Re: Search Engine for finding people in the USA - & Right to Privacy #general

Stan Goodman <SPAM_FOILER@...>

On Thu, 24 Mar 2005 18:19:02 UTC, (Jan) opined:

Peter Zavon wrote:


I just looked at this site and it showed, not the time when a person was it
the listed address, but their month and year of birth. Several, including
my entry, had nothing for that, and in a few cases the database had it
wrong. It was off by 20 years in the case of my sister.

Aside >from trying to list birthdates, I don't see anything that might be
troublesome here. However, it is noted that this is described as a Beta
site and will be on line until 31 March. Presumably it is continually
While this may work for most genealogy, in some cases people do not want
their presence, addresses or other information to be so available. In
my own genealogical work, a few relatives had had bad experiences in
their part of the families and they react poorly to contact.

Additionally, some people do not want their address or phone or birth
dates made available. Sites like this assume they have no right to such
privacy - something which is difficult to convince anyone of.
People who do not want their names made public, nor their addresses,
especially in conjunction with their telephone numbers, have a special
problem if they also desire to be listed in the telephone directory. Unless
I have again overlooked something, it is really only the birthdate (often
off by several decades) that the website in question adds to what is
revealed about virtually every US resident by virtue of being a telephone

In all candor, I think the sensitivity you describe is grossly exaggerated,
with no basis in reality.

To be clear, if one were to publish identifying details such as addresses
and the like in a genealogical chart, that would be a serious infringement
of privacy. Separated >from the chart, neither is an infringement. Suppose,
for example, an individual named e.g. "Morris Cohen" appears on a published
chart. There must be tens of thousands of people with this name in the
English speaking world. Which one is he, in the absence of identifying
details? Except for people with exceedingly rare names, of course.

It's not a perfect world and there are some sticky things - like this -
to which we all really need to be sensitive.

Jan Widome
Stan Goodman, Qiryat Tiv'on, Israel

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