The National Genealogical Society made some serious lemonade when it figured out what to deal with their conference, which was to be held in May in Salt Lake City, in the face of the COVID-19 crisis. Rather than cancelling it, they made it virtual. As I understand it, this is what they did. (It’s relevant today because you can now purchase recordings of the presentations that would have been made at the conference.)
Registrants for the conference could watch five featured presentations live. Well, sort of live, on May 20. The presentations from Judy Russell, Blaine Bettinger, Elizabeth Shown Mills, Thomas Wright Jones and storyteller and re-enactor Stephanie Raff, were pre-recorded (to prevent technical snafus) and streamed on May 20. The presenters monitored the live chat during the streaming of their recorded presentations so that registrants had a more live, conference-like experience.
There were also three sponsored sessions that were presented as part of the live event on May 20. And another 18 sponsored bonus sessions were recorded.
See this page for a list of the NGS Live! presentations and sponsored presentations.
The rest of the conference presenters–a total of 85 presentations–recorded their lectures, which will be available for streaming. See this page for a list of those presentations.
If you’re interested in watching the NGS lectures, there are three streaming packages available. They all include the 26 above-mentioned featured presentations and bonus sessions and the syllabus.
- Light package: Your choice of 10 sessions, plus the 26 additional sessions for $150 for NGS members/$185 for non-members.
- Full package: Your choice of 20 sessions, plus the 26 additional sessions, for $215 for members/$250 for non-members.
- The Works: Your choice of 45 sessions, plus the additional 26 sessions, for $395 for members/$430 for non-members.
These are available for purchase now; you can choose your OnDemand sessions on June 15 and on July 1, the OnDemand sessions will be released. Once purchased, the subscriptions run from 1 July 2020 to 15 May 2021.
I applaud the ingenuity of the conference planners! They managed to make the content available for the registrants as well as those hadn’t been planning to attend the conference. The presenters still had the chance to create their content for an audience. And I love that people can choose from among all the classes.
I’ve attended the NGS conference twice and both times the classes I took were top notch. I think this is a great opportunity to learn some great stuff at your own pace.