Help:DNA Matches

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Categories: DNA

The biggest benefit of DNA testing for many of us is the opportunity to connect and communicate with distant cousins who have inherited some of the same DNA from the same ancestors.

Contact Your Matches

An autosomal DNA test from any of the big testing companies (Family Tree DNA, AncestryDNA, 23andMe, MyHeritageDNA) is likely to give you hundreds or even thousands of matches. This is exciting.

However, communicating and figuring out your exact relationship will not be easy!

First, many of them may not reply to you. Second, it may not be easy for them to share their genealogy information with you.

You can make it easy on them by proactively sharing your family tree. You're already sharing it if you're on WikiTree. And it's already privacy-controlled. Anyone on the Internet can see trees and profiles on WikiTree, but what they see depends on each individual profile's Privacy Level and Trusted List.

In particular, we have optimized our Compact Family Tree for sharing with DNA test matches. This tree view shows eight generations — approximately what is relevant for autosomal test matches — and it displays the maximum number of names and locations in the smallest space for easy scanning.

Click to your DNA Tests page for a template you can copy and paste into messages to your matches. If you know that a match is on your father's side or mother's side, you may want to share your father's or mother's Compact Family Tree instead of your own. Click to your parent's profile, then select "Compact Tree" from the Help:Pull-Down Menus|pull-down menu]] that starts with their ID.

For Y-chromosome and mitochondrial DNA test matches you can share your direct paternal and maternal lines from your DNA Ancestors page.

Alternative contact methods

Many of our members have their own methods.

If your match makes any of their tree available on the DNA testing company site you may want to go ahead and add some of their family to WikiTree before contacting them. Kitty (Cooper) Smith explains her method for this here: "How do you use your auDNA test on WikiTree?"

Do you have your own method? Explain it in a response to Kitty or "What message do you send to your DNA matches?" or start a new G2G post. We'd love to hear it!

Collaborate with Your Matches

WikiTree is focused on collaboration. Since 2008 we have been growing our community, evolving our policies and community culture, and refining our tools to make genealogy collaboration fun and productive.

We're proud that many genealogists now view WikiTree as the best place anywhere to collaborate.

If your DNA cousins collaborate with you on WikiTree the results can be powerful. The genealogical Holy Grail for many of us is to confirm our family tree with DNA. WikiTree facilitates this with status indicators to record and show when a connection has been confirmed with DNA, like this: DNA-confirmed.gif

See DNA Confirmation when you're ready to start using these indicators.

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This page was last modified 07:25, 4 May 2018. This page has been accessed 30,188 times.