Sunday, May 08, 2011

What's a "Flash Webinar" ?

You may have heard of "flash mobs" as a sort of impromptu gathering in a specific place, facilitated by social networking technology like blogs, Twitter, Facebook (FB) and texting. Sometimes the events are totally silly, but the point is the spontaneity of the event.

Just this past week, the world of genealogy experienced a "Flash Webinar" (Ol' Myrt's name for it) where a family historian decided to host a webinar on the fly, without weeks of advanced advertising and planning -- merely to demonstrate how to add a death certificate received in that day's snail mail to his ancestor's file.

We can relate to Geoff's excitement on receiving the anticipated death certificate. But how often do we get to see how a researcher chooses to enter data in his genealogy management software program?

Now genealogists do take things slightly slower than some others, and so Geoff gave a three-hour lead time by posting the announcement in his blog. He also provided a link to the scanned image of William Henry Brown's death certificate from 1948 up in Neah Bay, Washington, so the webinar participants could follow along.

BRAVO for this outside the box thinking!

Watch Geoff live: how to add a death certificate in Legacy Family Tree Look here for the original announcement and the link to the death certificate.

P.S. Ol' Myrt is glad Geoff explained that while the length of the archived version of the webinar is 1 hour and 23 minutes, it wouldn't take the average user that long to enter one death certificate into an ancestor's profile.

Happy family tree climbing!
Myrt     :)
Your friend in genealogy.


  1. I was one of the lucky ones that noticed the announcement on Legacy Family Tree FaceBook page. And it was one of the best Webinars ever! Geoff did a great job, I hope he will provide more of these!

  2. Bravo, indeed! I have been fascinated by flash mobs, and am so glad that I caught the announcement in time to participate. Geoff is very easy to follow, and the demonstration was a real-time example of how to glean more information than most would believe possible from a death certificate.
    I hope there will be more flash webinars.

  3. Does Geoff know how many people showed up at the live flash webinar (not counting those who looked at the archive later)?

  4. I am not sure, friend of Pogo. However, he had over a hundred when he started.

  5. Ol' Myrt here had to settle for listening to the archived version of the webinar. Otherwise I would have helped Geoff with the pronunciation of Anacortes, and an understanding of the relationship between Neah Bay and Port Angeles. Being a Seattlite, I took many trips around the Olympic Peninsula in my youth, and revisited several times by taking my dad there in the few months before he passed away in 2007.

    Didn't you love it when he used Ani-Map?

  6. There were 129 live attendees - I was quite surprised at the numbers given the 3 hours of notice. I like Myrt's term, Flash Webinar.

  7. I watched it later that week and found myself laughing out loud at once stage when Geoff said "isn't this exciting" - something only another genealogist could relate to!