Is waiting 30 Days for a merge from a long gone profile manager ridiculous?

+45 votes
427 views
Presently, my biggest grievance with WikiTree is needing to wait 30 days for a merge when the profile manager has long since gone.  It would be nice to remove this delay for profile managers who have not been active for over a year.  Even if it was over 3 years, that would speed up a lot of merges for profiles created years ago by people who were only on WikiTree for a few days and loaded a Gedcom and then never came back or gave up quickly.
in The Tree House by Chris Gilbert G2G6 Mach 1 (19.5k points)
retagged by Robin Lee

8 Answers

+34 votes
Would also like to see abandoned profiles ( no login by manager in say three years) be put up for adoption and if there private set security at a safe, but view able status.
by D Z G2G6 Mach 1 (15.4k points)
+26 votes
Yes.  This is one of my biggest frustrations.

It seems the majority of Profile Mangers are actually people who were interested for 2 weeks and then have moved on, or uploaded a gedcom and  then moved on.

Would there be away to track activity, and automatically remove Profile Managers who have been inactive for say more than a year?
by Joe Cochoit G2G6 Pilot (205k points)
+16 votes
Be careful what you wish for.  If they're orphaned, they'll get adopted.  Do you want 30-day approvals or 30-minute rejections?
by RJ Horace G2G6 Pilot (562k points)
In complete agreement RJ - when one has dozens of profiles with pending mergers, it is good to be able to time (30 days) - one can only handle so much merging and bio-editing in one day.
+24 votes
I agree. Wikitree needs some mechanism to handle people who leave. We all will at some point.
by Paul Gierszewski G2G6 Mach 4 (41.4k points)
+22 votes

Go to the Family and Trees Tab on one of the profiles in question.

At the bottom of the page "Unresponsive Profile Manager Request Form"

This can be used to orphan a profile. You need to do three things before you fill out the form.

  1. Make a trusted list request
  2. Send a private message or email
  3. Post a comment on the manager's profile

This takes about two to three weeks, shorter than 30 days

by Anne B G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
That's one way but not really the answer.  The 30 day delay is because they are long gone; so why should we be burdened by just that?
The 30-day delay, I believe, is in place to give people time to respond.  Not everyone can be on WikiTree every day.  And sometimes real life happens.  People have a family crisis, a job crisis.  

There are plenty of things to do here in the meantime.
And, many times the issue is a SPAM folder, a change in Email, etc.   The unresponsive manager process has worked to get people's attention.   I also regularly post on a person's profile to take a look at their outstanding merges and explain how to get to them.   Many times that is all it takes.
Yes, that's fine but when the Profile Manager is the only reason for a delay and they have long since gone, we should not be burdened by a 30 day delay!
I know people who are no longer active in WikiTree but who contributed immensely and are still concerned about their "legacy" ... there are countless of reasons why managers become non-responsive ... I find the 30 days a perfect number of days to wait ...
But there are lots of profile managers who imported a GedCom years ago and only spent a week or so on WikiTree in the early days and have not been back.  Because the earliest profile belongs to them we have to wait 30 days for no good reason.
What, exactly, is harmed by the wait?
A tangled mess you have to wait to sort out when you might have 2, 3, 4 or more profiles for the same person with repeated spouses and children and siblings variously reflected across them.  And you just want to get on and add to the final merged profiles for them.  It's even more frustrating if they are pre-1500...
This is the cause of duplication which have recently been kept in check (pre-1500). I know one manager who imported a huge gedcom in 2011 or 2012 but that GEDCOM though it contained many faulty spelled names (not her fault, but the state of data on the Internet at that time) has laid the basis for what is today our project. And she gave me access to the trusted list of all her profiles. The tangled mess you are referring to will not be solved by shortening the 30 days waiting period.
It would be solved quicker!
It looks like most of the merges you've proposed have been completed fairly quickly.  Are there any for which you've actually had to wait the full 30 days?
There are 5 Alice Kingsmills for the same profile and 3 Johns that I expect will take 30 days, and possibly the duplicated relations will then need attention.  My comments are just based on my short time on WikiTree and reading other people's comments on this 30 day period. Thanks.  Maybe I will just get used to it, but waiting 30 days because the profile manager is long gone seems ridiculous to me.
After the 30 day default, you should be able to do several generations in either direction, without waiting.
And, actually, after 30 days I have completely forgotten that I proposed the merge in the first place.  And I have plenty of things to do in my 'offline' job other than check my pending merges every day.
UPDATE: I now check my Pending Merges every day.  I find it is the only way to keep on top of things and only takes a minute.
Isn't the purpose of a PM to keep tabs on what is going on in a profile? What is the purpose of a PM who is long gone? I ran into issues with an unresponsive PM when I first joined Wikitree. He had uploaded thousands of profiles in a gedcom in 2011, locked them, and then, for whatever reason, disappeared.  I kept trying to contact him, but there was no response. I finally figured out the magic formula outlined by Anne B, and after lots more waiting he was removed as PM. The wait served no purpose.  It was obvious that he had been inactive for years. The basic information for the profiles of my family members was just wrong. It didn't have anything to do with a merge. I was very frustrated with the whole stupid process which took me about 6 months to get fixed

