Here's how YOU can participate at Daily Kos!

We welcome you to sign up for a free Community User account here at Daily Kos.

Here in bold is the SHORT explanation of how you can sign up to contribute to the site.

If you are ready to sign up for a user account right now, you can click on the Sign up button at the top of any page and follow the prompts, or use this direct link. Note that the username you choose at signup WILL BE DISPLAYED on all your posts and comments, so please consider it carefully.

A special note on passwords: Our two requirements for passwords are explained in detail here.
1. Passwords must be at least 8 characters long.
2. Passwords must NOT be on this regularly-updated list of "the most commonly used passwords.”
If your password does not meet these two requirements, it will be rejected.

If you do not receive any follow-up emails after you create your account, please open a ticket at Help Desk. A new user account must be confirmed via a link delivered to the email used at signup. Some users are encountering a glitch with that delivery, and we will have to get you set up manually if you are among that group.

If you'd like to know a little more background and context, please read on.

Paid staff writers only create a part of our site content. The rest is created by Community members. Some of our most widely-read posts are by Community writers with a compelling personal story to tell, or deep knowledge about local politics to share. Community writers enrich the scope and variety of topics we can cover beyond the range of our staff writers, who bring their special expertise to bear on major political developments. Having a Community User account permits you to join the conversation whether by writing your own blog posts and comments and by replying to the blog posts and comments of other Community members and Staff writers. It also allows you to recommend comments and stories. Your Community status will be indicated by the caption "Community" under your byline for a post, and your user profile will show up in blue rather than the orange reserved for Daily Kos Staff members.

As a member of Daily Kos, you belong to the largest online progressive community in the nation. We are both a news organization and an activist hub. Your comments and stories will be visible to thousands of site readers who visit Daily Kos every day. Thus, you can contribute in a meaningful way to one of the most flexible and feature-rich websites still open to community participation, and be a part of advancing the causes we champion.

Let us remind you that it's easy and fast to sign up for a (free!) user account. The paragraphs in bold below are longer explanations of the information provided in our introduction above.

BUT before you sign up, please keep this caution in mind: Choose your username with care. Your username will appear on every post and comment, and in association with every comment and story you recommend. We permit people to post in complete anonymity or to post under their own real names -- but we do NOT permit people to change their usernames once they've created a posting account here (except in unusual and rare cases). So please take a moment to consider how you'd like to be known around the site before you register.

When you are ready to sign up for a user account, you can click on the Sign up button at the top of any page and follow the prompts, or use this direct link.

Please be aware of our two requirements for passwords, which are explained in detail here. To reiterate: 1. Passwords must be at least 8 characters long. 2. Passwords must NOT be on this regularly-updated list of "the most commonly used passwords.” We also make two strong recommendations, namely that your password be at least 12 characters long, and that you never re-use passwords from site to site. The recommendations are optional, but the requirements are not. Your password will be rejected if it does not meet both requirements.

As part of the account creation process, you should receive a couple of confirmation emails -- one to activate your account, and one to confirm that you succeeded in doing so. If a confirmation email does not arrive promptly, and you don't find it in your spam folder, please open a Help Desk ticket so we can complete the registration process for you.

After you sign up and login, the site will look a little different to you in a number of places. Perhaps the most obvious differences are shown on the top bar of the page. Instead of asking you to sign up or login, it will show your username (and a space for an avatar) and a Blog it! link with a little pen icon. That username has a pulldown menu associated with it to give you access to a number of other pages associated with your user account.

Stories will look different too. You will be able to Recommend stories that you find worthy of your endorsement, by clicking the star associated with it. And the comment threads attached to recent stories will permit you to participate. At the top and the bottom of each story you will see a comment box, ready for any text or photo, and almost any embed you want to supply in response to the story. You will also see a reply button attached to every comment except for the Tip Jar, so that you can respond to comments other people have made. Recent comments will also accept recommendations, a standard way of indicating your support of what the comment's author wrote.

After you have signed up and logged in, you are good to go! There are a number of finer details to know about posting and commenting, but you will pick up a lot as you go along. In case you want more information, you are welcome to make use of any of the other resources we offer to long-time and first-time members alike. You may find it helpful to take a look at other Knowledge Base articles. In particular, this post explaining the basics of how to write a story may be a useful tutorial. It is also worthwhile to read the site's Rules of the Road. to get a sense of site expectations, explained in a short list of dos and don'ts. Speaking of don'ts, please don't be alarmed if one of your first comments is answered by a member of our Partners & Mentors team. They are long-time site users who often post a reply to offer additional information for new users. You are also welcome to return to the Help Desk with any questions.

Some new users decide to take their time getting acclimated, reading and commenting in Open Threads for an indefinite period before posting a story. Others decide to jump right in by posting their own stories on their first day. Either approach can work beautifully.

Thank you for your support of the mission of Daily Kos! We look forward to having you join the conversation here at the nation's largest progressive community for news, opinion, and election strategy and analysis.

Why not create your account today?