links to mixed-content pages in Blackboard tabs?

<your name> Michael Yunkin michael.yunkin at UNLV.EDU
Wed Jun 25 14:18:38 EDT 2014

I would avoid asking users to make changes to their browser configuration -
that's a recipe for a poor user experience, and an indication that the
tools are inadequate for the task at hand.

It's never the users' responsibility to make our tools work properly.

(Also, we're struggling with the same problem right now. I imagine that
we'll either a) start serving our pages securely, or b) build a page
directly in Blackboard that links to our site and most important resources.
Serving the library website inside a frame doesn't thrill me anyway.)

-Michael Yunkin
Web Content Manager/Usability Specialist
UNLV Libraries
Las Vegas, NV

From:	"Chris R. Wieman" <c.wieman at USCIENCES.EDU>
Date:	06/25/2014 09:56 AM
Subject:	[WEB4LIB] links to mixed-content pages in Blackboard tabs?
Sent by:	Web technologies in libraries <WEB4LIB at LISTSERV.ND.EDU>


Following an update to Blackboard last fall, we began having a problem with
the Library tab on our Blackboard site (I administer the library site but
not Blackboard). The problem occurs when you open the library website from
within the Blackboard frame; although the exact symptoms vary by browser,
generally the main issues are 1) the library page doesn’t load and/or 2)
links which are not https won’t open. This occurs because Blackboard is now
a secure environment and doesn’t tolerate links within it that are not
https. It’s also caused by safety features in browsers which will not load
pages of mixed content. There are ways around this issue, but they require
the user to configure their browsers …so we’ve been treating this as
“educational issue” rather than a technical one, since the solution seems
to be out of our hands. That said, one easy way it could be fixed is to
configure the link within Blackboard so the Library site opens in a new
window/tab …however this can’t be done because the links that appear in the
Blackboard tabs can’t be set to do this.

I suspect we are not the only ones who have run into this problem. Has it
affected your institution? If so, did you find a workaround?

Thanks for your reads and replies. Best,

Chris Wieman
Information Science Instructor / Systems & Reference Librarian
J.W. England Library
University of the Sciences
600 S. 43rd St., Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: 215-596-8962 | Ref Desk: 215-596-8967
c.wieman at | Ask a Librarian |


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