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Why are so many sites now trying to match other genealogists up to each other?

Question by strideconnection

My Heritage are one of the worst I know, I now see folk with up to 12,000 + people in their tree, where they have just added other people's trees to theirs. So much of the data is innaccurate at times. I like to do things the old fashion way of getting certificates and verification sources, that is the fun of this hobby.

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by strideconnection Profile | Research | Contact | Subscribe | Block this user
on 2011-09-16 23:20:37

strideconnection , from Originally England now living in New Zealand, has been a Family Tree Circles member since Feb 2011. is researching the following names: CATCHPOLE, STRIDE, ESSEXSUTTON and 28 other(s).

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Answers

by asheppard on 2011-09-17 00:16:02

There are a lot of people out there who just "copy and paste" into their trees without any thought about the information, it's on some ones tree so it must be right.

I have a fictitious person in my tree and I know of at least 23 other trees that have this person in them, all copied from one to the other without looking at the facts.

I have two other people who emailed me and asked about the person in question as they could not find any records for them. It was easily explained and at least I knew they were genuinely doing their own research as well. They have both now added a fictitious person to their tree and have sent me some interesting emails they have received. It makes for a good laugh.

I did have one person who took offense at me asking questions about my fictitious person in their tree, and was told to do my own research and find out who the person was. Well, I know who the person is I made them up, but I didn't tell them that.

It's probably not playing fair but it's very interesting. Most people genuinely do their own research, taking what they know and what some one else may know and trying to put it all together, it's as you say it's the fun of the hobby and the discovery that makes it all worth while.

happy hunting

by strideconnection on 2011-09-17 00:36:40

Thank you for that, at least I now know I am not alone in my thoughts on this.

by irishresearcher on 2011-09-17 07:52:58

I made the mistake of allowing someone access to my tree and weeks later discovered they added ALL 1,500 to their tree. The only connection being through a marriage.

That isn't genealogy that's stamp collecting.

I have also spoken to people who have thousands on their tree and they have not bought any certs!

Even in my own tree I will only add a spouse to the blood relation.....I have no in interest i who their parents/grandparents are.

If people can't buy certs and collect church records then they are wasting their time.

by mtgrams on 2011-09-17 18:42:15

I HEARTILY agree with all of the above... I've given the genealogy 'bug' to several folks over the last 30 yrs, but always warned them to .. at the VERY least .. spot check at least some of the info before accepting the work of others!

Considering what was available on-line when I began, just knowing where to search (due to anothers' tree) is a marvelous short-cut!!

by mtgrams on 2011-09-17 18:51:08

Oh, and to Irishresearcher ...to which blood-related spouces are you referring? I assume you mean uncles, aunts & cousins, etc???

by lindsidelass on 2011-09-19 18:24:30

To some people collecting "relatives" is like collecting "friends" on Facebook; the more the better. You don't have to know all these folks, you just have to keep tabulating up the numbers. People who want to know their history will check references, will confirm dates, and most likely invest in doumentation. I would rather have 25 people, thoroughly examined by yours truly than 2500 that I just copied. Weren't we all taught that copying was cheating unless we had permission? The "hunt" is more than half the fun!

by strideconnection on 2011-09-19 18:37:46

You bet, trouble is, I was pretty naive many years ago when I did put my tree on the internet and it was not privatised and people just added all my data, then others copied theirs and so it went on, a lot of my data has changed over the years, so those copies will now be inaccurate.

It really makes me angry and the first person I sent a tree to back at least 15 years ago, the person added all to their tree including my late husband ancestors. The Person was only connected to me by their marriage. When asked to remove living persons data and all my husbands ancestors, I was told if I had nothing to hide why should I mind.

by smittycr on 2011-09-19 18:53:46

Oh I was glad to see this line. I added some data to my tree (minor data such as census info )and I was feeling guilty even though I only added what I knew to be true. I found so much information that I could tell people were making leaps to connect that were invalid especially when they have people married to others people when the birth/date dates don't make any sense. And where they combined 2 separate wives to be the same person. Thanks for the warnings and suggestions as I want a clean (well as clean as possible) tree.

I will keep doing research the long way otherwise it isn't much fun. And I've learned an awful lot about the areas where I'm resarching.

by strideconnection on 2011-09-19 22:29:38

Good for you, just remember if you join any genealogy sites, such a genesreunited, my heritage to name just 2 or join a genealogy facebook site, ensure you privatise your data as they will constantly be trying to match people in your tree with those in other trees, this is just so crazy. Good luck and happy hunting.

by aomething on 2011-09-21 11:31:10

I had the same problem about 15 yrs ago. I have a "distant" cousin that I had emailed my tree to, with the promise from him that he wasn't using it other than for his research purposes, and he put it online. THEN, somehow the death informationof my grandfather was changed and now everone that copies from the original file online has wrong information. I put a sticky note on the file and let people know they have to change the information so that it is correct. It has yet to be fixed. I now have my own personal family website up, and control what information I put online and then I don't have to worry about what is false and what isn't. I don't like Tree stealers or "friend Stealers" either. People need to do their own research. I have been doing genealogy since 1984 and its the thrill of the hunt that keeps me going! Good luck to every one!

by strideconnection on 2011-09-21 16:11:53

Does it cost a lot to set up your own website, and are you able to prevent those other than who you personally invite from visiting? I think when we first started this exciting hobby, we had no idea that the "Internet" would come along as it has done. When I first started my husband and I would sit for hours at the LDS churches scrolling through films and fiche to find our ancestors, then we purchased all the census on Fiche (still have all those boxes). Then Bulletin (BBS) Boards came along.

We would have contact with someone who turned out to be a cousin such excitement :-) we would send a copy of our work, never realising just how that could be used by someone not so diligent. Grrr :-((

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