A Look Back at 2011
With the New Year upon us, we thought this would be the perfect time to reflect on some of the great things Geni has accomplished in the past year.
2011 in Retrospect
We spent the first couple of months of 2011 further enhancing and refining popular features. Enhancements to documents, sourcing and projects have really helped to make it easier to share and collaborate with other users. As the year progressed, we pursued features to further facilitate collaboration and highlight the advantages of our premium features. We made some significant changes to the way Geni works, and while they may not have been the most popular, we believe they will ensure Geni’s longevity and enable us to continue to build new features and enhancements that make Geni the best collaborative genealogy platform. As we move forward, we remain firmly committed to our goal of creating the canonical world family tree.
Let’s take a look back at some significant developments and milestones of 2011:
Profile Revisions (March 2)
Before the start of 2011, we introduced the ability to view and revert text revisions for profiles, surnames and projects. With this release, we further expanded this feature to allow the ability to view the revision history of a profile and revert to the previous values for each profile field displayed.
Public Editing for Pros (June 23)
To make it easier for users to contribute their knowledge to Geni’s world family tree, we opened up editing permissions of public profiles to Pro users without the need for collaboration. All changes were reversible by other users with edit permissions on the profile and profile field locking was made available to Curators to help maintain the accuracy of the profile’s information.
New Header (August 11)
We introduced a cleaner, simpler header to make navigating on Geni even easier. With these changes, users are able to go directly to their tree in just one click and all notifications are now found in one place.
More Enhancements to Geni Pro (August 11)
New enhanced permissions to Geni Pro were introduced to accelerate the growth and improve the quality of the world family tree. All Geni Pro users were given the ability to edit and merge public profiles. We saw a great increase in the number of merges as users were hard at work eliminating the number of duplicate profiles. With these changes, merging and search became a Pro only feature.
Note: In November, we limited the Pro permissions to edits and merges only on public profiles they are connected to. Pros are no longer able to edit and merge unconnected public profiles without collaboration.
Geni Public Access (August 18)
The Geni Public Access program was introduced to provide Geni users with the opportunity to experience Geni Pro for free at public libraries and genealogical societies that provide access to computers connected to the Internet. Users can experience all the features of Pro from our growing list of participating institutions.
Introducing Geni Plus (September 13)
A new subscription package was introduced that offered many of the benefits of Pro for a fraction of the cost.
Record Matches (September 29)
As part of our effort to create the best platform for genealogists to collaborate and build the world family tree, we partnered with Archives.com and GenealogyBank to help make researching your family history faster and easier. Since record matches are found automatically, users don’t have to spend extra time conducting separate searches from various genealogy databases.
In November, we added Find A Grave to our record matches. The free grave registration site holds millions of records containing photos, biographies and dates to help enrich the information on your relatives’ profiles. We hope to add more great record partners in the future.
Changes to Membership Tiers (November 2)
While Geni has always offered free Basic accounts, we made some significant changes to our Basic and Premium memberships. As your tree grows, you’ll want to take advantage of our Plus and Pro memberships to get the most out of your Geni experience. To help make the membership tiers easier to understand and provide a greater value to our users, a new number-based tree limit was introduced, while search was added as a Plus feature. Based on user feedback, Pro merging permissions were modified. This enabled users to continue working on the world family tree, while accommodating those who wished to build their own tree.
Geni’s World Family Tree Reaches 60 million Profiles (November 11)
This year, Geni’s world family tree reached a new milestone – over 60 million connected profiles and counting. Over 10 million profiles were connected in the past year, bringing us closer to achieving our goal of creating the world’s largest and most comprehensive family tree. We’re thrilled to continue to see the growth of the tree through the hard work of millions of collaborating genealogists.
Geni Celebrity Quiz on Facebook (December 23)
We were super excited to announce this Facebook game. We introduced the Geni Celebrity Quiz on Facebook as a fun, interactive game to test your knowledge of celebrity trivia and discover how some of Hollywood’s top celebrities, both past and present, are related. To top it off, you can even challenge your friends to see who can get the top score!
What’s to Come
As we enter 2012, we are thrilled at the prospect of enhancing our collaboration tools and introducing more exciting features to the site. One such feature we’re eager to enhance is projects. Since introducing projects, thousands of inventive projects have been created and they’ve served as the perfect place to unite individuals who share common interests. It’s been pretty impressive to see what’s been accomplished so far. In the coming year, we have some big plans to make projects even better and we think you are all going to love it!
Thank you to everyone for your passion for Geni and we look forward to another exciting year in 2012!
Happy New Year!