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  • When PA's are unresponsive.

    I have a PA for my project that I have been in touch with for a couple of years and he has been reasonably good at answering my questions.

    This October I took the plunge and had my Y 67 marker done but had no way to compare the results because my group did not have a page set up and I had no idea who was participating and what their kit #'s might be.

    After much prodding I had him set up a page and it turned out nice. I of course had MANY questions (due to the fact that my results indicated that it was 99.9% certain that I was not related to this group since we were swinging on trees-although on paper I was). The answers could only come by him looking at their personal info, contact info etc. Over the past month I have sent five or six emails that he has not reponded to. The last email I offered to co- admin the project so that I may do some recruiting, see the pertinent info, make some comparisons and overall evaluations. Still no response.

    I hope that he is in good health, and if he is- is there a way that I could indeed take over the Project or serve as co admin through FTDNA? He is not a Y chrome member of this project-his interests are through his maternal side.

    Thank you for any insight.

  • #2
    Originally posted by SaintManx
    I have a PA for my project that I have been in touch with for a couple of years and he has been reasonably good at answering my questions.

    This October I took the plunge and had my Y 67 marker done but had no way to compare the results because my group did not have a page set up and I had no idea who was participating and what their kit #'s might be.

    After much prodding I had him set up a page and it turned out nice. I of course had MANY questions (due to the fact that my results indicated that it was 99.9% certain that I was not related to this group since we were swinging on trees-although on paper I was). The answers could only come by him looking at their personal info, contact info etc. Over the past month I have sent five or six emails that he has not reponded to. The last email I offered to co- admin the project so that I may do some recruiting, see the pertinent info, make some comparisons and overall evaluations. Still no response.

    I hope that he is in good health, and if he is- is there a way that I could indeed take over the Project or serve as co admin through FTDNA? He is not a Y chrome member of this project-his interests are through his maternal side.

    Thank you for any insight.
    May I suggest that you try to contact FTDNA and explain your situation.

    I had a bad experience with a PA of a group I wanted to join. The PA would not respond to my emails. I eventually, after 2 months with no response from the PA, went to FTDNA to see if the PA was still active. FTDNA, after a few more non responsive emails from the PA to myself, offered the PA to myself, as they felt the project was not being run in a beneficial way to the group or/and the company. (This was a very rare occurance)
    I never really found out why the PA would not respond to my emails, even though I know her email account is very active....

    Not the recomended way to go, and not really the the outcome I wanted or expected, but it may help to get things sorted out.

    Offering to Co Admin, I would think would be proactive, and should be seen in a positve light, especially if you are offering to help in another area that the PA may not be interested or experienced in. It guess it depends on who is the present PA and what their objectives, experience, expertise is....and what you are offering to bring to the group.

    Of course the PA may be on holidays, may be Ill, or have another explanation.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by rivergirl
      May I suggest that you try to contact FTDNA and explain your situation.

      I had a bad experience with a PA of a group I wanted to join. The PA would not respond to my emails. I eventually, after 2 months with no response from the PA, went to FTDNA to see if the PA was still active. FTDNA, after a few more non responsive emails from the PA to myself, offered the PA to myself, as they felt the project was not being run in a beneficial way to the group or/and the company. (This was a very rare occurance)
      I never really found out why the PA would not respond to my emails, even though I know her email account is very active....

      Not the recomended way to go, and not really the the outcome I wanted or expected, but it may help to get things sorted out.

      Offering to Co Admin, I would think would be proactive, and should be seen in a positve light, especially if you are offering to help in another area that the PA may not be interested or experienced in. It guess it depends on who is the present PA and what their objectives, experience, expertise is....and what you are offering to bring to the group.

      Of course the PA may be on holidays, may be Ill, or have another explanation.
      Who owns a project?
      The PA who has often worked hard and competently to create and administer it?
      The members who contributed their paid-for samples and who depend on the results?
      FTDNA which is trusted to provide the services and was paid for them?

      Why should a single unaccountable individual control a family's major genealogical resource? Don't get me worng -- most PAs serve their families and other affinity groups well, and often thanklessly. There are, however, a few who control unresponsive monopolies.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Itzhak Epstein
        Who owns a project?
        The PA who has often worked hard and competently to create and administer it?
        The members who contributed their paid-for samples and who depend on the results?
        FTDNA which is trusted to provide the services and was paid for them?

