Blog Awards – Consider the Source


It appears that blog award season is upon us, at least according to one website which has no interest in genealogy yet insists on handing out awards to what it feels are “top genealogy blogs.” We have no doubt that many of the recipients do have great genealogy blogs yet we caution anyone who has received an email about an award, to consider the source of the award.

You should use the same critical view toward any blog award as you would a source for your genealogy research: is the source legitimate? is the source the most representative one in its field? are there more reputable sources? would using such a source bolster or hinder the reputation of your research?

The recent award given by Online Colleges and Universities seemed legit to the point of actually creating an award badge and sending recipients the handy code to embed the badge via email.  In doing so, you were in essence placing a link to Online Colleges and Universities on your site so that they could try and improve their search ranking.

The site (for which, as you can see, I’ve decided not to create a link) is not involved in genealogy but as Louis Kessler of Behold Genealogy has pointed out so well, has created a series of “top blog” awards so that it can get “link juice” from the award recipient sites. If you’ve received an email from Online Colleges and Universities you may want to think twice about posting the award badge.

Awards from the genealogy industry and from within our own genealogy blogging community are made to recognize those who have produced superior content and not given in exchange for something such as a link exchange with another site.

©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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