My Suggestions Report is full of 797 Unique Name in Last Name Other

+10 votes
I ran my Suggestions Report for profiles I manage and the majority of suggestions are 797's or Unique Name in Last Name Other.

I thought that was the point, to put alternate spellings of last names (as they appear in various records) in the Other Last Names section.  Or am I misunderstanding the use of Other Last Name(s) in the profile?

Please advise and thank you.
WikiTree profile: Kim de Groot
in WikiTree Tech by Kim de Groot G2G6 (8.7k points)
retagged by Aleš Trtnik
Yes, I have four new suggestions, too.  And the names don't all seem terribly unique.  Maybe you should add the "bugs" tag to your question.
Good idea, just did that.
It is a ridiculous suggestion to use for other last names field. That is where all the other spellings are supposed to go.  This project is getting out of control.

I got over 200 new suggestions for these "name errors", since nearly all the profiles in my watchlist are in an exotic underdeveloped country (France). Of these, only one proved to be a real error. Marking all the others false was a complete loss of time - not to mention that the same problem will repeat each time I create new profiles.

I also didn't see any G2G postings announcing or discussing these additional suggestions before they were actually put into place.

PGM just got over 230 "suggestions" that are all false.
I have a few Unique names in my tree, so I have had this message a few times, maybe it is time to have this error message retired, especially as these days  a lot of parents use unique names or use a unique way to spell common names xxx

6 Answers

+11 votes
Best answer

You should all know that this is initial release of new suggestion, that wasn't checked before. That goes for 717 prefix, 767 suffix, 777 LNAB, 787 LNO and 797 LNO suggestions. The suggestions you got this week are the result of 10 years of work on WikiTree. So if for instance PGM has 200 suggestions that means 20/year or one every second week.

You can see the total numbers here

The suggestion is listed for unique words. That means that no other profile has that word in any part of the names.

There are some groups of profiles, where this suggestions are more common like my country, where I entered only a single person with certain last name. But as more profiles are added, those will become "common" names and will not be reported as a suggestion.

For people doing genealogy in WikiTree style, this shouldn't be much of a problem, since sources are only a click away and it can be quickly double checked. For other profiles (Mainly mass GEDCOM imports done years ago) it is much more complicated and more work to check the spelling.

Next week when suggestions are recalculated, I will see how many profiles were actually corrected and I will see what can be done.

by Aleš Trtnik G2G6 Pilot (439k points)
selected by Loretta Morrison
Sorry Julie Kelts had this starred first and I  accidentally un-starred it .....
Loretta, thanks for clearing that up.  Normally I wouldn't care, but this time I'm glad to have the record.
Yeah Julie my mouse clicker finger was working overtime or something ... not sure how that happened.  So I thought well I will just star it too.  Cause, usually I can also star with you, but it just took all the stars away, and when I put it back didn't add you back.

Yes, I'm glad you put Ales's star back.

If there is a star, a click on it will remove it.  (Maybe I do that once in a while. smiley )  If you award a star to a different person when there already is one, doing that will remove the previous star.  

In general, any time you do something, you can undo it with a click.  That's true of up or down voting, and if you ever flag something by accident, the icon will turn into one that says "unflag" and you can click that.

If you vote something up or down, the arrow (triangle) in the vote box will turn from blue to yellow.  If you click on the yellow arrow, your vote will be removed.  Maybe you know that already.

Yes, I did all know that I just accidentally removed it and it wouldn't put it back clicking it only put the star back with my name on it.... Cheers Julie !
+7 votes
The system isn't saying that's the wrong place to put them.  It's saying that they are unusual names - whatever field they are in.
by Ros Haywood G2G6 Pilot (892k points)
Ok, but why now?  Some of these profiles were put in a year or more ago and yesterday is the first time they've appeared in my Suggestions Report.  Is this a new sensitivity in the system?
Ales changed the 511 suggestion to ones numbered 7x7, which means that individual fields are checked separately for 'Unique Names'.  This only happened yesterday.
Well, Ros, tell Alex we bless him lil pink petunias, he hath provided a shocking wake-up for numberless (numerous?) PM ... atop all the other shocks we've endured the last two weeks

PS/ just counted ... I have 10 new suggestions and EIGHT of them are "unique spelling" Ha. I will Click my Bic and plow through this
I agree Susan, I have a list now as well.  These are all names I spent considerable time researching to get the proper spelling from the country of origin.  IMO, any surname could be considered unique, so unless the program contains every conceivable spelling of a name from every country and time period before doing a sitewide search, this is unnecessary.  WikiTree needs to remember we are unpaid volunteers and stop making it an unpleasant chore to be a member.
What the suggestions are looking at are for one or two (possibly a few more) instances of a name. Those names may or may not be the result of typos. That would be the main aim of these suggestions. It won't check if there are a few names already on Wikitree(no idea on the cutoff point).

