Fresh on the heels of FamilySearch’s troubled but successful world-wide indexing event, Ancestry.com is organizing one of its own. “We love the enthusiasm and support of the Find A Grave community. Thanks to you, we just surpassed 100 million photos on the site,” said Kristie Wells, Ancestry's Head of Global Social Media and Customer Engagement. “We are going to host a global meetup to see how many more we can secure.” The Global Cemetery Meetup will be held Saturday, 18 October 2014. On that day, Ancestry.com hopes to fulfill many of the hundreds of thousands of outstanding requests for gravestone photographs.
“While we started with a few locations in the USA, we hope to inspire meetups all around the world and expect [the list of participating cities] to grow quite large over the coming weeks. These events are all volunteer run and are easy to set up. We hope you will be inspired to host an event in your local town,” said Wells. She has provided detailed instructions on setting up an event in your local community. As of last weekend when I wrote this article, volunteers have already established a 33 meetups.
The FamilySearch event goal was 50,000 indexers in a 24 hour period. A total of 66,511 people indexed at least one batch. The number could have been much higher but many who tried to participate ran into technical glitches. “We are grateful for the patience and persistence of many volunteers who faced technical difficulties due to an overwhelming response.” Ancestry.com seems to have taken a cue from FamilySearch’s problems. Having advanced registration will help them know how many additional servers to add to their system.
More information about cemetery etiquette and the Find A Grave world-wide indexing event can be found at http://www.ancestry.com/cs/find-a-grave-community-day.