BillionGraves gained a lot of momentum in May, and we are thrilled with the growth we’re experiencing. Let’s keep up the momentum and celebrate!
For the month of June, the Leaderboard will show which region around the world is gathering the most new uploads. Regions are broken down into US states, Canadian provinces, and countries. Check up on your state, province, or country regularly this month to make sure it is doing its part. You should also check up on regions you want to collect research from—are people contributing in that part of the world?
When you look at the Leaderboard this month, you’ll see a beautiful map of both the United States and the whole world. The more green a region is, the higher its ranking.
Below the map is a breakdown of the top 25 regions for the month. You’ll see a number to the right of the region showing the number of uploads in the last 5 days. With this number, you can tell if your region is still working hard to maintain its spot on the Leaderboard!
At the time I wrote this post, Pennsylvania was in the lead, with Utah and Georgia close behind. And two countries made the list—The Netherlands and the UK!
Don’t worry, the regular user-based Leaderboard can be found just below the region-based one, so you can still track your own progress against other BillionGravers.
Are you in a State (or province, or country) of Growth this month?
We’re unveiling new features on BillionGraves! All of the free features that you’ve come to enjoy are still free.
- BillionGraves Plus account
- Notification Packages
- Earn these new features for free!
By opening a Plus account, you can access all of the BillionGraves features.
- 30 Records Watches: A Record Watch means you’ve submitted a specific surname you’d like to monitor at BillionGraves. Whenever a headstone with your specified surname is transcribed, you are notified via email. With these notifications, you’ll always know the latest data on your family history.
- Virtual Walkthrough: from any record view, you can click on the Nearby Records tab, where you will be able to see surrounding headstones in that cemetery. This is a great way to learn additional information about other people buried in that cemetery. We hope you make valuable research connections as you experience the whole cemetery where your ancestor is buried.
- Mobile Records Search: You can search and view all BillionGraves records directly from your iPhone, iPad, or Android device in addition to searching on the web. This means that while you are in a cemetery, you’ll be able to lookup a name to help you find a specific headstone or specific surnames buried in that cemetery.
- Favorites: This feature is coming soon, but we’re really excited to share it with you. You’ll be able to keep track of all your favorite BillionGraves records in one place. Once you mark a record as a favorite, you’ll never have to search for it again; it will be easily accessible from your Favorites page.
The BillionGraves Plus account is only $9.99 per year. And if 30 Record Watches isn’t enough, you can purchase Notification Packages, which include 10 additional Record Watches. You can purchase a Notification Package even if you don’t have the Plus account. For more information on signing up for a BillionGraves Plus account, visit BillionGraves.com.
Earn New Features for Free
Because we love our volunteers, we have started a program to reward you for your hard work: you can earn features just by uploading new images! When you upload just 500 images, you will receive 1 Records Watch (you can be emailed notifications when a certain surname has been added to the BillionGraves database). At 1000 images, you’ll receive an additional Records Watch. Then, you’ll continue to earn features for every 1000 images you upload. Visit the Upgrade page for more details. We know you’ll enjoy making a habit out of recording headstones, and we want to reward you for your efforts.
Of course, all of these features only serve to enhance your experience on BillionGraves. Our database of records will always be free. You do not need a BillionGraves Plus account in order to continue using BillionGraves.
We hope you are as excited about these new features as we are. Thanks again to all of our volunteers—image uploaders and transcribers alike—we couldn’t do it without you! Start uploading more pictures so you can earn your first Records Watch!
We’ve added some new features to the BillionGraves website, and we are excited for you to try them out.
The first is the ability to message other BillionGraves users. Go to a specific cemetery page, and below the map, click the tab labeled “Contributors.” You can view every user that contributed to documenting that cemetery.
If you click on a contributor’s user name, a box will pop up with basic information about that user—their user name and location, if they’ve disclosed it—and an option to send them a message.
We’re holding a contest in honor of RootsTech. The contest encourages you to recruit your family and friends, and then you’ll earn points for THEIR hard work! For every family member or friend that joins your team, you receive one point. And for every photo that your teammates upload, you get one point. So the more people you refer to BillionGraves, the faster your point total will grow. The contest ends on February 29, 2012, at 5 PM PST. If your team earns 10,000 points, you, as team leader, will win a $10 Subway gift card. Then we will hold a drawing to select our Grand Prize winner. The more points you earn, the more entries you get in the drawing. We will make a grand announcement about our Grand Prize during RootsTech this weekend!
Visit our RootsTech Contest page to learn more about the contest. From this page, it is easy to tell your friends by sending an email or posting to Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. Start growing your BillionGraves Team and help us build to a billion.
Information about our session:
Rob Moncur and Curtis Tirrell will present on using smartphones and GPS to crowdsource cemetery data collection. The session will be held in room 255B at the Salt Palace Convention Center on February 4. Again, the session starts at 1:45. We can’t wait to see you at RootsTech!