Project Volunteer and Web Site Standards/Guidelines
Are you a new volunteer Coordinator? Welcome to the USGenWeb Project!
Are you a new State or Assistant State Coordinator? Congratulations!
If you are new to the Project, you might want to check out the New Member Survival Guide at newvolunteer.html for general information about the Project.
Whether you are new to the Project or a new State Coordinator, you will find answers to many of your questions in this guide. New CCs/LCs can contact their SC for answers to any questions not found here. Should there be any changes made to these Guidelines/Standards, you will be notified by your State Coordinator and this web page will be updated.
Items listed as *Required* are the essentials -- minimum requirements for Coordinators and Project sites. Beyond the essentials, you can be as creative as you wish with the design and format of your site.
The *Strongly Recommended* and *Recommended* items will help you as a webmaster and will assist visitors to your site, so we ask that you implement all that are appropriate to your site.
First, here are the acronyms and terms you will frequently see in this document and elsewhere within the USGenWeb and your State GenWeb Project:
Your web site - As the owner of your web site, you have the option of establishing your web site on any server. Project web sites are hosted by a variety of servers, many of them free of charge. Your SC is available to help. Check with your SC for any particular state requirements for county web sites. If you are changing an existing web site, check with your SC about any state guidelines regarding removing any currently posted information.
Some of the state coordinators have prepared sample pages to help you get started. If your state does not have a sample file, you can check out other well-established websites for ideas. Some coordinators have had the opportunity to fine-tune their web sites over time, so you should be able to find some excellent ideas.
If you need help creating/editing or uploading your pages, help is available at Tutorials. If you have problems not addressed by the tutorials, additional information is available by subscribing to the USGW-HELPPAGES E-mail list. To subscribe to the list version, send a message to USGW-HELPPAGESemail@example.com or for the digest version USGW-HELPPAGES-Dfirstname.lastname@example.org with the word "subscribe" (without quotes) in the subject line and the text body and nothing else in the body of the message.
Below are required and recommended items for Project members and Project web sites. Please read through all of the information as there are sections for "ALL" project members web sites and specific information for other sections of the membership and web sites.
The National Coordinator shall subscribe all State and Assistant State Coordinators or designated State Support person(s) to the State Coordinator's mail list. All official matters to do with the project and announcements from the national level are posted on this list ByLaws, Section XII, Subsection D.).
State Coordinators and Assistant State Coordinators or designated support person(s) must provide their name, postal address, and phone number to the National Coordinator to be held in strictest confidence and to be used only in the case of an emergency. The email address of all support person(s) must also be provided. (See ../about/bylaws.html). Section XII, Subsection D.).
The state coordinator is required to maintain a state mail list with all local coordinators subscribed. (See ../about/bylaws.html) Section XII, Subsection D.).
State coordinators and/or Assistant State Coordinators are required to forward all Project-wide announcements to the state mail list. They shall also forward other messages of interest regarding the state and/or region as appropriate.
State Coordinators or a designated person/committee are required to periodically check to make sure that all the county web sites are adhering to the few USGenWeb Project requirements (logo, queries, etc.) and that they are updated within a reasonable amount of time (see Bylaws, Section XII, Subsection F).
The state has the responsibility to remove links to local-level project websites not meeting the USGenWeb Project standards/requirements (See Bylaws, Section XII, Subsection G).
The following links are required for State web sites: (See Bylaws, Section XII, Subsection B):
Your State Coordinator will subscribe you to the state's email list. All official matters to do with the Project and announcements from the National level will be posted on your state's mail list. See Bylaws, Section XI, Subsection B.)
Each county site must provide an easily accessible area for queries.See Bylaws, Section XI, Subsection C.) If your state doesn't have other requirements, there are several options available.
All county/local sites must have a direct link to the state's project. (See Bylaws, Section XI,
Provide basic research information for your county:
for the county court clerk, library and genealogical and/or historical societies.
A bibliography page showing the reference books available for your county.
Comments and administrative-type problems should be emailed to the National Coordinator. For suggestions, concerns or complaints regarding a specific web site within the USGenWeb Project, please use the Contact Form.
Direct comments, technical difficulties or suggestions about this web site to the Webmaster.