Friday, July 2, 2010

Exasperation! [Or the Duping of an Unexperienced Public]

Recently I requested some information from another "genealogy researcher" who stated that they had previously located some information for a client and was willing to share.
This researcher [who shall remain annon] lised a source as a tree located on Ancestry.com. Now, I'll admit to having used trees found from public locales to assist me over a hump when I ran dry of information. But NEVER do I rely upon those trees as a source! I use those trees, rather, to point me in the right direction, and then use proper documentation to prove [or disprove] the information I found in the tree I referenced.

Has anyone really looked at the public trees on, not only Ancestry.com, but other sites, and how truly unreliable these sites of "information" are?

I've blogged several times on this matter. And the more I complain, it seems the more misinformation is published!

But, here was a researcher, who sells their information as professional, sending me to this site.

Take a look for yourself here.

Okay, did you see just this one entry's horrendous misinform?

Take a look at this James England. His date of birth is listed as 1750 in Pennsylvania.

Look at the "Arrived" tab. Do you see it???

Look again!

This particular tree shows Mr. England arriving in Pennsylvania in 1683. And it even lists a reputable citation!

What???

Mr. England was born in 1750, yet he arrived in Pennsylvania a full 67 years prior to his BIRTH!!!

And a very reputable "genealogist" reportedly is using this tree as a source for their information!

My problem is that we have individuals who are selling their services, and yet taking their information, or rather as in this case, their MISINFORMATION and touting it as a reputable and informed source.

Wake up and smell the coffee! Is there any doubt that a checks system should be in place to prevent those individuals who are definitely not qualified to present themselves to the public as a qualified genealogy researcher? Those who have not had formal training might be able to take an exam for qualification. Those who have had formal training should be registered. But there needs to be a way to remove individuals who are duping the public with their inadequate and irresponsible research reports and qualifications.

And that's just one individual's opinion.

2 comments:

hummer said...

Won't comment on the genealogist, but I will comment on the trees. That is one challenge I have with Ancestry is it sends trees as hints. I have requested sources as to how a "tree" has come up with some of the information and it is someone gave it to them or WFT. Sigh..also half of the suggestions are people who have linked back to my tree as a source. Don't mind that just don't find the Ancestry tool particularly useful.
Thanks for sharing.

reh ncw said...

OK I looked. The family tree I was taken to was from a beginner who started genealogy in 2009. No foul called here. Have you noticed the quality of Ancestry has declined sharply since Nov. 2009?? I have written several blogs about this decline. I use to get adamant rebuttals to my blogs. This is no longer the case. In fact, one of my worse critic, has recently been blogging and adding to public presentations regarding the unreliability of Ancestor. As another geni published recently---Ancestor is a sometimes hint dropper and cousin bait, but not any more than that!!