A newsletter app for Django
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README.rst

Boletin, a Django newsletter app

Boletin is a generic newsletter application for Django projects, which allows for automatically generating and sending newsletters, with optional human reviewing process if so desired.

Boletin means "bulletin" or "newsletter" in Spanish.

Features

  • Complete subscription/desubscription process, with confirmation emails.
  • Completely decoupled, no need to modify your own code to use it, only settings.py and redefine templates as needed.
  • Newsletters in HTML and plain text in the same email.
  • Three different periods: daily, weekly and monthly newsletters, easily configurable.
  • Integrated with Django's admin.
  • Optional reviewing process (in the admin).
  • Cron scripts included.
  • Unit tests included.

Installation

  1. Include boletin in settings.INSTALLED_APPS.
  2. Create DB tables with python manage.py syncdb.
  3. Configure settings (see Configuration section).
  4. Install cron scripts in the system's cron installation for automated newsletter creation and (optionally) automated sending. See "Cron configuration" below for more information.

Configuration

You can configure many aspects of the behavior of the application via settings variables. Mandatory variables are marked with (*).

NEWSLETTER_EMAIL (*)

Email address from where to send the newsletter. Newsletter recipients will see this address in the e-mail message "From" field.

Default: None, it's mandatory.

Example:

NEWSLETTER_EMAIL = 'newsletter@example.com'

NEWSLETTER_REVIEWER_EMAIL

Email address for the newsletter reviewer. When a newsletter is generated, an e-mail will be sent to this address prompting to the revision of the newsletter.

Default: None.

Example:

NEWSLETTER_REVIEWER_EMAIL = 'reviewer@example.com'

NEWSLETTER_REVIEWER_ADMIN_LINK

Relative URL suffix for newsletter objects in the admin application. The site domain and the newsletter id will be, respectively, prepended and appended to this string. This setting is optional; if not defined, the e-mail message to the reviewer will not include a link to the admin application.

Default: None.

Example:

NEWSLETTER_REVIEWER_ADMIN_LINK = '/admin/boletin/newsletter/'

NEWSLETTER_GENERATOR_FUNCTION (*)

This variable is a string pointing to a function inside the project which will be responsible for retrieving content for inclusion in each newsletter.

The function must receive two parameters: from_date and to_date, which define the datetime range of the newsletter being created.

Default: None, it's mandatory.

Example:

NEWSLETTER_GENERATOR_FUNCTION = 'portal.newsletter.generate_content'

And the content of portal/newsletter.py:

from app1.models import FooModel
from app2.models import BarModel

def generate_content(from_date, to_date):
    app1 = FooModel.objects.filter(date__gte=from_date, date__lte=to_date)
    app2 = BarModel.objects.filter(date__gte=from_date, date__lte=to_date)
    return {'app1': app1, 'app2': app2}

NEWSLETTER_PERIODS

Available newsletter periods in the project. It's a list with one or more of 'D' (daily), 'W' (weekly) and 'M' (monthly).

Default: ['W'] (only weekly newsletter)

Example:

NEWSLETTER_PERIODS = ['D', 'W', 'M'] # daily, weekly and monthly newsletters

Management commands

Three management commands are included:

  • createnewsletter
  • sendnewsletter
  • shownewsletter

Createnewsletter

Generate a new newsletter for the given period (daily, weekly or monthly), both in HTML and plain text. It renders the templates newsletter_email.html and newsletter_email.txt.

Options:

  • -d, --daily: daily period.
  • -w, --weekly: weekly period.
  • -m, --monthly: monthly period.
  • -p, --print: print the created newsletter to stdout.
  • -r, --regenerate: create the newsletter again if it already exists.

One and only one of -d, -w or -m must be given.

Sendnewsletter

Send newsletters to subscribers.

Options:

  • -n, --newsletter: send only the newsletter with the given ID.
  • -f, --force-unreviewed: send unreviewed newsletters.

Without parameters all reviewed newsletters with pending sendings are sent. Use the -f switch to send unreviewed newsletters (useful for a completely automatic newsletter system). Use the -n switch to send an specific newsletter. The shownewsletters command should be useful to see created newsletters, their IDs and pending statuses.

Shownewsletters

Show stored newsletters, with their object ID (different than their newsletter number) and pending status.

Options:

  • -p, --only-pending: show only newsletters with pending sendings.

Templates

Default templates are provided for the subscription and unsubscription process, but you should redefine at least newsletter_email.txt and newsletter_email.html. You can redefine any template creating a newsletter dir inside your templates directory, copying the app template inside it and changing that copy.

The available templates are:

  • newsletter_base.html: base template for the subscription and unsubscription process, except email templates.
  • newsletter_confirm_email.txt: email template for confirming subscription.
  • newsletter_confirm.html: page telling the user the subscription confirmation email has been sent to her email address.
  • newsletter_email.html: email template of a newsletter in HTML format. You should redefine this depending on the context returned by the NEWSLETTER_GENERATOR_FUNCTION.
  • newsletter_email.txt: same as newsletter_email.html, but in plain text.
  • newsletter.html: subscription/unsubscription form.
  • newsletter_success.html: subscription success page.
  • newsletter_unsubscription_confirm_email.txt: same as newsletter_confirm_email, but for unsubscription.
  • newsletter_unsubscription_confirm.html: same as newsletter_confirm, but for unsubscription.
  • newsletter_unsubscription_success.html: same as newsletter_success, but for unsubscription.

Cron configuration

There are several crontab files inside the cron directory that you can simply include in your system-wide cron configuration to have automatic newsletter creation and/or sending. The createnewsletter and sendnewsletter commands are smart enough to ignore petitions for unallowed periods (i.e. not configured in NEWSLETTER_PERIODS).

Development

You can get the last bleeding edge version of boletin by doing a checkout of trunk in its subversion repository:

svn checkout https://svnpub.yaco.es/djangoapps/boletin/trunk boletin

Bug reports, patches and suggestions are more than welcome. Just put them in our Trac system and use the 'boletin' component when you fill tickets:

https://tracpub.yaco.es/djangoapps/