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The ability to edit a profile

Started by Michael T Lancaster on Sunday, May 23, 2010


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Showing 1-30 of 37 posts
5/23/2010 at 9:17 AM

Recently i have gone through some profiles listing several husbands or wives. It seems that Geni, when merging profiles, does not compare names of relatives such as husbands, wives, sons and daughters, but just adds names from the merged profiles. when you are able to edit these profiles (collaborator) you can not remove duplicate relatives in single profiles or am I wrong?

5/23/2010 at 11:17 AM

I'm not sure what you mean by "remove duplicate relatives in single profiles".

If you merge a single profile, then NO it does NOT automatically merge the duplicate profiles "around" it (spouses, siblings & children). In the best of worlds, Geni could only suggest such matches, but even that can be pretty problematic (John married to two Marys, sibling with same first names).

When the merge is done via the tree, then Geni usually opens a window ("merge wizard") that then gives you the option to "stack" all of the duplicates. This done, you then go to these profiles, and complete the actual profile merges.

If you find such a profile with duplicates, you can easily merge them by calling up this wizard. To do so, look at the profile in the tree, [make sure flip-nodes are disabled in the Preferences at the bottom], click the 'more' link on the profile's box, and then the "Resolve Duplicates" button.

Also, NEVER remove profiles added by other people, even if they are duplicate. Merge them instead. This will make BOTH of you managers, which is better for everybody around, as both of your families will be able to see it.

5/23/2010 at 12:17 PM

I would never dream of removing profiles. but profiles with 27 husbands with the eat same name and when you click on them - the same data - MUST be duplicates, The same goes for wives or sons. I have tried to look at all these in the profiles i have come across, Have you?

Private User
5/23/2010 at 12:38 PM

you must merge (stack) the duplicates.....
never ever remove them, the manager of the removed "duplicate" will then loose his/hers connections!
if someone is main manager of a profile and never attends to it, there will be hundreds of wifes and sons and daughters if the proifle is mergde many times (consisting of many branches/trees).

The profiles need to be attended to - in tree view: resolve conflicts

What I mean is - there are very few duplicats - I duplicat has to have everything exactly the same - even the m a n a g e r
If they have different managers, they are different profiles of the same p e r s o n and they need to be merged together.

5/23/2010 at 12:45 PM

I think you misunderstand- im not referring to duplicate profiles, im referring to duplicate information IN a profile. If one has permission to edit, one should also have permission to remove double (exactly the same) entries. Naturally a name in different languages can be spelled in several ways and this is ok. but if it exactly the same, it shouldn't be listed twice (and I have checked that it is not two different profiles with the same name, eg sibling where the first born died young and a second one was baptized the same)

5/23/2010 at 12:49 PM

By the way im tired of getting the reply Don't delete profiles - im not stupid, someone made an effort to input the profile, therefore only that person should delete it if necessary. AND I would never change information in a profile. Im offended that anyone could think so, but that must be because they have not read the full thread.

Private User
5/23/2010 at 1:09 PM

there is bo need to be offended
where do you find this information
I don't understand where this double info are

maybe you can post a link as an example of this kind of profile?

5/23/2010 at 1:58 PM

no-one meant you personally. You can't imagine how often profiles I manage get deleted in the historical tree, and as these profiles have dozens of managers, I can't even block the person doing the damage. Every time I ask him to not do it again. Every time he says "OK". Repeat.

Like Sussana suggests can you post an example, because I am also now confused about what you mean "in the profile".

5/23/2010 at 4:41 PM

Sorry i´m a bit sensitive since nothing seems to have worked to day.
I cant find a good example right now, but if it was my sons profile (James Lancaster) i would be listed as parent 3 or four times plus the various spelling methods of the merged profiles like this:
Michael Lancaster, Michele Lancaster, Michael Lancaster, Michael Lancaster, Mikael Lancaster, Mike Lancaster, Michael Lancaster, Michael Lankaster, Michael Langaster, Michael Landkaster, Michael Lancaster and 5 others.
In such a case i would like to "Merge" all the similar names to one, if someone then clicked on that name, a list with the profiles in question could appear for further information.

5/23/2010 at 10:06 PM

Michael, it is hard to tell without a screendump where the duplicates are.

One place they might be is in the "nicknames" field, which you can edit using the "Edit profile / Personal" screen. In that case, they're actually in one profile.

