How to import a new gedcom to add 100s of family members to my tree?

Started by Alan (Alain) Guggenheim on Monday, January 17, 2011
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1/17/2011 at 9:30 AM

I was just able to find a new branch with 100s of people for my tree. I have the Gedcom, and it would be way too slow and time consuming to enter them by hand. What is the solution? It seems Gedcom import is - again - blocked?
Can Curators import?

1/17/2011 at 10:11 AM

No, we cannot. Have you ensured that the profiles do not already exist on geni? Is there a point of "big tree" connection? If you've done that analysis and can provide those details, you could query for assistance.

1/17/2011 at 10:32 AM

I did not check the whole list (over 200), but my cousin, Sam Gougenheim who contacted me because he is starting on, and I have my main tree (11,000+) there is not in Geni. He is pretty close (3rd cousin), so I really would like to add all his tree. The connecting point is indeed in my tree and there are many "big tree" connections.
I sure hope Geni is going to fix the merge issues, have undo, sources and notes and re-enable import.

1/17/2011 at 10:38 AM

Yeah, if there are a lot of dupes you're not going to see import any moment soon.

Sourcing, revisioning, notes, document search etc. are the areas of geni development focus.

Maybe there's a way you can compare, on your desktop program, an export of your geni tree with your cousin's tree, generating a "non dupe" version. That is what I'd hit geni with.

1/17/2011 at 1:18 PM

I have only 8 dupes, and more than 200 new family members, so I will try my chance with


I doubt Support can help, that would only open the Floodgates of Hell with requests...

It depends, of course, on how detailed these profiles are, but actually adding 200 of them to the tree shouldn't take more than a couple of hours. Using the 'Add Immediate Family' option you can add entire sets of siblings in one go.

1/18/2011 at 9:50 AM

As you say, it is not efficient if you have proper details (dates of birth and death, location of birth and death, maiden name, sources,...) Way too slow and too prone to errors and typos for me.

1/18/2011 at 10:05 AM

If you cannot import a gedcom what is the use of this site? Do they really expect us to re-enter each person? Seems to me that this may be a glitch to get us to subscribe to the PRO version.

Pro-users ca NOT UPLOAD gedcom files either. This is a temporary measure until they work out a solution preventing people from reuploading the same dang profiles over and over again. What's the point of trying to create an accurate historical tree if it's faster and easier to upload multiple copies of the same nobility or other historical people faster than they can possibly be handled.

Would you prefer to be related to 20 different Pres. George Washington or to one?

1/19/2011 at 10:01 AM

Thanks for the reply. I know what you're talking about because I've encountered that on Ancestry,com. It's just rude people. Here's another question - can I merge part of another member's tree into mine? I entered all my data for our common line on his tree for his use before starting my own. Now I would like to copy or extract that line to my tree. As far as I know I'm not related to any George Washingtons.

1/19/2011 at 1:11 PM

I agree that the key is to fix the merge issues, but in the mean time, there should be a way to import and merge new gedcom files. If not, I cannot use Geni as my main site for my genealogical research.
Maybe there is a conflict between different type of usage and users: personnal, family oriented genealogical research on one side and public, fame oriented listings on the other.
I like Geni because it lets me discover and collaborate with living family members, but I find its limitations excessives.
What about keeping the gedcom uploaded trees "private" until they are validated and merged? Also most of the merge process could be done at the client or offline level and during but before final upload.

1/19/2011 at 2:10 PM

@bud, if you entered your data onto someones tree on Geni then that is not just that person's tree but yours too. Geni is not about a lot of seperate trees but about collaborative attempts to share a tree. You would each see the tree as if it's your own.

Forgive me if I misunderstood your message.

in my experience, most Geni users ARE more interested in family oriented genealogical research, BUT they also have, sometime in their past surfed this internet thing, and copy-pasted a GEDCOM (or two, 3,4 or 5) into their own at-home tree. There are millions of such files "out there", of varying levels of accuracy/crap. Most people do not have the ability to evaluate these additions, and "it's all for fun anyway". Having added them, they then forget what's in them. I dealt with the single tree of a user, who in the ONE file he uploaded had EIGHT copies of the biblical lineages, NOT all the same...

Because they aren't all the same, or at least the same as the existing validated tree, then merging them is entirely non-trivial. People write doctorates trying to solve this kind of problem.

There is no such thing as a "private tree", unless you mean one that the creator is prevented from inviting anybody to join or to Collaborate with him. In any case, who would then validate and merge these?

One of the suggestions was to limit uploads to everybody within a person's Family Group, but I doubt that that would satisfy your needs.

1/19/2011 at 8:15 PM

Are you saying I can just go to that tree, carve out the line I want and somehow append it to my tree?

if these are relatives of yours that you entered WHY would you WANT to disconnect them from the other tree? Aren't they ALREADY part of your tree?

Or perhaps you added them to this other tree, but have not yet merged / connected them to your tree. THAT would be the optimal solution. That way the two trees share this branch. That is the whole point, really, of Geni.

1/20/2011 at 11:31 AM

Good questions. Probably due to my unfamiliarity with how to use the site. I was first invited some time ago to add my line of one particular family to an already existing tree. I complied, putting in just enough people with minimal information to hook up with, what I thought, was our common ancestor. It appears this c.a. is not common. I presented my thoughts to the person who had invited me and suggested we should dig further. In the meantime I asked him to remove the connection. I have had no reply or action ever since. Somehow or other I must have started a separate tree, although I admit I don't recall doing it (senior moment?) with
very minimal info, planning to import my complete gedcom. Now that I find out one cannot do this, as a second thought I want to bring over my line from the other site and at least have that. There are quite a number of people on this site who share that particular surname so I want the record to be straight that I can't justify my connection via the "common ancestor."

1/20/2011 at 11:35 AM

With reference to the above deleted post, I deleted it because it sent itself prematurely. On other sites I've found all I have to do is hit the Edit button (which I don't find on this site) and can continue to write. We should be able to do that here.

1/20/2011 at 11:42 AM

Bud, No, I was saying you can just add your relatives to the tree and because there is overlap you wouldn't have to type out your whole tree just that which doesn't yet exist on Geni.

I typed my whole family on Geni (prior to the possibility of uploading gedcoms which caused so much trouble) that's over 5000 family alone. It really wasn't that much work and rather than predicting making errors you could look at it as a chance to review what you have for any errors.

Can you find a specific profile in this other branch? Who is the manager of the profiles in this branch? Obviously having started another tree, it isn't the present "new you". If we can get you through merging these two profiles, you will have full access to both trees.

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