If there is no reason for something,  like keeping an unresponsive manager on, then why do it? It makes a mess, like others keep saying. And we can solve the issue  of "legacy" by "acknowledging " the ancient upload that made the mess in the first place.
+1 vote

thanks   Chris Gilbert   - for comments - -

Perhaps , too, for abandoned profiles - there could be a "Co-PM" claim tag/field - to be activated after 30 days, similar to merges - - -

cheers - - john.a

by John Andrewartha G2G6 Mach 6 (60.1k points)
+3 votes
Chris we all understand your frustration.  I appreciate the 30 days when I'm not getting a response from a manager.  It gives me time to research a source or contact another member who may have more info.  Sometimes some else has more info than I do and will do the merges and the researchers and sourcing.  Sometimes we work together and find some fantastic stuff.  Sometimes the tangles get worked out.  

But I have yet to find more than five profiles in a row that can be worked out in an afternoon.  But then my family genealogy has been very twisted in many ways over the years.  Unfortunately some profiles will take weeks , months or years to get the correct information to prove 2 or three profiles represent the the same people.

Like I said I like the 30 days.  I do understand your perspective.

I recently had the pleasure of working with another manager , Chad Olivivent. We started out trying to merge multiple  Ged Com duplicates.  Sorting out the wrong parents.  Wrong generations attached to the wrong generation people.  A whole line attached to a man who has no recorded issue.

A reward was actually offered if someone could find proof that he is the father of the son attributed to him.  We had to sort his two wives.  Then sort the children of one of his wife's who had a son named Samuel by all three of her husband's.  We've quit for awhile to get other things done.  It has been exciting.  We learned a lot.  I found dozens of connections to my family.  But it will take much more research before all the merges can be completed.  We may never be able to prove these people are the same. And the thing is they are not all unsourced.  But they are different.

So sometimes it is about the 30 day wait just to say. " Hey folks we are setting this as an unmatched merge."   Anyway a big thank you to Chad.  Collaborating was so much fun.
by Trudy Roach G2G6 Pilot (182k points)
edited by Trudy Roach
Thanks for sharing your good experience, Trudy.
+5 votes
I agree that inactive profile managers should be removed after a period of time. Three years is a long period for someone to abandon Wikitree. Maybe the profile could be opened up for adoption upon request after three years of inactivity -- without the requisite frustrating communications to an incommunicado pm.
by Edie Kohutek G2G6 Mach 7 (73.8k points)
I'm sure the Powers to be here can see if someone has been active or not for 3 or more years.  OK Don't remove that person BUT if ALL or there profiles are locked unlock them according to Wiki policy, I have a PM that has been gone since 2013, and many (the ones I am interested in) are locked, they have no date, no location, but because I recognize the people, I know they are all pre-1860 and all the way into 1700'S, but I can't do anything.
Just had a thought that might solve this, On every PM home page place a Non Responsive counter that can be advanced by other PM's,  The counts can only be deleted by the person that puts them there,

Say after 10 counts the Icon changes to yellow, and after 20 it becomes red. At each count a caned e-mail is sent to the PM, and at every color change a warning is sent.  I assuming it will take some time to turn red, that gives plenty of time for them to respond and or ask the leaders here to clear the counter.  But once it turns red, all profiles become available for adoption, so they can receive appropriate disposition, and privacy settings.

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