why is it so hard to add people?

+10 votes
I'm new to wikitree. My question is, why is it so hard to add people. I understand that you don't want a bunch of duplicate profiles, I have no problem with that considering the massive amount of duplicates I've cleaned up at familysearch.

What I want to know is why once I've linked or "matched" with someone already on the tree, why can't I add their other children from my gedcom? I'm talking about children that have no 'suggested matches' and have no hits in the search. Are you truly going to make me enter those siblings by hand (my grandmother has 11 siblings), then match them to my gedcom (don't forget to copy their id number), find them in the gedcom list, click compare, paste in the id number I just made, compare what I already know is the correct information? I won't do it, I've already added them multiple times in 30 years. Why did I bother to pare down a gedcom to use here if you weren't going to let me use it in the most efficient manner?

I assume that many people who use this site are in the same boat as I am. I want to know how this helps others with their genealogy? If I haven't added a sister to my ancestor that someone is looking for how does that help anyone make the connections they are looking for?

I may just be mis-understanding how this is supposed to work, as of now, I find this site quite cumbersome, the interface very redundant i.e. typing in the information (again), clicking, copying, pasting, switching windows, hunting for the window I want in multiple open windows, etc.

Also it seems something may be wrong. When I was finally able to "add 'so and so' as father" it opened a new window that asked me if I wanted to change the information for the father (including the name! what? no!) or remove as father and I saw nothing that said "congratulations you finally found one" or "confirm add as is". I'm hoping this is a link issue.

One last thing, since I'm already up on this soap box, why are we having to weed through women's married names, in searches again. I was told, very early on in my research by a long time semi-professional, never use married names for women, it's confusing. Consider my g-g-aunt she was married 4 times before she died at 36, with all her married names it will take up my whole screen. Why are we, in modern times, making the same mistake our ancestors did by obscuring (or losing) women's birth names. It seems to me that it wouldn't be difficult to add "alias" fields for married names. Or at least let us old timers turn off viewing of married names.

Thanks for listening if you made it all the way through this wall-o-text. My frustration may be getting the better of me, I'm going to take a nap now.

in WikiTree Help by Karan Folsom G2G1 (1.9k points)
recategorized by Ellen Smith
you can also go back to a person's record once you've dealt with all the suggestions in that single record (so parents, spouse, kids, siblings) and the add option will show up *just* inside that record.

4 Answers

+19 votes
Best answer

Have you totally processed your GEDCompare report? Once you have done so by marking every potential match as either accepted or rejected, you will get ADD buttons for everyone who didn't have an accepted match and you can just use the ADD buttons to create the profiles. GEDCOM-created profiles are a little messy and have to be cleaned of what is considered GEDCOM "junk" but you may prefer cleaning to creating manually. (I didn't, but it's a personal preference.) Also, your sources may have to be reformatted.

Here are links to a couple of help pages...


GEDCOM created profiles (will help you with what "junk" should be deleted.)

by Nelda Spires G2G6 Pilot (468k points)
selected by Karan Folsom
Thank you so much. That makes it much clearer on what to do. I think I found something like that in the help but I either missed it or it wasn't clear that all of the report needed to be processed. I wish I would have started with a much smaller file.

Any idea of what to do with those people you can't figure out if they are a match or not, usually because the existing profile lacks enough identifying information?

Much calmer now, off to process the rest of my too large gedcom.
Karan, I'm not sure since I abandoned using my GEDCOM very soon, but I think I'd mark those which don't have enough info to compare as matches so you don't accidentally add them and later find you've created a duplicate. (Duplicate profiles can be merged, but that is another process to be avoided, if possible.) Marking it as a match does not change the existing profile or connect it to your portion of the world-wide tree in any way. Those which are possible matches might be some you will revisit and add manually at some future date when you can make a more thorough comparison.
+12 votes
As Nelda said, you can't Add easily until you've fully compared your gedcom and matched or rejected everyone. Then it's easier, and you don't want to manually create the profile to match it, you just click Add to make it.

As for the married names, there are lots of records out there that don't record maiden names, census records come first to mind. If you don't look for Mary Jones under her married name of Smith in the census, you won't find her.
by Jonathan Crawford G2G6 Pilot (227k points)
+10 votes

Why is it so hard? Well, to prevent duplicates and profiles without essential information (location, decade) and sources. You have wonderfully sources profiles, but unfortunately that is not always the case (see the unsourced project with a list here).

I see you have added profiles from you GedCom already. You will have noticed that lists of children are not complete  and sources are not imported neatly. The way I import is to start from the oldest profile and then work my way up to current time. GedCom is not very smart (it is an ancient fileformat) and you will need to check all connections it makes or does not make. The reason for that: GedCom assumes we all have our private tree without any connection to anyone unknown. But WikiTree is all about the connections.

Once you get the hang of it, I am  sure you will appreciate it. Then you will profit from the many tools available, automatic data checking, the large community and your new connections. You are not alone in your frustration, but also not alone here and with 25 M+ profiles already I am sure you will make connections soon (thus saving you a lot of work).

You will also read that many will tell you to stop with the GedCom import and create profiles from scratch. I am not a fan of that, but if you notice your GedCom is not clean/checked recently, it might be easier to do it that way.

I am not sure I understand your window issue. If you go to the edit screen of a profile, you have several options to add links: parents, children, spouses. Are you talking about that page? From the GedCom you just import, but see the 'create' screen. In there, you should use checkboxes to double check the links (parents and spouses will NOT be found automatically).

The naming conventions are described per country. The critical field is Last Name At Birth. Then there are options, depending on country. You will see the fields defaults are based on US conventions which use the renaming for women. But in most other countries like mine, you simply use the same current last name.
The search however will search for all last names found, as many people have many spelling variations. Again, WikiTree has their own way of doing things but tries to follow conventions. Please read up on your country's naming conventions.

The duplication of information is very true, but not too much. As not much information is stored in database fields (the first section) most goes into the biography. There you have a lot of freedom. There is no sources databases that you can simply link to (there might be some in the future), all is done by text entries. Yes, you will need a lot of copy pasting for that. But... the nice story is that we do not rely on the large institutions for sources but can link to any source (like the open data ones in my country).

Please contact your greeter if you have any more question.

edit: typos

by Michel Vorenhout G2G6 Pilot (266k points)
edited by Michel Vorenhout
+9 votes
More bits of advice:

1. While processing suggested matches, don't hit the Refresh link at the bottom of the Gedcompare screen. Your changes update automatically, so you do not need to hit any buttons to make them stick.  However, that Refresh link will increase the number of matches to process.

2. Once you have ADD buttons, Gedcompare works best when you start your Adding process from a Compare screen for a profile that has a confirmed match in your Gedcom and Wikitree. Then, add parents before you add siblings, and add spouses before children.
by Ellen Smith G2G Astronaut (1.3m points)

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