I ended up with 11 new suggestions and had sources already on most of the profiles so I knew I had a source for the name variant. The others I didn't have a source for the name so did some research and found the sources I had missed which means the profiles are better now.

The suggestion (511) that these new suggestions have replaced was a bit unmanageable and the new suggestions are a reduction on what was in the old suggestion.

While a splitting up of 511 Unique name to show "suggestions" per individual field might be seen as a reduction it is definitely an extension to include the last name fields in the algorithm.

In the case of my watchlist, these names proved to be typos in less than 0,5% of cases. I have now decided to stop checking my suggestion list. I had been checking it weekly since at least early 2017, but after the 200+ "clue for father" and similar Wikidata suggestions, this is the last straw.

This new "suggestion" just created over 200 "suggestions" on PGM profiles. Early New England records have all sorts of spelling variations.

Working through this kind of "suggestion" wastes an obscene amount of time of volunteers and others.

I request that this "suggestion" be eliminated / turned off.
+6 votes

I have numerous  "Unique Name" suggestions showing up this week..... on old profiles.   Something must have changed with the suggestions report.

I'm a bit surprised they haven't listed more "unique names"  from the Japanese family I've been working on!
by Peggy McReynolds G2G6 Pilot (250k points)

devil You can be SURE "they" that 7x7 bot of Ales WILL get around to your Japanese names ... ought to be "entertaining" for you ..... Click your Bic !!

+15 votes
If they are trying to discourage people from tending to their suggestion lists, they have hit on a great way to do it. As if we all have nothing better to do then go on and mark dozens of bogus suggestions as false errors.
by Stu Bloom G2G6 Mach 3 (30.2k points)
+9 votes
In a patronymic culture, the LNAB is reserved for the patronym, and any auxiliary identifier, such as occupation, place of origin, etc, will have to go in the OLN field.  Coming from a rather small culture where such things matter a lot, it's unavoidable if many of these identifiers come up as unique.

I've always felt compelled to keep my Suggestions clean. Today, when I look at it, I've got 43 suggestions, all "797 Unique name in Other Last Names".

Unless a button is added right on this list to mark the suggestion as false with one click, I simply won't bother. This is a complete and utter waste of time.
by Leif Biberg Kristensen G2G6 Mach 6 (65.1k points)
Looking more closely, I also had one "777 Unique name in Last Name at Birth" that I almost missed due to the long list of nonsense OLN suggestions.
There are a number of comments on this extension of the Uniqueness toll in the Data Doctors thread of the week -

It seems to strike particularly against those of us working on parts of the world that are less densely populated in WikiTree, and have idiosyncratic naming practices. I had about 50 of these new annoyances.
I'm in exactly the same situation, Leif. I got over 200 new suggestions, combining "Unique LNAB", "Unique Current Last Name" and "Unique Other Last Name". Only one of them was a real typo. Not worth the time. I used to check my suggestions every week but think I'm going to stop now.
I went through mine. Basically I recognized them all and knew they were created from one or more sources.

I make typos now and then; my typing isn't all that reliable. But I have VERY good proofreader's eyes, and when I re-read a profile the typos just tend to stand out from the page, so i correct them. Usually sooner, but occasionally later. I don't need a machine to tell me what to do.

Since I'm currently working with fairly recent profiles - times when the Swedish people excelled in making up unique names for their kids and were busy abandoning patronymics for invented surnames, I know I'll be having a regular inflow of these offensive suggestions.
+7 votes
This post, and apparently the new screening criteria, have been in place for a day or two at most.  Instead of everyone rushing to get upset and address all their suggestions despite feeling that they are wasting their time, why don't we all show a little patience?  Now that the change has seemed to provide some undesired results, and we have provided feedback, let's give Ales a chance to reconsider!
by Julie Kelts G2G6 Pilot (230k points)
Thanks for the star, Julie R.!

But I think Ales deserves it more, so I changed it.

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