I had a visit from the Genealogy Police this week. I’d heard of the Genealogy Police but I’d never met them, or even one, so I thought they might be just a figment of someone’s worst nightmare. But, now it’s clear they do exist.
And if she’d had her way I would have been shot, hung and quartered. Then burned at the stake and my ashes ground into dirt. And then I would have been flung into the far reaches of Hell. And, if there’s anything I left out that would insure my total annihilation, feel free to add it to the list. I’m sure she’d be pleased.
Here are My Genealogy Rules & Regulations: There aren’t any.
I’m not a Mormon, or any other kind of Christian, so I’m not under relentless pressure to adhere to the belief that dead people (or living ones for that matter) need to have their heads dipped in water for salvation of their souls. In these ecologically-sensitive times it seems like a waste of water to me. Some people (I’m betting on a majority here) don’t want to live with their families in Heaven forever. They can hardly stand living with them on Earth for 60 or 80 years. And then there’s the whole question of what constitutes a family don’t-even-get-me-started.
So, that means I’m beholden to absolutely no-one (or God) for my interest in dead people. I could just as well be collecting baseball cards.
Apparently, these are The Genealogy Regulations that I had been oblivious to:
1. Genealogy is not like the rest of the Internet.
2. If you post something online it has to be Proven Fact. Otherwise, don’t post it.
3. If you do post it, you are required by Genealogy Law to post a disclaimer stating that there may be errors contained therein.
4. If you post incorrect information without a disclaimer, and get caught, you are obligated to flagellate yourself to death because you have now committed the most heinous of sins for which there is no forgiveness, may your soul writhe in Hell, your life is OVER.
OK, here it is:
Warning! You have landed on a genealogy website where you may find information about dead people. Just in case this is your first day on the Internet and/or it hasn’t crossed your mind yet, the information herein could contain errors. Some of the people named have been dead for hundreds of years … how accurate do you think I can be?
This is not a professional treatise. I write my sources how I damn well please. I even have un-sourced data from my early days and that’s just tough. If I source data from a book written 100 years ago and it turns out to be incorrect … oh, well … sh*t happens.
Sometimes I post errors on purpose to see if you’re paying attention. Or maybe I don’t. You’ll never know for sure.
Genealogy is exactly like the rest of the Internet. It’s written by human-beings of varying skill levels prone to all the vagaries of humankind. If you find any errors, you are not welcome to send email beating me across the head about them. You may, on the other hand, approach with kindly interest and attempt to engage me in mutually-beneficial conversation.
There you go, self-righteous psychopaths.