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Archiver > APG > 2006-09 > 1159300041

From: "Mills" <>
Subject: Re: [APG] Working capital and making a living...or not
Date: Tue, 26 Sep 2006 14:47:21 -0500
In-Reply-To: <200609261442487.SM01424@pgapollo>

Natalie wrote:

>There's very little
incentive for the working and established professional genealogist to take
productive income producing time to go grab one of those labels and slap it
on their forehead, when there are the some of the VERY SAME issues with
individuals WITHIN that label group undervaluing their work and working
under cost "because they can" or "because it is their calling" or "because I
don't really need to make money at this, because I've another job, or a
spouse," or "because getting the label was just for my edification," etc.

Natalie, there is one incentive: When you feel passionately about an issue
you can argue for change a lot more effectively if you're part of the group
you want to change.

Within those labels, there are those who share your views and struggle to
find the time to promote the same issues that concern you. If you stand on
the outside shouting that those on the inside should do something, do you
realistically think that their active practice of genealogy allows them more
time for "changing the system" than what you have? Strength comes in
numbers. In any organization, an increase in participants enables the
organization to accomplish a lot more than it can when the burden of "doing"
is upon just a few.

If those who care about professionalism and the ability of professionals to
earn a living say they don't have time for certification or accreditation,
that raises two other issues:

1) If they don't think credentials are necessary for *themselves*, then how
can they effectively argue that "self-proclaimed" genealogists whom they
view as marginal need to upgrade their professional offerings?

2) What exactly *can* the field use to guard against "hanging out the
shingle" by the incompetent? As much as we respect APG, mere membership in
APG is not the bar, because anyone can write a check for the dues.
Credentials attest that a genealogist has acquired a stringent base-level of
skill and knowledge, but you don't see that as necessary. So what *can*
raise the bar?

As critical as it is to have "customary earnings" that are viable and
realistic, I know you well enough to know you *don't* think that
professional improvement it's just a matter of setting some minimal hourly
rate. So what standards do you propose? How can those standards be conveyed?
Can they really be enforced if a field think credentials are not necessary?


Elizabeth Shown Mills, CG, CGL, FASG

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