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Geni Family Trees #general


E. Randol Schoenberg
 

Jeffrey, 

The evidence of progressive correctness comes from the various large areas I have worked, for example, the Frankfurt and Prague and Vienna Jewish communities.  I know it is hard for people to believe or understand, but there are many people (not just me) who are extremely active on Geni, doing more than you could ever think is possible.  Some of them become curators (there are several hundred volunteer curators now) and we have frequent discussions (some public, some private) on how to resolve problem areas, for example, when recurring mistakes creep in.  One of the tools we have as curators is to lock down profiles so that new relationships cannot be added without curator approval.  The tree is always a work-in-progress, but it does improve over time.  Look, for example, at the tree of the Maharal of Prague.  There are still some issues, but we have tried to eliminate much of the apocryphal ancestry that you will find on most other sites, based on recent scholarship.  The more evidence is added to the profiles, the easier it is to avoid and resolve errors.  Slowly, but surely, the tree comes together in ways that just are not possible when people work by themselves.  In the Frankfurt tree, I collaborate with a number of others who scour the tree looking for conflicts and discrepancies.  The Geni program also has features that can alert you to potential errors.  In the Prague Jewish tree, I have fewer collaborators, but we are gradually piecing together the families, using old and new resources, so that when people find it, they do not have to reinvent the wheel and can take advantage of the work that has already been done., and then make improvements.  We all make mistakes, of course; that is unavoidable.  And anyone who has experience working with old records knows that there are often errors and ambiguities.  As I have written previously in one of my old blogs, there is no such thing as certainty in genealogy.  We are all just doing our best to figure things out until the next piece of evidence comes along that either confirms our assumptions or requires us to reevaluate them.

I agree that it is one of the things that is very difficult for users operating in a smaller field to understand, that a process that allows some errors to creep into their tree is also a process that ends up catching and correcting even more errors.  I try to explain that it is like a machine that goes three steps forward and one step back, three steps forward and one step back . . . .  Over time, it averages out to real progress.  

Randy Schoenberg


Joyaa Antares
 

On Sat, Oct 31, 2020 at 05:34 PM, E. Randol Schoenberg wrote:
Look, for example, at the tree of the Maharal of Prague.  There are still some issues, but we have tried to eliminate much of the apocryphal ancestry that you will find on most other sites, based on recent scholarship.

Hi Randy,

I have taken a look at the page - thanks. 
[https://www.geni.com/people/MaHaRaL-of-Prague-%D7%94%D7%9E%D7%94%D7%A8-%D7%9C-%D7%9E%D7%A4%D7%A8%D7%90%D7%92/6000000002236005169]

I can see that there are 115 managers and one curator.

Why is it that under the "sources" tab, no sources are listed?  This seems completely at odds with claims you have made on the concurrent thread about Geni trees, (for example, "Aubrey, let me know where I can see a superior genealogical tree to what we have on Geni. Many of us who know much more about genealogy than you do").

It is not my intent to be oppositional.  It is simply that the evidence doesn't appear to support your claim.

Thank you, Joyaa

Joyaa ANTARES, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia


N. ARONSON
 

I use Geni extensively and, despite the many mistakes, find it an incredible source of information.
What makes use difficult is the fact that there doesn't seem to be an agreed way how to enter details and because of that anyone just does it the way they feel correct.
In particular what disturbs me is the fact that many people enter someone's wife with the surname of her husband rather than her maiden name. In order to find the maiden name one would have to hoover over her name and find her father's name. Quite annoying. Can the curators do something about that?

N. Aronson
Manchester UK


George Muenz
 

Randy, you and the other volunteers/curators do beyond amazing work. What you do has given us whose families were destroyed and who knew nothing of our families a connection to our family and our history. Geni set me on the path from knowing NOTHING at all, not even that my late Mother had 3 brothers and a sister, my Grandparents names, etc, to connecting/meeting with family I did not know existed in Israel, Hungary, Germany, Sweden, Argentina, and the USA. Kol Hakavod!!!
--
George (Naftali) Muenz
Vancouver, Canada


E. Randol Schoenberg
 

On Sun, Nov 1, 2020 at 05:22 AM, Joyaa Antares wrote:

I have taken a look at the page - thanks. 
[https://www.geni.com/people/MaHaRaL-of-Prague-%D7%94%D7%9E%D7%94%D7%A8-%D7%9C-%D7%9E%D7%A4%D7%A8%D7%90%D7%92/6000000002236005169]

I can see that there are 115 managers and one curator.

Why is it that under the "sources" tab, no sources are listed? 

