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FamilySearch Wiki:WikiProject FamilySearch Historical Records/Getting Started

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“One very nice thing about the wiki is it's NOT something that requires a group effort [or] commitment. Anyone who feels inspired can contribute a little or a lot of info.”

-- Susan

Interested in contributing to the WikiProject FamilySearch Records but feeling a little confused over where to start? If so, this blog post aims to help you get going.

First off, we want you to know that contributing doesn’t mean spending countless hours researching and writing full articles (unless you want to… we won’t refuse!). Any amount of time spent working towards completing articles in the wiki qualifies you as a contributor and is a huge asset for our community. You can dedicate a couple of hours a week or contribute to one-time to a project that interests you. We hope that you’ll find the work rewarding and will want to return to help regularly!

The first step is getting registered as a user. If you already have already signed up for a FamilySearch account, that account will allow you to contribute to this project. Registering allows you to:

  • Edit existing pages and create new ones.
  • Receive notification of new information on a page by watching the page.
  • Collaborate with fellow community members on Talk pages.
  • Create a user page and Talk page to practice editing.

To register, visit the registration page . A great bonus to registering is that your newly created account will allow you access to all FamilySearch products.

Once you have registered, it’s time to find a task and article on which you are interested in contributing. Our WikiProject:FamilySearch Records page features a task list which shows many of the ways you can contribute to the articles; the Projects Needing Content section allows you to choose regions and specific areas in which you are most interested. It is entirely up to you where you choose to contribute!

One important part of writing for a wiki is including where the information was originally found. Through correct citation, users can search for further information and verify information. For the purposes of this project, “MLA-style” citation is used in the articles. If you are not familiar with citing your work or need a refresher on how it’s done, a citation guide, which includes examples, is included on the site.

If you find you are needing further help there are other resources available to you. Video tutorials will guide you in an overview of the wiki and searching (among other topics) and wiki articles organized by topic will help you with many of the specific questions you may have. We even host a half-hour informational meeting every other Wednesday at 1:00 pm. This meeting can be attended online or on your phone and is a great opportunity to meet each other and ask questions.

Ready to jump in? Have questions? We’d love for you to contact us!

(Links below will take you to the User Talk Pages, another option for contacting us.)