Anonymous is used increasingly in contributors name, is there a policy to prevent this?

+18 votes
I am a little concerned about the increased names in WT that are Anonymous or have Anonymous in them. I know that some esteemed organizations do not accept anything from Find-A-Grave because monikers and anonymous names are used on memorial to quite an extent. I am a contributor to FAG and find that quite disturbing. I have never seen a memorial that was not accurate. I would suggest that members not be allowed to use monikers or the word Anonymous in their names. Just my opinion. Question: can Anonymous not be included in contributors' names?
in Policy and Style by Carolyn Murray G2G6 Mach 1 (11.6k points)
retagged by Ellen Smith
I think the use of " anonymous " in this context reduces the value of WikiTree. It should not be allowed.
I am the admin for a large number of people who have given me their permission to add them to WikiTree along with their DNA information and ancestry.  I let them know that their first name couild be listed with an initial, Anonymous, or their actual first name.  Several of them choose Anonymous.

3 Answers

+12 votes
Best answer
To answer the question directly...

WikiTree's policy strives to protect people's privacy, not to prevent or expose it.
by Dennis Wheeler G2G6 Pilot (535k points)
selected by Charlotte Shockey
+8 votes
I totally agree. It goes against the WikieTree Vision of one profile per person. How can you tell what person anonymous is!!!


I would go one step further and forbid the uploading of GedCom's. The number of times I've looked for duplicates and found people with similar names who have no sources - just a gedcom upload.

I've only been here a month or so and initially I uploaded one line of my tree through a gedcom import - it was the worst thing I did. I ended up going over those profiles many times to enter the sources and correct the data entry problems.

Now I only add a single profile at a time and take care to make sure I have all the sources - it's great - it's like verifying your research.

It may be slower, but its the best way to fulfil the WikiTree vision - one profile per person, carefuly researched and fully sourced.
by Sandra Ruffle G2G4 (4.0k points)
The only reason I wouldn't prohibit GEDCOM uploads is because people would then decide not to join Wikitree.
+13 votes
Many people fear what they do not understand -- and most people do not understand the internet. The internet is still a relatively new concept, and its still evolving.

The thing is, most all genealogical research is done via public records. Some companies provide access to public records for a fee, while other companies provide access to the same records for free. Not all public records are available on the internet, but an increasing amount is.

Now, in order to access this info, one usually has to provide information about themselves in return. Mostly, this is to assist with marketing and advertisers.

Many people create pseudonyms in a effort to not only thwart being targeted by marketers, but also as stop-gap to identity theft (a growing concern in our internet world)

The irony is that we're not nearly as anonymous as we'd like to think we are.

In the world of genealogy, everyone is a child of someone, and that someone has a relative who already knows who you are -- not to mention all the public records of you that are readily available to most anyone.

And on the internet, your own computer betrays you by creating a fingerprint of your IP address, your computer type, and your browsing habits. In the world of digital marketing, you can be personally targeted -- without even knowing your name.

If you want to be anonymous -- stay off the internet. Never sign anything. Only use cash.

Anonymity does not free one from responsibility. It only temporarily delays the inevitable.

There is nothing wrong with trying to maintain some level of privacy, but understand, that it can never be completely secure.
by Dennis Wheeler G2G6 Pilot (535k points)

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