~ Today's prompt is brought to you by the letter Y ~
Webster's Dictionary defines yield as "to bring forth by a natural process; to grant to another; to give up possession." A synonym for yield is share. If you have spent any time on the genealogy boards or websites, you have read the discussions about sharing genealogy data. We have all either read or heard the horror stories of people who shared their genealogy with others only to find it on someone else's website without permission, attribution or thanks. As a result, many genealogists (and quite a few family members I know) refuse to yield (or give up possession) their genealogy research to others. Or you may have the relative who yields research in drips and drabs - only answering your specific question and no more (it always feels a bit like the game 20 questions)
This is a real shame because when we are unwilling to yield (or share), we oftentimes are also unable to get information from others in return. Yielding requires us to accept that we may not get anything in return or may not even be thanked ~ but I think we all have to be willing to take a chance and yield simply for the sake of furthering the research that is available to others (whether online, at a local library or archives).
Before you dismiss this notion, ask yourself a few questions:
- Why am I saving my genealogy research?
- What have I done with my genealogy research?
- Have I started a blog to share information and stories with others?
- Have I self-published a book about a branch of my family (and provided copies to the local library, archives or genealogical society)?
- Have I printed up my family tree with a charting program?
- Have I made audio/visual recordings and provided them to extended family members?
However if your research is sitting in your computer or file cabinets and no one else is getting any benefit, ask yourself if it is time to yield ~ to bring forth, to grant to another, to give up possession, to share!
Yielding can pay big dividends ~ maybe someone researching your family has information that will answer your questions or provide that extra fact that will change everything up in your own genealogy research. Today start with baby steps ~ yield a family line on your blog, website or online tree ~ put it out there and perhaps good karma will return the favor.