        Why should a single unaccountable individual control a family's major genealogical resource? Don't get me worng -- most PAs serve their families and other affinity groups well, and often thanklessly. There are, however, a few who control unresponsive monopolies.
        They do have a monopoly and FTDNA is in on it as evidenced by the removal of my last post which was a response to you. I am wondering if Ms. Wark is reading and deleting at will-we will soon find out.

        Comment


        • #5
          Project Group Administrator

          Your Project Group Administrator has provided a clear Description of the project as well as the surname and variants of the surname test in the group. He has also provided a web page with the Project Background, Project Goals, Project Results, and DNA Test Results (Alleles) for Project Members with their Kit numbers and most distant ancestors.
          An administrator is not required to list any individual’s names nor their email addresses. If a member in a group has a match or near match with another member an email address for contacting the other party is displayed on their personal page.
          Entering data (Alleles, lineage, most distant ancestors, and notes) into the Y-search is up to the individual.
          As for as the money one pays to FTDNA, that was for DNA testing only. It doesn’t include any special assistance from a group project administrator. A project administrator’s job is voluntary and they don’t receive any monetary benefits from their work. In fact many administrators spend the own money and many hours researching data and setting up a website for their group projects.
          To reiterate, FTDNA only does DNA testing and provides for someone to setup as a project administrator. They limit themselves as to how any project should be run and that is a good thing. Administrators can provide just basic information to there project group or they can setup a very detailed website of there own.
          FYI, a project administrator has the ability to screen anyone who wishes to join his/her project. In this case, an individual must first email the project administrator before they can join his/her project. The reason behind this is an administrator may require the new member to send them their lineage, the right to publish their name and email address etc. (You would be surprised at how many people only test for DNA and won’t provide any information.) Most administrator don’t do this, they will allow anyone being of the project surname to join without being screened.
          As for the individual in a project you have the right to email you project administrator with you questions.
          You also have the ability to join another group that may be in some way related to your surname or start your own project by using a variant of your surname.
          If you don’t get answers to you question about you DNA results from you administrator then go to the FTDNA forum. There are a lot of knowledgeable people that are more than willing to assist you.

          Ragnvald
          Viking / Noris

          Comment


          • #6
            Project Admnistrators

            Originally posted by Rex
            Your Project Group Administrator has provided a clear Description of the project as well as the surname and variants of the surname test in the group. He has also provided a web page with the Project Background, Project Goals, Project Results, and DNA Test Results (Alleles) for Project Members with their Kit numbers and most distant ancestors.
            An administrator is not required to list any individual’s names nor their email addresses. If a member in a group has a match or near match with another member an email address for contacting the other party is displayed on their personal page.
            Entering data (Alleles, lineage, most distant ancestors, and notes) into the Y-search is up to the individual.
            As for as the money one pays to FTDNA, that was for DNA testing only. It doesn’t include any special assistance from a group project administrator. A project administrator’s job is voluntary and they don’t receive any monetary benefits from their work. In fact many administrators spend the own money and many hours researching data and setting up a website for their group projects.
            To reiterate, FTDNA only does DNA testing and provides for someone to setup as a project administrator. They limit themselves as to how any project should be run and that is a good thing. Administrators can provide just basic information to there project group or they can setup a very detailed website of there own.
            FYI, a project administrator has the ability to screen anyone who wishes to join his/her project. In this case, an individual must first email the project administrator before they can join his/her project. The reason behind this is an administrator may require the new member to send them their lineage, the right to publish their name and email address etc. (You would be surprised at how many people only test for DNA and won’t provide any information.) Most administrator don’t do this, they will allow anyone being of the project surname to join without being screened.
            As for the individual in a project you have the right to email you project administrator with you questions.
            You also have the ability to join another group that may be in some way related to your surname or start your own project by using a variant of your surname.
            If you don’t get answers to you question about you DNA results from you administrator then go to the FTDNA forum. There are a lot of knowledgeable people that are more than willing to assist you.

            Ragnvald
            Viking / Noris
            I'm a project administrator myself (Hungarian Bukovina).

