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Getting Started in LiveWhale Calendar

Looking to get a general overview of how LiveWhale Calendar is organized? Perfect—you’re in the right spot. We’ll be walking you through the LiveWhale Calendar interface as well as covering some of the basics like the toolbar, logging in, and the dashboard.

Questions we’ll answer in this guide include:

  • What does the front-end calendar look like and what visitors will see?
  • How do I log in?
  • What’s included in the Dashboard and how do I view events?
  • What are groups and how do I add users
  • Will I receive notifications from LiveWhale Calendar? 

The Front-end Calendar View

Before we log in and start looking at editing interfaces, let’s start with the front-end calendar that site visitors will see. Depending on your school’s theming and customizations, certain elements might be added, hidden, or rearranged, but most LiveWhale Calendars look similar to this out-of-the-box version:

Main LiveWhale Calendar page

On this main page area you’ll see things like:

  • The view selector – navigate between the different calendar views Day, Week, Month, and All Upcoming Events
  • Header – a large date header, previous and next buttons, and a jump menu
  • Calendar – the primary calendar event display

The sidebar area can include other tools like:

  • The mini-calendar – cycle through this interactive month view to easily find a particular date
  • Search box – basic keyword search tool
  • Subscribe link – an easy spot to grab RSS and iCal links for various calendar feeds
  • Event type (Categories, Audience, Campus) filters – clicking on any of these will give a filtered view of events with just those event types
  • Tag selector – selecting any of these will also give a filtered view of events with just those tags
  • Submit button – for accepting event submissions from your community (learn more info about event submissions)

Event List View

In most views when browsing and searching the calendar, visitors will see a simplified list view of all matching events. By default, each event will include title, time, location, summary, and image. These are customizable in the theming process. Clicking the event title will bring you to the event details view.

Event List view

Event Details View

Event details view Once you’ve clicked on an individual event title from the main calendar view you’ll be taken to the event details view. This is where any other details about your selected event are shown.

The main content area will show by default:

  • Your event summary, usually in a larger font
  • The rest of your event description, including any inline images and video
  • Event cost
  • Tags
  • RSVP form (if enabled)
  • Add to my calendar link to download an iCal file that can be imported into Google Calendar, Outlook, etc.

The event details sidebar includes:

  • The event image, or a link to a fullscreen slideshow if multiple images have been added
  • Location map
  • Online event link (if enabled)
  • Contact info
  • Social media sharing links


Note: Events with title/date only and no “beneath the fold” details may not have an event details page but will still appear in the main calendar views with no link.

Logging into LiveWhale

The login page for LiveWhale Calendar is almost always the URL of your calendar plus /livewhale/. So, if your calendar is located at calendar.yoursite.edu, you can log into LiveWhale at calendar.yoursite.edu/livewhale. Many schools choose to put an “Editor Login” link into their calendar theming, in the footer or elsewhere.

LiveWhale comes first installed with a default “password” mode, which allows you to create username/password pairs. However, most schools configure a connection to their single-sign-on (SSO) server, so calendar managers can log in using their normal credentials. In most cases, visiting the /livewhale/ login URL will first redirect you to your university SSO login page, and then back to LiveWhale upon a successful login.

More in the docs:

  • SSO setup
  • Using login links to show “Any logged-in user” events for non-editors

The LiveWhale Toolbar

Once you’re logged in, you’ll see the LiveWhale toolbar at the top of your browser. It will look like this: 

[screenshot of toolbar for LWC]

Across that toolbar you’ll see the following:

  • Your Group: brings you back to the editor tools
  • Your Events: brings you to your group’s event manager
  • Go to Calendar: brings you to the main calendar for your school, or your group’s calendar, if one is configured
  • + New: a button to take you directly to adding a new event at anytime
  • Toolbox (more on that later…) add anchor link down to that section
  • Hi {Name}: a link to your User Settings (there’s more info on that here; add anchor link down to that section) and a Log Out link

The Back-end of LiveWhale: The Dashboard

The Toolbox

The Toolbox contains your events, RSVPs, images, locations, and more. This section contains most of the links in the toolbar, plus more if you have the permissions to see them. Here’s what it looks like for a typical calendar user: 

[screenshot of the open Toolbox for an admin that contains all links]

Briefly go over Superpowers and Admin.

Groups, Users and Permissions

When you login, the first thing you’re going to see are events from your group. 

Groups are the main organizing principle of LiveWhale – you might think of groups as “buckets” of events, and the users that manage those events. One key idea is that in LiveWhale, everything is owned by a group: you as an individual user don’t “own” any events, images, tags, etc. This is so that even as new users arrive, change groups, or depart, there’s never going to be content that becomes inaccessible.

Groups tend to correspond to offices and departments on campus – Department of Biology, Department of Music, Student Services, Registrar – but also can sometimes correspond to special communications efforts, like the homepage or a “Featured Events” group.

When a user logs in to LiveWhale, they’ll see and be able to edit all the events in their group. Users can be a member of one or more groups. Administrators have access to every group.


User permission options fall into several levels for LiveWhale Calendar and include: Editor, Publisher, Curator and Administrator. More specific information about each of those levels can be found linked in our docs below.

Importing groups and users

You can import your groups and users all at once by creating a CSV file with specific formatting, and passing that file to us for back-end importing. We can also provide the formatting requirements and a starter spreadsheet if needed.

Group switching

If you have access to more than one group’s content in LiveWhale, you can click “Your Group:” in the toolbar and then switch groups by typing, using the arrow keys and pressing Enter, or clicking with the mouse.

[screenshot of the group switcher open]

More in the docs:

  • Group Settings
  • Setting top groups in the group switcher
  • Users
  • Permissions

User settings

To change your password (when you’re using LWC’s built-in authentication model), email address, or notification preferences, click the “User settings” link in the user menu at top left. There are some optional developer settings here as well.


Sharing and what does it mean to accept suggested events (email notifs, blue box, what it means to cross-list an event)

Searching and Filtering

in the back-end (default to upcoming “All Past Events”)

Bulk Actions

With Checked Items for bulk actions (hide/show, star/unstar, add/remove tags, move to group, share to group)

Email Notifications

We try to make it a habit not to send lots of notifications your way, but there are some instances where you may want to be notified of certain things. If you attach an email address to your LiveWhale user, LiveWhale will send you email notifications about activity you’ve asked to be notified of like: 

  • Event RSVP notifications
  • Suggested content to your group(s)
  • Bulletins (messages from administrators)

More in the docs:

  • Receiving Email Notifications
  • Customizing Notification Emails