Open Thread Thursday: Tweeting and Blogging at Genealogy Conferences

Dead Twitter

Having returned from a week in Knoxville where many genealogy bloggers attended the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ Annual Conference from August 18 to August 21, 2010, some interesting issues come up involving social media and genealogy conferences. In addition, some bloggers also attended the Association of Professional Genealogists Professional Management Conference on Tuesday, August 17, 2010 also in Knoxville where the same issues arose.

During several sessions, presenters or those introducing the presenters, stated that blogging and/or tweeting of sessions was prohibited. Neither event had a prepared social media policy in place and printed in the program.

Over the past two years, as genealogists and family historians have realized the value of social media in relation to their research and the ability to connect with others, practices such as tweeting and live blogging at genealogy conferences has increased as well.  However, when compared to other types of conferences, the genealogy industry lags far behind the use of social media.

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For our Open Thread Thursday, please comment on these issues:

  • If you did not attend #fgs10 last week, did you follow along via blog posts and/or tweets on Twitter?
  • If you attended #fgs10 last week, what are your thoughts on banning social media at genealogy conferences? What about the lack of a clear social media policy?
  • Do you think that conferences benefit from the increased exposure if they allow social media use during sessions?
  • Why do you think some presenters won’t allow the use of social media during their sessions? Disruptive to other participants? Fear of having presentation content copied?

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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