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Announcements and New Features Announcements of changes at Family Tree DNA and to the FTDNA website. This is also for general communications by FTDNA staff.

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  #21  
Old 23rd May 2017, 11:14 PM
MoberlyDrake MoberlyDrake is offline
mtDNA: T2b5 | Y-DNA: J-M172
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 1,284
It's stupid not to use all the data they have. Quite a few people here test multiple family members. I know Ancestry makes use of their database, at least, they almost have to have done so with the new "Genetic Communities" and I believe 23andMe combines user input with population cluster testing.

I don't think my cousins ever look at their results, but I suppose it is rather embarrassing to have to explain to your cousins that FTDNA has no idea what they're doing, so just ignore the ethnicity estimates. Maybe I should warn them however.
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  #22  
Old 24th May 2017, 03:54 AM
Tmason Tmason is offline
FTDNA Customer
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: U.K.
Posts: 97
If it's any consolation, Ancestry also produces anomalous results.

I know of a case (because they are my relatives) where a son was said to be "more British" than his mother - who was showing 0% British Isles - even though his father was Turkish Cypriot.

No way 0% British + Turkish Cypriot can produce offspring with a high percentage British (it wasn't just a trace).

The mother is British, by the modern understanding of the word, yet she was shown as Scandinavian, Irish etc. - NOT British.

So she could not give her son a "British" component she does not have!
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  #23  
Old 18th July 2017, 10:00 AM
Dhyana Dhyana is offline
FTDNA Customer
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 1
Wondering where is my mother!?

I too am puzzled about the recent MO update. My Father's family heritage on paper is English, Scott, Irish, German. My mother's heritage is 100% southern Italy. My new MO has me 64% British and 4% Southeast Europe, 8% Sephardic and 27% Middle Eastern. All is well Except where is my mother! The old MO had me aprox. 36% southern European so okay with the new parameters maybe a drop of 10% - I'd buy that but not 25% to 4%! This is simply a mistake. Thanks and good luck to all. (I love this site FTDNA - so much to learn. I do appreciate all the work done here. -Diana
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  #24  
Old 10th August 2017, 03:09 PM
susan_dakin susan_dakin is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by mlcarson View Post
It's still good if you want additional testing. It's just that their "My Origins" is crap. I think that Ancestry might be better for basic genealogy matches but it requires a subscription. \
The main value in FTDNA for me is FamilyFinder autosomal matches -- WAAAY better than either 23&Me or AncestryDNA for that purpose. More people test with Ancestry, but Ancestry won't show where your matching chromosome segments are -- useless! Also, about 90% of the user trees on Ancestry are full of errors -- they all just copy each other's wrong information. Ancestry is also TOO conservative in calling something a match, so you miss many real matches. 23&Me provides good chromosome matching info., but many, many users choose to be anonymous or are obsessed with privacy and won't share their results. If you can get Ancestry matches to upload to GEDmatch, it's helpful, but I could not do the analysis I'm doing (mapping all my and my brothers' chromosomes) without FTDNA. The My Origins results are ridiculous (they give vastly different origins for me and my three brothers), but it is not wise to trust ANY admixture results -- others might be better, but they still are mostly guesswork. They are certainly no reason to have DNA testing done!
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  #25  
Old 10th August 2017, 03:58 PM
MMaddi MMaddi is offline
yDNA: R-CTS2509; mtDNA: T2e
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 3,352
Quote:
Originally Posted by susan_dakin View Post
The main value in FTDNA for me is FamilyFinder autosomal matches -- WAAAY better than either 23&Me or AncestryDNA for that purpose. More people test with Ancestry, but Ancestry won't show where your matching chromosome segments are -- useless! Also, about 90% of the user trees on Ancestry are full of errors -- they all just copy each other's wrong information. Ancestry is also TOO conservative in calling something a match, so you miss many real matches. 23&Me provides good chromosome matching info., but many, many users choose to be anonymous or are obsessed with privacy and won't share their results. If you can get Ancestry matches to upload to GEDmatch, it's helpful, but I could not do the analysis I'm doing (mapping all my and my brothers' chromosomes) without FTDNA. The My Origins results are ridiculous (they give vastly different origins for me and my three brothers), but it is not wise to trust ANY admixture results -- others might be better, but they still are mostly guesswork. They are certainly no reason to have DNA testing done!
I agree with the points above, which I've bolded.

Ancestry is obstinate about refusing to provide a chromosome browser as a research tool to their customers. They seem to believe that it will confuse their customers or most of their customers aren't interested in getting segment information. Maybe that's because so many of their customers see the silly commercials - "I had to trade in my lederhosen for a kilt" - that only talk about ethnicity estimates and order the test on a lark. I don't go to cocktail parties, but I wonder how much banter is wasted at cocktail parties with people discussing their ethnicity estimate. They have many customers, both genetic genealogists and adoptees, who know how to use a chromosome browser and need that for their research, but Ancestry doesn't listen to them.

Yes, Ancestry is too conservative in their estimates of how closely related matches are. It seemed to occur after they started using their Timber algorithm last year. Here are some examples in my match list:

Estimated possible 3rd-4th cousin - paper-trail proven 2nd cousin (two of these who are 1st cousins to each other)

Estimated possible 4th-6th cousin - paper trail proven 3rd cousin

Estimated possible 4th-6th cousin - paper trail proven 2nd cousin, once removed

It's not like these are cases of 4th or more distant cousins. These are fairly close cousins and the other companies would get these right.

Regarding 23andMe, the overemphasis on privacy is annoying. However, it's gotten better since they gave people the option of open sharing if they opt into DNA Relatives. It seems that most people choose that option, which means you don't have jump through the hoop of sending a sharing invitation to get segment information. But I do have one estimated 2nd-3rd cousin who was anonymous for a long time and didn't respond to my messages or sharing invitation. Earlier this year, he changed his account to provide his name. It's a surname that's from the town in Sicily where my paternal grandparents were from. So I sent him another message noting that and asking him to accept the sharing invitation. No response at all - frustrating!

The three main companies all have their pros and cons. Getting back to the topic of this thread, I do have to say that of the three FTDNA has the least reliable ethnicity estimates.

Last edited by MMaddi; 10th August 2017 at 04:57 PM.
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