            Before setting up our Y-DNA projeect, my Hungarian research partner and I put together a database of all the Bukovina Szekely and their descendants from church records (the database now has more than 70,000 people in it).

            Everyone in the DNA project so far has been recruited by me (and half of them have even had their tests paid for by me!) This is because $99 is a whole lot of money for someone from Hungary or Romania).

            Anyway, when I started up the project, I had a very clear idea of where I wanted to go with it. If someone has another vision, they are more than welcome to join another project in addition or set up one of their own.

            By the way, I used the feature which allows me to determine who can join. The project is restricted to a particular set of people from five specific villages. Other people have asked to join, but if they are not of Bukovina Szekely descent, I refer them to another suitable project (if I can find one).

            Personally, I would be pretty upset if someone came along after the fact and pushed to take over the project because they disagreed with something I was doing. When my participants agreed to join, I assured them that I would be the only person with access to their personal information. I don't feel it would be fair to them to bring someone else on board without their permission.

            I agree with Rex that FTDNA does not control the project administration; the company only provide the tools for setting up the project and organizing the data.

            It seems to me that people who are willing to be contacted can upload their results to y-search and give their contact information IF they want to be contacted. I've posted all my people's results to y-search (but with myself as the contact) This is how the participants wanted it done. Most of them are elderly (often without computers), and others speak only Hungarian.

            Beth Long

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Beth Long
              I'm a project administrator myself (Hungarian Bukovina).

              ...

              It seems to me that people who are willing to be contacted can upload their results to y-search and give their contact information IF they want to be contacted. I've posted all my people's results to y-search (but with myself as the contact) This is how the participants wanted it done. Most of them are elderly (often without computers), and others speak only Hungarian.

              Beth Long
              You really should consider a co-admin, especially if most of your participants don't have a computer. What happens to the project when something happens to you? Those elderly, often without a computer, or the ones who only speak Hungarian are going to have to contact FTDNA and somehow explain that you may no longer be around? Or will the project go with you?

              Comment


              • #8
                Project Co-administrators

                Originally posted by Nelliebly
                You really should consider a co-admin, especially if most of your participants don't have a computer. What happens to the project when something happens to you? Those elderly, often without a computer, or the ones who only speak Hungarian are going to have to contact FTDNA and somehow explain that you may no longer be around? Or will the project go with you?
                Actually, I do have two (Hungarian) co-administrators. They are both people who have been involved in the (database) project from the beginning and are known to most of the project participants. One is only 25 years old, so I have considered the issues you speak of (that none of us will last forever).

                What I was trying to express (and maybe didn't do very well) is that having someone come along after the fact and want to change the goals of the project or the way it's administered doesn't seem quite right to me. A coadministrator should be someone you know and are comfortable with, not someone who comes "out of the blue", especially if that person feels negatively toward your efforts so far or the philosophy of the project. If they have a different concept, why not start a new project rather than try to take over an existing one?

                Beth

                Comment


                • #9
                  A late response-sorry!

                  "What I was trying to express (and maybe didn't do very well) is that having someone come along after the fact and want to change the goals of the project or the way it's administered doesn't seem quite right to me. A coadministrator should be someone you know and are comfortable with, not someone who comes "out of the blue", especially if that person feels negatively toward your efforts so far or the philosophy of the project. If they have a different concept, why not start a new project rather than try to take over an existing one?

                  Beth[/QUOTE]

                  I wanted to clarify that I never asked the PA to change or alter the project, in fact, I wanted to help augment it. However, a good idea was suggested to start a project by using a variant spelling of the surname.

                  By the way, you have taken on a monsterous task and are to be commended for it!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Alternative Surname Projects

                    I wanted to clarify that I never asked the PA to change or alter the project, in fact, I wanted to help augment it. However, a good idea was suggested to start a project by using a variant spelling of the surname.

                    By the way, you have taken on a monsterous task and are to be commended for it![/QUOTE]

                    Yes, you could certainly start a new surname project ( I see several surnames which already have more than one project).

                    However, it appears (from your previous posts) that you are not genetically descended from this surname (unless I have misunderstood something). I think it would be more interesting to have a project which focuses on those who come close to matching you genetically?

