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30 October 2014

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Social Media for Family Historians, 2nd edition

The second edition of my book,¬†Social Media for Family Historians, is now out.¬†It explains what social media is; what use it is; and introduces you to more than 25 social media sites that can help family historians to communicate, share and collaborate with other family historians and with their own families. It has been expanded and updated, with some sites removed that I no longer consider useful, and new ones added, such as Google+. The section on getting started with Facebook in … [Read more...]

Can Google+ replace Facebook and Twitter?

I've been playing with Google+ for a few days now, and I've had some time to experiment and to see how others in my circles are reacting to it. Most seem to be using it as a substitute for Facebook - posting to a limited audience in their own circles. Many of them like that you can more easily post about specific subjects to specific people, a capability that Facebook has but hides very well. The more public figures - developers and power-bloggers, for example, are making everything … [Read more...]

First look at Google+

Google+ is Google's new experiment in the world of social networks. I say 'experiment' because it is only in limited release; you have to wait for someone to be able to invite you, and then you have to accept the invitation during one of the brief, unpredictable periods when new members are being accepted. I also call it an 'experiment' because Google have tried something similar before. It was called Google Wave and it didn't catch on. Google Wave was removed from circulation. It is … [Read more...]

Ask Archivists!

Today was Ask Archivists Day. In much of the world it still is, Australia being ahead of most of the rest of the world. It was/is a great opportunity to ask an archivist a question and have it answered. The hashtag to use is #AskArchivists. You don't have to be a member of Twitter to read the conversation; only if you want to ask a question. Questions were varied, from very broad, such as 'what does an archivist do?' to quite specific. I asked the National Archives of Australia (@naagovau) a … [Read more...]

Family history societies using social media

I have written previously about how family history societies can use social media and why I think they should. Social media is a great way to connect with people and let them know what you offer, especially people you may not otherwise reach. I would love to start a list of societies that use social media - Facebook, Twitter, a blog, Flickr, YouTube, and so on - and put it on this site somewhere. Currently the list is so small that it seems almost counter-productive, but I am willing to try … [Read more...]

Twitter for family historians

What is Twitter? Twitter is what is known as a microblog. You can send and receive messages, called tweets. A tweet can be a maximum of 140 characters. Tweets can be seen, and searched, by everyone unless you restrict them only to your friends. You can search for messages by a single person, by a word or phrase, or by a topic or hashtag, which is word, often abbreviated, with a # in the front of it. A tweet you particularly like can be retweeted to your followers. Tweets can include … [Read more...]

Social Media for Family History Societies

A lot of large companies and organisations are using social media to attract new customers and members, and to keep in touch with the ones they have. Those that don't are learning how to do so. I think small volunteer organisations like family history societies should do the same. It is even more important for societies to use low-cost ways of reaching people that cost little more than the time of a regular volunteer or two. Most family history societies have at least a basic website so … [Read more...]

Social Media for Family Historians

My first book,¬†Social Media for Family Historians, was published in late 2010 by¬†Unlock The Past. It explains what social media is; what use it is; and introduces you to more than 25 social media sites that can help family historians to communicate, share and collaborate with other family historians and with their own families. It covers new ways to communicate such as Sykpe and SecondLife; social networking sites such as Facebook and GenealogyWise; blogs and microblogs such as Twitter; sites … [Read more...]

Follow an archive day on Twitter

Today is Follow An Archive day on Twitter. Twitter users around the world are tweeting about their favourite archives, and archives around the world are tweeting about themselves, using the hashtag #followanarchive. I've learned about a lot of archives I didn't know about, and a lot that I did know about but didn't know they used Twitter. Here are a couple of examples: @BaselineLPMA ¬†NSW Land and Property Management Authority Heritage Information website at http://www.baseline.nsw.gov.au, … [Read more...]