Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Ancestry's Expert Connect

Posted By Ann Rabinowitz

One of the interesting features which Ancestry.com now provides is called Expert Connect (www.expertconnect.ancestry.com/Home). It is cleverly set up and bills itself as a means to call in reinforcements for genealogy research that the average researcher is not able to handle by themselves. It is quite easy to use and allows members to obtain the following seven services:
  • Ask an Expert
  • Custom Research
  • Language Translation
  • Local Photo
  • Personal History
  • Record Lookup
  • Record Pickup
Ancestry.com handles obtaining the researcher, provides a venue for the member to obtain a fair price and have it handled through Ancestry.com’s secure payment environment. The funds for the work are paid in advance and held by Ancestry.com until the work is completed.

A graphic depicting how the system works is provided below from the Ancestry.com site:


How it Works

The experts are found in a database which covers the following information: Provider Name, Feedback Rating, City of Residence, State/Province, and Country. You can also find them by their specialty such as by Geography, Heritage/Religion, Era, and Archive. At present, there are thirty-one experts who have registered to do Jewish research, one of which is the President of the Utah JGS.

So far, Expert Connect covers work in the following states in America:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Countries outside the United States which are covered are the following:
Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

As the service grows, there are sure to be more states and countries included within its parameters.

For experts who want to belong to this service, they can view the following area on the site: http://expertconnect.ancestry.com/ProviderHome.aspx . By expert, the service also encourages regular researchers who are familiar with their local archives or resources to register too. They can be most helpful for picking up records or taking photographs.

So, if you are not able to do certain research chores yourself, you might want to consider the Expert Connect service. It makes it easier to find and connect with the appropriate researcher for the tasks you need to have done.

*REMINDER: JewishGen receives a commission for users who access Ancestry through our website. Please visit www.JewishGen.org and use the "search ancestry" box to get started.

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