                    Our project is still small, but so far, genetic matches and non-matches appear to be pretty clear cut. We have one case where two men of the same surname (one from Bukovina and one from Transylvania) matched with at least ten generations between them.

                    Because we have almost everyone's paper trail going back to the late 1780s, we can track NPEs ("non-paternal events") that far back at least. The church records are pretty specific about illegitimate births (the father is recorded as "unknown"). Thus, (for example) we find about an equal number using the surname Fabian who are actually descended from a Peter Jeremias back in the 1700s. His father (surname Jeremias) died, and his mother remarried a Fabian. Peter then used the Fabian name, and he has hundreds of descendants. Some of them were quite surprised that they were not genetically Fabians.

                    Of course, there are undoubtedly many many "NPEs" before the recorded records, too. Eventually, our project hopes to test the 130 surnames which constitute about 90% of the population of these five villages (which were isolated in Bukovina for 150 years before being relocated back to Hungary).

                    Not to mention the fact that surnames were only adopted around 1500 or so in this area. To complicate it further, many Bukovina Szekely have patronymic surnames (János, Péter, Fábián, Sebestyén, etc.) In some cases, it took several generations to "stabilize" the surname (i.e. Péter János could have a son who called himself János Péter)

                    Once all 130 surnames are tested, we imagine that the majority of NPEs will resolve (i.e. they will match some other project surname). Of course, in some cases, children were fathered by men outside the community, but we believe this will be a fairly low proportion of the total.

                    Sorry to ramble on about my project, but it's been a labor of love for many years.

                    Beth

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      NPE as the adoptee big problem and delima

