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