1) On Samples of Essential Reports for Genealogists (posted 28 May 2012):
* Becky Wiseman commented:
"... it was an awesome presentation as were the other three with her (and the four with Tom Jones)! One of the things that I took away from that session is that Elizabeth Shown Mills types up a complete research report using a Word Processor. She does not enter any data (or the research report) into Roots Magic until after the research report using the Word Processor is complete. She then copies the info from the word processor and pastes it into the Research Report in Roots Magic."
My comments: I knew that I must be doing something wrong...I have been putting my research results into my Notes as I collect them, and entering the Event evidence as I collect it, with Source citations. My practice over the years has been to put "too much" into the Notes (with embedded source citations - not always complete!) and sort it out when I need to write it up in a word processor. In order to use the "Research Note Report" in RootsMagic 5, I've had to copy the Note material into the "Detail Text" part of the Source Citation Detail for each source. In my opinion, this Report gets me closer to being an "Evidence-based Genealogist."
* Julliana Lund commented:
"Thank for the review of ESM's class ... you sure make me wish I was there. You mentioned that there would be a video available for purchase - any idea where I can find that? I am desperate to improve my "methods" of research and analysis. This sounds like it would be very helpful."
My comments: See Connie's comment below about the video issue. It is my fervent hope that some smart conference organizer will engage presenters like Thomas Jones and Elizabeth Shown Mills to do a streaming video series (like RootsTech has done) for wider exposure. Every genealogist, from beginner to expert, can benefit from watching them, and only a select few can afford to attend the conferences. FamilySearch, and the National Genealogical Society, have created some videos of "experts" also.
* Connie Sheets commented:
"I'm not aware of video being available of this presentation, but one can purchase an audio CD from Jamb, Inc., not only for this but for many of the presentations at the NGS and other conferences.
"It doesn't look to me like much editing was done to the RM5 Research Notes report, other than adding personalized headers and footers, and inserting graphics. This report functionality was the sole reason I switched from Legacy to RootsMagic. Once you understand the purpose, you won't want to live without it!
"While I agree one should do a research report first, if (like me) you've been guilty of doing a lot of research without that, RM's Research Notes report is a lifesaver in terms of giving you a way to go back and re-analyze everything you've already done."
"I receive a LOT of documents that people share with me that have no author's name on them. This is frustrating. So I make sure if and when I send something to someone else, whether it is mine or belongs to someone else, I write the author's name, contact info, and date on it.
"As for the online trees. My tree is private. The most important research I did was already copied and pasted to Ancestry.com (not because of something I posted to my tree but from a MyFamily.com site) and the author refused to remove at my request several years ago, so I let it be. I think it's funny, though, because everyone who has copied this info, inevitably ends up with a tree with at least 3 "siblings" with the same name! If someone wants to believe a person who has three men of the same name in a single household did all that research themselves, well...they are in for a big surprise!"
"I don't mind that people copy my information at all. That's why I put it out there to the public. But I do expect them to contact me to see what our connection is or what additional information I may have.
"For one particular line that I've spent a lot of time on, I attached a probate document to an individual on my tree...but I redacted all the good stuff...the names and locations of all the heirs including the daughters married names! In its place I added a text box and said: 'Through collaboration we can achieve our end goals quicker and with more accurate information. I am happy to share this and additional documents with fellow researchers, however I have seen too many documents attached to the incorrect person on Ancestry member trees. Please contact me if you believe we are researching the same family and I will be happy to work with you.' I've not received one email. :( People just want to grab and go!"
"There is a big difference between gleaning facts from me and stealing my copyright. I have had at least one person copy an entire narrative webpage of mine (well, except for my name and copyright notice, which she deleted) and paste it to her own blog as though she had done the research and written the narrative. I need to follow through with this one to have the blog provider remove the post (since my polite requests directly to the thief have resulted in stone cold silence), but I've not taken the time to do it.
"I have had numerous people take unique documents or results of my research that I shared via e-mail (or snail mail in the olden days) and post them without attribution. While that is not a copyright violation, it is rude and maddening.
"I appreciate those few cousins who have the common sense and good manners to state where they got something I shared that they use."
"b) Yeah, it bugs me when Ancestry users grab my entire tree and add it to theirs without even making contact. On the few occasions when I've contacted them to find out how we might be related, the answer has always been, 'I don't know - who was your relative again?'
"c) I've given up on attempting to be the internet police in regard to copyright. I'm with Jenna - the reason that I put as much information online as possible, as well as making my Ancestry tree public, is to make the information available. I don't own the facts. I don't own the links and documents that I locate on Ancestry. I'm doing the research for my own enjoyment and if my legwork helps another family member fast-forward their research, that's fine with me. What bugs me is when an Ancestry user downloads my 'stuff' and re-uploads it as their own original content, rather than using the "Save to my tree" feature. Again, I can't police this, so I don't try.
"d) I'm concerned with the 'you don't need to know what you're looking for; all you need to do is look' mentality. While I find the clues via Member Connect activity helpful, I seldom add the research to my tree without doing the legwork myself. I will view other Family Trees, then follow the trail myself.
"e) So many people have jumped to conclusions with their research that my fear is that some family histories are destroyed beyond repair. It will take the diligent researcher to sort this all out, realizing that just because the name's the same, it's not always the same person. Many times, I have done the research on two people with the same name so as to absolutely rule out the one who isn't my guy.
f) Clearly copyright doesn't mean anything to the average internet user. Years ago, pre-internet, I had a boss who took a publication I had written and produced and used it his portfolio when applying for another job. What I couldn't get over was that he actually showed the portfolio to me. When I called him out about it, his response was, 'I was your supervisor when you did it, therefore I can put it my portfolio.' For me, that was the most blatant and egregious theft of my work ever. So someone stealing the results of my family history research doesn't bother me that much. It bothers me, but not much."