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What's new in September 2021 (v1.24)

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OpenCities Product Team

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More accessible sites for every community

OpenCities is dedicated to supporting cities to make their digital content and services accessible and usable by everyone. As part of our ongoing commitment, we are continually reviewing and including accessibility improvements that apply to all OpenCities sites. In this release we have included updates which support more consistent keyboard navigation, enhanced mark-up for screen reader accuracy, and smarter loading for low-bandwidth connections.

Learn more about how OpenCities makes governments accessible to citizens


Enhanced security controls for your sites with the Content Security Policy

We are regularly reviewing and testing our sites to proactively enhance security capabilities. Based on the latest recommendations, we have included a new security HTTP response header, Content Security Policy (CSP). The CSP header allows you to control how resources on your sites are loaded such as JavaScript and CSS, among others. The CSP header is used to reduce common attacks like cross site scripting, man in the middle and click-jacking.

Learn more about enabling and configuring the CSP security header


New capabilities in Themes Management and Site Settings

Site Designers will be able to view more contextual information at a glance, and take bulk actions like removing unused themes with the new Themes Management list view. When working on multiple themes, it's now possible to open them across multiple tabs, and when editing a theme, users can now filter, edit and download assets under the files tab.

Site Managers can now set and manage 404 and other error page paths separately in Site Settings, to create more useful pages for residents who haven’t reached their intended destination. A new ability to prevent pages being moved above the Homepage in the site tree has also been added. 


​​60+ bug fixes and continuous improvements

See the full list below of accessibility and security enhancements, bug fixes, and upcoming deprecations in our latest changelog.



OpenCities Changelog 

Detailed overview to learn about changes to OpenCities in v1.24


Accessibility Enhancements

Low-bandwidth connections

  • Audio and video tags on pages have been updated to include preload=none

Screen reader accuracy

  • Improved tabbed content interactions for screen readers, hidden text added via the visuallyhidden class to inform screen reader users about the functionality of the selector links 
  • Enhancements to header hierarchy in sidebars, header structures updated to consistently output as <h2>
  • Removed <ul> tag from feedback form error message when no error label generated 
  • Added role=”listitem” in div tag for content list generated items 
  • On event listings, selecting the heading above text field now also highlights the text field 
  • Removed duplicate ‘defer’ attribute in homepage element 

Keyboard navigation

  • Skip to main content is the first tab target even when notifications / announcements are present 
  • Resolved an issue where language option selection was not being honoured and translated by Google Translate when Imperva is enabled
  • All top level navigation menus are dismissible by keyboard even when mouse hover is active
  • Resolved an issue where the close button was not working as expected on right menu for mobile devices
  • Separate header element containers now wrapped in one <header> element 
  • Separate footer element containers now wrapped in one <footer> element 


Security Enhancements

CSP Security header

  • Added a new screen in the config to manage the Content Security Policy response header including listening mode, edit mode, and an interface for resolving conflicts


  • Added new API authentication method aside from HMAC (authentication:basic)


Upcoming Deprecations + Breaking Changes

Flash player

  • Support for Flash player will be deprecated in an upcoming release
  • This may be a breaking change for a small number of uncommon implementations


  • Themes will support the latest version of JQuery in an upcoming release
  • This may be a breaking change for some theme implementations where custom JQuery has been used
  • This change will only be enabled by default for new themes, and existing themes will be able to transition manually as needed

Azure AD Graph API

  • Microsoft will be deprecating Azure AD Graph API in early 2022 in favor of Microsoft Graph API
  • We will updating our external user management feature to ensure continued support in an upcoming release
  • We will be supporting a staged rollout to transition to the new API before this becomes a breaking change


Content Types and Templates

All content types

  • Resolved an issue where  ‘Open in New Window’ controls were not always redirecting users to an internal or external link in a new window or tab in some contexts
  • Enabled native HTML5 support for video playback controls, replacing Flowplayer

OC Events

  • Resolved an issue of sidebars not appearing when an event is listed as free
  • Latitude and Longitude is now calculated automatically based on the address for simpler pin positioning on maps
  • Resolved a filter error for OC Event categories where selecting ‘Don’t match Selected (All)’ was not displaying the expected categories in the filter

OC Staff Profiles

  • Resolved an issue where some fields in staff details were not saving content correctly


