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Archive for the ‘Review’ Category

Geni – Doomed?

Geni.com was never one of my favourite sites. I am not a big fan of this type of website normally but since it was free, and I had some control over it I decided to give it a try and added a few generations of family on it.

Well on August 11th, 2011 Geni.comi announced that “Geni Pro Just Got a Whole Lot Better” (For those of you who don’t know, Geni Pro is the premium part of the site which users can pay to use additional upgraded features.) Unfortunately the Genealogy community doesn’t think this is such a great thing since Geni Pro subscribers now have full permission to add on to, edit, and merge profiles in the historical parts of the tree but limits Non-Pros from adding new profiles to the historical tree or merge profiles. It also limits Non-Pros from viewing trees other than those of “close relatives” and from entering relatives names past their third-great grandparents. This reminds me of the old OneWorldTree on Ancestry.com

I’m also wondering why I, as a Non-Pro subscriber never received any communication about this prior to reading it on other people’s blogs…

To read what some are saying about the changes you can view:

But all is not lost. In a recent statement made on Geni.com, Geni will be allowing Public Access in several libraries and Centers so that people will have a chance to experience Pro Geni advantages.

Doomed? In my eyes it is. I like to research in the comfort of my own home – especially now that winter is coming and so it will be no use to me. Nor do I plan to pay for the privilege of putting my tree online where anyone can just go in and edit/add/merge to it so I *won’t* be participating. Besides, when I go to the library it is to conduct research. My time is valuable to me and I can’t afford to spend any additional time in a library for this. I might as well use a program such as PAF and upload my tree here or to my own website.

Now if I can only find a way to delete my tree of the site since it seems they have even made that difficult!

Family Village on Facebook


I have been playing Family Village on Facebook for almost a week now and while I thought I would really enjoy it it turned out to be a bit of a disappointment. The game is a spin off of a person’s family tree. Players add their family into the program and have the opportunity to immigrate them over, purchase homes, and assign them jobs. They create their own little village.
Ok, before anyone bites my head off I DO realize it is still in Alpha testing but the game freezes often (sometimes for hours) and you end up getting totally frustrated as you lose coins which have taken hours to collect!

What also makes it annoying is that living people must confirm their relationship in order to continue so unless you allow the game to send them an email you can not move them forward (unless of course you actually purchase Family bucks with real money).

The game is confusing at best and too time consuming. I think I will put it away  for now and perhaps revisit it once they get all the bugs worked out.

WDYTYA – Tim McGraw

The 2nd episode of Who Do You Think You Are? features Tim McGraw and airs on Friday, February 11th 8/7c (TV-PG).

Tim takes a look into his father’s ancestry and uncovers some interesting facts and how they relate back to the founding father’s.

Meanwhile, over at new blog Your Family SecretSearching Every Corner, Researching Every Turn (S.E.C.R.E.T.) genealogist detective Sherlock and Watson do some uncovering of their own on McGraw’s ancestors. It will be interesting to see how their research matches up to the series. S.E.C.R.E.T. also followed more of Vanessa Williams Maternal ancestors who although were not featured on WDYTYA still made interesting reading. Looking forward to more of their posts.

Also happening tonight, GeneaBloggers Radio will be broadcasting live from Family History Library on Friday, February 11, 2011 from 9:00 – 11:00 pm CST hosted by GeneaBloggers own Thomas MacEntee. The broadcast reviews the WDYTYA shows each week and allows listeners to call in and offer their thoughts and share their opinions about the shows. Worth listening to!

Read more about the live broadcast.

Family Tree Magazine’s 101 Best Genealogy Websites 2010 -Review

Family Tree Magazine and David A. Fryxell just announced their choice of 101 Best Genealogy Websites for 2010 and frankly, I am a bit disappointed. While some of the tried and true favourites such as Ellis Island, One-Step Web Pages, Family Search and Cyndi’s List were chosen, there were many other wonderful sites that were overlooked.

In the category European Ops: Sites for researching in Continental Europe only 9 sites were chosen and yet not one site was recognized for Italian, Spanish, Hungarian or Irish Genealogy despite the fact that there are several note worthy sites available to choose from. Clearly they missed the boat on this one and it appears the magazine is catering to a particular demographic audience.

Year after year we see the same sites listed in these lists and year after year very few European websites, if any, are ever chosen. When they are chosen they seem added as if almost an after thought. While I enjoy using some of these sites as much as the next guy or gal, I honestly believe it’s time to broaden one’s horizon’s and start thinking outside the box to help break down those brick walls. How many times can a person talk about the same genealogy sites or special offers that so and so is promoting for a limited trial period? What about the endless online sites funded, maintained, updated and made available freely 365 days a year?

Perhaps it’s time to start our own list of top 100 websites and recognize some of these unsung heroes. Then maybe they will realize all the wonderful resources they have been ignoring all this time.

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