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FindAGrave - include related family members in Source Linker?

Thanks for all your work and improvements. We love FamilySearch. One suggestion would be when attaching a FindAGrave record, also include family members connected/linked in FindAGrave to the FamilySearch source linker, similar to how family members are attached in census records. This way users could also review any family members connected in FindAGrave.
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  • This is a great idea, but I believe its introduction would depend on how Find A Grave sources are being loaded to Family Tree. The necessary work might have to be made by the Find A Grave people.

    However, in theory, if it can work with census sources coming from Find My Past it should be possible to program these names as being connected to the primary person, too.
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  • Lundgren (Search Architect) May 24, 2020 14:38
    Thank you for your feedback!

    Unfortunately, the owner of the find a grave collection does not currently share the relationship information with us in the data.

    Without that we cannot offer this feature.

    Thank you for the suggestion!
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  • 2
    What would worry me about taking that relationship information (which Lundgren says isn't available anyway) is - where does it come from? The whole purpose of FindAGrave originally was to record graves. Unfortunately (perhaps) it seems to have changed into a general family history type site with all sorts of stuff in there that has simply come from someone else's research.

    For instance, Elva Lentz' record in FindAGrave includes a precise date of death, a month of birth and a place of birth. None of that is on the stone, none of it is cited. I have no reason to doubt any of it - but nor would I accept it without any backup.

    The problem is that it's all too easy to treat this extra stuff with the same degree of respect as the solid photo. Whereas who knows where it came from? (Again, to be clear, I have no reason to doubt this particualr entry - but we can be pretty clear that somewhere, something will be wrong.)
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  • To paraphrase one of my favourite comedians, "Oh, I hadn't thought it out, Stew...." (Sorry, I mean "Adrian")

    Seriously though, you make a good point - fine idea for the sources containing accurate headstone inscription detail, but not so good for much of the Find A Grave stuff that has no back-up evidence at all.
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    • That's a good idea, thanks. There's already a note giving her birth name so I must have got something on there already - but apparently not the latest twist in her story of being buried elsewhere.
    • Tom - her record in FindAGrave now has the suggested note.
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  • The biggest problem is that aside from the photograph (or any other document images that may have been uploaded to the memorial) nothing else is sourced. And that is a problem, especially where misinformation is running amok in the wild.
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  • There is really no way that I would want that type of a feature on the system. NONE of those other names listed in Find a Grave memorials have any type of documented evidence or proof whatsoever that they are actually factual. Find a Grave is NOT a source for any of that data.

    In Fact, the ONLY real legitimate data that can be taken from the Find a Grave index is:

    1. The actual name of the cemetery and location where it is, and
    2. The information exactly as it comes off of the headstone.

    If there is no photograph, you basically have nothing that can be documented from that memorial. Granted, it may provide clues, but no real evidence.

    All other information in the memorial is only mythology as it has no substantiating sources, evidence, or other proof that they are valid.

    I would never want to provide inexperienced patrons the ability to quickly load a pile of unjustified hearsay information from a Find a Grave memorial directly into the FSFT as though it were fact, because quite frequently, it is NOT.
    • Sometimes the relationships *are* documented on the headstone, though. It would be nice if those relationships could be transferred to FS, but they're not included in the provided index, according to Lundgren, above. Heck, oftentimes the *names* are dropped. My grandparents' memorial came across to FS with just their surnames (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/619... and https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/619...). (This would make sense if we were talking about my other grandparents -- my darling aunts and mother decided that a stone with just their dad's surname on it, and nothing else, would suffice. I have a picture of it, but I haven't bothered putting it on Find a Grave, because I don't see the point.)
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  • My initial, positive reaction to Matthew's suggestion was based on my last visit to Find A Grave (via the FamilySearch link). That record had a clear photograph of the headstone and only the names that were inscribed were mentioned on the page. These included a husband and wife, a child and grandchild - all of whom I had already added to Family Tree.

    If all records were like this, I felt the situation would be hardly different from that where census records come across from, say, Find My Past and are able to be attach to multiple members of the family in "one go". (If they do not line-up as inputted to FT, individuals in the record can be selected and still be added without leaving the page.)

    I later (following Adrian's comments) realised my thinking was flawed. Initially, because of many Find A Grave records having no photograph and no evidence for relationships in the text. I also now see that the format of the Find A Grave records does not match that of the census sources - where the head of the household is listed, followed by his wife and children, etc. Provided they are all lined-up in the way they have already been added to Family Tree, the sources are added to parents and children in minutes. On reflection, I can see there is no comparison to be made between (FMP) census sources and the sources from FAG.
    • Yes, to avoid any doubt - a gravestone - or a photo of one - can be absolutely brilliant and any method to publish them is to be applauded. It's all the rest of the stuff that is debatable. Even transcripts are suspect - because some of them, aren't.
    • Yes. If the Find a Grave data were all handled like a census, you would have the following all coming over automatically:

      - Day and Month of Birth
      - Location of Birth
      - Day and Month of Death
      - Location of Death
      - DATE OF BURIAL where FS has added their own uninvited guess into the index.
      - Full name both married and maiden and occasionally intermediate married names
      - Names of supposed parents a siblings, sometimes only there because someone with the same surname in the same timeframe was buried close by in that same cemetery.

      With the exception of the day and month of birth and death which can occasionally show up on the headstone (usually it's just the year), ALL of the other pieces of data have been fabricated from somebody's own imagination or personal record collection. Apart from the rare obituary that has been copied from a different source elsewhere, there is never any evidence or proof provided for any of that data. Therefore, Find a Grave cannot be considered a source for it. Why would we want all of that mythology dumped into the FSFT just because it could be made an automatic operation?

      Another thing that I have discovered is that just even though it is chiseled in stone, frequently the birth date is completely wrong. 200 years ago, people didn't have the need for constantly using their birth date (e.g., when filling out forms, etc.) and as they go through their senior years, they lose track of when they were really born. Birth certificates were not being issued. So you need dates that were recorded closer to when that person was actually born.
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