Can the policy on orphaned profiles with privacy on strictly private be changed please? [closed]

+12 votes

Hi, I'm trying to follow up on a request (see the comment on to merge two possibly pre-1700 orphaned duplicates, that have their privacy settings on strictly private.

Without luck ... I get the message "The profile is not public so it cannot be adopted."

They are the following two profiles: and

I'm wondering if the policy on orphaned profiles with privacy on strictly private be changed, so that we at least can see the family tree and the dates (if they relate to living people or recent times, this way it will be clear).

WikiTree profile:
closed with the note: Situation is being adressed.
asked in Policy and Style by Philip van der Walt G2G6 Pilot (140k points)
closed by Philip van der Walt
Excellent proposal. I agree this would be a good idea
Philip, are you unaware of the "open profile" link on Lindenhovius-7?

It's near the middle of the row of links at the bottom of the text in the yellow-bordered section.

That should solve similar problems for locked orphaned profiles (unless the individual is indicated as still alive) - no policy changes necessary!
This link is not available on profiles with the strictest of privacy settings.
And even if it was, as far as orphaned profiles go, it would still be helpful to see dates so that one can determine the connections or age.

It is available on the Public View of Red/Private profiles. If the profile has any data, it will be indicated in the yellow-border section (referenced but not visible). See the available information on this profile:


If there is no data referenced in the yellow-border section, then there is also no data in the data fields. So you already know if the profile does or doesn't have data that might match another profile's data. If you see no date in the Public View, then there is no underlying date for a comparison anyway.

For lower privacy levels, you can sometimes find the Open Profile request link by clicking the Family Tree & Tools tab and then the Contact link (or just scroll to the bottom).

Once you find the link for a given profile, save the link. You can change the WikiTree ID to fit the profile you want to request to be opened.

Just understand that not all requests will result in the profile's being opened. Some profiles may be deleted, as with Lindenhovius-6.

Only when you yourself are the manager. When I click there I get to see my own profile.

This has been done this way to ensure the privacy of living people.

But on orphaned profiles this mechanism is still in place. As Bea will confirm as experienced leader.
When you have more experience on WikiTree, you will learn that profiles cannot be merely "deleted" ... they have to be merged away.

As for the open-profile request option - yes I'm well aware of that and have used it many times before (thanks Paul!) ....

Is the following text not visible in the yellow-bordered section when you click the link for Varney-587:

Only the Trusted List can access the following:

  • Daniel's formal name
  • full middle name (H.)
  • exact birthdate
  • biography
  • family tree
  • father's name
  • mother's name
  • siblings' names

If you're a family member request to join the Trusted List. You will be informed by e-mail if you are approved.

[privacy conflicts] [take-down request] [open profile request] [unresponsive profile manager request]

My understanding of the Public View tab is that it will show me what others who are not the profile's manager or on the trusted list will see. Try the updated link in this comment; I used the specific URL from the Public View tab instead of the generic link in the other comment, which may be the reason you are defaulted back to your profile. Let me know if you can now see this text.

I generally see such text when I click a Red/Private profile that I don't manage and am not on the trusted list. The text will vary from profile to profile, depending on the underlying data. If none of the bulleted text appears, then their is no underlying data. As I said, that is my understanding.

No. It is not visible. To see what the general public sees, click on the utmost left tab.
Correction, I do see it now. Only - again, on orphaned profiles with the strictest of privacy settings, this is not visible. Well, the two offending profiles are gone now, so I can't check to see if I just missed the window.

3 Answers

+7 votes
I'm not even sure why it's possible to set a profile with birth/death dates that long ago to anything except open.

Maybe there should be a limit of privacy levels available on a profile in line with birth year. Anything over 150 years ago can only be set to open. It wouldn't end all problems of this nature but it could certainly help.
answered by Deb Durham G2G6 Pilot (719k points)
The problem with these two profiles (and all the other like them) is that there is no way of knowing because except for the names, the rest is not visible.

These profiles are truly profiles "in limbo" ... just wondering how many more like them there are out there ...
+8 votes
Thank you Philip for the G2G and BWJ for noticing these matches, I have asked Paul if perhaps he can take a look at this and help us out and have set them all as unmerged matches for now: (is the one with the lowest number so if they really are the same they will be merged into that one of course ;)
answered by Bea Wijma G2G6 Pilot (243k points)
I get an "Error 404" when I click the Lindenhovius-6 link.

Has it possibly been deleted?
Hi ready or not ! ;)

Yes Lindenhovius-6 is deleted now, there was no info or family attached and Lindenhovius-7 perhaps is going to be deleted as well if it's the same..
+5 votes
I have encountered this occasionally. It happens usually when a profile manager has been inactive and non-responsive for a very long time. Sometimes the manager gets removed from a private profile. Under the "Family Tree & Tools" tab, you can use the "Unresponsive Profile Manager Request Form." Add as a note how it has no manager and is also private. For any profile of someone born more than 150 years ago, you can also request to have the privacy opened.

For irregular situations not covered by forms, there's also the option of sending an email directly to We've got a great team that deals with technical problems that us hoi polloi don't have permission to do ourselves.
answered by Elizabeth Winter G2G6 Mach 6 (64k points)

Hi Elizabeth, please read the question and all the comments again.

Sorry I don't meet your standards, whatever those might be.
I apologise for being brusky. You took the time to answer and you deserve a thank you for that.

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