to new Ning Design Studio, you were mistaken.  Simply go back to a group that you previously styles and click edit on the text module, look at HTML editor view and you'll see your stylesheet is still there.  Open it up in a new tab and simply replace the first "body" selector with the following:

.xg_theme #xg_body

Re-upload that stylesheet to the textbox and replace the exisiting style url with the new one and call it good.

This will not change the external canvas image as before.  The old way just weighed pages down too much, i feel.  Instead,What it will do is replace the internal canvas image so that the background images behind the modules changes like so:

For Those Who Have Never Changed Backgrounds for Groups

The idea here is to inject a CSS style sheet into the group page which will over-ride all styles declared for that page.  How do we do this?  Create a style sheet using Notepad similar to the one I have attached below and replace the loooong image file URL with your own image file that you uploaded through any text box, save the file as GROUPNAME.css 

Now go to the group which you hope to change the background of and switch to HTML editor view, then using the file upload function (paperclip), upload that css file you just made, copy the looooong URL of the file and [HERE's A TRICK= press CANCEL]  NOW...paste that URL into the text box in HTML view.   Finally, you add the following code to the front and back (surrounding) that URL.

<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="" />


It will look similar to this when you're done adding the linked stylesheet within the text module of a group:

See an example finished group with styled background here on my land surveyors support network- Aerial Photogrammetry Group.

BONUS TIP:  If you want to additionally style the title of the group, simply add another CSS selector to the style sheet for the h1 property link so, changing it according to your design, of course:

h1             {text-align: left;
    font-family: Helvetica,arial,serif;
    font-size: 35px; text-transform: none;font-weight:bold;
    color: #FFFFFF;



So what do you think? Is this a tip worthy of a superstar?

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  • NC for Hire

    "So what do you think? Is this a tip worthy of a superstar?"

    JFarrow, you've already helped many many NCs and given tips that qualify for superstar status. As they say in relationships: "just let it happen."  ;-)

  • you know you have my vote bro. this is absolutely SICK!
  • NC for Hire
    awww thanks guys!
  • You already earned that status JF, whether Ning recognizes it or not ;).
    • NC for Hire
      100% agree. And you too Brian, for that matter.
      • I think this new initiative is a sound one for the community. But I'm always really most interested in making the Ning platform the best it can be because I use it for my businesses. I don't think they should put me up there actually, I think they should start treating us as the business partners we are and have the decency to answer suggestions, questions and critique.

        I realize they implemented one of my ideas when they added the Dashboard drop down menu in the upper left corner and today I don't know how I got along without it, but on my profile there are links to exactly 49 ideas I have posted here on Creators and while one of them now is live, the majority of those ideas have not even received a single comment from Ning.

        Here's another idea they probably will not comment on: make the Ning Superstars a Ning product!

        Integrate a network "like" on profiles so the top x number of members automatically goes on a Superstars page.

        It's simple, if Ning needs it on their own network, we of course need it too.


        So don't put me up there, put it everywhere ! 

        • Actually, perhaps the Profile "Like" should probably stay what it is, and what should be added is a new button: The "Superstar" button (customizable by the NCs of course).
  • NC for Hire

    since im in the mood for truth, all of us right now on this page have a mutually beneficial symbiotic relationship which is fueled by the persistance and drive for all of that stuff which isn't asked of us, yet through providing outside-the-box solutions from inside-the-box, we learn more about the limits (if they exist) and report to each other publicly-because we do not know one another personally.  

    I genuinely appreciate that are a few good heads out there that are as fueled by what we create next as i am. yes, ning should pay us....but if that were the reason behind doing what we do, then we would have all stopped long ago.

    there are some classes which have no syllabus ...ergo Ning


    i appreciate you guys too

  • NC for Hire

    still using this hack for groups and i love it

  • How did I miss this one? Always been a Superstar in my book... I love thinking out of the box! Great job brother!

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