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Re: Genealogy Posts--One list or Two?

>I was about to post information about Sinclair/St. Clair in Nebraska in 
>1870--anyone have a connection?  But, was not sure what we have decided 
>regarding genealogy posts. Is it the desire of the group to have the 
>genealogy traffic over at Gary's one-list address exclusively? [and meaning 
>posting to the discussion list and the genealogy list is discouraged]  My 
>thought had been that sending to both lists would maximize circulation, but 
>over time the genealogy list was so quiet, that when Gary posted a note 
>suggesting everything run through the original discussion list, I was 
>inclined to agree.
>Personnally, I would be satisfied with the original sinclair@mid.org list for 
>everything.  My sense is that most list regulars have documented most of the 
>family history that they can and are now hoping for a breakthrough on their 
>brickwalls.  The volume of new searchers and active searchers seems somewhat 
>limited, so that including it in the discussion list may not be that 
>disruptive and overpowering.  Plus, the information, inquiries and responses 
>channel into the list archives, which to me has always seemed like a terrific 
>resource to create.

You raise good questions.  The appended is not the answer to most of them,
but it is further food for thought, in the form of the message I sent to
the genealogy list recently.

>Thoughts from others?

Yes, please.


John S. Quarterman <jsq@mids.org>

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Message-Id: <199909220131.UAA01550@akira.aus.us.mids.org>
From: "John S. Quarterman" <jsq@mids.org>
To: sinclair-roots@onelist.com
Cc: "John S. Quarterman" <jsq@mids.org>
cc: sinclair@gis.net
In-reply-to: Your message of "Mon, 20 Sep 1999 11:20:31 CDT." <199909201620.LAA02295@vyoma.mids.org> 
Date: Tue, 21 Sep 1999 20:31:06 -0500
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Reply-to: sinclair-roots@onelist.com
Subject: Re: Sinclair Genealogy Close of Sinclair Roots List 

From: "John S. Quarterman" <jsq@mids.org>


>Due to inactivity, the Sinclair Roots list will be closed at One 
>list.  It was worth a try, but all are in the habit of posting inquiries 
>to the Sinclair discussion list, and that is where the discussion should 

I've discussed the above announcement with Gary.

Permit me to make a few observations.

1) Many people have been crossposting items between the two lists.
This usually results in more responses coming from the older, larger,
unmoderated list.  This is normal, and can be corrected over time
by reminding people not to crosspost.  I can probably put in some
technical hacks on the discussion list to prevent crosspostings,
and thus keep sinclair-roots traffic on sinclair-roots.

2) Building traffic on a list takes time and careful seeding.  It took
a year before the discussion list reached critical mass.  Gary is trying
something a bit more difficult, because it's moderated and it's more
narrowly focussed, so it's not possible to depend on spates of argument
to build volume and the range of acceptable topics is smaller.  But
many other genealogy lists have succeeded with the same constraints,
given time.

3) Some people who could contribute to this list have not joined it.
Yet.  That's not unusual, either.  It was a long time before Rory,
Niven, and Malcolm, for prominent examples, joined the discussion list.
Once there is interesting traffic, people will come.

4) There seems to be a real demand for a genealogy-only list, even though
the demanders aren't particularly vocal yet on the list itself.
Those of you who asked for this list: speak up!  This isn't television.
If everyone sits back and passively watches, nothing is going to happen.
Ask questions.  Elaborate on details of what you know about your line.
Suggest research sources or techniques.  Suggest new topics.  Post something!

5) I have remained silent on the subject of the genealogy list since
the original postings when Gary started it, because I didn't want to
interfere.  I support what Gary is trying to do.  I will do what I can
to help it work.

>Thank you for the support on the start up.  Happy hunting to all.
>List will be closed at the end of the day today

Obviously it hasn't closed yet.  Gary is willing to give it a longer go.

Are you the subscribers willing?  If so, you need to make your presence known.

Speak up!

>Gary M. Sinclair

John S. Quarterman <jsq@mids.org>

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