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Customers think they've joined my project but they haven't

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  • Customers think they've joined my project but they haven't

    Several customers now have found, to their dismay, that when they thought they joined my project, they didn't really! This is even more alarming to me, because I don't know how many other customers thought they joined, and either never realized that they didn't, or they thought that I rejected them, etc.

    As best I can guess, this is a consequence of bad web programming, along with FTDNA's restriction on the number of projects to which one may belong. The project rules are somewhat complex and not well-known, so it is quite understandable that customers might try to join more projects than FTDNA wants to let them; but what is absolutely inexcusable is that FTDNA's web site calmly assures the customer that he has correctly joined the project, when he actually has not!

    In the past, I often told customers that to avoid the glitches of joining projects, one could go to the project's web site and join there. But a customer has recently reported to me that that method now has the same problem: It assured the customer that he had joined, when he hadn't.

  • #2
    And have you reported this error to FTDNA? If not, please do so. It does none of us any good for errors to not be reported to the correct people. We can't fix this, only the FTDNA programmers can.

    That said, in my experience, people who thought they joined my project but didn't had simply clicked on the project name in the list and thought that meant they joined. They neglected to press the grey JOIN button at the bottom of the page.

    When I invite people to join, I give step-by-step explicit instructions on how to join. I've seen too many project managers who simply say "click the blue JOIN button to participate". Well that only gives half the information, and users who are not web-savvy have trouble figuring out what to do next.

    As for the restriction on the number of projects, if the person is not allowed to join another project, the website will tell them that. I tried to join a family member to a 3rd surname project or something like that, and got a message saying that he was already in the allowed number of projects. I'd have to try it again to get the exact message that's given.

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    • #3
      efgen, VERY GOOD REPLY!

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      • #4
        Originally posted by efgen
        And have you reported this error to FTDNA?
        ...
        That said, in my experience, people who thought they joined my project but didn't had simply clicked on the project name in the list and thought that meant they joined. They neglected to press the grey JOIN button at the bottom of the page.

        When I invite people to join, I give step-by-step explicit instructions on how to join.
        ...
        As for the restriction on the number of projects, if the person is not allowed to join another project, the website will tell them that. I tried to join a family member to a 3rd surname project or something like that, and got a message saying that he was already in the allowed number of projects.
        I did give explicit instructions, first for the ordinary method of joining and then for the alternative. It does appear that the alternative method (by going through the project's web site) has an additional page that I hadn't noticed: After clicking on the Submit button, you get another page with a Join button at the bottom. I knew about this latter page when going through the ordinary method, but did not realize that it also comes up when using the alternative method. Needless to say, most customers think that the Submit button does exactly that--they do not expect to get another page with yet another button at the bottom to push.

        It is unfortunate that a customer who has already tried, and failed, to use one method may simply give up; and it is highly likely that a customer who has tried both methods and failed both times will give up.

        I do now agree with you that the primary problem may be the hidden Join button at the bottom of the page. It is very easy to miss--the page certainly seems to be telling the customer that he has already joined, rather than requiring him to press another button.

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