Posts tagged ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’

May 14, 2012

WDYTYA is canceled by NBC for its 4th season !!! #Genealogy, #Ancestry, #NBC

by C. Michael Eliasz-Solomon

Stanczyk is sad that WDYTYA (“Who Do You Think You Are?“) has been canceled by NBC — There will NOT be a 4th season.

This was reported by Investors Business Daily at 9:00am today by Patrick Seitz (why do this when I am en route to an archive?). The impact upon Ancestry.com  was immediate. Today its stock (ACOM) is down 13.15%  at the time of this article.

From a business standpoint, I think this is an over reaction. First off this, is a year of the 1940 census and that has been as HUGE up to all census related sites (see this jester’s Genealogy Website Rankings page). Also Ancestry has launched its DNA initiative (AncestryDNA). Now this has the costs baked in already and whatever revenue stream this produces will accrue to the bottom line. Stanczyk has already fielded questions about this product, so there does exist some buzz for the product and it was announced/promoted at this year’s RootsTech Conference. Add in the PBS’s own series “Finding Your Roots” and there does seem to be an “rising tide lifts all boats” effect in progress.

So I have to ask, “Is NBC short sighted in this action or at least are they acting out of synch with other media/events that are happening?”.

I think NBC should move it to Saturday night. So we could have a Saturday / Sunday bonanza between NBC and PBS. Both series could do a “push-pull” to lift each other. If NBC is firm then, perhaps a Cable network will pick up this series??? Please!  Here is what I think might be good fits:

Bravo – Who doesn’t like The Actor Studio? Similar  audience since the celebrity genealogy is a kind of deep dive into a celeb’s background.

OWN – Oprah seems like the kind of family oriented billionaire who has the wherewithal, clout, and morals to keep this content going  … strong.

A&E TV – This network has Bio and History channels. There must be a slot available there

BYU TV – This would be my last choice given its limited availability. But BYU and LDS audience would be interested in this PROVO, UT send-up and the rest of us could follow along.

As this season draws to a close, I wanted to say, “Thanks” to WDYTYA and Finding Your Roots for an excellent season.

 

As always, I would love to hear your thoughts on this matter.  Email me!

 

May 12, 2012

Jason Sudeikis / Who Do You Think You Are? (#WDYTYA, @LisaKudrow) #Genealogy

by C. Michael Eliasz-Solomon

Last night’s Who Do You Think Are? show was another interesting episode. Stanczyk got an idea whilst watching the show. Why not, play along on Ancestry.com?

Now this occurred to me because I am helping friends who are Lithuanian and I noticed that tie-in right away. But what really made it personal and very interesting for me was to find Jason’s 2nd great-grandfather, Joseph had immigrated/worked in Mahanoy City, PA (a mining community). As it turns out, this is a big Polish/Lithuanian/Italian community due to the miner immigrants around the beginning of the twentytieth century. It is also a city where the Eliasz-Solomon family has roots.

So I wanted to right away get on Ancestry.com and see if there were any Sudeikis ties (or near ties) to our roots. I really enjoyed the mining research — that is an area of research I was considering since one ancestor died much too young. I too was thinking a mining accident my explain the death.

Of course, after seeing Jason’s search for the ship manifest I had other questions too. I think the season needs to add a final show after a summer re-run season where genealogists can write in and ask questions. Like last night I saw a fellow tweeter was wondering about the CT Sudeikis family whether they had been contacted as part of the research. Me,  I was wondering two things about the ship manifest:

  1. Why was Mary sent back to get Stanley (since Mary was only 14, not the 16 as shown on the ship manifest; Compare 1900 Census with ship manifest.). I felt the young age of the girl getting her even younger brother, who now had even younger siblings in Pennsylvania would have been an interesting topic for Jason to react to.
  2. Also, why was poor Stanley Sr. the last Sudeikis left over in Lithuania? Notice that his older (non-American born siblings) all came over in 1898 leaving only Stanley to come over  two years later. Again, this would have been a dramatic point to explore with Jason. Perhaps that abandonment in Lithuania was why Stanley Sr. felt he could so easily abandon Jason’s family in Chicago for the CT family.

Also I have a question for the show and Lisa Kudrow. Did your researchers learn where in  Lithuania, Jason’s ancestors came from? I think the ship manifest (yes I am obsessed with the ship manifest) had a misspelled ancestral village. My guess would be Wizajny — which is actually in modern Poland very near the Lithuanian border in what would have been the Suwalki wojewodztwo (and afterwards the Russian Empire’s Suwalki gubernia). I have done research in that area before that is why my mind immediately went to that village when I saw the village of the ship manifest.

I think the show could exploit Lisa and/or the on-air genealogists and possibly the stars in responding to the questions. Is there a place for fans to write-in their suggestions? Why not a year-end show at the end of summer/beginning of fall to let people get their questions answered and perhaps do some “behind the scenes” info or show clips that were cut due to time constraints. Make this show be a full hour (instead of 30 minutes). Come on Genealogy Buffs — write @LisaKudrow and make the request!

P.S.

Let me take this opportunity to wish my beloved wife, Tereza, the mother of my only children, a very Happy Mother’s Day 2012 ! Tereza, thank you for creating our little dynasty by having my twin sons !!!

We love you Tereza!

xoxoxo

February 24, 2012

London, England – WDYTYA — #Polish, #Genealogy, #TV,#Show

by C. Michael Eliasz-Solomon

At the London “Who Do YOU Think You Are?“, the largest genealogy event in the English-speaking world will be held this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in London, England @ a three-day expo at the Olympia Exhibition Hall (February 24-26, 2012).

Between February 24 and 26 the Kresy-Siberia Foundation will have a stand at the “Who Do You Think You Are?” — the world’s biggest family history show.

Tens of thousands of Poles imprisoned in Russian labour camps or “gulags” across the far reaches of Siberia between 1940 and 1941 were freed in 1941, when Russia decided to become an ally of Great Britain in 1941 the prisoners were freed to form the Polish Second Corps — who fought so heroically in North Africa and the Italian campaign of 1943-44, (i.e. battle of Monte Cassino).

Many of these men settled in and adopted as their home, the communities in Bath, Trowbridge and Bristol. Perhaps this event will lead to new connections between these displaced families and their ancestors/descendants in other parts of the world.

Stanczyk wishes to note that the Polish Second Corps included: Wojtek soldier bear – mascot of 22nd Artillery Supply Company, who I have written about a few times.

 

http://www.thisissomerset.co.uk/Chance-Polish-descendants-trace-roots/story-15298065-detail/story.html

 

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