Another place they might be is in the "Immediate family: Son of..." field shown on the profile - this is in fact a list of links to other profiles, and indicates that the father is present multiple times, as multiple profiles. Go to the tree view and click the yellow triangle, and do the merge thing.

You seem to have managed to sort it out for your son by now, at least!

Good luck!

5/24/2010 at 12:50 AM

as Harald says, those are most likely a list of links to the duplicate profiles. Even IF you did "the merge thing", these links will [sometimes] still show up, but they will all refer to the same stack of profiles. Those profiles have to be merged in order to see only the single "main" Michele Lancaster that is there.

This is actually a feature because it makes it easier to reach those profiles for review.

5/25/2010 at 5:01 PM

Michael I think I know what you mean. I have several ancestors with lo ked profiles and the sMe person will be listed numerous times. Understand the frustration.

5/26/2010 at 2:04 AM

Hi, and what about different spelling. If I write Zemanek, Zemánek or Земанек it should be the same for recognizing. But I guess, that it isn't!

Do you know how to influence on the Geni to make such an improvement?

Private User
5/26/2010 at 2:08 AM

@Anton: See thread on our Naming Conventions, with a longer discussion on different alphabets:

5/26/2010 at 2:27 AM

Please don't use cyril - or any other alfabeth than latin
1. Many of us can't read
2. It is not seachable
3. Leads to many misstakes

5/26/2010 at 2:49 AM

Thanks, Anne, I'll go through the discussion.

Gunter, that's pointless, especially this: 2. It is not seachable & 3. Leads to many mistakes.

The way how to resolve this is to amend the system (ability to search among Cyrillic alph.) but not to change the names of people!

Private User
5/26/2010 at 3:33 AM

Linda Cyr and Michael.
Please post a link so we can look into this

5/26/2010 at 4:43 AM
5/26/2010 at 7:09 AM

Hi I have to wait until thrusday to post an example. Am traveling and do not flash to download my tree. But michael's example is perfect. Thanks

5/26/2010 at 7:43 AM

Michael and Linda, I can request that Michael Ebersol complete the merge on Michael Lancaster's example. Do you want me to do that?

5/26/2010 at 8:35 AM

that does not really solve the problem of the multiple brothers, fathers, sisters and wives listed under profiles. I know that i can simply view each one and se if it is the same person in question, but this takes time and i get frustrated when i review the same "Robert" for the 4th time just to se that it is the same profile. I know that it is only when ther can be doubt about the identity of the main profile that it is necessary to dissect these details in order not to request a merge of two namesake profiles, with almost the same data, but where something in the list of wives, brothers, sisters, husbands, mothers or so on bothers you. The only interesting profiles are those that differ, and might give a clue to if the main profile is actually the same. I could easily request a merge of these two profiles, but then i wouldn't have an example of multiple repeated names in the relatives list.

Private User
5/26/2010 at 8:48 AM

no not before we have a chance to look at it!!!!

Private User
5/26/2010 at 9:05 AM

Michael, unfortunately you sent a link to a profile that is locked to me
I can't watch the tree for this one.

Not that many users have three downloaded files, michael, is this really what the discussion was about? But I understand it is irritating if you have many profiles in common.
Just merge them and problem is solved.
The user is well aware of the fact that there are pending merges as they will show in his/hers merge issue list.
Maybe you can send a message to the manager/user and ask/remind him/her to merge all his duplicats?

(To all of you who have hundreds of pending merges for your duplivats, please merge them =) so we get rid of some of the blue bubbles!)

There are examples of profiles that have hundreds of names in the immediate family area - they need to be attended to in one way or the other, either by merging or but resolving conflicts in treeview (yellow triangle) duplicats or not.

Sorry for this long explanation, but hundreds of people get this posts by mail, I just want to be as clear as possible.

5/26/2010 at 1:37 PM

I'm beginning to wonder if users are downloading GEDCOMs from Geni, then uploading them and having them merged just so they can have management privileges on profiles that they would normally not get management privileges too....I know...conspiracy theory....

