GeneaBloggers – Our 3rd Blogiversary

GeneaBloggers 3rd Birthday

And then, we were three.  Where does the time go?  It seems like only yesterday I started GeneaBloggers with a listing of 400 genealogy and family history blogs. Well, we are celebrating our 3rd blogiversary today so here’s a gift for you: a brief history of GeneaBloggers.

GeneaBloggers History

GeneaBloggers is an online community resource listing over 2,000 genealogy and family history blogs all over the world. Blogs are listed when they are submitted by the owner of the blog or by one of their readers. The only qualification is that the blog have current articles and that it be focused on genealogy and family history.

Why Blogs?

Well very often as genealogists we need a way to write the stories of our ancestors and to write our own stories about how we found them.  Each day there are close to 500 articles created by our members who write up their research finds, post photos and documents, share the latest resources (online and offline), publicize webinars and events and generally just share their infectious enthusiasm for genealogy and family history.

Facts and Figures About GeneaBloggers

GeneaBloggers was started on January 18, 2009 by Thomas MacEntee, a professional genealogist, author and educator who realized the need for a community of genealogy bloggers.  In those 3 years, the site has grown to include over 2,000 blogs from all over the world.

In addition there have been over 2,400 different articles posted at GeneaBloggers with over 11,000 comments made by readers to those articles. And the GeneaBloggers site has so far seen almost 6 million visitors including those reading via RSS feed readers like Google Reader.

How Can You Use the Resources at GeneaBloggers?

Even if you don’t have your own blog, you can search for your surnames across all 2,000 blogs by clicking Search All Blogs at the top of the page. Also, check out Blog Resources which lists over 500 links to sites about backing up your genealogy data, cheat sheets for Facebook and other programs, and more.

If you are a blogger, click Suggest A Blog to submit your blog to be included at the GeneaBloggers site.  In addition, check out the About page for info on how to participate in various GeneaBloggers events such as the Daily Blogging Prompts.

And Radio Too?

That’s right! GeneaBloggers has its own Internet-based radio show called GeneaBloggers Radio each Friday evening at 8pm Central on BlogTalkRadio.  You listen to the episode on your computer (with speakers or headphones) and you can even access a chat board and interact with over 100 other listeners while the show is airing. Guests and topics cover every aspect of genealogy from education to vital records!  All episodes are available for download at the BlogTalkRadio site or on Apple iTunes and make for a fun way to “listen” to genealogy information while exercising or commuting.  After almost 1 year and over 50 episodes with close to 40,000 listeners around the world, GeneaBloggers Radio has added a new dimension to the genealogy experience.

[Note: readers are encouraged to pass the above information on to their genealogy societies for use in newsletters, etc. so others can benefit from the resources at GeneaBloggers.  In addition, bloggers can use the information (in part or in whole) on their own sites to help get the word out about GeneaBloggers.]  

©2012, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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How To Blackout Your Blog for SOPA

sopa blackout sample

If you followed our previous post here at GeneaBloggers about the SOPA blackout, you might be wondering how you can participate and either go for a total blackout on your site or add a “Stop SOPA” ribbon. Here are some resources:

General

Blogger

  • SOPA Blackout Template at http://sopa-blackout-template.blogspot.com/ has a javascript code (scroll down to the bottom) to be added to your blog’s HTML template right before the “head” end tag.  Take a look at one of my minor blogs – Grandma Austin’s Diaries – to see what the end result will look like . . . not only a blackout but some useful resources.The code:

    <script>
    window.location = &quot;http://sopa-blackout-template.blogspot.com/&quot;;
    </script>

    Here is how the code looks on my blog template . . . you must go to Design, click on Edit HTML and scroll down to just before the </head> tag (click to embiggen):

    SOPA blackout blogger code

  • BloggerMint SOPA Ribbon at http://www.bloggermint.com/2012/01/stop-sopa-ribbon-for-blogger/ has a ribbon that appears on your Blogger blog instead of a total blackout.

WordPress

WARNING

Please be sure you know the resources you are using and the sites to which you are linking during the blackout.  This is an opportunity ripe for scammers – don’t fall prey to something that looks neat and might cause problems for your site or accounts tomorrow!

©2012, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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Genealogy Bloggers – Are Your Joining The SOPA Blackout?

Stop SOPA

If you haven’t been following the issue of SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) here in the United States, you might be surprised when you visit your favorite website tomorrow, Wednesday, January 18, 2012, and find it “blacked out.”

Today Wikipedia announced that it is moving forward with a blackout of its sites, based on a survey of its members. Even though one of the most discussed provisions of SOPA has been removed, there is another piece of legislation (PIPA) about which to be concerned.

Piracy vs. Personal Freedoms

[WARNING: Personal opinion ahead!] I am very concerned about both SOPA and PIPA and any legislation here in the US to regulate the Internet.  I believe I understand the issues involved with piracy. I continue to be an advocate for responsible intellectual property usage in the genealogy community.  However, the draconian and even Machiavellian provisions in these pieces of legislation are the typical knee-jerk reaction that we’ve seen with our government representatives especially in the field of vital records access.

I am not willing to sacrifice my ability to access the Internet and to host my own little piece of that place just because corporations can’t build a better mousetrap when it comes to digital access and because they are too lazy to propose effective legislation.

There will always be ways “around” any wall put up as to Internet access.  Even with some of the SOPA provisions, if you knew the IP address for a website that was blocked, you could gain access.  However, access should not become the right of those with the technical knowledge.  I fear for the everyday user who doesn’t  have this knowledge, nor should it be required.

Will You Blackout?

I’m not straddling the fence about blacking out here at GeneaBloggers.  Right now I am 80% certain I will black out all my sites on Wednesday.  A day off the Internet might just be good for many of us and make us think about the issues.  Even though it is GeneaBloggers’ 3rd blogiversary, I think the issue of a free Internet are too important.

If you want to blackout your site as well, here are some resources:

©2012, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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