Ethics in genealogy

Today, Genealogy Simple presents the topic of ethics in genealogy, and not just the case with genealogy searches at the initial stage on the Internet for genealogies.
Sometimes, in order to find any information related to your search, you need to register and leave information about yourself that includes personal data. It is not always convenient and safe and the customer will not always like it. Also on the Internet there is a huge amount of misinformation that has been entered into the GEDCOM database.

GEDCOM (Genealogical Data Communications) – specification for the exchange of genealogical data between different genealogical programs. GEDCOM was designed by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to aid in genealogy research. Most modern genealogy computer programs support import/export of data in the GEDCOM format.

Protecting living people

Although, as a rule, it is easier for people to steal a person than to find information in the genealogy database, this does not mean that we should not know about the problems.
The genealogy that publishes the information should respect the interests of living relatives who believe that posting information about them on the Internet is an invasion of privacy. People get nervous when they find all their information on the Internet.

Genealogy is a hobby in which we ultimately look for information about our ancestors, those who passed before us.

There were quite a few discussions about the exchange of information and who should share and what. One of the researchers was upset when she discovered that the pedigree she put in the Ancestral File through the family history library ended up in someone else’s GEDCOM, which is now displayed online in the database.

Usually the biggest problem with researchers using large databases on the Internet is that they absorbed the research of others and did not confirm where they got the information from.

Share the information you know to be precise. Help other genealogies instead of obstructing them without going through an unproven stream of names, dates, and places. Genealogy is not only the number of names that you can have in your database, but how exactly you can trace your line. Accurate tracking of your family history should be the focus of attention, and not able to stand up and say: “I have been doing my genealogy for three months, and I have 100,000 people in my database.”

Share or not share

If you shared with one person, you pretty much shared with the world. Once you share a GEDCOM file by uploading it to a database or sending it to one, you can no longer talk about what happens to the information. You shared this information with someone, and now they have the right to share with whom and how they want.

Many people share their entire database, including living people, because they did not figure out how to exclude people when creating the GEDCOM file. Some GEDCOM database sites now impose mandatory restrictions on who can be published by cutting off those born after a certain year. These sites apply a 72-year privacy act, which means that anyone born after 1930 is deleted when the file is uploaded. Others leave names, but hide all other information, replacing it with the term “private” or “live”. However, instead of relying on such stopping measures, we should take responsibility for our files.

In conclusion

The Internet offers many great features for genealogies and so many great resources are available anytime. We can reach millions of people. Most researchers are responsible, but you will come across those who do not share your sense of ethics. We should always remember this, because we post information on the Internet, both in what we share and in what we demand from others when we share information with them.

Rhonda R. McClure

Good luck in finding.