Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Posted November 8, 2019 by Amanda | 9 Comments

Today we are excited to introduce the new Consistency Checker to Geni’s World Family Tree. The Consistency Checker will constantly monitor changes to profiles in the family tree to detect common errors or inconsistencies and bring them to your attention so that you can make the necessary changes to improve the quality and accuracy of the family tree.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

This helpful tool checks for 26 types of inconsistencies, ranging from obvious issues, such as a child born before their parent, to more subtle problems, such as an event after death. It offers you a fast and easy way to fix mistakes to ensure that the most accurate information is found on Geni profiles.

And it is available to everyone for free!

The Consistency Checker has been running on all newly added and edited profiles since the beginning of this year. We will soon back fill inconsistencies for older profiles in batches, until all profiles on Geni have been checked.

How to Access the Consistency Checker

 
To access the Consistency Checker, click on “Research” at the top of the page and select “Consistency Checker” to view a list of all the inconsistencies found in your family tree.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Reviewing Inconsistencies

 
The Consistency Checker page will display a list of inconsistencies organized by inconsistency type. The number of inconsistencies for each section is displayed alongside the name of the inconsistency type.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

You can change the collection of profiles you are viewing by clicking on the dropdown at the right of the page. There are four types of profile collections: “My Relatives,” “Distant Relatives,” “Followed By Me,” and “Managed By Me.”

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Each inconsistency issue will include the following information:

  • The profile photo of the person involved.
  • A description of the issue along with links to the profile.
  • A tip that provides a suggestion on how to resolve the issue.
  • The profile photo of other profiles that may also be involved. Simply hover over the image to view the name of the profile.
  • A photo, if a photo is involved in the inconsistency.

Inconsistencies are classified by severity: Error, Warning, and Informational.

Errors are indicated by a red triangle exclamation mark icon and flag obvious errors in the tree. For example, if a child is born after the death of a parent or if a person’s birth date is after their death date.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Warnings are marked with an orange circular exclamation mark icon. These inconsistencies alert you to unusual data that could possibly be correct. For example, a large age difference between spouses may look unusual, but can also be correct.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Informational inconsistencies are marked with an “i” in a blue square icon. These inconsistencies are possible problems, but likely to a lesser degree. For example, siblings with the same first names will have an informational flag. In some cultures, it is common to give a child the name of another child who died at a young age. These informational flags will alert you of the possible discrepancy so you can determine if the children with the same names are correct or if they are duplicates.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

In order to load the page faster, we will load the first five issues of the first inconsistency type and one issue for every section thereafter. If there are more issues to review for that inconsistency type, you may click the link “Click here to load more” to continuously load issues as you scroll down the page.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

To stop loading issues for that inconsistency type, click “Stop loading” at the top right corner of the category header.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

How to Resolve Inconsistencies

 
Inconsistencies may be resolved either manually by editing the information on the profile or automatically by clicking on an Auto-fix option, if available. A tip is provided with each issue with a suggested solution for the inconsistency.

Each inconsistency includes a link to the profile so that you may review the profile’s existing data and if needed, make a correction. The tip may also provide you with a quick link to view and edit a profile.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Some issues can be automatically fixed right on the Consistency Checker page using the Auto-fix button. For example, if a profile is missing a birth surname, a suggested fix of possible surnames will be provided in blue. Simply click on the blue button to automatically fix the issue.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

If you know that a suggested inconsistency is correct, or if you do not know the answer, you may choose to ignore it and remove it from the list. Simply click “Ignore” at the bottom right corner of the inconsistency. If the inconsistency is correct, select “Mark this correct for all users.” This will remove the inconsistency from everyone’s list, so that another user will not mistakenly try to “fix” it. If you do not know if an inconsistency is right or wrong, select “Hide this only from my view” to only hide the inconsistency from your list.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

The number of ignored inconsistencies will appear at the top right of the category header. If you would like to view your hidden inconsistencies, click “show all.”

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Inconsistencies marked correct for all users will appear in green, while inconsistencies that have been hidden from your list only will appear in gray. You may unignore or unhide an inconsistency at any time by clicking on the link at the bottom right of the inconsistency.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

If you do not have permission to edit a profile, you will have the option to send the profile manager(s) a message to request they help resolve the inconsistency.

Once an inconsistency is resolved, it will automatically be removed from the list.

