Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Genealogy-What Do You Mean It Isn't Free?: My Take

This is my response to the third in a week-long series of posts at GeneaBloggers entitled Genea-Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money).

What Do You Mean It Isn’t Free? – how do we as a community deal with the perception that everything – and I meaneverything – is free for the taking when it comes to genealogy. From commercial databases, to freely stealing content from a blog or website, to being incensed when a genealogist charges for a webinar or a syllabus.  This will be a no-holds barred looked at why certain perceptions exist in the genealogy community and how they must change in order for the industry to move forward in the 21st century.

I have always been taught that there is no such thing as a free lunch.  We get lucky in genealogy, with many things that appear free: familysearch.org, RAOGK, Legacy webinars, etc.

The problem with this is that none of these are actually free.  Someone, somewhere, is paying.  Legacy can host these webinars because of all the people who purchase their products; RAOGK volunteers are using their gas and time to help out fellow researchers; FamilySearch is part of the LDS church, and members help support it.

We need to treat genealogy like we do any other service and pay for services and items we want.

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