User group meeting & agenda 15 October 2008

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Proposing ideas for this agenda

To propose or discuss ideas for this agenda, please use the Discussion tab above. As the meeting draws near, we will review the items proposed on the Discussions page and decide which ones should get highest priority on the agenda.


Administrative items

  1. Assignment of time keeper and note taker
  2. Introduction of new members: 10 seconds for name and desired takeaways.
  3. Prayer --
  4. Review of Minutes
  5. Today's agenda preview

Information items

  1. Linking to commercial Websites: Change in Guiding Principles.

Discussion items

Carryover from Previous Weeks

  1. Citing sources (Jimmy Parker)
  2. Barn raising (Michael)
  3. Removing links to obsolete PDFs (Michael).

New Items

  1. How will we choose moderators?


Facilitator was Michael Ritchey. Note taker was Jimmy B. Parker, Time keeper was [Add name here].

Prayer by Thomas Lerman.

The total number of registered users of the FamilySearch Wiki as of October 15th is 4,971.  That is an increase of 168 registered users over the last week.


Michael Ritchey, James Anderson, David Samuelsen, Sister Felsted (ASL interpreter), Kip Unger, Thomas Lerman, Anne Roach, David Crowther, David Dilts, Joan Healey, Jimmy Parker, Fran Jensen, Jim Greene, Diane Loosli

Remote Attendees:

Francisco, Lise Embley

Items Discussed

Last week's minutes were reviewed.

As a follow-up to last week's discussion, linking to fee-based web sites was clarified by Michael. A change has been made to the Guiding Principles document. Review it and make any needed adjustments.

The bottom line is, we can link to fee-based sites, as we have in the past in the research outlines and elsewhere. The following practices should be followed:

  • Recommend and link to free sites first.
  • Recommend to fee-based sited next.
  • It would be a good idea to identify fee-based sites, so patrons will not be surprised. Do we want one or more icons to attach to fee-based links?
  • For a summary of this discussion, see the Guiding Principles document, sub-heading "Spam-free". Feel free to change or comment on this section.

An investigation is under way to determine if there is a way to identify links to obsolete research outline and other auto-imported pages so they, and citations to them, may be removed. This is particularly desired if those imported outlines have now been updated on the Wiki. We do not want to link back to out-of-date material. The problem may be easily solved if those obsolete outlines are all in a single folder or holding file with a unique string of characters in the name of the outlines.

A brief discussion ensued on print versions of Wiki pages. David Crowther stated he knew additional work was needed on print capability on the Wiki.

Source citations were briefly discussed. Source citations should be added as pages are added, as they are easier to add then, rather going back later to add the citations. As a matter of best practices, it is good to keep paragraphs to a single suject or idea, with one citation for that idea.

Michael gave us an update on the planning for the first barn-raising or content sprint, as a model. The first project will be Maryland, which was chosen for several reasons. There are 13 topics for the state and fewer counties than for some other states. The target date for completion for this model project is mid-November.

Action Items

  • Michael -- Track the history of who is adding links to the old research outlines.