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Slovak record indexing issues, geographical discrepancies etc.

Dear team,
i use your database over a long time, searching for my relatives. I would love to help you with data quality issues for Slovak records, cause a lot of problems are created due to lack of knowledge (language, history). If I can help with your project with some advice, let me know.
However, here are some questions / suggestions regarding your tool:
1. Geographical discrepancies in Slovak records.
An Example - Bohunice from Trnava county to be found in Levice county
https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/619...
Once i've already discussed this topic with some chat "support". It would be good, if we (standard users) could send you feedback to a specific record and suggest correction (on all levels). For example, if I found the given name is not indexed correctly, I could send feedbeck to a specific issue, not just generaly.
2. The name indexing done by English speaking people creates a lot of incorrect entries. The records in the former Hungarian Kingdom have been written in different languages (Czech, Slovak, Hungarian, Latin, German). My suggestion is to create a field for modern names (at least names), so every person who creates the index will add a field for the modern name given to it (Joannes = John = Ján = János).
3. For familytree it is sometimes important to analyze data of the whole family (this is a problem due to a different indexing of names and surnames. Therefore I download the results in the Excel file and analyze the issues within the excel file. However, there is a problem with downloading the search results. Is it possible to download and select with more user friendly tool and more results? For example, I would like to select one family, but I can not use it with standard tool. I prefer to download all born childrens within 20 years. But I have to do it 75 persons per excel file and then i have to copy the values in one file. Would it be possible to create a tool for select and download, so download would not be cut only to selection in browser?

Thank you for any feedback.Have a nice day.
Michal Bernát, Slovakia
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    I certainly agree that FamilySearch's indexing of non-English records is sometimes of poor quality, for instance in the Netherlands many records have "Burgelijke Stand" as the place name. Burgelijke Stand simply means Civil Registration. I've noticed in the past that FS has tried to increase indexing of non-English records by encouraging English indexers to quickly learn the basics of another language and then index in it. Unfortunately this leads to the kind of issues you have experienced.

    Unfortunately FamilySearch's systems are not very good at allowing for changes to indexes. Many people have asked for it to be possible for users to flag errors, but FS has not yet released such a feature.

    As for your suggestions about translating given names, indexes are supposed to be a literal transcription of the original record. Genealogists and researchers need to translate names themselves if needed, which usually is not that difficult.
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  • I have also run into a misuse of terms with respect to places even in Englsih. For a long time, there was a place called "do" which was recorded from various records onto Family Group Sheets by novices. "Do" was shorthand for "ditto" and was not a place.

    As to correcting indexes, for as long as I can remember, the ability to correct, change, or add to an existing index has not existed. At this point in time, it appears that it is very early in the design phase and at the last Roots Tech this year, Ron (the Family Tree Guy) Tanner presented a mockup of what was (at that time) being considered.

    The current effort to index records started about ten years ago and if history is any indicator, it is going to be another ten years or even longer before a feature that allows patrons to correct FamilySearch indexes is implemented.
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  • As others have pointed out, fixing indexes is probably the most-often-requested improvement to FS, but I don't expect to see anything this decade.

    Regarding given names: FamilySearch's algorithms are pretty good about recognizing that, say, János and Johannes are the same thing. This means that there's no reason to clutter up name fields with equivalents that aren't present on an original document. (And even the minor variations found in historical records can be ignored; if they abbreviated it to "Joañes", the person's profile does not need an alternate name with that abbreviation.)

    There are other name equivalents that FS's search is missing, such as Ondrej = Andreas, Jano = Johannes, and Ďorď = Georgius, but the solution to that gap is not to change the data (the index), but to fix the algorithm (specifically the what-matches-what database that it works with), and as an interim workaround until that happens, to adapt how we use the tool(s) available, using the search algorithm's strengths (wildcards) to make up for its weaknesses. This is a specific case of a broad principle: the software should adapt to the data, not the other way around.

    I've made extensive use of the Slovakia church books on FS, so I know exactly what you're talking about regarding the spectacular misinterpretations that show up in the indexes. They happen in other non-English indexing, too, such as the Hungarian baptismal indexes (Roman Catholic and Reformed); my favorite example is still my great-great-grandmother's little brother, who is indexed with a thoroughly mangled version of his father's term of address (Tisztelendő = Reverend) as his surname: Fiztdeadó. Given the two-indexers-plus-arbitrator system that was in place at the time the index was presumably made, this means that there were three people working on this record who had absolutely no business indexing in Hungarian.
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  • Regarding the mis-identified location, I believe that's a separate problem from incorrect indexing, because none of the indexing projects in this area have any placename fields. The location information is added at some other point of the process, and as I have tried to point out to Support multiple times, whoever or whatever is responsible for adding the location is much too frequently Doing It Wrong.

    I just re-re-opened my latest Support case on the topic. It had been re-closed without any new response whatsoever. The problem is that the subject line of the case got "auto-corrected" to "Correcting errors in Historical records", which is wrong on all levels, because it sounds like I'm trying to change history. (I originally wrote "Wrong locations in Hungary Civil Registrations indexed records" for the subject.)

    Maybe what we need is a new thread here in GetSatisfaction where we can list some of the examples we find of mis-located records, with an emphasis on ones that come from known or ongoing indexing projects, where we can verify that the locations are not included in the indexing. These errors point to a serious fault somewhere in FS's processing of indexing project input, and it would be nice if FS at least acknowledged that there is a problem on their end (they can't blame their volunteers) and that it is ongoing (meaning that the inability to fix existing indexes is totally irrelevant).
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