Here is Amy's latest challenge:
Dip your toe in the social networking pool. Genealogists are some of the friendliest people on the block. Networking with them by using “social” web sites will help your research and provide you with new friends. If you’ve never used social networking tools, this Social Networking in Plain English video by Common Craft is a good place to start. Picture the ways you can use social networking to meet and collaborate with other genealogists. Some of the more popular social networking sites are Facebook, Twitter and even Linked-In (though this site is more business-like in its purpose). You do not have to join these sites if you do not feel comfortable doing so, but you should at least know they exist and that they can benefit genealogy research. Those that are well-versed in social networking can refer others to the video. Bloggers are encouraged to discuss how they use various social networking sites in their own research.To be quite honest, I am not a social butterfly. I reserve that title for my aunt. Nonetheless, social networking is awesome. You can participate as much or as little as you want.
The main, "well known" social networking sites I use are Facebook and Twitter. All my blog posts are linked to both. I share other things on Facebook, too, so that status is updated more than Twitter. I might share a link to a cemetery in trouble or tell you what I had for dinner! I do not play a lot of "Facebook games" so those are not in my timeline much, but that doesn't stop me from being friends with others that do.
As for genealogy, Facebook and Twitter are the best ways to keep up with what's going on in the online community. Not only the industry, but with the friends I have discovered since joining. I've learned about new blogs to follow, free genealogy company trials, research resources, tips on breaking through a brick wall, organizing my research files, cemetery photography, and so much more. And, yes, I have even connected with new-found cousins, shared in their joys and sorrows, and even swapped Christmas cards. Research and daily life connect beautifully here.
I work with Twitter slightly less, simply because stuff happens so fast there. Unless I am involved in direct messages, I am usually behind on the conversation. I just don't access Twitter 24/7. I still like it, though. A search on "genealogy" or "cemetery" will flood you with lots of conversations to follow and/or join.
I am on Linked In, as well. It is very business oriented, and I have not found it to have a large genealogy community just yet.
I would like to point out something else. Just because you aren't on Facebook or Twitter doesn't mean you have never been involved with social networking. Ever posted a comment on a blog? Ever joined a conversation in an online forum? Ever done something as simple as rate an article? Even the slightest interaction is a form of social networking. In the footer of this blog is a retaggr card showing several ways to connect with me. Facebook and Twitter are only two. There are several other places mentioned. All have the ability to be a part of "social networking."
Interested in connecting with me? I'm here!
Facebook - SLincecum
Twitter - southerngraves
FindAGrave - Stephanie Lincecum
The Cemetery Club - Stephanie
Library Thing - southerngraves
YouTube - southerngraves
My other blogs:
Rose Hill Cemetery
Hope to "see" you soon, whenever and wherever that might be.