Thursday, 20 December 2007

Ancestry Announcements

Ancestry, and its parent company The Generations Network have made two announcements of note.

The first was posted on Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter.

FamilySearch and The Generations Network Agreement Give Patrons Access to More than 24,000 Databases and Titles

SALT LAKE CITY — FamilySearch and The Generations Network, Inc., parent company of, today announced an agreement that provides free access of to patrons of the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and the 13 largest regional family history centers effective today.

With this new agreement full access will be provided to more than 24,000 databases and titles and 5 billion names in family history records. In addition to the Family History Library, the following 13 regional family history centers have been licensed to receive access to

  • Mesa, Arizona
  • Los Angeles, California
  • Oakland, California
  • Orange, California
  • Sacramento, California
  • San Diego, California
  • Idaho Falls, Idaho
  • Pocatello, Idaho
  • Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Logan, Utah
  • Ogden, Utah
  • St. George, Utah
  • Hyde Park, London, England

You can read the complete item at Dick's site.

I've added the table, available here, showing the states that have a large number of LDS members. Of the centres getting the Ancestry service only Las Vegas is not in a state in the top five ... did they just take a gamble on Las Vegas? Hyde Park is also an odd ball.

I can see why the LDS would want this service back in their centres to assist their adherents in their religious duties, but what does Ancestry get from the deal? Exposure? I doubt they need that in Family History Centres. Or is there a part of the deal not being mentioned?

The second announcement is on the Ancestry blog. Ancestry World Tree is considered outdated and will be replaced with the Ancestry Member Tree system which was introduced in July 2006. I don't recall having used either of these. Ancestry did nothing to earn my good will regarding user-submitted information when they took data I had posted to Rootsweb WorldConnect and offered it through their subscription service.

The Ancestry blog posting contains a table comparing World Tree and Member Tree, and showing Member Tree as offering more. But one thing Member Tree does not offer, which World Tree did, is the option to keep information totally private. Be aware that when you post to Member Tree Ancestry will be making some of the information you add public. Your option if you don't want that is not to use the Member Tree system.

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