08 July 2014

FamilySearch Announces International Indexing Challenge -- a crowdsourcing effort of benefit to all genealogists and family historians

FamilySearch Press Release July 7, 2014

FamilySearch Announces International Indexing Challenge

50,000 Volunteer Indexers and Arbitrators Online. 24 Hours. One History-Making Event.

SALT LAKE CITY—FamilySearch International today announced a worldwide crowdsourcing challenge aimed at establishing a new record for the most volunteer indexing participants online in a single day. The challenge will take place during the 24-hour period beginning at 6:00 p.m. (mountain daylight time) on Sunday, July 20. Already one of the largest and most successful volunteer transcription programs in history, FamilySearch indexing is looking to top its one-day record of 49,025 individual contributors.

WorldwideIndexingEvent “Our stated goal is 50,000 volunteers participating in a single day, though we think the potential exists to surpass that mark by a considerable amount,” said Mike Judson, indexing workforce manager for FamilySearch. “All it takes to be counted in the record is to submit one batch. With hundreds of thousands of past indexing volunteers and thousands more joining weekly, breaking the record won’t take much if people will commit to spend the 30 minutes or so required to finish and submit a batch.”

Indexing is vital to family history research. It is the process of transcribing information from historical documents to make them freely searchable online at FamilySearch.org. FamilySearch indexers perform the initial transcribing of names from home or wherever they can connect to the Internet. FamilySearch arbitrators (advanced indexers) check to ensure consistency and accuracy in the process. Since FamilySearch indexing started in 2006, this crowdsourcing effort has produced more than one billion freely searchable records that have helped millions of people to find their ancestors.

The event begins at 00:00 coordinated universal time (UTC) on July 21, which is 6:00 p.m. mountain daylight time (MDT or Utah time) on Sunday, July 20. It ends 24 hours later, at 23:59 UTC (or 5:59 p.m. MDT) on Monday, July 21. Local start times and status updates can be found on the FamilySearch Facebook event page.

The prior record of 49,025 indexers and arbitrators in a single day was set on July 2, 2012. To be counted in the new record, each indexer or arbitrator must submit at least one indexing or arbitration batch during the 24-hour period. Volunteers and potential volunteers can visit https://familysearch.org/indexing/ to learn more.

Indexing projects are available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, German, Polish, Swedish, Dutch, Russian, and Japanese. Volunteers are invited to work on any project but are strongly encouraged to work in their native language.

Editor's Note: Here are the start times for select world-wide locations as provided on the Facebook event pages.

Sydney, Australia: July 21 @ 10:00 AM
Osaka, Japan: July 21 @ 9:00 AM
Moscow, Russia: July 21 @ 4:00 AM
Kyiv, Ukraine: July 21 @ 3:00 AM
Johannesburg, South Africa: July 21 @ 2:00 AM
Amsterdam, Berlin, Brussels, Paris, Rome, Stockholm, Warsaw: July 21 @ 2:00 AM
London, England: July 21 @ 1:00 AM
São Paulo, Brazil: July 20 @ 9:00 PM
Buenos Aires, Argentina: July 20 @ 9:00 PM
Ottawa, Canada: July 20 @ 8:00 PM
Santiago, Chile: July 20 @ 8:00 PM
New York City, New York: July 20 @ 8:00 PM
Chicago, Illinois: July 20 @ 7:00 PM
Salt Lake City, Utah: July 20 @ 6:00 PM
Phoenix, Arizona: July 20 @ 5:00 PM
Los Angeles, California: July 20 @ 5:00 PM
Anchorage, Alaska: July 20 @ 4:00 PM
Honolulu, Hawaii: July 20 @ 2:00 PM

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