30 December 2012

They Won't Contact You Either

[bypass this if blogging is not your thing...]

Posting information about your ancestors, either in online trees, websites, or blog posts, can be a good way to reach out and make other researchers aware of your interests. Many genealogists, myself included, suggest that researchers use blogs in particular as "cousin bait." Be advised that many people will run across your site and never ever contact you, no matter how specific the blog post or how how tempting the "bait."

They may even "use" your information without asking. This is a fact of life.

Occasionally I look at the Google searches that cause people to visit my site. Frankly, I generally worry very little about what people search for to get to my site. My interest really is in what posts generate the most traffic. That may not be wise from a marketing standpoint, but that's how I operate.

What is frustrating is to see that someone has searched for one of my ancestors specifically (using a complete name and village of birth), found my site, and never contacted me. It is even more frustrating when the ancestor is one on whom I know very little or one who has very few descendants. In the last case it makes me really wonder who was searching--particularly when the number of descendants hovers around fifty, most of whom are closely related.

Does this mean stop blogging?


I have made contact with relatives through my blog, some of whom I've now been in contact with for years and with whom I've exchanged quite a bit of information. And, writing about your research is always advised for a variety of reasons.

Just be advised that "cousin bait" won't generate immediate response and some times it won't generate any response. But it is worth the try.