Is it worth it?

About 18 months ago I started a Family Wiki. It seemed a good way of doing collaborative genealogy, and sharing family stories and information. A blog like this is quite a good way of recording progress, but current posts soon pass into history and are more difficult to find. A Wiki accumulates information as people add to information correct it and discuss it.

But so far only one other person has contributed anything to our family Wiki. Over the last month it has had about 15 visitors a day, with about 25 page views, but hardly anyone, other than me, has contributed anything, or even commented on what is there, or said whether they have found it useful.

Page Views
home 109
Green_family 40
Sandercock Family 29
GreenMAA935 27
Growdon_Family 27
Index_of_People 26
Family index 24
Ahnentafel 23
GreenawayR2405 22
GreeneFT144 22
space.discussion.GreenAW1194 22
Beningfield_Family 21
Brathwaite_Family 20

The Beningfield, Brathwaite, Green, Greenaway, Growden and Sandercock pages all got 20 or more visits during September, but nothing in the way of comments or contributions.

As a result of this, I’ve stopped trying to add to these Wiki pages — there just doesn’t seem to be much point. I occasionally post a small correction to what is already there, but it doesn’t seem to be worth the effort to add much.

What I hoped might happen is that at least some people related in any of these family lines might contribute information on the people they were related to, and possibly start their own family wikis for other branches of their families not related to ours, so that we could then have links between common relations, and contribute to each other’s stories. But it seems that few are interested in such collaboration. And unfortunately there are too many who just grab what information they can from any source, but aren’t willing to give anything in return. As a result I’ve become a little reluctant to give family history information to others unless they show that they are willing to share what they know as well.

Of course it’s possible that most of the people who look at the Wiki pages are not related — most visitors seem to be from the USA, whereas most of our families are in South Africa, the UK, Australia and Canada.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.