5/26/2010 at 2:34 PM

that is exactly what we thought it was. All three of those Thomas (Thomas Estep, Sr., Thomas Estep, Sr., Thomas Estep, Sr.), are links to duplicate copies of Thomas' profile. They have to be merged... This is pretty much what ANY area that is in the middle of a merge is going to look like, until it is completed. In some of the Royalty profiles you can see as many as 20 copies at a time. This is what makes life interesting. :-D

5/26/2010 at 3:01 PM

OK so back to merging - Thanks :-)

Knud Jørgen
5/26/2010 at 4:49 PM

Dear Michael Trevor Lancaster,
I am sorry to say so, as it undoubtedly will cause resentment, the advice you are getting from Susanna Engberg Barnevik is totally misguided. There is to my knowledge no authoritative and independent source which advice you adopt this type of behaviour (even not source recommended by Geni Inc which has an incentive to encourage such behavior as it likely to increase the company’s short term profit). Unfortunately it seems that a few people in the Collaboration Pool, who administer large number of profiles, undertake mergers behaving in the way. They seem in many cases to create a profile with little, undocumented and often unreliable information for the same person as has been introduced by a newcomer, then ask for collaboration and after a merger (because being manager of greater number of profiles than the newcomer) become the main responsible for the profile which the newcomer carefully have put on Geni. These people also have many collaborators and without the newcomer realizing what is going on open up the floodgate for more and often arbitrary mergers by people with very little knowledge about how Geni function, but who seem to take pleasure in undertaking mergers to leave their mark in what they wrongly may think is a useful activity. That may add to the large number of profiles these very experience people already administer, and they may for that reason receive a prize from Geni Inc as this activity is the company’s short term profit interest, but it serves no useful purpose with respect to improving the quality of the Big Tree as a source of reliable information about family links, on the opposite as I shall argue in the sequel. In the interest of Geni providing reliable family information, nobody should administer more profiles than he/she have time, expertise and motivation to maintain, making sure that the information in the profiles and their links are correct at any time and incorporate new well documented information made available. It is unlikely that anybody, even those who seem to spend most of their time awake on Geni, will be able to manager more than a couple of thousand of profiles, and in the case of profiles for well-known individuals, who attract a lot of attention, far less. Collaboration on Geni should be about facilitating more or less senseless mergers adding bogus links, but about expanding the tree with well documented links aggregating and documenting dispersed information and deleting bogus link however painful for those who thus loose a royal linerage.
You should not merge two profiles if the merger does not contribute a well documented new link. A profile with information, which is at odds with external sourced information (detailed in “About me”) in a profile for what seems to be the same person, is often part of a tree with numerous errors in terms of false data and false links which is worse because it much more difficult to correct. Merging with such a profile will create additional unresolved merge issues and thus add to the mess. If in addition somebody "solve" these merge issues by merging with profiles which are locked, the mess become almost impossible to clear up. Thus never ask for a merger with a profile which is locked, ask instead the manager in question to make the profile “Public” (add an explanation for how it is done, as the manager in question may not know how it is done. If the manager does not respond within a reasonable period of time, consider cutting the profile loose from the tree and then reconnect all valid public profiles to this new profile. However, realize that this is very time consuming and may upset some people who like to maintain bogus links to “Gorm den Gamle” or what have you. Be prepared to reestablish links you have cut if somebody present even unreliable documentation for the link; Geni is after all not science, however if links are added arbitrarily being linked to somebody important in the Big Tree fails to be interesting and the whole thing becomes not more relevant and less entertain the social computer games at the internet like Civilisation.
Inspection of the Danish branch of the Big Tree at Geni reveals that a large number profiles with no or little information has been created in 2007 and 2008 and subsequently merged indiscriminately, often by Geni Members, who are not Danes and therefore presumably less knowable about and interested in Danish family history than Danish Geni Members who joined at a later stages, Data on a large part of the branches of the Danish Tree from 1000- 1600, and in the case of historical well known figures even more recent, and often contain inconsistent information ( several different parents, and impossible large number of partners and children, grandparents born before their grandchildren etc) is far less reliable than stand alone family databases which are electronically available on the Internet, where Geni due to the collaboration of many people with access to different sources of information, like Wekipedia has the potential to be more reliable.
A profile should only managed by a few people interested and knowledgeable about the profile and approachable to deal suggestions for adding new information. In general what best serves the objective of improving the quality of the Big Tree as a source of reliable information about family links is that a profile is only managed by one person. A profile being associated with numerous managers as the result of indiscriminate merger of the type you are recommended to undertake, results in nobody feeling responsible, not those who administer more than 10.000 profiles or in some absurd cases more than 100.000 profiles because whatever their good intentions, it is not human possible, and not those frustrated less experienced users who have created the profiles in the first place and then naively agreed to collaborate with the cowboys already managing the big herds losing control over their family tree by mergers which have resulted in their data being overwritten and the creation against the law of nature of an absurd number of relatives.
When you close to you in your family tree own have a moderately famous family member which you care sufficiently about be willing to make an effort to have correctly represented as part of your branch of the Bi Tree, and therefore resent to see having several parents, a large number of partners and an impossible number of children, use the procedure available to de-link the parents maintaining only the best documented set of parents, and then offer your collaboration to the managers of the profiles of partners and children to document these links (with reference to written sources, preferably published and even better sources which are available at the Internet). If the manager in question seems not to know anything about the person in question, ask to be the main administrator. Now link up with your own documented profiles and those which are already there which are also well documented (if ask the managers of the relevant profiles to provide documentation in “About me”). If things are really messed up with numerous links to lock profiles with unresolved merge issues, you may consider creating a new profile to bypass the mess; but in general avoid creating new profiles when you can add your new links to existing profiles. Additional information can in general easily be added to existing profiles and if you think you are the best placed to look after a profile, ask for it to be transferred to you.

