Family Tree Magazine Opportunity For New Genealogy Bloggers

Family Tree Magazine Family Tree Firsts Blogger Contest

I want to point out an excellent and unique opportunity for those who are new to genealogy and family history and perhaps want to take a try at blogging about their journey.

Family Tree Magazine is holding a contest as part of Family History Month to be named FTM’s Family Tree Firsts Blogger. Basically, FTM is looking for someone who is new to researching their roots and who would like to document the process using a blog hosted by FTM. Besides writing about the victories as well as the frustrations of ancestor hunting, the winner gets access to Family Tree Magazine products and services including webinars as well as some “surprises” from FTM partners.

So if you know someone who you think would be a perfect fit for this mission, click here for more information.

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

Leveraging Meet Meme Cards in the Genealogy Community

Meet Meme Social Trading Cards

[Editor’s Note: over at my personal genealogy blog – Destination: Austin Family – I describe how I found Meet Meme and ordered my set of Personal Edition Cards]

So, if you are now familiar with the Meet Meme cards – what I call “business cards on social media steroids,” how could they be used by individual genealogists, groups such as GeneaBloggers as well as by genealogy events such as Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree and Family History Expos?

Here are some ideas – and I encourage any readers to help brainstorm ideas by entering info in the comments:

  • A professional genealogist could easily use these as business cards. The cards contain all pertinent data such as email, website URL and even Twitter information. These cards are multi-faceted in terms of the information they can convey.
  • A genealogy vendor could have the Meet Meme cards “branded” with their company information and hand them out at events such as conferences and expos.  In fact, the “collect ’em all” phrase could have new meaning: hold a contest where attendees have to meet all your staff and collect the cards to win a prize.
  • A genealogy event could have cards made for attendees in place of conference badges. Plus a conference could also offer the attendee the option of purchasing additional cards on their own.
  • Other ideas for events include using the Meet Meme cards for ice breakers as well as having a poster displaying all attendee cards.

While I could probably create my own business cards with all these social media “hooks,” Meet Meme has simplified the process.  They help you to pull info from the various social media sites that you already use. The Meet Meme cards also have fun features like “special powers” – in fact I can only think about the “special powers” that some of our members would list!

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Take a minute to read the post over at Destination: Austin Family and then contact Meet Meme at their site.  I know that I’m going to use the Meet Meme cards for future venues and I can’t wait to see the ideas that other genealogists come up with!

Disclaimer: I contacted Meet Meme about receiving a complimentary set of 40 Personal Edition Cards at no cost to me. This material connection had no effect on the outcome of the above product review and the review was performed based on the merits of the product. See Disclosure Statements for more information on the material connections I have with various genealogy and non-genealogy vendors.

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

Shaking the Family Tree – Shaken and Stirred!

Shaking the Family Tree

For weeks I had heard from my colleagues in the genealogy field about this “fantastic” book with genealogy as the main subject and by a woman with an “odd name.” Somehow I thought that footnoteMaven had finally written a comprehensive book about 19th century photography studios or about photos of women with glasses. Or perhaps it was a new tome by citation goddess Elizabeth Shown Mills under a nom de plume like I. Cites. Whatever it was, I knew I had to get my hands on a copy, based on the “buzz” the book was creating.

The Buzz

Well Buzzy is a better word – as in Buzzy Jackson, the author of Shaking the Family Tree – Blue Bloods, Black Sheep and Other Obsessions of an Accidental Genealogist. Jackson’s view of how a fairly innocent hobby like genealogy can become an obsession is not only accurate but she is also able to convey how many genealogists – both the hobbyist and the professional – feel about searching for family history.

When I told a non-genealogy friend about Shaking the Family Tree, she said, “Well I knew you were possessed by this genealogy thing. Now I just think you are possessed.” Why do I want to climb to the top of a tree and shout about this book? Because what Jackson has written is simply what I would sit down and tell someone who asks, “So what does genealogy involve? And why are genealogists so obsessed with it?”

The Journey

Buzzy Jackson’s journey which begins innocently with attending a local genealogical society meeting could be any genealogist’s journey. Over the course of the book readers not only find out more about Jackson’s own family, but how the process of searching for ancestors has changed thanks to the Internet as well as the availability of DNA testing. In fact, I was very impressed by the logical way in which Jackson described DNA testing and its genealogical uses – it is probably one of the best summaries on the subject that I’ve seen.

With humor as well as poignant details, Jackson has been able to encapsulate all the fascinates genealogists in an engaging book. Jackson covers it all: the brick walls, the genealogy research trips, the interviews with family members and more. With the holiday shopping season upon us, not only would this make a great gift for the genealogist in your life, but also for those who’ve expressed an interest and want to learn more about genealogy.

Got Genealogy?

Buzzy Jackson “gets” genealogy and understands its many aspects, its traditions and what the future holds for the industry. And luckily for us, she has been able to communicate the “pull” that genealogy can have on one’s life and she’s willing to share it in Shaking the Family Tree. Not only will readers be shaken but hopefully they’ll be stirred to start their own hunt for their ancestors. Then they’ll understand the life of the genealogy-obsessed.

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Disclaimer: I contacted Touchstone Books/Simon and Schuster about receiving a review copy of the book Shaking Your Family Tree at no cost in consideration of writing a review. This material connection had no effect on the outcome of the review and the review was performed based on the merits of the written work of the author. See Disclosure Statements for more information on the material connections I have with various genealogy and non-genealogy vendors.

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee