Request for Access to a Living Person

+11 votes
Just making a remark about an email I received this morning from someone asking for access to a living person's profile.

The person who sent the email said she wanted to know if it was the profile of her ex, the father of her children, that she would appreciate being added.

To be clear, I will not give access to a living person's profile for an "ex" to an "ex".  Is it me?

I only grant access to ancestor profiles and those researching them.

Not for a fishing expedition.

If it is a person who is living,  you should be their mother, father, brother, sister, child, cuz then I would know who YOU are.  If you are an "ex", I'd know that too. Not to mention, you would/should know me and not ask for access to a profile.  You'd already have it.

Just saying.
in Policy and Style by Betty Tindle G2G6 Mach 8 (81.2k points)
retagged by Ellen Smith

Hi Betty,

If she's just trying to locate him for personal reasons

There is a USA public records site for adding or locating living people. I've found some of Donnie Blackstone's missing kinfolk there. The site bases it's information primarily on voter registration and property deeds etc. so the information may be a few years old for some listings.  FAMILYSEARCH also has a public documents option for the same information but now you have to open an account to use Familysearch. The new site is called FAMILY TREE NOW.  You might direct your correspondent there so she won't pester you anymore.

I think she is only trying to locate him for personal reasons, Eddie.  I truly do.  I only replied that I could not give her access to a living person.  I was just so shocked.  I did not think to offer any alternatives.
For such a request from a member of WikiTree, I would ask the requester to send me sufficient details on the person for whom she is searching so that I could decide if that person is the same as the profiled individual. Then I would consult with the profiled individual to see if any of the information is relevant to him/her. If it is, I would then ask the profiled individual if he/she wants to fulfill the request.

If a non-WikiTreer sent me the request, I would ignore it. As Eddie noted, the requester can search elsewhere for information!
Exactly!  I feel the same way Lindy.
I've had someone ask to be added to a trusted list of a possibly-living person because the requestor wondered if it might be a woman he'd dated many years ago. I didn't do it. Even if it were the right person and she'd be interested in hearing from the requestor, the only information he'd have gotten from that profile would be the 1940 census, which isn't exactly going to help much in locating her. And without asking her, I don't know whether the requestor is her old flame that she'd love to reconnect with or her horrible ex that she's grateful to have out of her life.

3 Answers

+5 votes
Best answer
It seems to me two things are being balanced here:

1.  If she is in an adversarial relationship with the ex, then you may be giving her information that could be used to harm the ex or the children.  You surely don't want to be drawn into this.

2.  If she is following legitimate genealogical concerns and WikiTree standards, she could be seeking, as someone has suggested to avoid creating duplicate profiles of her children or other relatives.

It would seem to me that, (2) yes, we don't want duplicate profiles, but that can always be fixed.  Problems arising out of course of action #(1) could be much harder to fix.   I go with suggesting she create profiles with the information she has, and if they happen to be duplicates, they can be merged later.  That seems by far the lesser of two evils!
by Jack Day G2G6 Pilot (376k points)
selected by Betty Tindle
To me too, Jack.  I agree wholeheartedly.
+8 votes
If she is the mother of his children, and has created profiles for her children, she may want to be sure that she is adding the right father to them and not duplicating a profile that already exists.

I have added profiles for both my sons..I have created profiles for both my ex's and for their family going back in time -  after-all they are my children's ancestors as well as my ex's ancestors. And I certainly don't expect all my ex's relatives to know about me and my children..

If she is willing to give you details of the children born to her ex - and their profile's, then at least you could check and confirm whether it is the same man and should be connected to his children.
by Michelle Wilkes G2G6 Pilot (138k points)
Michelle, I know she is not the right one because the guy she is asking about is married to my cousin and they have been married since they were 19.  I had no doubts about that, at all.  I added the profile she was asking about. I also added his spouse, who is my cousin, along with their three children.  Now, if it were another cousin's profile, who had been married four times, I would have to get more information from the person asking and more info about the person they are asking about.  (I do not know the whole name of all of my cousin's four wives.)    Always.
In that case, Betty, the answer is easy - just tell her that the person is not her ex.  This question, though, is an excellent one for all the issues it raises about important considerations in the case where it does happen to be the person that the writer thinks it is.
Gaile.  I did send her another, more detailed explanation.  The first email I sent I had only replied no.  Let her know they had gotten married at 19, etc....isn't him.  I think I was just shocked.  She is very new too, I checked after my responses to this, only been on Wikitree for two days.  She may be unfamiliar with the policies and delicacies of asking for access to a living person.
+8 votes
I would hesitate quite a bit before I added someone else to the trusted list for a living person. I think I would have to have the permission of that person first. I would agree that children need to be connected to their appropriate parents. But you don't have to give trusted list access to accomplish that.

You do recognize that a person on the trusted list of a profile can edit and make changes to that profile and also has access to information that person may prefer to keep private. Perhaps an X is not the best person to have that access.
by Shirley Dalton G2G6 Pilot (493k points)
Yes, Shirley, I do realize they can make changes and an ex is not the best person to be adding. :)  I know however that the guy she asked about is married to my cousin, they have been married since they were 19.  I would only give access to a living person's profile if I know them personally.  If the person is still living, I should know their family members by now.  Almost 60 years old.  LOL  I don't think any kids or spouses have slid by me.  Yet.  )

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