In the Danish branch of the Big Tree the profiles of very famous people from 1000-1600 such as that of “Gorm den Gamle” seem to be beyond salvation. Don’t waste your time to clean up here. The mess reappears almost immediately after you have established a bit of order due to the addition of unreliable profiles and indiscriminate mergers.

Best regards,

Knud Munk

5/27/2010 at 4:23 AM

there is only one way to describe what you just wrote, and similar allegations / accusations you have made in the recent past - BULL-SHIT.

1) Having a "greater number of profiles than the newcomer" gives you NO special privileges than anybody else.
2) More so, your silly accusations that "a few people" (stop trying to "be polite" and pretend you don't mean ONE specific person) "create a profile with little, undocumented and often unreliable information" is either pretty ignorant or malicious.
3) The best proof for #2 is that Geni AUTOMATICALLY gives management of the merged profile to the manager of the profile that had MORE information, not less.
4) While yes, there is a LOT of incorrect information in the tree, this is mostly due to repeated merges, which can overwrite the correct information. It is often MORE important to complete merges, which helps make the tree more usable, than it is to maintain the individual profiles. In the parts of the tree that I work on, I have temporarily given up on maintaining dates at all. That can be fixed at some later point, after the tree is cleaned up, and Geni gives us the tools to permanently keep it that way.

Presently just keeping the tree "in shape" is like trying to nail Jello to the wall. It's a continuous battle, and those people you mistrust the most, have been most diligently working on maintaining the "big-tree" for YEARS now. Long before the Collaboration Pool was created, even long before Collaboration itself existed on Geni.

The REASON these few managers have SO many managed profiles is because they have a good personal relationship with the Geni staff. GENI trusts them to do a good job (as do thousands of other users). Geni KNOWS how helpful these specific users are to others so they are given these profiles (from abandoned accounts) in order to make life easier for EVERYBODY. It is these abandoned profiles that are mostly empty (like the vast majority of profiles on Geni.

What have YOU done lately for the common good? Perhaps, if you weren't so rude, and made more of an effort to improve yourself, you too could become a valued member of the community. Until then, please take your silly, childish accusations somewhere else. You either know them to be wrong, or too stupid to let facts convince.

"All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent." - Thomas Jefferson

Shmuel-Aharon Kam

5/27/2010 at 4:38 AM

Great response Shmuel. :-)

5/27/2010 at 6:16 AM

Barbara, I've come across quite a few of these examples in my merging, as well. Generally, the RED highlighted warnings will only do date checks, gender, and living status. I also try to determine how many matches there are to parents, spouses, children, etc. If there appear to be enough matches to familial relationships, I will go ahead and complete the merge, with the hope that data conflicts can be resolved with some research. But if you get the RED highlights, and cannot find good matches to familial relationships, I will generally unmerge the stack.

Stacking profiles is not a perfect science, and it is easy to make mistakes using the wizard. I would rather have someone take a second look at profiles and maybe complete the entire process (stack, merge, resolve data conflicts), than to perform a bad merge, which gets really messy to try and clean up...

My $.02


Showing 1-30 of 37 posts

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