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IAGenWeb Project Rules

 

Revised by a simple majority vote: February 22nd, 2014 (changes since last revision)

 

Basic Requirements necessary for a project page to be associated with the IAGenWeb Project. indicates a County Project requirement, indicates a Special Project requirement1:

 

  1. MAINTAIN A SUBSCRIPTION TO THE IAGENWEB MEMBER LIST
    The IAGenWeb Member Mailing List is for communicating essential information regarding the administration of the IAGenWeb Project. All IAGenWeb Project members are required to be on this list at all times. See our bylaws for a definition of your membership.
  2. PROVIDE USGENWEB & IAGENWEB PROJECT LINKS AND LOGOS

    Every project main page is required to display the USGenWeb & IAGenWeb logos in the upper portion of the page so they are immediately visible without scrolling down the page. Both logos must be linked to their respective home pages.

    The URL for the USGenWeb Project homepage is:
    http://www.usgenweb.org/index.shtml
    You can find a selection of USGenWeb logos here
    The URL for the IAGenWeb Project homepage is:
    http://iagenweb.org/index.htm
    You can find a selection of IAGenWeb logos here.

  3. LET YOUR VISITORS KNOW WHO YOU ARE & PROVIDE A MEANS FOR THEM TO REACH YOU
    Coordinators must display at least their first name & a working email address (or a link to the page where the email is displayed) on the main page of their project. Project coordinators should respond to all appropriate email from contributors, researchers & other project members within several days. The importance of acknowledging all emails, data submissions and otherwise responding to visitors and other IAGenWeb members cannot be stressed enough.... even if you are unable to be of help to the visitor. Remember that your response is a representation of the IAGenWeb. If you are unable to access email for more than a few days, inform the State Coordinator of your absence.
  4. PROVIDE A "JOIN OUR TEAM" LINK
    Every project main page is required to let visitors know that the IAGenWeb project is always looking for volunteers and must include a link to the "Join Our Team!" page: http://iagenweb.org/state/jointeam.php. Display of the logo is optional, but encouraged. The logo can be found here.
  5. PROVIDE THE FRIENDS OF IAGENWEB LINK
    The Friends of IAGenWeb link must be displayed on the Home Page of all IAGenWeb projects. Friends of IAGenWeb was established to provide the financial support for the IAGenWeb project which includes the special projects and the message boards.

    The URL for the Friends of IAGenWeb home page is: http://iagenweb.org/state/friends_of_iagenweb/
    You can find a selection of IAGenWeb logos here.
  6. ccPROVIDE LINKED LOGOS TO YOUR IAGENWEB COUNTY BOARDS
    Every county has a Queries Message Board set up for their visitors’ use. Coordinators are required to utilize the board and to make it known that it exists by placing the logo linked to the board on their site; if not placed on the main project page, then place links on a page specific for the Boards linked from the main project page. This encourages visitors to place their queries there. Also, provide linked logos to the Obituaries, Biographies and Document Boards for your county.
  7. PROVIDE BASIC RESEARCH HELP FOR YOUR PROJECT
    The coordinator must provide basic research support for visitors: a list of current links and/or names, addresses and phone numbers for the county courthouse, local libraries, genealogical and/or historical societies, and other relevant information. Include a page listing volunteers willing to do lookups. On this same page, request additional volunteers. Researchers are very often eager to help others if asked. Many coordinators also encourage visitors to post their queries and look-up requests on the county Query Board and provide a bibliography page listing reference books available for their county.
  8. PROVIDE REFERENCE LINKS FOR YOUR PROJECT
    The coordinator must provide a list of other websites where visitors may be able to find additional information (i.e., links to other websites that may provide additional, relevant information). The IAGenWeb Special Projects page and IAGenWeb links page are excellent examples.
  9. PRESERVE IAGENWEB AND USGENWEB IDENTITY
    Should an IAGenWeb Project Coordinator decide to create and maintain a website for an online project similar in concept to the IAGenWeb, the new website should be significantly and distinctly different from the IAGenWeb project site. There must be no confusing one with the other.

    To promote and preserve IAGenWeb and USGenWeb identity and to help prevent confusion, an IAGenWeb project home page must contain IAGenWeb and USGenWeb logos and may not contain logos for, or links to, similar county-based online genealogy projects.
  10. THE IAGENWEB SOLICITATION RULE
    Project websites may not raise money or solicit funds (i.e., request or plead for funds) other than for the exceptions listed below.

    Friends of IAGenWeb may raise or solicit funds on pages within the
    project where approved by the IAGenWeb Leadership Team and by the
    site's coordinator.

    A project site may list research materials and/or services offered for sale or hire so long as this list is not on its home page, but may be linked from the home page. It may be appropriate to include the IAGenWeb disclaimer that the contents of such research materials and/or the expertise of any professional researchers are not guaranteed.
  11. ABIDE BY THE USGENWEB COPYRIGHT STATEMENT
    All members of IAGenWeb Project shall be responsible for adhering to The USGenWeb copyright statement in its bylaws. Unless in the public domain' permission to use' must be obtained from the copyright holder for special HTML code, scripts, graphics, backgrounds, photos, research data, transcriptions, etc. USGenWeb Project Copyright Information and the IAGenWeb Disclaimer are excellent resources on the topic.