Data Conflicts

 
The list of inconsistencies will also alert you if a profile has existing data conflicts that may resolve the inconsistency. We recommend reviewing the data conflicts first before resolving the inconsistency. Click on “Data conflicts” to review the existing conflicts on the profile.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

For the example above, we can see that there is a more accurate birthdate of “May 3, 1835.” Selecting this date will resolve the “Too young parent” inconsistency for the profile.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Inconsistencies on the Profile Page and the Tree View

 
Inconsistency notifications will also appear on a profile page and in the HTML version of the tree. On a profile page, an inconsistency notification will appear at the right, just below the matches module.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

In the tree view, a circular orange icon will appear at the bottom left corner of a node to alert you to any inconsistencies on a profile. Note this is only shown in the HTML version of the tree.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Clicking on the inconsistency icon will show you all the inconsistencies for that profile. You may also manually recheck the inconsistencies for the profile by clicking the refresh icon at the right of the page or by clicking “Re-Check” at the bottom of the page.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

View Nearby Inconsistencies

 
You may also view all of a profile’s nearby inconsistencies. On the profile page, click the Actions button and select “View Nearby Inconsistencies.”

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

You will then see a list of inconsistencies for profiles within that profile’s max family group, which consists of their third great grandparents/fourth cousins and closer.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Relationship Paths

 
The Consistency Checker will also check relationship paths. By checking the relationship paths on Geni for inconsistencies, you will better know whether a relationship in the tree is accurate. If inconsistencies are found, you can review and fix it, thus also helping to improve relationship paths for everyone. Click “Consistency Check” at the bottom left corner of the relationship path to view any inconsistencies found along the path.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

The relationship path will appear above the list of inconsistencies found in the path so that you can see where a profile fits in the path.

Introducing the Consistency Checker to the World Family Tree

Making the World Family Tree Even Better

 
We all strive to ensure our genealogy research is accurate, but it’s also human to make mistakes. The Consistency Checker is an important tool to help maintain and improve the accuracy of the World Family Tree. By alerting users to inconsistencies in the tree, we can empower the community with the tools they need to make the World Family Tree the highest quality collaborative family tree of the entire world.

The World Family Tree only gets better as collaborators work together to verify information, contribute documentation and sources, and correct inaccurate data. In doing so, we can all work to prevent the perpetuation of incorrect family history information online and share new relationship discoveries in the tree with greater confidence.

Try out the Consistency Checker now and lend a hand in making Geni’s World Family Tree the highest quality, single family tree of the entire world.

Post written by Amanda

Amanda is the Marketing Communications Manager at Geni. If you need any assistance, she will be happy to help!

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  • woenx

    Great feature!

    However, most of my family uses the Spanish last name convention, where there isn’t such a thing like maiden or married last names. Today I found that around a hundred of my profiles are marked as ¨missing¨ their birth last name. Is there a way to take that into consideration, so geni does not complain about that?

    • geniblog

      Hi, thanks for your feedback! We’re passing it along to our engineers to see if they can take that into account.

    • geniblog

      Hi, can you send the link to a profile that has a missing birth surname inconsistency?

    • geniblog

      Hi, we’ve pushed a fix and are re-running all Missing Birth Surname checks.

      • woenx

        Thank you!

  • Kala Freer Plante

    What the hell is this!!! I got to inconstiances for my 10th great grandfather Adam Hawkes and there not inconsitances!!! So what do I do about that!!!

    • geniblog

      Hi Kala, if the inconsistency is correct, you may mark it as correct. Simply click ‘ignore’ and select “Mark this correct for all users.”

      • Kala Freer Plante

        OK clicked ignore but is this going to keep happening because the inconsistency was he was to old to be a parent which is an opinion and Large spouse age difference also opinion, kinda have to know the dam family so whom ever you got doing this needs to learn math and stop with their opinions! They are wrong!!!

        • geniblog

          The Consistency Checker is meant to bring to your attention to possible problems. It doesn’t necessarily mean that it is wrong, just asking you to check and verify. Each person should review the information in the tree first to make sure if the inconsistency is correct or if there is a mistake that needs to be fixed. If you are familiar with this branch and know the information is correct, then you should mark it correct for everyone. Once it is marked correct, the inconsistency is removed from everybody’s list.