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Proposal: Genealogy & Family History

The proposal description reads: Proposed Q&A site for genealogy enthusiasts, family historians, professional genealogists, and serious amateurs.

Why the word serious? Surely any amateur would be welcome. And would not the term enthusiast include them anyway?

  • Are we making any progress on this? Since we've entered the commitment phase, we're introducing ourselves to an even broader group. Lou and Justin, what do you folks think? – GeneJ Sep 10 '12 at 14:15
  • Proposed Q&A site for professionals, amateurs and enthusiasts of genealogy or family history. – Site Designs Sep 21 '12 at 6:17
  • Proposed Q&A site for genealogy and family history professionals, amateurs and enthusiasts. – Site Designs Sep 21 '12 at 6:18
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The tag line should be short, complete, succinct, inclusive, ...

Q&A site for anyone interested in Genealogy or Family History.

  • That does it for me! --GeneJ – GeneJ Sep 12 '12 at 21:16
  • Works for me as well. – Lorraine W Sep 12 '12 at 21:38
  • I see that @RobertCartaino updated the site description today. I now reads, "Proposed Q&A site for genealogists who study families by the tracing of their lineages and history." – GeneJ Sep 19 '12 at 18:13
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    Just asking ... I know there are genealogists with specialities, but are there genealogists who don't "study families by the tracing of ....?" Any chance we can use @TomWetmore's suggested description (above). – GeneJ Sep 19 '12 at 19:06
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    Originally, I didn't mind Tom's suggestion, but under further analysis, it just says "For anyone interested" and repeats the title of the site. I think it is better to specify the wide range of people we want to include. I like the original we had. See: discuss.area51.stackexchange.com/a/7611/5074 – lkessler Sep 21 '12 at 2:00
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    @lkessler Agree! The description is really lame now. I don't find it appealing at all. Change it back!! – Canadian Girl Scout Sep 21 '12 at 6:16
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I propose we change the description to:

Proposed Q&A site for professionals, amateurs, and hobbyists interested in genealogy and family history.

It's short and straightforward.

  • Proposed Q&A site for professionals, amateurs and hobbyists interested in genealogy and family history. – Very Big Kid Sep 9 '12 at 21:14
  • @VeryBigKid I almost used "interested" instead of "involved". I think you're right. It's more welcoming to those who aren't actually doing genealogy yet. – user42535 Sep 9 '12 at 21:17
  • @JustinY Genealogists are very sensitive to their professional status and will immediately key into the fact that your suggested changed doesn't even include the word 'Genealogist'. Also, although you say it's short and straightforward, the words 'amateurs' and 'hobbyists' mean virtually the same thing to someone who is serious about genealogy. – Canadian Girl Scout Sep 12 '12 at 13:17
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    @JustinY It can be quite a bit shorter and more straightforward: "Q&A site for anyone interested in Genealogy or Family History." See my comment below. – Tom Wetmore Sep 13 '12 at 12:10
  • @TomWetmore I saw that, and I like it. – user42535 Sep 13 '12 at 15:55
  • @TomWetmore I saw that, and I like it. – Those Legs Sep 15 '12 at 4:56
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I guess I'm in the minority, but I like the original description. The word genealogy is right there in the beginning and genealogy enthusiasts has a very nice ring to it. "Family historians, professional genealogists and serious amateurs" pretty much sums up the rest of the people who would use this site. As far as amateurs instead of serious amateurs - if you're not serious about it, this isn't the most user friendly website :-) for someone just wanting to test the family history waters.

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    Agree with all your points, especially the last one as there is an enormous difference between an amateur just starting out and one (not professionally accredited) who has be attending seminars, society meetings, visiting graveyards and building their family tree over the last 20 years. – Canadian Girl Scout Sep 12 '12 at 13:22
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Since the wording is identical, I assume this description reflects that "Genealogy & Family History" is a re-start of the earlier effort, "Genealogy." The latter was closed not too long before the re-start effort began. Here's the link to that closed proposal: http://area51.stackexchange.com/proposals/2553/genealogy

Why the word serious? I can only guess that the author of the original proposal was hoping to be inclusive in describing the target audience.

How simple, straight forward and inclusive can we make new proposal description? How about I propose the description that follows, then you and others can suggest ways to improve it?

"Q&A site for those interested and/or engaged in the practice or hobby of Genealogy and Family History."

Better yet? "Q&A site for those of all skill sets and experience levels interested and/or engaged in the practice or hobby of Genealogy and Family History."

  • I don't mind that, but I would also list the inclusions to show at least some of the wide range of people, e.g. What you said plus "... including genealogy enthusiasts, family historians, professional genealogists, and serious amateurs". – lkessler Sep 8 '12 at 13:35
  • ... as long as we don't make the tag line too long. – lkessler Sep 8 '12 at 13:43
  • @Louis, how about, "Q&A site for those of all skill sets interested and/or engaged in the practice or hobby of Genealogy and Family History." – GeneJ Sep 8 '12 at 13:43
  • Tag lines are tough. – lkessler Sep 8 '12 at 18:11
  • This doesn't sound engaging enough. – user42535 Sep 8 '12 at 22:57
  • Here's an article about naming Stack Exchange sites. The part about "The Elevator Pitch" gives some tips on creating the tagline: blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/10/… – lkessler Sep 9 '12 at 4:59
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"genealogy enthusiasts" and "serious amateurs" indeed overlap a fair bit. And you're right, I wouldn't want to exclude "non-serious" amateurs.

How about instead of "serious amateurs", something like "full-time or part-time hobbyists"?


Second thought's (after my answer to New proposal description is too restrictive/uninviting)

Actually, now I think "serious amateurs" is not bad. We wouldn't want to say just "amateurs", since it doesn't sound or look good in the description that way.

If we do want an alternative, I'd now recommend: "xxxxxxx amateurs", where "xxxxxxx" is another word for "serious".


How about: "aspiring amateurs"

  • As above, I propose, "Q&A site for those of all skill sets and experience levels who are interested and/or engaged in the practice or hobby of Genealogy and Family History." – GeneJ Sep 8 '12 at 13:48
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The terms "hobby" or "hobbyist" are a little contraversial in this field. Although it may be a pastime to many - separate from the paid day-job - it is technically a science, just as much as any historical research or CSI.

Some fear that genealogy may not be treated with the correct level of respect from outside the field largely because it is viewed as a mere "hobby".

Of course, it all comes down to the definitions we use for those terms. However, calling it "family history" is a good step in the right direction because it certainly reinforces the relationship to history, albeit local-history or micro-history. The techniques and disciplines are exactly the same.

Tony

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