How transport pressure groups can use FixMyTransport

Cambridge Cycling Campaign's FixMyTransport page


FixMyTransport gives individual passengers the tools they need to get their problems heard.

But the site can also be effective for transport pressure groups and campaigns, and we are very happy to see it being used in that way.

Here are some ideas for how transport groups can use FixMyTransport.

Create a profile for your group

betterbuses logoA profile doesn’t have to belong to a person – it can represent your group instead. See, for example, the profile page for Glasgow’s Better Buses campaign.

They have used their logo as a userpic. Their profile page gives more information about the campaign, a URL for their website, their Twitter handle, and a list of the FixMyTransport campaigns they support.

If you’re a smaller group and you don’t have your own website, this page could even act as your sole web presence.

Find people who share your concerns

FixMyTransport may already contain reports about the issues you care about. Here’s how to find out:

  • Go to our Browse Issues page, and input your postcode, town or area (or click ‘use my current location’).

Select location on FixMyTransport

  • This will take you to a page with a list of all reports made in that area, and a map.
  • Use the blue controls at the top left corner of the map to zoom in or out, until you can only see the area you campaign within. The list of problem reports will change to reflect the area covered on the map.

List of Manchester issues on FixMyTransport

  • From that page, click on each report’s title to read it.

Once you have a FixMyTransport profile for your group, you can use it to leave a comment on any relevant FixMyTransport problem report. Feel free to link to your site if you think your campaign can help our user.

Subscribe to our feeds

See our recent blog post on how to follow the routes or stops that matter to you. By subscribing, you can be alerted to relevant campaigns as they arise – and comment on them where it’s helpful.

You can also use the same technology to feed local problems onto your website: see Lichfield Live for an example: FixMyTransport issues within Lichfield are fed into the right hand column of that page. They’ve written a blog post to explain how to do that, if your site is built on WordPress.

Set up your own campaign page

If you can’t find any relevant reports, why not create your own FixMyTransport campaign page?

For maximum effect, we recommend focusing on a single issue. Make your request clear, and remember that visitors to the site may not know the background, so explain the relevant issues. Also include a call to action – explicitly ask them to join your campaign by clicking the big green ‘join’ button at the top of your page.

Once you’ve created your FixMyTransport campaign, you can tap into all the site’s functionality for spreading the word via social media, inviting comments, and escalating problems to people who can help, like local councillors and transport watchdogs.

Don’t forget to announce the URL via all your usual channels – your own website, your newsletter, etc (NB, if your URL is rather unwieldy, you may wish to use a URL-shortening service such as Tinyurl.com).


An example of a pressure group using FixMyTransport

The image at the top of this post shows the Cambridge Cycling Campaign’s page on FixMyTransport: it has the most supporters of any of our reports to date (253 at the time of writing). They are protesting about the lack of cycle parking at Cambridge railway station.

The group have used FixMyTransport to the full:

  • They’ve added several photographs to show the problem graphically. A picture speaks a thousand words!
  • They’ve stuck to one issue, and explained it clearly.
  • They then spread the word, via their newsletter, website, Twitter and Facebook.
  • Each time anyone comments on the page, their update is emailed to every supporter. These emails act as a reminder to supporters, and keeps them coming back.
  • When progress is made outside FixMyTransport, it is reported in the comments too, to keep everyone updated.

If you’re a transport group who would like further help or guidance as to how to use FixMyTransport, just drop us a line.

Now you can subscribe to new report alerts for operators, areas, routes and stops

Blue Streaks by Steve Webel

One of the most-requested features for FixMyTransport has been the ability to track a specific route or area. We’re extremely happy to report that you can now do just that, with our introduction of Atom feeds. Subscribe to a feed, and you’ll be notified of new transport problem reports when they occur near you, or on a route you care about.

In fact, you can now track not just routes and map areas, but specific operators, stops and stations too. We’re hopeful that this will help build communities around shared services.

Subscribe to your commuter route, for example, and you’ll not only be the first to know when a problem has arisen, but you’ll also be able to join the campaign and communicate with your fellow passengers on FixMyTransport.

Or you might want to track all issues in your town or local area. Here’s how:

1. Start by searching for your local area: click here.

Select location on FixMyTransport

2. Use the map controls (circled below) to zoom in or out, pan, or scroll until the map covers the area you’re interested in.

FixMyTransport map controls

3. Find the orange feed icon at the top of the relevant list: feed Right-click on ‘Get updates on issues on and around this map’,  and select ‘Copy shortcut’ (in Internet Explorer) or ‘Copy link location’ (in Firefox). This will give you the URL to paste into your feed reader.

save the feed url

Don’t use a Reader? Some popular ones are Google Reader, Bloglines, and FeedDemon.

Here are some examples of pages with the new feed capability:

If you run a website, you can now also feed content directly to it. We think it’s ideal for local community sites, commuter and transport pressure groups, or any other site with a focus on transport. Just drop us a line on team@fixmytransport.com if you’d like some help.

EDITED TO ADD: Lichfield Community media have now written a great post to explain how to add a FixMyTransport feed to a WordPress site.


Image by Steve Webel, used with thanks.