Friday, October 11, 2013

About Genealogy Roadshow and WDYTYA

I read this blog post by D. Joshua Taylor this morning and nodded my head in understanding the entire way through. Personally, I totally relate to his feeling like a 12 year old in room full of people who do not understand him when it comes to genealogy. I also appreciate his comments about the recent genealogy television shows.

I am tired of all of the naysayers regarding Who Do You Think You Are? and Genealogy Roadshow. Obviously, it takes thousands of hours of research to come to genealogical conclusions. And yes, the results are shown in a matter of four or five minutes. But, isn't that true for presenting our findings to other family members or clients? They receive a report or book outlining their family tree, often times without having a true understanding of how much work went into the project. Most of us do not get insulted about that, so why be insulted by a television show that essentially shows the same thing happening?

It may seem to non-genealogists that these shows make genealogy look "too easy." My thought on that is this: those who are truly interested will start, realize how difficult it actually is, and if they find they love the hunt, will stick with it and embrace the work. If not, they go on to their next hobby. No harm, no foul. 

As for me, I will continue watching these shows on television and enjoy seeing the participants faces when hidden family secrets are revealed or confirmed. That's what genealogy is all about for me.

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