Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Rock the APG Vote
Yesterday I voted. No, not in the U.S. election. I did that days ago. I voted in the Association of Professional Genealogists election.
I looked at the ballot and realized I knew several of the candidates personally, all of whom I met first through my blog, Facebook or Twitter. Eventually these online acquaintances became real-life friends.
I carefully read each candidate's bio and information. Then I voted on the issue that is most important to me in this election: social media.
Why social media? Because it is an important tool in research and professional networking. Also, APG has been slow to adopt social media into their fold, and I want to see that change. This is the only professional research organization I know of that bans the use of social media at certain events. Librarians don't. Independent researchers don't. Why do genealogists? The only reason I can think of is that the full value of social media is not understood by those in the position to make the decisions.
Several months ago, I emailed the organization and offered my assistance in getting the group's social media presence off the ground, using these tools to reach out, and getting those members who are online involved. My offer was not accepted. This isn't a complaint. I'm just pointing it out so you know I did try to *be* the change I wanted to see.
So on my ballot, I didn't put much consideration into the letters behind the candidates' names (CG, AG, ABCDEFG). I took slight consideration into the candidates' participation in the email discussion lists, (this is why it's bad to lose your cool online, folks). But really I cast my votes based on the online presence of each of the candidates and determined which ones would, in my opinion, be best qualified to help APG get to the next social media step.
And that's how I voted.
If you're a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, I encourage you to determine the issues in professional genealogy that are most important to you and vote. Hurry though, because the polls close November 5. You will find all the information you need in the Members Only section. This is your group and you pay to be a part of it. It's a great resource, and your participation will make it better.