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Use Social Media to Connect with Cousins around the World

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Social media has been a growing way to connect with family and friends and other genealogical researchers for over a decade. The ability to exchange comments and emojis has exploded to a number of forums where you can exchange photos, videos, memes, music and other media.

Here are some ways to use social media in your genealogical research:

Facebook has many ways to help you find your family

  1. Search for everyone of your surname, make friends with them and ask them what branch of the family they belong to. They might even know who their grandparents are and you can add them to your person tree. You might not want to put their names in an online database without their permission however.
  2. Join facebook groups set up for your family surname, family group or the area in which your family lived.
  3. Join facebook genealogy groups for the area or country of origin of your ancestor
  4. Join facebook groups set up by genealogy societies in your area and the localities you are researching.
  5. Meet people from all over the world who are researching the same areas and surnames that your are.
  6. Set up Surname albums in the photo album section, and you can share old family photos with family members or the world. You can use the comments to explain who is in the picture. Only about 200 photos are allowed in each album, so you might want to have multiple albums for different branches of the same family, even if they have the same surname.
  7. Share family photos on your timeline and in genealogy groups.
  8. Be sure to join the Wikitree groups on facebook too.

Twitter has some features similar to facebook, but limits how much you can post.

Instagram allows you to take pictures and immediately post them online.


Be careful how much information you post on social media about living people. Most of what you post might not be easy to delete.

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This page written and designed by Sharon Troy Centanne

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