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Slides of Bifhsgo presentation, March 12, 2011

Slides of Bifhsgo presentation, March 12, 2011



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    Bifhsgo Bifhsgo Presentation Transcript

    • Social Networking and Genealogy
      Marian Press
      BIFHSGO March 12, 2011
    • What is Social Networking?
      “Interaction between a group of people who share a common interest.” (Wictionary)
      Different kinds of social networking online, some using new web technologies
      some non-genealogical but used by genealogists
      some developed specifically with genealogists in mind
    • Why Social Network?
      Anything that helps build more family history contacts good
      Genealogists “do” collaboration well
      Social networking isn’t new
      Earlier form – mailing lists and message boards
      Rootsweb mailing lists; Ancestry message boards
      Still active, still useful
      Have been enhanced by modern technology: e.g., Google searches posts on message boards
    • What Will Be Discussed Today
      Blogs and wikis
      Social networking sites genealogists can take advantage of
      Flickr, Facebook, Twitter, Delicious
      Traditional genealogy sites that have added social networking features
      Ancestry, Footnote, Genes Reunited, Lost Cousins,,
      Social Networking Sites Designed for Genealogists
      GenealogyWise,, WikiTree
    • The Technology Around Social Networking
      Web 2.0: Second generation of the web
      Collaborative, dynamic, open, social, content created by users
      Tags - keyword(s) describing photos, etc.
      RSS - lets you know when a web page is updated
    • Flickr – Photo Sharing
      Photosharing - just what it sounds like
      Individuals and organizations share photos
      e.g, National Library of Scotland
      Photos can be made public or private
      Can add “tags” to help others find your content and contact you
      Find pictures of ancestral villages, churches, etc.
      Very effective photo back-up system
    • Social Bookmarking
      Delicious (
      store & share your favourite web bookmarks
      find others bookmarking similar sites (
      share blog posts, articles and news
      genealogy and family history specific
    • Blogs
      Probably the most well known and most used by genealogists
      Chronologically-arranged web pages
      Genealogists use for news/updates and sharing family research
      Easy to read: Google Reader, iGoogle, Bloglines
      Easy to build: Blogger
      Easy to find: Genealogy Blog Finder
    • Building Your Own Family Blog
      Very easy to do using a site like Blogger
      Think of a blog as possible substitute for web site
      Don’t have to wait till your family research is complete to build it
      Very useful way to keep family up-to-date on what you are doing
    • Twitter:
      A free social networking and micro-blogging service
      Exchange quick, frequent messages called “tweets”
      140 characters maximum
      “Tweet” can be used to advertise and lead to a blog posting, archives’ activities, etc.
      Can search for a word being tweeted –use a hash tag (#) for real relevance
      Genealogists, archives, and libraries are here
      Recently much tweeting from Rootstech 2011
    • Wikis
      A web site that allows users to add and edit content collectively
      Wiki is the Hawaiian word for “fast”
      Can create you own wiki or contribute to an established wiki
      If you don’t like anyone changing/editing your work, maybe not for you!
    • Types of Wikis
      Informational wikis
      general subject wikis – like Wikipedia:
      general genealogical wikis
      subject/society wikis
      GEDCOM wikis
      Personal family wikis
    • Genealogy Wikis
      Sponsored by Foundation for On-Line Genealogy, Inc. and Allen County Public Library
      Uses wiki technology to build collaborative family trees
      Can build a page for each ancestor
      Can create profile, upload GEDCOMs
      A wiki page built for each family member and a family page for each family
      Need an account to Edit pages
    • Wikitree:
      Begun in 2008 by Chris Whitten (creator of WikiAnswers)
      Very similar to WeRelate
      Wiki page created for each person
      Need to get permission from “profile manager” for each person to make changes
      Theory is to have one wiki profile page for each ancestor in the world
    • “Hard-Core” Social Networking
      Facebook (
      new specialized genealogy social networking site, recently purchased by National Institute for Genealogical Studies
    • Facebookwww.
      A social networking site – 585 million users
      High rate of Canadian participation
      U.K. second highest users after U.S.
      Genealogy really taking off in Facebook
      family tree applications
      genealogy society and interest groups
      library groups and catalogue applications
      can look for unusual surnames
    • Social/Collaborative Tree Building
      Allow groups to build trees together
      Searchable so others can find you
      Some emphasize tree building; some collaboration and networking
      Have privacy controls
      Numbers of different sites growing fast
      Advertise huge numbers of trees/individuals
      Most still in “beta” – many have shut down
      Very U.S. centric to date
    • Collaborative Tree Sites
    • Traditional Genealogy Sites with Social Networking Features
      Most successful so far are the “hubs” or “magnets” for genealogists
      Databases and other records provide added value
      Are rapidly adding networking features for family trees and for records
      Ancestry, Footnote, GenesReunited, etc.
    • Finding Out More