Help:Recycling WikiTree IDs

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Categories: Styles and Standards

Recycling a WikiTree ID means using it for a person other than the person for whom it was created. This is almost never appropriate.

Sometimes members want to do it because they want a lower-numbered ID for their own profile.

Sometimes members want to do it to help clean up WikiTree. A lot of junk profiles have been created over the years, but we have rules against deleting them.

On WikiTree, we merge duplicate profiles, we don't delete them. But what if there is no duplicate? What if it's just a junky profile with little or no information about the person it's meant to represent?

Even if the profile has very little information, we don't recycle the WikiTree ID unless it meets these very strict criteria:

  1. There is no personally identifiable information at all. There are no names, dates, locations, and/or relationships on the profile that can be used to connect it to a real person.
  2. There is no personally identifiable information in the change history. That is, the profile never had any personally identifiable information. Often a member will clear out the information on a profile but it's still in the history.

The Unknowns Project was created to recycle IDs with the last name "Unknown." They deal with profiles that meet these very strict criteria, unusual as they may be. No other profile IDs should be recycled.

Recycling IDs corrupts the change history of a profile. Being able to follow the history of changes to a page is critically important on a wiki.

Recycling IDs also corrupts URLs. It damages how Google indexes WikiTree, and will confuse any links to the profile that may exist elsewhere on WikiTree or on other websites.



This page was last modified 11:07, 28 December 2017. This page has been accessed 1,011 times.