Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Genealogy: How to Build a House of Citations


"Just what is the difference between the ground, the first floor, and the second floor of the genealogy citation? I don't get it."

Well I'm glad you asked. There is a lovely photo of my grandparents up there that my cousin Tammy gave me. Let's walk through the floors of citation and attribution, from the bare minimum (floor) to the best ever (roof).

The Ground: "My grandparents at their wedding. Tammy gave me a copy of this photo Uncle Martin took. cfbandit@gmail.com"

Positive: we know a little about who's in the photo and where it came from.
Negative: no identifying information, no idea who Tammy is unless you're family, and virally, it has little incentive for people copying it to contact you.

This is bare minimum that you need in order to get a citation in. But it gives us some information we didn't have before, like what it is, who has it, and someone's contact info.

The Basement: "My grandparents are their wedding in 1934. Tammy Creswell gave me a copy of this photo Uncle Martin Graves took, she can be reached at tlctc on Ancestry and I'm cfbandit on Ancestry."

Positive: we know a little about who's in the photo and can probably piece together who's talking and where it came from. Getting better with the contact info. A little more detail. Now we know who Tammy is! And we know who took the photo, to better trace copyright rules.
Negative: We still don't have a lot of info. We don't know who the people in the photo are. We're still not clear on who's talking.

The first floor: "Daniel James Graves and Louvain Needham at their wedding on 21 December 1934. Tammy Creswell (tlctc on Ancestry) gave me a copy of this photo that Uncle Martin Graves gave her permission to share. Email me at cfbandit@gmail.com to talk about it!"

Positive: Now we're starting to get somewhere. We know who is in the photo and when this was taken. We know where to find it. We have some contact info if it starts to spread.
Negative: We're still missing some key info, like where it was taken and the formatting leaves a lot to be desired.

The second floor: "Daniel James Graves and Louvain Needham at their wedding on 21 December 1934 in Elk Point, Alberta, Canada", JPEG photo, from Tammy Creswell (tlctc on Ancestry), permission to share from Martin Graves, 1934. Email me at cfbandit@gmail.com to talk about it!"

Positive: This is starting to look like a real citation. There's all the info we need to understand the who, what, where, and when of the photo, and who's got it now and where to talk about it.
Negative: This is really starting to look good! Really the only thing that's missing is a link to the location of the file.

The ceiling: "Online photo, "Daniel James Graves and Louvain Needham at their wedding on 21 December 1934 in Elk Point, Alberta, Canada", JPEG photo, from Tammy Creswell (tlctc on Ancestry) http://trees.ancestry.co.uk/tree/14943978/recent, permission to share from Martin Graves, 1934. Email me at cfbandit@gmail.com to talk about it!"

Positive: This is starting to look like a real citation. There's all the info we need to understand the who, what, where, and when of the photo, and who's got it now and where to talk about it. Even better, we can go to the tree and verify its existence for ourselves.
Negative: Again, starting to look good, but we have to find the photo, not directly linked to it.

The roof: "Tammy Cresswell, "Daniel James Graves and Louvain Needham at their wedding on 21 December 1934 in Elk Point, Alberta, Canada." JPEG Photo, Ancestry.com (Online: Tammy Cresswell (tlctc),  2010), http://trees.ancestry.co.uk/tree/12609618/person/-220003186/photox/14?pgnum=1, accessed on Ancestry Tree by Concetta Phillipps on 15 April 2014. Permission to share and republish from Martin Graves, given 1934. 
Email me at cfbandit@gmail.com to talk about it!"

Positive: This is starting to look like a real citation. There's all the info we need to understand the who, what, where, and when of the photo, and who's got it now and where to talk about it. Even better, we can go to the tree and verify its existence for ourselves. And we've got full attribution rights as listed.
Negative: These citations and attributions can get quite long and sometimes exceed the characters allowed in the Ancestry description box. 
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