Wednesday, August 21, 2013

What did you learn today?

It didn't take very long today to find "what did you learn today?". As soon as I dropped my stuff in my room at the Hilton and connected to the internet, I received an email from Bill Priest, a fellow board member of the Lucas County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society. Subject: Our chapter needs a Facebook account. I agree.

We spent the rest of the afternoon learning about the value of social media as it applies to today's genealogical societies. Basically, it is our lifeline. This is the way people connect today and it is a valuable tool that has so many benefits. 

I was reminded about my own personal Facebook account. I have connected with old friends and cousins I haven't talked to in 20 to 40 years. If I could do that, just think of what a local society with 50 to 100 members could do on Facebook. All those surnames. All those family bibles. All those photos. All those family rumors. All those possible connections between cousins and friends centered in a specific location. 

Next I thought about those genealogy society meetings that some of us attended before the internet influence on family research. We got together at a local library or church to socialize, search for family members and learn about records that were available. Research was based on correspondence and research trips.

We all got together. In person!

We can still all get together. On line! Only now we can include the members who don't live in our area.

I think it is time to realize that Granny has built a bridge to the 21st Century and we can have virtual genealogy societies on Facebook with amazing results. Very few of us gray-haired genealogists need our grandchildren to print out our society newsletters for us anymore. We can navigate the internet pretty well on our own. 

What did we learn today?  We need to integrate social media into our genealogy societies in order to survive.

No comments:

Post a Comment