Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Giving Back: Indexing & Transcription Opportunities for Genealogists

So, who wants more free genealogy records online?

Who wants to find them, transcribe them, build the database to host them, and pay to maintain them?

I think we're all a little guilty of this. Whether it's because we simply don't know about all of the opportunities available, or we think we don't have the necessary skills required, or we're just feeling too lazy/busy/set in our ways to help. We've all made the excuses. But there's no time like the present to jump in and lend a helping hand!

Records are unsearchable, and therefore invisible, until they are transcribed, tagged, and indexed. If we want things to be free and searchable, we need to be part of the cost cutting measures. And the repositories who are already taking on the bulk of this free access burden need our help with the most time consuming part. It's the single greatest contribution we can make to a record collection. Why wouldn't we share the skills we've accumulated as genealogists to help institutions across the globe to provide better records access to all of us? If we aren't part of the solution, we're part of the problem.

Check your favorite repositories--local, state, regional, and national--to see what they need from you. If you come across, sponsor, or need volunteers for any transcribing projects, add them in comments!

These are the ones I've come across so far just through Google searching, my own research, and reaching out on social media.

International/National Projects:

State (US):

There are certainly more projects available out there than just these. So please, let us know when you find them. 

The research you help by giving back may just be your own!