I've seen a lot of Twitter and Facebook about people saying that they don't see the need for another social network. And while I do agree that we don't need it, that doesn't mean that I don't want it.
One of the reasons that I was interested in GenealogyWise is that I feel like my Facebook is too cluttered. I have friends from high school, friends from work, genealogy friends, family, etc. Although some of these people are entertained by my genealogy, most of them don't care. I also want to keep my news feed on Facebook manageable and if I go around adding every genealogist, it may get out of hand. Now if I was just using Facebook for genealogy, I wouldn't have a problem. But that's not how I'm using it. I'm using it to network for work and keep in touch with old friends. I have been thinking about making a separate Facebook profile for my genealogy side for a few months now. I want to collaborate with everyone and meet new people with the same research habits, but I don't know if Facebook if the right place to do that for me. (At least not with my current profile.) I also don't mind my friends knowing more about me than random strangers, even if they are awesome genealogists.
So I went ahead and signed up with GenealogyWise. Just as Randy said, this site will not work without lots of people joining and using it regularly. Here are some of my initial thoughts:
- Social network just for genealogy.
- I like having a separate network for genealogy.
- It's more like one big group instead of everyone being divided into who wants to be friends with who. It seems easy to find and communicate with people not on your friend list.
- I like being able to see more than just what my "friends" are doing. Maybe I can discover someone new who shares my research interests.
- So far, I haven't seen a bunch of quizzes being taken.
- No one has told me what they had for breakfast (and then lunch, dinner, how they slept, etc.)
- Many more groups focused on genealogy, including surnames, software, websites, etc. Although many more still need to be created, I haven't seen much of these "smaller" groups on Facebook. Maybe these groups will be more interactive than the groups I find on Facebook.
- Listing of genealogy events. Although small, I can see lots being added to it by people who are interested. Nice to have them all in one space.
- Doesn't collect a lot of private data (phone number, address, etc) like Facebook allows.
- From what I have seen, GenealogyWise was created by FamilyLink. I'm not sure how I feel about a company owning the network. Although I think that someone would have to "own" it, I don't know that I want a company that has their hands in other areas taking over a social network. (I look at it this way, if Ancestry.com formed the group everyone would be freaking out. So why not do the same with FamilyLink?)
- Why is FamilyLink trying to start another social network when they have been trying to build up a base on Facebook? Why not work on their We're Related App to make it work better instead of building a new site?
- It's another site to join and maintain.
- Another site to check for updates. It allows people to post blogs. Do we need another spot for this?
- Small network, but that may change in time.
- Not sure if it will last. Is it just a fad for a few days or does it have staying power? Is it worth building something and just waiting for it to fade away?
If you want to try it out, please add me as your friend. Let me know what you think. Leave a comment or send me an email to genwishlist [at] gmail [dot] com.