Executive Corner: FamilySearch 2012 Accomplishments

Dennis Brimhall--190 by 90

2012 was a big year for FamilySearch! Here are a few things that stand out from what we were able to accomplish.





FamilySearch.org Website

What Was Added in 2012

  • Digital Images Added:                   297,695,589
  • Indexed Records Added:               408,154,952
  • New Collections Added:                381
  • New Countries Added:                  10
  • New Books Added:                        40,849

FamilySearch.org at a Glance as we Start 2013

  • Number of names in searchable databases                                           Over 3.5 billion
  • Number of historic records published online each month                     Over 35 million
  • Number of digital images published online each month fromoriginal  source documents                                                                 Over 33 million
  • Number of searchable historic record collections online                         1,363
  • Number of indexed names published per year                                    Over 200 million
  • Average daily page views                                                                     Over 5 million
  • Average daily visits                                                                             Over 200,000
  • Average daily visitors                                                                             Over 85,000
  • Page views since launch                                                                          Over 16.6 billion
  • Visits since launch                                                                              712 million
  • Visitors since launch                                                                             308 million
  • Number of online indexing volunteers                                                   Over 200,000
  • Number of registered users                                                                    Over 1 million
  • Number of family history centers                                                         4,600 in 126 countries
  • Number of digital books                                                                            Over 60,000

FamilySearch has 6.875 billion historic records on microfilm that are being digitized and eventually indexed. These records contain an estimated 20.6 billion names.
FamilySearch Indexing

FamilySearch indexing grew at an unprecedented rate in 2012 with the indexing of 263 million records. Major contributors to this growth were:

1940 US Census Community Project

  • A truly significant community effort.
  • We involved more than 184,000 volunteers.
  • Volunteers indexed more than 132 million records in just over four months.
  • Smashed all previous records for indexing.
  • Resulted in a published, searchable census a full two months earlier than anticipated.
  • On July 2, more than 46,000 volunteers took part in a goal to index 5 million records within a 24-hour period. The goal was surpassed with the indexing of more than 10 million records indexed in a single 24-hour period.

U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Community Project

  • In total, this collection dwarfs the 1940 U.S. Census with an estimated 500 million total records.
  • Excellent volunteer involvement with great excitement.

International Indexing Efforts (Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America)

  • Italian Ancestors project—a joint effort between FamilySearch and the Italian National Archives to digitize, index and publish the full collection of Italian civil registration records (births, marriages, and deaths).
  • The collection represents more than 115 million digital images and upwards of 500 million names.
  • Significant international recruiting efforts are currently underway to assemble a volunteer workforce to index and arbitrate this collection in a timely fashion.

The FamilySearch Indexing Program

  • Available in 11 languages (English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, and Swedish) with more language interfaces and international projects coming.

Family History (DCAM-X) Image Digitization Operations

FamilySearch has over 200 digital record preservation camera teams in 45 countries who produce more than 100 million new digital images for free online publication each year.

  • North America operations stayed the same with 43 cameras.
  • Latin America increased their camera operations from 30 cameras to 43 cameras.
  • We started this year 2012 with approximately 112 cameras for the eastern hemisphere. By the end of the year 2012, we counted approximately 124 cameras for the eastern hemisphere.

RootsTech Conference—2012

In 2012, RootsTech attendance grew over 30% compared to 2011. At over 4,000 registered attendees, RootsTech was the largest genealogy conference in Utah in the past 10 years and rivaled national conferences such as NGS and FGS.

  • 4,036 registrations—3,259 full conference registrants and exhibitors, 777 family history consultant registrants.  Developer attendees increased by 37% over last year to 669.  Non-FamilySearch developer attendees increased 40% to 350.
  • Attendees came from 46 U.S. states and 20 additional countries.
  • Over 50,000 views of live streaming sessions (compared to 4,700 last year), with up to 4,080 concurrent viewers.
  • 21 official sponsors: Microsoft, Dell, Ancestry.com, brightsolid, Archives.com, BYU, NGS, NEHGS, FGS, APG, VmWare, Avanade, HP, Lexmark, Lenovo, CDW, UTC, IIMI, CenturyLink, Savvis, and Sprint.

Public Relations:

  • Over 90 bloggers present from Australia, Canada, Israel, the U.K., and the U.S., including the top 5 genealogy bloggers.
  • 6,563 total social media mentions for RootsTech (45% higher than 2011), and 1,135 total mentions for FamilySearch.
  • 5,487 RootsTech tweets by 1,121 contributors (compared to 3,494 tweets by 337 contributors in 2011).
  • Local coverage by ksl.com, Deseret News, Standard-Examiner, Church News, Mormon Times, LDS.org.

Attendee Response:

  • 90% of RootsTech attendees indicated they were very satisfied or satisfied with RootsTech overall.
  • 82% of nongenealogy industry technology creator attendees reported that RootsTech increased their interest in creating technologies for the genealogy industry.
  • RootsTech received a Net Promoter Score of 57%.

Family History Library:

  • 414,970 visitors.
  • Group attendance 11,947. This was a 56% increase over 2011.
  • Youth attendance was up by 46%.
  • Over 6,000 youth were hosted at the FamilySearch Center as part of Temple Square Youth Summer Conferences.
  • 558 patron classes were taught with over 7,000 patrons in attendance.
  • 35,290 first time users.
  • Hosted Night at the Library during RootsTech.
  • Hosted kickoff for the 1940 U. S. Census indexing.
  • Hosted Engineering Day.
  • Cultural Learning Orientation—research experiences were presented at the Family History Library.
  • Proposal for library remodel.

Family History Learning Services

We produced and delivered a total 486 new instructional products in 2012. Below are a few highlights:

  • Delivered a total of 124 new online courses in the Learning Center (597 total courses on the learning center, making it the largest family history learning repository in the world).
  • Delivered 26 instructional products to support the release of the Family Tree (10 languages).
  • Delivered 23 training pieces to support the release of the 1940 U. S. Census.
  • Delivered the youth website with localized content (10 languages).
  • Delivered pre-MTC, MTC, and In-Field family history lessons (19 languages for pre-MTC/MTC).
  • Delivered To Turn the Hearts guide and videos online (21 languages for the guide, and 15 languages for the DVD).

We thank all of our users, industry partners, press, bloggers, employees, and sponsors for a great 2012. What’s exciting is that we have even more planned for 2013! So, hold on for the ride!
Dennis  Brimhall

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