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How does FTDNA determine surnames?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Woody1 View Post
    I don't understand why people don't want to publish their tree, unless they're not interested in exchanging information or they just don't have the time or ability to put together a tree.
    A small part of people with no tree, I think is person managed by a administrator for the research (who handle several account among relatives). If i check my matches list, I see one persons e-mail connected to 8 account. I do understand it can be very tedious for that person to update every tree. Maybe FTDNA should have a way for them to replicate tree between account that is managed.

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    • #17
      I agree that it's difficult for many people who are managing multiple accounts. I manage a couple of accounts for relatives. I use the (free) Gramps application on my desktop PC to manage my trees. Gramps is somewhat complicated to use, but it has the ability to export gedcom files using filters so that you can create a subset of a master tree that's tailored for a specific person.

      I realize that not everybody is able to use software like this nor to does everybody have the time to put into it.

      In cases like that, it would be really useful to put at least a basic tree for each individual that has a pedigree for a couple of generations.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by ltd-jean-pull View Post

        Or there are the frustrating ones (at another site with a large database) with HUGE private trees which get bigger by the day who are very possessive of their information... I've invited her as a guest to a very cropped tree - ONLY the direct line and no siblings etc because I know she'll copy it ALL on to her huge tree and she won't invite me to see any of it.
        There are those who post huge trees on Ancestry and there is lots of cutting and pasting of trees there. When someone has thousands of names on a tree, I'll bet that they haven't researched many of the entries - if any at all.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Carpathian View Post
          There are those who post huge trees on Ancestry and there is lots of cutting and pasting of trees there. When someone has thousands of names on a tree, I'll bet that they haven't researched many of the entries - if any at all.
          Even though the tree is private there is a way I can see some individuals.

          The fact that she has the wrong surname for her own gt-grandmother makes me doubt the quality of the research. If she was prepared to spend just a small sum at ScotlandsPeople and get the death certificate of her gtgt-grandmother (I've found the entry - it wasn't hard to find) she might learn who the parents of a gtgt-grandmother's were. The tree doesn't have a date of death for this gtgt-grandmother.

          She doesn't recognise any of the names in the tree I gave her access to. I've suggested to her that the unknown father of her mother might be a relative of ours, but she hasn't responded. She's probably puzzled that I know her grandmother wasn't married.

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          • #20
            Names,trees,ignorance etc

            Good luck with all of this! I entered the Twighlight zone!
            Many matches have no trees or private but want mine and my surnames.
            Most believe if there is no common surname,why bother? We don’t match!
            The trees have no room to alter name variations.My relatives changed theirs many times.
            Trying to educate my matches nicely ended up with no responses.
            You need to learn the browser and calculate/compare,people.
            I am about to,give up with the match thing altogether.
            Last edited by Miamio; 18th February 2018, 12:36 PM. Reason: Typos

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            • #21
              [QUOTE=Miamio;448645]
              Good luck with all of this! I entered the Twighlight zone!
              It's more like the land of reading tea leaves. Most people will believe what they want to believe, and some will believe anything they are told. The genetics are sound but the interpretation in GG is often difficult or not always useful. GG is not a substitute for traditional "paper" documentation. It can provide clues, but it does not always solve every situation.

              Many matches have no trees or private but want mine and my surnames.
              Most people in today's world want to come out ahead by getting more than they give.

              Most believe if there is no common surname,why bother? We don’t match!
              You realize that is not true. But since you do have a surname match, and since you also do have a genetic match, that cannot be dismissed.

              The trees have no room to alter name variations.My relatives changed theirs many times.
              Some ethnic groups have so many variants of surname spellings, it's as maddening as it is astonishing. With experience you realize that phonetically the name might be the same, no matter how it is spelled.

              Trying to educate my matches nicely ended up with no responses.
              You can't teach anyone who is unwilling to learn. No one can.

              You need to learn the browser and calculate/compare,people.
              I am about to,give up with the match thing altogether.
              What exactly is your goal in this?
              Last edited by Carpathian; 18th February 2018, 05:58 PM.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Woody1 View Post
                Sorry if this has been discussed before. When I look at FamilyFinder Matches, I see that many matches have a list of surnames, but do not show a family tree. I'm wondering how FTDNA determines surnames for people who don't post a family tree? Does that mean that the surnames were actually entered by the person who owns that kit, or is there some other algorithm that FTDNA uses to produce the surname list? Or do those people have a hidden family tree that contains those surnames?
                I think that the person enters his/her ancestral surnames.

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                • #23
                  The list of surnames is added by the person who has tested or by the person in control of the test. It is a long and laborious process to manually enter each family name along with the location, so many don't do it. And many people keep their working tree on another site. I have a tree of about 6,000 people over at Ancestry, but here I keep only a strictly bare bones pedigree tree of about 250 individual names. I don't normally add anything to that tree unless I find another distant ancestor's name.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by keigh View Post
                    The list of surnames is added by the person who has tested or by the person in control of the test. It is a long and laborious process to manually enter each family name along with the location, so many don't do it.
                    I don't agree about it being long and laborious. Most people who don't enter surnames and locations don't post any tree, either. IMO they either don't know their ancestral surnames, or they don't know how to enter them, or they are lazy or uncaring. To me it is one of the best features of FTDNA and it is annoying that relatively few here do it.

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