Using Facebook to Contact Distant Relatives

Facebook is the most popular social media site to date. With over one billion active users, to say that information there is abundant is an understatement.

While many use the platform for personal and professional use, others find it as a tool to communicate with their distant relatives.

Many are in debate as to whether or not it’s a good idea to do so. Whichever works for you, here are some of the factors you need to consider.

1. Think twice before adding.

The thing about Facebook is that when you add someone, you no longer have the option to say why you’re adding the person. So if you stumble upon your distant cousin whom you’ve been looking for, when you add them they might think you’re just another creepy stalker.

2. Consider the Other inbox.

When you’re not friends with a certain person on Facebook and send them a message, they fall in the Other inbox, not the direct one where you can easily see the notifications.

When you shoot them a message, the chances are they won’t notice it. It still depends, though, if the one you’re trying to reach is a bonafied Facebook savvy.

3. Be polite and tell them of your purpose.

If you do get the opportunity to contact them through Facebook, make sure you state your purpose right away. Be prepared because not everyone is excited to learn about distant relatives as you are. In fact, there are more people who don’t care about genealogy so be polite enough to them.

4. Interest counts.

If you find out that the person you’re trying to contact is also into researching about their genealogical history, then you’re in luck. Chances are, you’ll end up being added as well, coordinating along the way and soon, meet and talk about your intention to learn more about your family history.

So there you have it. Do consider Facebook but also keep in mind the factors above before you go adding that distant relative of yours.

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