How do I prevent people adding Ancestry Links to profiles

+8 votes
I appreciate the wonderful corroboration  of others, but I really dislike having Ancestry links added to profiles I have created, especially when  there are errors. I know I can improve my work and and as I have been trying to assist in Data Doctors I have learnt a lot.  So please what should I do to stop good-hearted people from changing my profiles?
in Genealogy Help by Rionne Brooks G2G6 Mach 7 (73.1k points)
retagged by Ellen Smith

4 Answers

+12 votes
What type of Ancestry links bother you? I don't think it makes sense to be opposed to all Ancestry links. Links to Ancestry trees are generally pretty useless, but links to Ancestry sources (eg originals of wills) can be very reliable and useful sources. I think you should only delete an Ancestry link if the facts the link supports are already sourced in your profile with either (1) a more reliable source or (2) with a free version of the same source.

If people are adding links to Ancestry trees or poor quality Ancestry sources (eg Millennium File) for facts that you already have sourced with higher quality sources, the only thing you can do is manually delete them, preferably with an explanation about why you are doing so. If you have a lot of heavily trafficked profiles on your Watch List, it's unavoidable that you will need to devote part of your wikitree time to reversing deleterious changes to the profiles.
by Chase Ashley G2G6 Pilot (318k points)
edited by Chase Ashley
Thank you Chase, I really dislike clicking on the Ancestry link to be taken to a subscribers page.  The other irritation is the gross inaccuracies  I have found on Ancestry and then people have regurgitated that information as if it is gospel. So I will do as you suggest, I will delete them.
I try not to use sources when I can find the source freely available elsewhere (Family Search, etc.). But that's not always possible.

So if the Ancestry links are part of a valid source citation (Ancestry family tree references excluded), I don't think you should delete them. Even if you are not a subscriber to an subscription, many source records can be accessed via a local library which may have a library subscription that patrons can use on site.

There are many broken links that point to family trees there. But there are many links to valid/valuable sources like birth, marriage, death, etc. records available on as well. Please don't remove any potential valid Ancestry sources from any profiles.
+7 votes
I do not like Ancestry citations on some of my profiles either, for the same reason you mentioned. So instead I just leave the Ancestry citations on the profile and add new ones - usually from Family Search.  They often show up on profiles that I adopt.

For those profiles that involve Kiwis, Most of the time I can use NZ BDM  index records which does not require any payment or subscription to access.
by Robynne Lozier G2G Astronaut (1.3m points)
edited by Robynne Lozier
+6 votes
Lots of profiles probably contain source citations to rare books held in libraries that very few of us can access either, or held in records offices on the other side of the world, but we wouldn't dream of deleting those. Please don't delete links to records on Ancestry as it might be the most accessible source for that bit of information. Not everything is duplicated on free sites. I have no problem with deleting links to trees though! Perhaps you could ask whoever had added the link to provide a transcript or summary of the information?
by Suzanne Doig G2G6 Mach 3 (39.8k points)
I agree. So much data is only available in places you either have to go in person or pay someone to research for you. Sometimes if you know the exact details you can get it and sometimes they will do a search for you - but don't expect it. There are plenty of county/state courthouses that won't do a search for you but they are the only source of that record you need. Even the free resources like FamilySearch don't have everything online yet and some of those records require going to Salt Lake City to look at them (or pay someone to do it for you). In some ways, those that you have to travel to are bigger pay walls than Ancestry where many libraries have access (and local Family History Centers).
+5 votes
I keep in mind that  Wikitree is a collaborative site .  Ancestry members giving well written source information plus an ancestry link should be appreciated for the information given.   As others have pointed out, no link (free or paid) is guaranteed to last forever and not all sources are available online.  If I give you the complete citation for  instance to a census record with an ancestry link and you are not a member,  no one says you have to click on it.  What you could  do is use the information given to find it elsewhere and add a second reference to the second location.   I have often given both a FamilySearch and reference to a source if I have both readily available.   But if the only one I have In my notes is the ancestry one, that is what you will get.  Keep in mind that  I am only referencing documents and not family trees.   Anyone is welcome to add a new reference or sourced information to profiles I manage.  The more information the better. Cherry
by Cherry Duve G2G6 Mach 7 (70.7k points)

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