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Project merging people.

Could you create a public project with the mission of merging duplicates? so people can give service cleaning the data base even though the volunteers are not family related. Like Indexing project.
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  • 1
    I agree with the idea. Just 'merged' two copies of my Grandmother into one under 'her' PID that I use, but if I search for the old one under the old PID, it's still there. So what gives ??
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  • 2
    If everyone would check up on their close loved ones who have passed, that would help immensely. I was going through several of my distant relatives this weekend and found duplicates that I suspect were made by someone being lazy, had they compared before creating a new person they would have seen that there was already someone in there with the same family...spouse, parents siblings. Someone who had sources already attached. So I merged them.
    I try to periodically check and see if close relatives have had anyone made a duplicate.
    But I think that is a good idea, and I would be happy to volunteer for that!
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  • 4
    The best people to do merging are people who know the duplicates involved. That means relatives who have done enough research to be sure they are merging duplicates correctly.

    One of the complaints with indexing projects that has come up occasionally on this board is that they are done by people not familiar with the places or people involved and so result in a number of avoidable errors. For example, my great-great-grandfather is listed in a census as John Joker. When I look at the record, I can clearly see that it really says Jakes with a sloppy o and s, because I know what his name was.

    With indexes and knowing how to search them, this is not too much of a problem. But incorrectly merging people can cause such problems in FamilyTree and such frustration for patrons, that the thought of any wide scale merging projects by unrelated volunteers is likely to give a lot of people nightmares.
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  • 1
    From what I have seen, there must be hundreds of duplicates out there. For one of my relatives there were 7 of the same person.
    There were in most cases, no attachments to back up the records.
    Others matched parts, and some with errors in them. Good Idea.
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  • 4
    Perla

    I applaud you for making suggestions; and, encourage you to continue to make suggestions; but, that said, I cannot agree this particular suggestion of yours to create a public project, like "Indexing", with the mission of merging duplicates.

    Yes, you are correct that such a project that you suggest would enable volunteers to give service; but, in this instance, I personally feel ( like has been suggested by 'Gordon' in his comment ) that "Merging" / "Combining" should only be undertaking by those Users / Patrons with a stake in ( ie. associated to ) the individuals / persons being "Merged" / "Combined".

    And, I totally agree with 'Gordon's' comments in regard to "Indexing".

    I was going to add my comment to you post almost directly after you posted it; but, decided that I would wait for others to comment first.

    I totally understand where you are coming from, do not get me wrong.

    But, personally, I would prefer and, in fact, only want, those Users / Patrons also associated with my Ancestral lines to be doing the necessary "Merging" / "Combining", as only those Users / Patrons associated to the individual / persons being "Merged" / "Combined" have, I would truly hope, a reasonable understanding of the Ancestral lines of the individuals / persons concerned ( but, also know that, in practice, that this is not always the case ).

    Unlike "Indexing", which is about "Transcribing" what you ( the "Indexer" ) "See" in front of you ( as per the "Project Directions" ); as is stated, within the "Merge" / "Combine" process of "Family Tree" itself, "Merging" / "Combining" is a very COMPLEX process that requires, not only, knowledge of the individuals / persons being "Merged" / "Combined"; but, many other factors - it is not just a "Transcribe" what you "See" ( as per the "Project Directions" ) process .

    Just my thoughts.

    Not everyone will agree with either you or me - they certainly do not always agree with me.

    But, please keep submitting suggestions - you never know, one simple suggestion that you have, may be a "Game Changer", that revolutionises the what things happen in "Family Tree".

    I wish all the best with you "Family History" endeavors.

    Brett
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  • 4
    For a period of time, Family Search had a bunch of BYU students work on the duplicates problem in newFamilySearch. What they found (and discontinued the project as a result) is that the volunteer students were not familiar with the families and where they resided and often combined the wrong people together, creating a big mess. newFamilySearch had no change log and therefore, the resulting combined records were very difficult to properly separate or bring back the record that had been combined into the other record.

    This kind of project faces the same kind of problem, but to a lessor extent because there is a change log that tracks what happens when two records are merged together.

    I have two areas where my family lived for several centuries and many cousins still live in the area. One in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, where my Swiss Mennonite ancestors had large families who often used the same given names over and over. They married into families who also used the same given names -- all Biblical -- so it wasn't unusual to find families marrying others with the same family names. Merging the duplicates in that part of the country is a very tricky proposition and it is very easy for the wrong people to be merged, even though it looks like the records are of the same people.

    I cannot recommend this kind of project at all, because it will, especially in the areas where the same families lived for centuries (my Swiss Mennonite ancestors arrived around 1715) along with the families they married into. New England is another area where the problem goes back even further to the earliest immigrants who came over on the Mayflower and its sister ships.
    • This is a problem I find in my ancestors as well, generations ago people using the same names over and over, naming new children after siblings, grandparents, aunt and uncles. Oh my!!!

      I do wish one thing FS could do, that Ancestry has, is to give another suggestion to indexed names for those of us who know how a name was spelled, such as in the case of my grandparents and uncles. Their first and last names were butchered in the rush to index the 1940 census.
    • Can I add Tom, a great idea for a project for the future, for example, when the time comes for the 1950 census to indexed, there be a way to notify us, by name or state/area, that we have census records for that area that need to be done. I would jump on doing census records for my area!!
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