Add a 5-star rating for "accuracy" for each vital
Include a 5-star rating system for Name, birth date, birth place, marriage date, marriage place, death date, death place. Allow all users to vote. If the data changes, reset the rating.
Why a special rating for accuracy? Because it is critical to assess accuracy prior to reserving ordinances, per the First Presidency and FamilySearch policy, yet there is no simple prompt that helps users understand this critical step.
Many users see a colorful icon that suggests to them that FamilySearch believes ordinances are ready to reserve--FamilySearch says it is good to go, so why do anything more? They reserve ordinances and share with the temple. No assessment of accuracy is done, partly because the system does not make it clear it should be done.
If a user sees blank 5 stars, they can easily see that accuracy has not been checked by anyone yet. If they see low star ratings, they can see that perhaps some research needs to be done. I admit it is an imperfect solution, but it is better than the status quo.
Pre-empting common rebuttals:
"But it so subjective!" -- So is everything in FSFT, including the vitals themselves. FSFT is all about having imperfect people collaborate.
"Nothing is ever perfectly certain, but some profiles will not get any more research because they see 5 stars" -- I would be happy with capping the displayed value at 4.5 stars, so everyone can see that no vital is perfectly certain.
"We don't want to add hurdles to participating in ordinance work" -- Users can still have the option to reserve and complete ordinances regardless of star status. They can choose to check for accuracy or not--but at least they will have a prompt that tells them whether anyone has looked at it.
"People can just look to see if there are sources attached to the vital." -- Not all sources are equally reliable, and not all sources agree with one another, and not all users take the time to check them against one another. Thus, having 4 sources attached to a single vital doesn't necessarily mean that vital is accurate, or that anyone has tried to assess accuracy yet.
"People can just write a comment in the 'Reason this information is correct' box." -- That box is used for more things than a swiss army knife, and careful justification in that box is commonly overwritten or deleted by merge. But there is much bigger problem--the presence of that box does not prompt users to check for accuracy prior to reserving ordinances.
"Users already know they need to check for accuracy." -- What can I say to this other than speak from my own experience? If I add a name anywhere on the tree and leave it for 48 hours, ordinances for that name will be reserved and shared with the temple system before I come back to it--even if I only added the name as a placeholder and have no good evidence of the existence of that person. When I follow up with the users who reserved the ordinances, they 100% every time say that FamilySearch told them the person was ready for ordinances (they saw the green icon). Many face-to-face conversations with novice users have revealed exactly the same misperception--they think the green icon means "good to go"--no more steps to take.
You may disagree with the solution and that is fine. But please advocate for some solution, of some kind. Users need to easily see that they need to check for accuracy prior to ordinance work, and they need to have an easy way to show they have followed that First Presidency counsel.
I am just another 'lowly' User/Patron ...
[ And, I happen to ne a Member of the Church ... ]
Just in passing ...
Great suggested enhancement ...
That Said ...
I honestly doubt, that implementing such, would make that much of difference, to the average (Member) User/Patron.
MANY Users/Patrons, who are Members of the Church, are LESS experienced, in Genealogy/Family History research, than MANY of the Users/Patrons, of "Family Tree", of 'FamilySearch', who are not members of the Church.
Sadly, most (Member) Users/Patrons, would most likely, NOT even take notice, of such a "Star" Rating ...
Unfortunately, they just want a "Name", from their "Ancestral" Lines, to take to the "Temple"; and, very sadly, many DO NOT even do the "Family History", part of the Work - they just rely on what OTHERS have done.
I know, I have been helping/assisting OTHERS (Especially, BEGINNERS), for, MANY; Many; many ... Years ...
Many are just far too busy, with both, their "Life", in general; and, their 'Calling(s)', within the Church ...
It takes, much time; and, persuasion, to get them to "Understand", the IMPOTANCE, of DOING one's "Family History" (Research), to get a "Name", to take to the "Temple" - and, how much better, the EXPERIENCE, in the "Temple", WILL be, if they ACTUAL know, of; and, about, their "Ancestor" - through THEIR own "Research".
They really NEED to gain, their own "Testimony", of the the "Family History" Part, of "Temple and Family History Work" - there are TWO (x2) Parts - you cannot have one, without, the other ...
As an aside ...
Something a Programmer (and, NOT from 'FamilySearch') once said to me ...
You CANNOT make a "System" FOOLPROOF; because, 'Fools' are so ingenious ...
[ Plus: the old adage that ... You can lead a horse to water; but, you cannot make them drink ... ]
And, they are BOTH, so true ...
Just my thoughts.
Again, great suggested enhancement ...
ps: Make things too complex/complicated (or, too many things to consider); and, people will just not use a 'System'.
@American Twyman thanks for your suggestion. Aaaah, in a perfect world, everyone would check sources before reserving temple ordinances. I've had to fix genders on ones who have already had the work done. Once someone sees the green temple icon, woo-hoo, let's get it done. I can relate to that excitement for sure. I completely agree with you that even though people can go ahead and reserve, having a prompt there might encourage more to look into the person's information further.
Just because most people might not use it, it doesn't mean it shouldn't be implemented. Just because we are all imperfect researchers doesn't mean we shouldn't strive for greatness and near perfection, or expect it in everyone else. I say shoot for those stars!
Thanks again for this suggestion. I like the direction of it and I hope something is done to encourage patrons to check sources first. This is such an important work! If "working" on it discourages people from doing it, that is sad, but we need to do the work correctly0
Hi @Brett .! Dating back to years of getsatisfaction posts, you and I have agreed I think exactly one time in a thread. Despite our disagreements you are always cordial and straightforward. I appreciate the good you do on these forums.
Though I believe similarly that many will ignore the star rating, I think at least some will choose to make some effort. Regardless, if we stick with the status quo, most users will not even realize they are supposed to check for accuracy. If we help them recognize guidance of church leadership and they choose not to follow, that is on them. If we fail to even try, then it is on us.2
The "Goal" of FamilySearch was announced many years ago, but not really understood, accepted or followed (IMO).
"Worthy of All Acceptation" DC 128:24
Here's James Tanner's explanation of the concept:
@CaptBob I like the enthusiasm toward ensuring accuracy. I have learned that FamilySearch's initial priorities are not necessarily their current priorities, so if I take time to make a suggestion, I try to target what I perceive to be in line with their current priorities. Simple, easy to understand ways to participate seem to be very much a priority, as are system changes designed to encourage users to more closely follow First Presidency counsel.
Thus I am hopeful that someone at FamilySearch will read and seriously consider this proposal. Hopefully they will see how it would both provide a simple way for users to engage, and also help users become aware of First Presidency counsel.1
Many users want to know First Presidency counsel, but in this case simply have no idea it exists. Many users are willing to follow First Presidency counsel, but they cannot do so if they don't know about it.
Please FamilySearch--please help these users.0