    The Digital Copyright Slider is an easy-to-use tool to check if an item is copyright protected.
  12. MAINTAIN YOUR WEBSITE TO KEEP IT IN GOOD WORKING ORDER
    On-site and off-site webpage links must work and be checked periodically to ensure they work. If an email address link or webpage link is no longer functioning, either repair or delete it. Any reports of webpage errors, including malfunctionings webpage or email address links, must be followed up on and corrected within several days. Coordinators are encouraged to post a message asking visitors to report non-working webpage and email address links and other webpage errors. Don't hesitate to ask for help correcting these if needed.
  13. RESPECT THE OWNERSHIP OF DONATED MATERIALS
    Material posted on IAGenWeb project sites are the property of the submitter and are considered to be a donation to the IAGenWeb project. (Note: Material submitted to the USGenWeb Archives or to mailing lists or boards owned by other organizations fall under the policies of the respective owner of that resource and are is not subject to this policy.) When a project has a change of its Coordinator, all material submitted by others remain with the project. Material is to be removed only upon the written request of the submitter.
  14. DATA REQUIREMENTS
    The vision of IAGenWeb is to continually provide research material for our visitors. This is accomplished by adding two types of records to the projects: complete record-sets and incomplete record-sets. These records must be "on-site content" located on the project website.

    Postings to the county boards (obituary, biography & document) are considered "on-site content" for the purpose of this requirement. An on-site index of project-specific records located on another website are considered on-site content. For example: an index of data located on the Iowa Gravestone Photo Project. However, data residing on another website does not count towards this data requirement.

    New complete record-sets or incomplete record-sets are to be added to a project no less than once every six (6) months, with at least one complete record-set added yearly. That is to say, both record sets may be complete record-sets, but both may not be incomplete record-sets. Some of the Special Projects only provide incomplete records, so Coordinators must add new incomplete record-sets no less than once every six (6) months.

    A complete record-set covers a defined period of time or is complete for a given scope of data.  An incomplete record-set is a substantial number of unorganized, but related, records.  Incomplete records always have the potential of becoming a complete record-set.  Record sources, contributors' names and the date when the material was added is strongly recommended.

    Examples of "Complete" and "Incomplete" record-sets:

    Compete record-set
    (formerly called transcribed records)

    • A bride index for all marriages within a span of years
    • A census transcript covering a complete unit of data such as a township
    • All biographies from a history book
    • Complete gravestone inscriptions for a cemetery
    Incomplete record-set
    (formerly called random records)
    (unorganized, but related, records)


    • A substantial set of various county biographies
    • A substantial set of transcribed county news articles
    • A partial list of gravestone inscriptions for a cemetery
  15. PROVIDE A SEARCH ENGINE ON YOUR SITE
    Every IAGenWeb project site is required to have a working and up-to-date search engine(s) that search the on-site data for the project. Because records posted to the message boards are considered on-site content, our visitors need to be directed to search them also. This can be accomplished by including the boards in the project's main search engine, by providing a second search box for the boards, or by indicating to the visitor that a full search is not complete without searching the message boards. 

    There are many free search engines available on the internet that are easy to set up and maintain. If you have set-up questions, contact the State Coordinator. Instructions for adding the boards to the project website's search engine, or providing a separate message board search box, can be found in the Board Tips & Procedures section on the Forum. In addition to the on-site search engine(s), if a coordinator wants to offer a separate search engine that searches off-site data on other projects, it must be clearly labeled as such, so visitors aren't confused.
Notes:

1 Special Project coordinators are encouraged to adapt other relevant county requirements to their sites.

 

The Rules Update Committee: (13 Dec 2013 - 6 Feb 2014)

  • Stephen Williams - Committee Chair, Immediate Past State Coordinator, Iowa County Coordinator, Iowa State Census Project Coordinator, Technical Support Team Member
  • Conni McDaniel Hall - State Coordinator, Dallas County & Henry Coordinator
  • Linda Ziemann - Past State Coordinator, Kossuth & Monona & Plymouth & Sioux County Coordinator, Iowa in WWII & Iowa Old Press Project Coordinator
  • Constance Diamond - Past State Coordinator, Delaware & Dubuque & Fayette County Coordinator, Iowa History & Iowa in the Great War Project Coordinator, Welcome Hostess
  • Karen De Groote - Past State Coordinator, Humboldt & Pocahontas County Coordinator
  • Sharyl Ferrall - Past State Coordinator, Iowa Old Press Special Project Coordinator, Allamakee & Clayton County Coordinator
  • Mark Christian - Past State Coordinator, Story County Coordinator, Technical Team Leader
  • William Haloupek - Assistant State Coordinator, Tama County Coordinator
  • Sharon Becker - Cerro Gordo & Decatur & Ringgold County Coordinator, Iowa in WWII Assistant Coordinator
  • David Dinham - Clarke County Coordinator
  • Allen Hibbard - Marion County Coordinator
  • William Waters - Howard & Winneshiek County Coordinator