Joyaa please look under the Media tab on the Maharal's profile.  There you will find (on the right side) 18 documents.  Click on "View all" and you will find them, including the most recent scholarship at https://photos.geni.com/p13/5f/b2/30/28/5344484b40a82955/judah_loew_ben_bezalel_called_maharal_original.pdf

You can also view the 8 public Discussion on the profile, including this one.

https://www.geni.com/people/MaHaRaL-of-Prague-%D7%94%D7%9E%D7%94%D7%A8-%D7%9C-%D7%9E%D7%A4%D7%A8%D7%90%D7%92/6000000002236005169#/tab/discussion

As I have said, and as I know from my own experience 11 years ago, there is a very steep learning curve for Geni.  There's a lot more to it than you will notice when you first come to it, if you are only looking for things you are familiar with from other websites.

Randy Schoenberg

Los Angeles, CA


E. Randol Schoenberg
 

On Sun, Nov 1, 2020 at 05:23 AM, N. ARONSON wrote:
In particular what disturbs me is the fact that many people enter someone's wife with the surname of her husband rather than her maiden name. In order to find the maiden name one would have to hoover over her name and find her father's name. Quite annoying. Can the curators do something about that?

How the names are displayed depends on your personal display preferences.  Geni is extremely flexible so it is designed to accommodate all sorts of styles of genealogy.

Under Account Settings, go to Name Preferences.

https://www.geni.com/account_settings/name_preferences

Randy Schoenberg

Los Angeles, CA


N. ARONSON
 

Thank you Randy for that useful information. Have changed my settings and am looking forward to continue working with Geni minus that disturbance.
Keep well and safe

Nachum Aronson
Manchester, UK


Joyaa Antares
 

On Sun, Nov 1, 2020 at 04:58 PM, E. Randol Schoenberg wrote:
On Sun, Nov 1, 2020 at 05:22 AM, Joyaa Antares wrote:

I have taken a look at the page - thanks. 
[https://www.geni.com/people/MaHaRaL-of-Prague-%D7%94%D7%9E%D7%94%D7%A8-%D7%9C-%D7%9E%D7%A4%D7%A8%D7%90%D7%92/6000000002236005169]

I can see that there are 115 managers and one curator.

Why is it that under the "sources" tab, no sources are listed? 

Joyaa please look under the Media tab on the Maharal's profile.  There you will find (on the right side) 18 documents.  Click on "View all" and you will find them, including the most recent scholarship at https://photos.geni.com/p13/5f/b2/30/28/5344484b40a82955/judah_loew_ben_bezalel_called_maharal_original.pdf

You can also view the 8 public Discussion on the profile, including this one.

https://www.geni.com/people/MaHaRaL-of-Prague-%D7%94%D7%9E%D7%94%D7%A8-%D7%9C-%D7%9E%D7%A4%D7%A8%D7%90%D7%92/6000000002236005169#/tab/discussion

As I have said, and as I know from my own experience 11 years ago, there is a very steep learning curve for Geni.  There's a lot more to it than you will notice when you first come to it, if you are only looking for things you are familiar with from other websites.

Randy and Other Geni Users,

Randy - thanks for your reply. I asked why no sources are listed under Maharal's profile, and you directed me to the "media" tab, which shows images and documents, including a 57-page pdf, and other items.  Following your directions, I found wonderful material but not really what I was looking for.
For example, the main page claims dates and pages for the Maharal's birth and death:


I'd expect to be able to turn to the sources tab to locate the source for these facts - and I don't mean to be able to open a link to a large pdf (although that's a nice added extra) - but simple one-line reference.   In exactly the same way, if I wanted the source for "love thy neighbour as thyself", I wouldn't expect to be handed the Bible and told to locate where this is written.  Rather, a one line reference, "Leviticus 19:18", and I can then go to the Bible to verify this if I want to.   

Thus, the source for the birth might say:   Putik and Polakovic, "Judah Loewben Bezalel, Called Maharal– A Study on His Genealogy and Biography", in [Book name, editors names, year of publication, ... ] page 50. - according to whatever referencing system that Geni users want to use.  And by all means put the pdf of the entire chapter under "media" copyright allowing.

Obviously, this isn't a standard that one might reasonably expect of every Geni profile, but it's fair to expect this for a profile that is held up a scholarly, and has over 100 "managers" and a curator.

The other link you provided (to discussions) didn't lead to a single discussion but to all of the discussions.  I don't know which discussion you intended me to look at. I couldn't see whether Geni has the facility to direct a reader to a specific discussion.

Re. your comment, "... there is a very steep learning curve for Geni.  There's a lot more to it than you will notice when you first come to it, if you are only looking for things you are familiar with from other websites.".  However, taken in the context of my points, this translates to a lack of intuitiveness and/or transparency.  

Lastly, "115 managers and one curator".  Please can someone explain why this profile has or needs 116 people to look after it.  Is a manager necessarily someone who manages the profile?  Could the term "manager" be misleading? 

Thanks very much, Joyaa ANTARES
Gold Coast, Queensland, AUSTRALIA