Social media has become a part of daily life. It is family history in the making. Ben Bennett and Cydni Tetro had an idea: What if someone could stream information from these sites by importing it to a preservation site and create a story?
Cyndi Tetro works for Disney in the Imagineering department and she knows stories. She has learned that an individual must understand the background to understand the story. She explained that in her current assignment with Disney she has to know everything about Star Wars. This background understanding helps to create an experience for the visitors to the theme park. She commented that when families step into a story it becomes a magical place to make memories! She asked the question, “What does a story mean to you?” She showed a tree containing the icons and trademarks of many social media sites and the many ways in which stories are shared today.
She said, “Storytelling is a timeless human tradition.” Stories are memorable, help us to travel further, and inspire us to action. The ones who know a lot about their families tend to do better when they face challenges, yet “we are creating stories every day that are not being captured.” She asked, “How do we remember?” Her answer was that we collect family stories in journals, audio, and video files. We are using social media yet the stories are being lost. The social content is posted at a pace that a person could get lost in the moment. For example, individuals upload photos to Facebook at a rate of 350 billion a day, YouTube has 100 hours of video uploaded every minute, and Vine has 5 tweets per second.
Ben Bennett and Cydni Tetro wanted social media accounts to come together. They wanted to build an experience to preserve stories. So Cydni set to work during this past month to create #MyToday. #MyToday will help individuals share and keep stories from their social media accounts by saving them to the FamilySearch website. She said that the challenge was to make it as easy as possible with as little friction as possible.
She showed us its potential through importing her own Facebook content to create a story. Cydni asked all of us to try it for ourselves at www.mytoday.co or come see them in the Expo Hall. You will have an opportunity to create an experience through your own Facebook account. Information from your Facebook account is imported and you will create the story through content integration. Content integration is achieved by looking at the stream and choosing to keep or ignore it based on the story being told. #MyToday is in the early stages of beta, so the information will not be saved or imported to the FamilySearch website. #MyToday welcomes your feedback.
Stories happen every day. #MyToday is a tool to capture the memories and stories of all who are connected to social media. #MyToday will allow individuals to connect their social worlds and preserve them forever.
Lynn Broderick (https://thesingleleaf.wordpress.com/) is a writer by birth, a teacher by profession, and a researcher by passion. She enjoys researching individuals of the past in the context of family, community, and social history. Known as the Single Leaf, she combined her childhood memories of football and genealogy to create genealogy football and works with her team to win their family history bowl each year. She loves to coach people on how to enjoy pursuing their family history and has done so for over 25 years.