Suggested record hints and suggested duplicates should have a warning
edited September 28, 2020 in Suggest an Idea
LMorgan said: Suggested record hints and suggested duplicates should have a warning. I've had several records now that have been incorrectly merged into another family tree. The resulting tangle is time consuming to fix. Many of these problems would be solved if language making it clear that the computer suggesting a match does not mean it is. Maybe state if you can't discover and verify these two records are the same person DO NOT merge them. If you don't know if this record belongs to this person DO NOT attach. Many users may be under the impression that family search wouldn't suggest it if it wasn't a match. Some tutorial step suggestions in the same box would be helpful. Explain how much information is necessary to know if the record is a duplicate. One similar first name and town for example probably not enough. Establishing family connections and also looking at the latest changes for each record before deciding is helpful, etc.
Heather McPhie said: I agree giving an "in program" warning would be helpful, but I think an even better approach would be to have a little bit of one time training that a patron needs to acknowledge before being allowed to attach sources and merge records. I don't think a patron needs to be reminded every single time that a brainless computer is making the recommendations for merges and record hints. I think that to explain it once to every patron, and then trust that the patron can remember that fact would be enough. Teach the patrons correct principles, and then let them govern themselves. Currently, the system just "lets them govern themselves" without ever teaching any principles.0
LMorgan said: I agree with Heather. That is actually my first choice as well. There is a lot of duplication of records and mistakes being made simply because new users don't understand the impact of what they are doing. But if we can't have that it would at least help to have the messaging that goes along with suggestions generated by the computer. I'm interested to know if other ideas to help prevent some of these kinds of problems have been suggested. Warning language could be added fairly quickly. Heather's idea would take some time to get up and running but I think it is doable.0
Paul said: This issue has been raised on a number of occasions on this forum. Okay, get rid of the genuine duplicates, but consideration should be given equally to the number of true individuals who are disappearing from Family Tree because of the careless users who accept FamilySearch's suggestions and merge them with totally different persons. Several I come across do not even have the same surname, yet still get suggested, then merged, with a person who never even lived in the same part of the country, either.0