I found a mistake in an indexed document - what do I do?
In this document, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSGC-59PL-X?cc=2790465 the index doesn't include the first line, and associates the wife (2) with the husband of family b (line 5-7). I am trying to associate with family b, which makes this a bit of a problem. How do I go about fixing the problem, or flagging the indexing for adjustment elsewhere?
N Tychonievich mod
@MattiasWinther Looking at the records you provided, we see that the citation indicates that MyHeritage.com owns these records. So, FamilySearch would not be able make adjustments to the indexed information. You might want to contact MyHeritage about it.2
You are suffering the frustration of other FamilySearch users, who for many years have been forwarding requests that would enable them, as individuals, or FamilySearch (employees), to make changes to currently incorrect information on indexed records.
Fortunately, some records can now be edited, but only certain fields. I don't think we will be allowed to edit records provided by other websites, however (e.g. MyHeritage). There is an increased amount of editable material, but still a long way to go before even FamilySearch's "own" indexed records are fully editable.
I don't know the position with the other major websites - except, through experience, Find My Past, to whom errors can be reported (by online form, straight from the record) and are then corrected. Smaller websites (like FreeREG, for UK records) also have a facility to report errors, as does the GRO (for England & Wales) website. All of these websites seem to have little problem in making valid changes within a matter of weeks.
FamilySearch employees have responded previously with the reason (why the same facility is not available here) being connected to the organisation not having sufficient resources to be able to undertake such work. Obviously this is something FamilySearch could provide, but it appears to have decided this is not a priority when it comes to the many services it provides - given its limited financial and personnel resources.
At present, it is left to FamilySearch / Family Tree users to note any errors when they attach such records to individuals in the Family Tree program. There is also the provision to comment more widely on this in a separate "Notes" section. No, this does not help those who only come to FamilySearch to search its records - details of which they then take away and record in their personal software programs. But, hopefully the current position will improve in the months / years ahead, but you are not alone, of course, in your unhappiness at how things stand at present.1
Your question will be forwarded to the Search team for review and assistance. You may be contacted by that team if they need more information. Since this is an already published document it goes to the Search team.
Thank you for notifying us.0
Great! Having found yet another one I'm having an issue with, what is the proper way to notify the Search team? Posting here seems a bit... ad hoc. Anyways, this is a link to the next one I stumbled upon: https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSGC-5F2K?i=62&cc=2790465&personaUrl=%2Fark%3A%2F61903%2F1%3A1%3AQLP4-3TKR
The index contains about twice the amount of lines as the image, so I suspect this is actually two records melded into one. Unfortunately, I was hoping to match with the second half.2
@CHold - How does one contact the search team, please?0
Unfortunately, this wording does cause confusion to many who post their questions. All the moderator means here is that a question posted to a "less appropriate" section of Community (say "General Questions") is often moved (by moderators) to the "Search" (or other, more appropriate) section of this forum.
The "search team" can include any other member of Community that looks at questions posted in that section - not the "team of specialists" you perhaps imagined! However, some posts are genuinely escalated to specialist teams / departments of FamilySearch, but these people cannot be contacted directly by us ordinary members - only by moderators who have been delegated that authority.1
@Paul W - Thank you, Sir.0
I'm sorry, but that makes no sense. If the idea is to provide actually useful indexed records on this service, importing bad data from another provider and then not having the option to adjust known errors makes it worse than if those records were not indexed in the first place.
If FS want to share indexing with other sites, that is probably a good thing, but making each individual user have to contact every other service you share data with is untenable. I realize this is not your individual decision, but then there exists a need to lift the broader issue up further. Modification of known invalid data, regardless of where the source of that data might be, is necessary for a research tool like indexes.
I found two of these just by chance, it would stand to reason this is a not too uncommon problem, so there is obviously a need for a working solution. If there isn't, that renders not only the imported indexed data untrustworthy, but the internally indexed data as well, since the user will not be aware of the difference.0
Thank you for your well-worded reply. You elucidate very clearly that there is frustration over the situation such as it is, but that ultimately, without this being a priority for FS as a company, there is very little that can be done. This is naturally the reality of things, and I am not familiar with the priorities and challenges of said company in the short and long term. Indeed, Gedcom X and other side projects to the website have provided a great boon to the field of amateur genealogy.
Even so, it seems a shame that a company that works to get people in to the field for some reason seem to me, based on your response, to put a premium on data quantity rather than quality, which I can only assume has more pragmatic reasons based in marketing research, profit or similar. This seems both to miss the target, making the data on the platform less reliable, as well as making peoples genealogy efforts more complicated.
With that said, I thank you for being as accomodating as one could ever hope for, and attach my sincere hope that you and yours will have the very merriest of christmas seasons!0
While I agree with you that FamilySearch is not putting enough emphasis on accuracy, please remember that they are not-for-profit. They are sustained by donations and volunteering by people and organizations all across the world.
If you feel that the Indexing quality is lacking, then you could consider volunteering to Index records yourself. See here: https://www.familysearch.org/indexing/1
As I am sure you realise, many errors do not come from the indexing stage (i.e. due to indexers errors), but during a later process. (As noted in another thread, sometimes even before the project has started!)
Also, websites like FreeREG are (as the name implies) free to use and rely of the work of volunteers, too. Nevertheless, my reports of errors have been quickly remedied, showing this should not be a problem for FamilySearch, with its huge army of volunteers, some of whom could be assigned duties related to this important work.2