On Genealogy Snobbery

As occasionally happens, it appears that some people take not just exception at what we do here at GeneaBloggers but seem to take offense as well. And they go out of their way to stir things up, as it were.

It’s a free country (at least here in the United States where I sit now as I write this) and folks can say what they want and advocate what they want. Even when it comes to what is and isn’t genealogy. But since this is my platform, I want to make it clear what, in my opinion, we do here at GeneaBloggers:

  • We blog about our genealogy. We do so to expand the meaning of genealogy and the genealogical experience. We make genealogy accessible to everyone, even the beginner who might not “do it right” the first time or even every time. We encourage not discourage. We document our family history in various ways through blogging prompts. We commemorate celebrations and happy events as well as sad ones.
  • We don’t believe that genealogy is a field only accessible to a few. We don’t believe that you have to approach your family history from a certain perspective or a certain way. We don’t believe that you need to have a certain amount of education, a certification or a credential to write about your ancestors.
  • We tend to embrace populism over elitism. We often feel free to express our agreement or disagreement with others via comments or blog posts. We also offer encouragement and insights to others especially those new to genealogy and blogging. We are mature enough to understand that what might work for one person and their genealogy doesn’t necessarily work for us. And if it isn’t our cup of tea but others seem to be having fun with it, we don’t p*ss on their parade.

There aren’t many “thou shalt nots” here at GeneaBloggers.  We like people to be themselves, to be free and unfettered in discussing their own genealogy and family history and to do so in a safe and inviting environment, free of accusations or undue criticism. One thing we absolutely despise is snobbery.

Snobs abound even in genealogy. Some would ask why we should even pay attention to them. My only reason for pointing it out is more so for the new genealogy bloggers, that they should not be discouraged in any way from writing from the heart about their ancestors, their genealogy.

So when we ask folks to blog about Election Day or 9-11 or as we will for Veterans Day, they should feel comfortable doing so.

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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About Thomas MacEntee

What happens when a “tech guy” with a love for history gets laid off during The Great Recession of 2008? You get Thomas MacEntee, a genealogy professional who’s also a blogger, educator, author, social media connector, online community builder and more. Thomas was laid off after a 25-year career in the information technology field, so he started his own genealogy-related business called High Definition Genealogy. He also created an online community of over 3,000 family history bloggers known as GeneaBloggers. His most recent endeavor, Hack Genealogy, is an attempt to “re-purpose today’s technology for tomorrow’s genealogy.” Thomas describes himself as a lifelong learner with a background in a multitude of topics who has finally figured out what he does best: teach, inspire, instigate, and serve as a curator and go-to-guy for concept nurturing and inspiration. Thomas is a big believer in success, and that we all succeed when we help each other find success.

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