Privacy Level Question

+14 votes
So here is the skinny: the grandfather is a notable and reasonably well known, the father is a public figure and married to a wife who is less so. Father and wife received a number of national newspaper articles upon their dramatic demise, these gave the names of the couple's three children. These folks are alive and middle-aged. Addition information about the mom is verified through their public birth certificate which I found through familysearch….so…are the children respected as semi-private? Even though the whole project will be harder for others to help connect? Opinions sought as to the ethics, not the legality as it was clearly newsworthy ten years ago when national newspapers printed it.
in The Tree House by Dorothy Coakley G2G6 Pilot (175k points)

2 Answers

+5 votes
Best answer
What is the advantage to making the kids names public on Wikitree?
by Lance Martin G2G6 Pilot (111k points)
selected by Dorothy Coakley
I agree - I try to keep a level of separation between public individuals whose whole life is out there for everyone to see, and their children, husbands, wives, etc. who are often merely bystanders to whatever public spectacle is making the public person so popular.
+5 votes
Hi Dorothy , so is you're question two part?  Add the children to the profile and keep them private?   And since the children's names are listed in the newspapers , the newspapers could be used as sources to verified the children are the parents children?  But to use the newspapers as a source would violate living people's privacy?  Do I understand your question?  I would use the public info as a source and keep the privacy level private. But that is just my thought.
by Anonymous Roach G2G6 Pilot (186k points)
Hi Dorothy,

I think you are correct.  Anyone who is living (or may be living, but we are not sure) should be kept Private.  On the other hand, to cite a newspaper article in the profile of the parents (who are deceased), seems fine to me.

Do you have any idea how the middle-aged children would react?  Are you in touch with them?  Would they like to be involved with WikiTree?  (too many questions - LOL - just things to consider).

My sister was initially very pleased that I wanted to add her to WikiTree, but later, she changed her mind.  Now she has been anonymized, per her wishes.  If I had it to do over, I would not have added any living people to WikiTree (hindsight is 20/20 and all that).

Don't know whether any of that helped, but kudos to you for your concern for the ethics of it all.  My best!

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