In his most recent blog post under the title Dick Eastman is wrong John Grenham starts:
"On second thoughts actually no, Dick Eastman is right. The other title is just grabbier.Grenham is reacting to a presentation The Future of Genealogy Research Eastman gave to The Third International family history conference of the Claire Roots Society, Diaspora of the Wild Atlantic Way, which took place on 23rd to 24th September 2016.
On third thoughts, maybe he’s both right and wrong."
Where they agree is on the importance of collaboration online. Where Grenham differs is in hoping it will not occur through subscription sites such as Ancestry. Que sera, sera --- if people find the commercial sites good value they'll use them, and it's not just the collaboration they offer but also convenient access to digitized records. While Ireland may have free access to many records (of those not destroyed) wasn't it the commercial companies that produced an name index to the Catholic parish records. Wasn't it Ancestry that indexed most of the Canadian census records which now, after an embargo period, are freely available at the Library and Archives Canada website.
What's most surprising in both Eastman's slides, and Grenham's blog post, is --- no mention of genetic genealogy. Adding DNA evidence to genealogical research is the biggest advance of the past few years and shows no signs of stopping anytime soon. The demonstrated potential to tumble down brick walls we have seen to date is nothing compared to what will happen when a critical mass of the population's DNA, especially outside the USA, is tested and available in a database for comparison. It should not be overlooked in any discussion of the future of genealogy research.