Many visitors to the FamilySearch Research Wiki have created user accounts on the site, yet they have failed to create their user and user talk pages so others can interact with them via the wiki.
The User I.D’s of users don’t display email addresses, personal websites or other contact venues unless a user puts that information on their user page.
User talk pages fill the intrawiki communications tool requirement on most wiki sites. We all want this feature, especially to request help and to receive any site specific information that originates with the wiki administrators and moderators..
It is easy to create these pages. Here’s how:
Click on the ‘Sign In” link at the top right corner of the page.
You’ll be taken to the FamilySearch page titled : “Where Generations Meet”. If you already have an account on FamilySearch, simply fill in your user name and password in the corresponding fields. If you don’t have a free account on FamilySearch, click on the Create New Account button.
FamilySearch uses the same user login credentials across almost all of its sites, thus few users will ever need more than one set of login credentials.
Your credentials allow you to add and edit information on the FamilySearch Wiki in addition to being able to see many if not all images in the FamilySearch records index. Additionally, the new FamilySearch database and the FamilySearch Tree interface for that database use the same login credentials.
There are caveats to the last statement because not all people have access to the FamilySearch database, yet, but the process of granting user accounts to it is underway. Many non-LDS researchers have already been given access to it and the rollout continues.
A note should be made at this point. See the “Forgot your user name or password” links just below the ‘Sign In” button? if you ever forget your credentials, simply click on ether of these links to retrieve them. They will be sent to you via the email address you included when you created your account, so be sure to use an address that has longevity or keep your account profile up-to-date so you can retrieve your credentials info in if you do forget it.
Use your credentials to log in to the FamilySearch Research Wiki. Note the tools on the right side of the page in the light purple frame. Click on the “Personal tools” section and expand it.
Click on your user name to go to your user page. It will be empty, so take a few minutes to add a little information about yourself, your interests or anything else you want the wiki community to know about yourself.
Most users will use the WYSIWIG editor at the top of the page when adding their information but if you are familiar with the wikitext protocol, you can simply click on the Wikitext button on the tool bar to switch to the wikitext view.
Next, click on the “My Talk” link on the tool bar Add a welcome comment or some other short note. Save it and your Talk page will be active and ready for use. Site users will contact you via notes and comments they add on this page. You’ll use their Talk page to interact with them.
When someone posts a comment on your Talk page, an email notification of it will be sent to your email address.
While you are looking at the items in your personal tools, open your preferences and set them to fit your style. The other links will display any articles you are watching or all of your contributions to the wiki.
Take the time to explore the rest of the tools for the wiki. Under “Community”, you’ll see links to various topics, meetings and news for the wiki. Under “Toolbox” you’ll find links related to pages from emailing a user to viewing the links associated with any page..
The “Views” section provides links and tools ranging from editing a page to the history and even protecting a page. One of the most important links in this section is the ‘Discussion” link. If you are logged in and click on this link, you’ll see all of the user discussion comments associated with it. In many cases, they will give you the genesis of the page, complete with how it came to be presented in its current format and possibly why it contains the information and links on it.
If you want to comment about anything on a wiki page, use this link.
If you want to communicate with a wiki user who has posted or edited this page (called articles in wiki convention), use the User Talk page.
How do you find their user names? Just click on the “History” link at the top of every page and you’ll be able to see the full history of a page since its creation. The user name of anyone who has added to it or edited it is listed along with the date stamp of the change and any comments they made when they edited the page.
If they have created a user Talk page, clicking on the Talk link to the right of their user name takes you to their Talk page, where you can leave your comment.
Take a few minutes today and populate your User and Talk pages on the wiki, then have some fun and just explore the sites. An average of sixty articles have been added to the wiki each day for the last few years. You’ won’t have a hard time finding something ‘new’ to read and you’ll undoubtedly be rewarded with some extremely valuable research aids, tips and links that will help in our ancestral quest.