Use of reference images: South Africa, Johannesburg—Cemetery Records, 1840–2019
Currently working through this batch: https://www.familysearch.org/indexing/batch/c3be3dde-8ade-4ba2-962b-98f3971ba403
The project guidelines state that I should only be indexing grave applications and registrars of those buried/cremated. I think this includes cremation applications, so I've been indexing those.
Using the reference images I have found that there are often multiple pages for a single person. Typically a cremation application, burial order, and medical examination report. I've been marking the burial orders and medical examination reports as "no, no extractable data" per the project instructions. However, the burial orders and other reports often have information that the project wants recorded (namely birth date, death date, age, etc.) that are absent from the cremation application. Should I use information from these reference images to index this information for the cremation application? Or is that a misuse of reference images for this project?
This project needs some work on the instructions.
1. That grave application in the example is for a headstone - not even for the burial of the body. It probably is more important to know when the person was buried as opposed to when the headstone was set. There could be decades between the events.
2 The instructions say to index Grave Applications and REGISTERS of Persons Buried or Cremated and then shows examples of registers and that headstone placement. IF they want singular documents indexed, then it should say to index ALL documents related to a death, and include what NOT to index, like medical examination reports, cremation applications, etc.. (if it is limited to registers and grave applications).
The instructions are lacking. Should anything be indexed other than Cemetery Registers and Grave Applications for headstones? Should users index all records relating to a death? Should all information be indexed on the FIRST image and the subsequent images marked blank? Should Medical Examination reports be indexed? This is personal information about recently deceased people. Seems like South Africa's POPIA data protection laws should apply. But, that is up to the project managers to figure out!2
I agree, I feel like I've made many mistakes on this project because the instructions need more details!0
I am going to tag @gary_noble and see if he knows something more about this South Africa collection. I think he works on these projects. Also, I hope the page moderators will escalate this question and find an answer for you!1
Hi Melissa, I did chat to one of my other admins on the SA indexing group about this. She agrees with me that as the PI stands, then the burial order img 1 is not indexed, but the cremation in img 2 is indexed. As you mention the PI is yet another one lacking in clarity, and as you point out the reference image of the headstone application should not even be in the PI as an example. I really am at a loss with these SA projects, and losing faith in the whole process.... It seems as though the people who write the PI do not understand the records, or use a piecemeal generic set of instructions. The PI reference images are often wrongly written, or they take the most basic one as an example, yet there are more complicated records that often surface that are then not covered. It seems that indexers who do not understand the country, its language, surnames and placenames will also keep insisting on doing these projects despite being asked not to if they dont understand. Then the placename standardiser gets hold of them and adds the finishing touches1
Thanks, Gary. I agree with everything you wrote. I don't work on South Africa projects for all the reasons you named. But, we can see that the instructions are subpar in comparison to the other projects shared on this website. In looking at the film for this collection, there are plenty of examples that could have been more effective to show indexers and reviewers the expectations. Hopefully someone is reading this thread that has the power to correct what is lacking.2
The answer to this is that if there is a certificate of Medical examination reports it is not to be indexed and will be marked No Extractable Data.
This has been verified by upper authority.