LONDON-L ArchivesArchiver > LONDON > 2003-07 > 1058267545
From: "John Brown" <>
Subject: Re: [Lon] family searching.......
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2003 12:12:25 +0100
"Linda" <> wrote :
>Oh yes, I remember the days, before Internet and Email, when I
>ploughed through books, atlas's, maps, trying to find information, yes
it >was rewarding when I found what I was looking for, however back in
>the beginning when I was just a Genealogy Newbie 20 odd years ago, >how
I wish I could of asked for someone's advise, or where to look for
>information, books told me this but they're not quite the same as
>another human being communicating their experience's to you or giving
>their words of wisdom.
The point is that the first port of call should be to find out what you
can for yourself, not rely on the generosity of others from the start.
What happens if someone gives you duff information ? Books, maps etc
first, then develop your knowledge from an already semi-informed point
of view by attacking the 'net and other sources. Your suggested approach
is the root of many modern day educational problems, with people
accepting answers from computers without question and without any
perception of what the correct answer should be.
>These days at a click of a button just about I can ask away, and more
>often than not a friendly reply is sent back, not like the times of 20
>years ago or even now when just writing a letter and sending it to
>England takes 1 week, then there's the time for them to reply, I would
>be lucky to receive an answer in a month, only to be told they couldn't
>help, now the answer is here more or less straight away.
So you don't bother with anything other than internet contact ? I don't
believe it. Of course the interent provides quick and easy contacts,
but, and perhaps this is news to you, not everyone is connected. What do
you do if you find a possible cousin and their postal address, but don't
have an e-mail address ? I write to them and wait; what is wrong with
waiting a few days or even a few weeks or months ? Let's be sensible
about this; the internet is one source of help but it shouldn't be
either the first port of call, or the only, and information obtained
from it should never be accepted without further checking in them papery
things with blackish printing in them - what were they called again ?
>>The point is that the internet is creating a culture of laziness
>>many of its users
>I believe the Internet has not made us lazy but has made us able to
>communicate like we have never done before, the Internet has given us
>the chance to learn to help one another and share, that a book could
>not give us, I love books, I've got a whole library full of them at
Of course it's made communication easier, no one says it hasn't, but
easier = less effort involved = lazier. As for 'the chance to learn to
help one another' if we didn't know how to help others until the advent
of the internet, that is news to me and, I suspect, almost everyone else
on the list.
>I'm not lazy because of it, I exercise regularly every day, I don't sit
>the computer hours at a time, the Internet has given me the opportunity
>to learn, to make contact with other people who share the same
>wonderful hobby as I do and along the way make some friends, people
>perhaps I would never of had contact with otherwise.
Whether or not you exercise has nothing to do with laziness. The rest I
can't argue with.
>Each time you see a question which you think "why don't they look it up
>in a book", why indeed have a Mailing List at all, each question is
>someone reaching out for help, no matter the type of question, we are
>all a community of likeminded individuals who all share the same thing
This is mostly a mixture of a distortion of what I have said and what I
would refer to as 'psycho-babble'.
>Genealogy, and the Internet has given us the opportunity to find the
>answers straight away instead of waiting, days, or even months only to
>find no answers at all.
Genealogy has given us no opportunities, it is a hobby for most a
professiona nd career for a few. The internet certainly has, though it
seems that your only real concern is speed, rather than what I see as
rather more important issues such as accuracy, reliability and learning
to help yourself rather than relying on others.
>And sometimes a simple act of helpfulness restores your nature in
More psycho-babble. Presumably you mean 'faith' rather than 'nature' but
as a realist and cynic I never have had, nor will have, any 'faith in
humankind'. I do have total confidence that humankind will do whatever
it needs to do to survive, in adherence to Darwin's principles and any
other actions are peripheral and largely useless. Individuals will no
doubt do whatever they like and will benefit or suffer accordingly in
line with the same principles.