How to display Chinese names correctly, so the family name comes first?

+20 votes
In Chinese, the Family name comes first in order of display. How to display Chinese names correctly, so the family name comes first? Currently, the display order is : First Name, Middle Name and Family Name. If this is the display order (in both public/private view and in Tree view), the Chinese characters would look un-reasonable and to the point of "disrespect". The acceptable order to display Chinese name is: Family Name, Middle Name (usually the Generation name) and the Given name.  How could I make that happen?
in Policy and Style by Ted Marr G2G1 (1.2k points)
retagged by Ellen Smith
Short answer: you can't.

Drives me bonkers, too, although at least in Hungarian it's only at the level of "annoying" rather than "disrespectful".

2 Answers

+16 votes
Best answer
Unfortunately this is a sore point with many and has been discussed in multiple threads before but does not appear to be of much interest to the powers that be. It's not only Chinese but a hole slew of East Asian cultures and Hungary that use this order but we seem to be unable or unwilling to accommodate that.
by Helmut Jungschaffer G2G6 Pilot (617k points)
selected by Lunjun Mou
+6 votes
I cannot believe this is still unresolved 4 years later. It's not like other genealogy sites cant resolve it, look at Geni for example:

I cant see why Wikitree change the label for last_name to "Family Name", and then allow users the ability state the display order of a person's name.

It should also be possible to enter both their Chinese/Tamil/Hindi/Whatever characters AND the English spelling of that person's name in separate fields.
by Robin Clarke G2G2 (2.0k points)
There have been many, many discussions on how to fix WT's broken, Anglo-centric naming scheme -- but even basic and simple corrections, such as getting rid of the middle name field, have been abandoned, so I don't think anything will change anytime soon.

You are right with regard to a solution for family name first, J. However, it is not correct that middle name changes have been abandoned. The middle name field was effectively made optional in March 2023, in a way that should satisfy both those who wish to use it and those who don't. See

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