Content Editing and Publishing

Page Overviews

  • A more helpful error message ‘Please ensure that you fill out the page title field’ now appears correctly if left blank and the user hits submit or publish


  • Resolved an issue where the accordion configuration green image failed to convert to accordion on save
  • Resolved an issue of no feed displaying for Twitter feed when plugin > 'Social feed-public-OpenCities Feed 1' added and published to page
  • Resolved an issue when adding a standard form and selecting image map editor and displayed files from the server when user is choosing to change image
  • Resolved an issue of background images selected in Advanced table editor not populating in ‘Back image’ textbox 

 Page Settings

  • Checkbox behaviour for ‘Hide this page from external search’ now adds a record to robots.txt configuration, and adds a response header and content meta tag to the page
  • Removed user agent check to always output response header from ‘Hide this page from external search’
  • Tooltip added to ‘Hide this page from external search’, to indicate changes made to parent page apply to child pages
  • Inline notification now appears if page setting control is overridden by a parent page


Site Administration

Site Settings

  • Added the ability to lock the position of the homepage to the top of your site tree to prevent it being replaced
  • Added the ability to configure and customize the page displayed to residents when they an unhandled exception occurs
  • If no page path is set, a new default template for 404-error page and unhandled exception error page will be generated and applied to the config 

My Area + Waste Management

  • Resolved an issue where the correct date format was not being honored when importing waste services addresses from CSV/XSLS files 
  • Added the ability to delete old schedules where no addresses are utilizing them


  • Resolved an issue that caused the engagement tab to not be editable in workflow content screen
  • For new installations, changed the default setting for page author approval notification to not skip
  • For new installations, changed the default setting for default approver notifications

User Management

  • Resolved issue for OKTA users having to log in even when already logged in to an active session

Themes Management

  • Moved and redesigned the ‘Create theme’ and ‘Import theme’ button for better usability when handling a large number of themes
  • Added a new list view for themes in standard or MyCity tab with toggle control
  • Changed link behavior so that themes can be opened across multiple tabs
  • Updated titles for theme tabs to be more descriptive
  • Added the ability to take a bulk action to delete themes 
  • Performance improvements with faster loading of tabs in theme editing
  • Theme files now display a relevant icon when listed under the Files tab
  • Search filter added to the theme files tab
  • Reposition of ‘Add Files’ button to the top of files tab page
  • Files can now be edited, downloaded, and closed in the preview panel under the Files tab
  • Toggle the transparency styles of the background of SVG and PNG files in the preview panel to more easily view images with transparencies
  • Larger upload zone when uploading new files to the theme files tab
  • Improved save prompt model appears after editing files in the CSS / JS tab if the user forgets to hit save before navigating to a new file
  • Previously edited position in the CSS / JS codeblock remembered on save for next visit
  • UI updates to ‘Preview theme’ button drop down, dot appears next to the last site you previewed the theme with
  • ‘Copy’ in a theme automatically generates a duplicate of the theme, you can navigate to the copy by selecting the link in the success toast notification


Premium Modules and Connectors


  • Adjustment to correct alignment for bullet points and social media icon links
  • Resolved issue that caused multiple submissions when user clicked submit multiple times for User Generated Content (UGC)
  • Resolved an issue where UGC created a new WIP version every time user clicked save
  • Resolved a TypeError issue when selecting menu options in MyCity 
  • Resolved an issue where event date and time picker were missing from pop up on first load 
  • Resolved an error when using a Facebook account to sign in to MyCity


  • Synchronised events created in Eventbrite that span across multiple days are now matching the date and time range in Eventbrite
  • Eventbrite connector now syncs events that are already in progress to OpenCities after the initial configuration
  • Resolved an issue where Eventbrite event page templates were reset on the next sync
  • Changed behaviour of workflow emails to trigger on first sync after update to an event, not on every sync
  • Eventbrite events that have moved online now drop the physical location on next sync
  • Added the ability to nominate a default page template for events synced from Eventbrite
  • Organiser URL link no longer syncs to avoid customers sending emails to the generic account
  • Eventbrite synced events are now searchable in listing by date and suburb, even if they are added to child OC Event location pages

ATDW (beta)

  • Resolved issue of website link using owningOrganisationName to product name on sync instead
  • Added the ability to configure the template applied to OC Accommodation and OC Tourist attraction content types on sync
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