This time I have to take issue with the current ‘hot story’ that is being thrown all about the Internet and fast becoming quoted as ‘fact’ by many outlets when it is far from it.
I am referring to the column that appeared recently on the site Mashable. You can find it on Dick Eastman’s Newsletter site and several other places. It is getting great ‘play’ and while I suppose that might be good for genealogy and family history in general, it is INACCURATE and it is MISLEADING. Needless to say these last two items are not good for genealogy, ancestry, and family history.
This article is rife with false information, errors, and more. Here are just a few of the items I found on my first look through this ‘genealogy’ article.
- It is totally a lie that professional contracts for genealogy research are all between ‘$2,000 to $5,000’ as the writer and company maintain. NO WAY! I know hundreds of individuals and dozens of researchers who have had contracts far below this inflated level. On a personal level I have had multiple contracts far below this level and only two in it, and those may have been ‘lifetime’ expenses. All I can guess is that the company wanted to end on as high a number as they could, but how do we know as they explain neither where they got that number nor their process for us.
- It is totally another lie that grave sites such as those listed, billiongraves, FindAGrave, and Legacy.com ‘collect death certificates’. They absolutely do NOT!
- The Facebook game, Family Village, is NOT genealogy. It is a game. Enjoy it all you want, have fun, etc, but do not think this is genealogy any more than Candy Crush gets you ready for life.
- Good, high quality, complete genealogy cannot be done totally for free as the NGS Board member believes. Inexpensively? Absolutely! But to do it right requires spending some money. I also find it irritating that someone from the National Genealogy Society‘s Board of Directors perpetrates this myth. Last time I checked it cost money to belong to NGS … I bet you can’t attending their conference in Las Vegas this month for free either — forked-tongue anyone?
I have yet to have my inquiry to the company that conducted the referenced survey, Global Industry Analysts, Inc, returned, but it is early and I will report whatever they have to say in response to my questions. I am especially interested in how they got the $2,000 to $5,000 price tag, how and how many folks participated in their survey and how they chose them.
Likewise I have also sent an inquiry to the author of the article, Jill Krasny and will post her responses as soon I get them.
Oh, and just for good measure, I also emailed Terry Koch-Bostic, the NGS Board Member, who is quoted in this article to see if she actually said what is attributed to her.
As they say …. watch this space!
When, and if, I get any responses I will post them here. I certainly hope folks do.
Onward To Our Past®