While I generally like a lot of the recent overhauls of different projects (e.g., Global Cemeteries), there are certain aspects of the One Name Studies project overhaul that don't make a lot of sense to me.
I understand the idea of turning an individual One Name Studies project into a "hub" of sorts, to allow more flexibility and collaboration when it comes to research areas (see: Setting Up The Name Study).
This works well when there are multiple people working on a One Name Study, or when the One Name Study is of a common-enough name, as to warrant having to break out the study into multiple work spaces.
However, there are One Name Studies where the last name is uncommon, or there is only a single researcher. In these instances, why should a One Name Study be divided into a single "hub" page, with a link to only a single "research" page? Why not retain the single One Name Study page, that contains the current research? When the time comes, and the criteria is met, to break out the study to multiple pages, then do it at that point. To force this new organizational structure, where it is not needed, creates additional, unnecessary work. And in my mind, it creates confusion as well to have a single "hub" page, with only a single "spoke" (research) page.
This is not some theoretical musing. I currently manage 8 One Name Studies. I "co-manage" another One Name Study, but I'm really the de facto manager. I have contributed to yet another One Name Study. Out of these 10 studies, only one of them has more than 2 people contributing to them (the one that I'm just a contributor on). Out of these 10 studies, 3 others have someone else other than me working on them. This leaves 6 One Name Studies where I am the sole contributor. This doesn't bother me, as I am active on all of the One Name Studies that I manage.
But these 6 One Name Studies are fairly unique-enough last names. No one else has stepped up to really contribute. And I lead the research effort. To then go back and change all of these One Name Studies to match this new "hub" template, and to then move all the research work that I've done to yet another page, will leave me with yet more unnecessary work to do. I will not only have a One Name Study project page to manage, but then my own research page will have to be managed and maintained as well. All for this idea that somehow there will be lots of people who will be flocking to join the One Name Studies that I work on.
If there are multiple people who work on these One Name Studies, then it makes sense to break out the work. I can see where this would be useful for one of the studies I contribute to (e.g. Binkley). But it does not make sense to do this for others that I maintain (e.g. Weddington, Vanover, Longan, Cresap, Rodewald, and Hoxsie).
Having said all this, I'm all in for creating standardized sections in a One Name Study, and making sure that it is inviting for all to participate, that the scope is global, how to join, membership, etc.
But what I would like is to have some flexibility in the rest of the One Name Study. That research can be included in the main body of the study and not forced out to some other unnecessary page, until the One Name Study grows big enough that it makes sense. There is a note on the Getting Started with a One Name Study page, under the "Main ONS page" section that states "Note: This is the preferred format for the main ONS page; however, some leeway and customization is allowed. If you are unsure on how to setup your main Name Study page, please contact an ONS Leader for assistance." This is in reference to the sections included on the page. But I would like this flexibility extended to the idea that all research has to now go on separate pages (which is discussed further down the page).
Because if I have to go separate all the work that I have done, it will just create more busy work for me, and I will seriously have to reconsider whether maintaining these projects is worth my time. Because at that point, this is no different than if I stood up my own pages, outside of the scope of the ONS project. At that point, I would have to ask myself why would I need the ONS project.
Steve, Natalie: please reconsider.