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Thread: FAQ: Everything You Wanted to Know About Signatures or Sigs

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    FAQ: Everything You Wanted to Know About Signatures or Sigs

    This one of several AW FAQs about images. Other related FAQs include:

    FAQ: Don't Hotlink to Images and Why We Do Not Allow Hotlinking

    How to Link to An Image Properly

    FAQ: Image Size Guidelines

    What is a Signature?

    A sig, .sig or signature in this context refers to a snippet of text that is automatically appended at the end of every one of your posts. On Absolute Write your signature will also automatically be appended to your PMs.

    Sigs first appeared in the very early days of email, but they’ve migrated and evolved, and now, many forums support the use of a sig.

    The signature may simply be a link to your Website, or your book page. It might include a witty aphorism or saying, or a small image of one or more of your book covers.

    We also ask that you not use link shorteners like TinyURL or Bitly on AW. There's an FAQ: URL Shortening on AW that explains why.

    Sigs on Absolute Write

    Here's the official policy on signatures and links from the The Newbie Guide to Absolute Write:
    Quote Originally Posted by “MacAllister”
    Some forums have extremely strict guidelines about things like signature links. We'll ban sigline spammers, here, too - but usually only if they're spamming links to cell phones, shoes, cheap viagra, and the like.

    We actually LIKE you to link your blogs, books, writing-interest sites, and so on. We firmly believe it helps build community, creates stable information environments, improves education, and strengthens relationships. Just don't join up solely to flog your own site and services. That's spamming, and it's exploitive, and it's not cool. Don't join up just because you think it's a good way to market yourself, your book, or your blog. Again, it's spamming, it's boring, and you won't be met with a lot of enthusiasm.
    We do ask people to be courteous about image sizes in sigs; many of our members are in countries where they pay a tax based on bandwidth, many are using dialup, and many are using tablets. Please don’t use a giant image, or an animated gif that's going to possibly annoy other members. There’s an FAQ about image sizes; please try to keep even a series of thumbs or book covers within those size limits.

    Also note that we do not allow link shorteners like Tiny or Bitly. See: FAQ: How to Create Links and Why We Don't Allow Shorteners

    Super Members (50 posts or more) and Kind Benefactors can upload images to use in a Sig; Registered Members (less than 50 posts) must link to an image stored on a site like Photobucket, or Flickr.

    That said, a signature is a privilege and not a right.

    To Create or Edit a Signature

    1. Go to your Settings (at the far right on the top of the AW Forum window).
    2. Click “Edit Signature” under the 'Settings and Options' area of the sidebar or click this link to Edit Signature.
    3. Use the Edit Signature field and the formatting tools to create and format your signature.
    4. Remember that we don't allow hotlinked images or shortened URLs.
    5. Use Preview to see how your signature will look when it's appended to a post.
    6. Don't forget to Save your Signature by clicking the Save Signature button.

    Some Hints about Creating a Signature

    • Regular members are limited to 300 characters excluding the BB code formatting, and 600 including the formatting.
    • Super members are limited to 400 characters excluding the BB code formatting, and 800 including the formatting.
    • Please restrict the total area used in your sig to 800 x 200 pixels.
    • It’s often easier to enter the text you want people to see first, then use the Link tool to add links by selecting the text you want to be a link, and clicking the Link tool. To learn how to make links see: FAQ: Don't Hotlink to Images and Image Size Info.
    • You can the vertical line "pipe" character | (shift + \) to separate parts of your signature vertically.
    • Be sure to use the Preview button to see how your signature will display.
    • Don't forget to Save your signature by clicking the Save Signature button.

    Formatting and Creating a Signature

    The most basic sig consists of a link with clickable link text and takes this format:

    [url=]MY WEBSITE[/url]

    When you save or preview the signature, it would look like this:


    Adding Images to a Signature

    You can Upload an image to AW if it fits within our image restrictions. Only use this method for a single sig pic.

    To Upload an Image and Use the Signature Picture Field

    1. Position your cursor in the Signature field where you want the image to appear.
    2. Click the Insert Signature Picture link in the Signature Picture field

    Clicking the link inserts [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC] in the Edit Signature Field.

    So for instance this:

    My recent book:

    Looks like this:

    You can select the [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC] text in the Signature Field, then click the Link tool , and paste a URL or Web page address so that clicking on the image in a saved Signature would go to that site.

    The tags for that would look like:

    My recent book:

    Alternatively, for a book cover that goes to a link, you could use the Image tool instead of the special Signature Picture field, and link to an image stored on one of the image sites mentioned in the Image FAQ, like Flickr or Photobucket, or even your own site.

    That would look like this in terms of the text and tags:


    This is the best method to use for linking to more than one image in a sig.

    Deleting an Image from a Signature

    There are three steps:

    1. Edit the sig image tags [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC] from your signature; CP-->Edit Signature under Settings and Options on the left.
    2. Scroll down to Image Options and click the check box "Delete Current Image"
    3. Click Save Signature

    Disabling Signatures

    You can disable signatures on a per-post basis by un-ticking the 'Show Signature' checkbox when you compose your post.

    1. Click the Edit button on the post whose signature status you wish to change.
    2. Click Go Advanced.
    3. Scroll down to the Additional Options area of the Edit screen.
    4. Under Miscellaneous Options check the box to Show your signature.
    5. Uncheck the box to not show it on this particular post.
    6. Click Save Changes

    The Single Most Probable Cause of All Sig Problems

    You forgot to scroll down and click the Save Signature button.

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