Tuesday, December 14th, 2010 05:34 pm
I used to be on Facebook. One of my sisters ragged me about it for so long, I caved.

I almost instantly regretted it.

I am a writer. I do not write in sound bites that fit on the wall.

So I always ran out of characters before I ran out of something to say.

Then, the little wet-behind-the-ears Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, declared that privacy was no longer a "social norm," and that was all I needed to deep-six Facebook.

And yet, many of the bloggers I follow are on Facebook. Even when they post that they don't really like it.

So I want to know...is there an advantage from a genealogical perspective to being on Facebook?

I frankly do not have any desire to re-connect with people with whom I attended grade school. I don't play games, or send cyber-gifts to people.

But, for those who have done it, is there a benefit to creating a surname or family page on Facebook? Have you made connections that helped with your research?
(Anonymous)
Tuesday, December 14th, 2010 11:45 pm (UTC)
I guess I am biased to using Facebook since I've developed a class called Facebook for Genealogists. I focus mainly on privacy and let attendees know that it isn't just Facebook - as a user, when you provide info, you have a responsibility to read the Terms of Services of that site and understand what they are doing with that data. I do agree that Facebook's approach has not always been to be upfront with its users.

However, I've seen many genealogists and family historians use Facebook in a very focused manner: queries, lookups, recommendations on sources and software, surname searches, etc. This is what I tell folks - forget the games, the apps, the pokes. Stay focused and Facebook can help you with your genealogy.

Thomas MacEntee