Sunday, March 24, 2013

Keynote speakers Day 2 of Rootstech

Day two of Rootstech and there were two keynote speakers. The first was Jyl Pattee, who  was talking about the “WOW!” moments in our lives.  She was basically advocating a combination of Oral Histories, to capture other people’s “Wow” moments and writing down your own, so that all the memories will be captured for eternity. One really good idea she came up with is to capture the small moments when they occur in a blog.  This can become the basis for a book.  She entreated us not to wait til the end of the experience to record it as you won’t remember it all by then.
The second keynote speaker was Tim Sullivan, President and CEO of  He stressed that collaboration is the key to building your family history.  When you work with others you will achieve much more.  Naturally, he was advocating doing this by putting your family tree on Ancestry and then collaborating with people who find they match your tree.  He quoted one ancestry user who says that she “benefits from other people’s eyes looking at my tree and offering corrections”.  It forces her to get out her research, review it and make corrections.
So collaboration is absolutely key to success.  Ancestry try to create a space where beginners and experts can come together to work on their family history.  Then he made a shocking revelation: the trees on Ancestry are not always 100% accurate.  There are some mistakes. :) But ancestry thinks it is still worth those trees being there, as people can benefit from publishing their families and therefore getting the opportunity to correct their mistakes.
He also announced some new things that are coming to Ancestry.  The ones that we were told about were US based, but the audience was very excited to hear that US Probate records will be added (a collaboration with Familysearch).

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