More Thoughts on Short-Term Fee-Based Memberships

An earlier post discussed some websites where a short-term subscription may be a viable option, particularly if there is a database of images that may significantly help your research. A month-long subscription may be cheaper than ordering microfilm or actual record copies. Here are a few additional things to consider before getting that one-month subscription.

  • Make a list of the people for whom you want to search in that database. Take some time making the list so that no one is overlooked.
  • Know what materials are in the database.
  • Know what materials are available elsewhere for free–most fee-based databases have at leasst some images/indexes that are available elsewhere
  • Get the subscription at a time in the year when you will have time to really use the database. Think about your own personal schedule. This means avoiding:
    • times when family comes to visit
    • busy times in your personal or work life
    • subscribing right after you’ve purchased a computer you are not quite familiar with
  • Save any located images and references to your own personal computer, digital media, etc. Saving them to a personal “tree” or your online “account” generally means you need to have paid access to that account in order to access the images.
  • Save images. This is repeated twice because it’s important <grin>.

4 thoughts on “More Thoughts on Short-Term Fee-Based Memberships

  1. Mary Beth Blackmon says:

    I would add, make sure to determine whether the short-term subscription will include all the holdings the company has.

    • That’s a good point. Most do..largely because they are really hoping to get you “hooked” so that you keep your subscription longer than a month.

  2. Michael, I am doing the Great River Genealogical Society’s Yellowjacket quarterly now. This is a very interesting article. I am trying to put different things in the quarterly to help our members. Like this quarterly I had an article about getting old pictures out of an album.

    If it is possible, I would like to have your permission to reprint this article. I didn’t want to do it without asking because of the infringement rights. I wanted to do it legally with your permission if you allowed it.

    Thank you,
    Nancy Sanders

    • Nancy-
      Good to hear from you.
      That’s fine–just include the name of the post, the website, date and my name as the “source.” That should be fine.
      Thanks for asking.

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