                      The big problem I have as an adoptee is NPE delima and I have worked on it for many years. It is the brick wall which brings many adoptees to FTDNA. I have tested all that can be tested and my terminal SNP is the only terminal green ink SNP in the Group I have been trying for some time to join in the Brown surname project. Because of rare markers and limited matches I have been pointed over a long period of time directly to this one group, Group 36, of the Brown project and they will not add me to the Group as an adoptee because: 1. As an adoptee I do not have a paternal GEDCOM 2. I am not an exact 111 marker match. They have a separate website for Brown which has not been updated since 2011 and about 50% apprx. of the over 1000 people in the project are in ungrouped areas(2). The reason is the admin. leadership has one focus and that is to display only confirmed by DNA and genealogy exact or nearly so matches in groups. I find this not at all helpful for my research. With a total focus on 111 marker exact matches SNP data is totally ignored in this project. We will see if this admin. is removed or not. Formal requests have been made to FTDNA for action. When a matter such as this has gone on for a long, long time and several hundred tested folks sit in ungrouped areas of project with a terminal SNP identified in green ink, clearly, some action is needed to bring the admin. effort into this current century. A lot of progress has been made by the Big Y and it is just a shame to see it wasted in my opinion. In my case, I do not have a choice of another surname project with leads and BROWN is my last stop. That sort of situation is being overlooked. If you must go to that surname project it is like your power company you get electricity from, there is a public interest involved, which needs to achieve recognition.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by localnative View Post
                        The big problem I have as an adoptee is NPE delima and I have worked on it for many years. It is the brick wall which brings many adoptees to FTDNA. I have tested all that can be tested and my terminal SNP is the only terminal green ink SNP in the Group I have been trying for some time to join in the Brown surname project. Because of rare markers and limited matches I have been pointed over a long period of time directly to this one group, Group 36, of the Brown project and they will not add me to the Group as an adoptee because: 1. As an adoptee I do not have a paternal GEDCOM 2. I am not an exact 111 marker match. They have a separate website for Brown which has not been updated since 2011 and about 50% apprx. of the over 1000 people in the project are in ungrouped areas(2). The reason is the admin. leadership has one focus and that is to display only confirmed by DNA and genealogy exact or nearly so matches in groups. I find this not at all helpful for my research. With a total focus on 111 marker exact matches SNP data is totally ignored in this project. We will see if this admin. is removed or not. Formal requests have been made to FTDNA for action. When a matter such as this has gone on for a long, long time and several hundred tested folks sit in ungrouped areas of project with a terminal SNP identified in green ink, clearly, some action is needed to bring the admin. effort into this current century. A lot of progress has been made by the Big Y and it is just a shame to see it wasted in my opinion. In my case, I do not have a choice of another surname project with leads and BROWN is my last stop. That sort of situation is being overlooked. If you must go to that surname project it is like your power company you get electricity from, there is a public interest involved, which needs to achieve recognition.
                        I doubt an administrator will be removed just because you don't meet their requirements for the project. I guess maybe I don't understand your problem. You should have been given a list of the names and email addresses to the men you matched. Your next step would be to contact them and work directly with your matches. Why does it matter where you are grouped within this surname project? How close of a match are you to the group you believe you are related to? Since your focus seems to be your terminal SNP have you joined a haplogroup project?
                        Last edited by mattn; 10 April 2016, 08:28 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I can understand localnative's frustration to some extent, but really the problem is that surname projects can be a poor tool in some respects. DNA does not necessarily match to a surname. It is science versus a human construct. As genealogists we traditionally follow family lines by surname unless written evidence suggests otherwise. In the era of DNA that has to be extended to include people of any surname if they match the DNA. It is foolish and narrow minded to think otherwise. Frankly, the DNA is what links people to a particular site, not their surname. In my own situation I am in a project that is for a name as popular as BROWN and my results have not been published, even though they are a GD 5 match at 111 markers with one fellow on the site and particular marker value matches his, which on the site is unique to him. There is an unpublished third person in the same boat as me that matches him at GD4, but neither of us carry the project surname, and we are not closely related to each other. The result of this is that it is giving a distorted picture of genealogy. it makes that man appear more unique than he his DNA-wise.
                          I'm can understand a need for criteria but to exclude people from being listed just because they happen to have a different surname masks the genealogy. The irony is that though it has no impact upon those on the site carrying the surname, some of those carrying the surname may be less "of the surname" themselves. If an NPE happened say in 1700 and all a man's male descendants live today under his surname, even though his father was not of that surname, do we say they shouldn't be in the project because it isn't their genetic name? Or conversely, should localnative and I join our own surname projects because all our male children will carry our surnames, even though we know that the men whose names we carry, have a NPE in their ancestry? It seems to me a little application of commonsense is needed when deciding to exclude members' data.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Doublemartini View Post
                            I can understand localnative's frustration to some extent, but really the problem is that surname projects can be a poor tool in some respects. DNA does not necessarily match to a surname. It is science versus a human construct. As genealogists we traditionally follow family lines by surname unless written evidence suggests otherwise. In the era of DNA that has to be extended to include people of any surname if they match the DNA. It is foolish and narrow minded to think otherwise. Frankly, the DNA is what links people to a particular site, not their surname. In my own situation I am in a project that is for a name as popular as BROWN and my results have not been published, even though they are a GD 5 match at 111 markers with one fellow on the site and particular marker value matches his, which on the site is unique to him. There is an unpublished third person in the same boat as me that matches him at GD4, but neither of us carry the project surname, and we are not closely related to each other. The result of this is that it is giving a distorted picture of genealogy. it makes that man appear more unique than he his DNA-wise.
                            I'm can understand a need for criteria but to exclude people from being listed just because they happen to have a different surname masks the genealogy. The irony is that though it has no impact upon those on the site carrying the surname, some of those carrying the surname may be less "of the surname" themselves. If an NPE happened say in 1700 and all a man's male descendants live today under his surname, even though his father was not of that surname, do we say they shouldn't be in the project because it isn't their genetic name? Or conversely, should localnative and I join our own surname projects because all our male children will carry our surnames, even though we know that the men whose names we carry, have a NPE in their ancestry? It seems to me a little application of commonsense is needed when deciding to exclude members' data.
                            Yes a surname project has to have criteria and it is up to that project's administrator to set the criteria. Surname projects would be an absolute mess if all the 37, 67 and 111 non-surname matches were added to the groupings with no genealogical evidence that the men are related in a genealogical time frame of that surname. Now if the men with different surnames have genealogical proof in some way that they are related through an NPE or even if there isn't a connection on paper (their ancestors were neighbors for instance) I have made exceptions. Many of the matches with different surnames go beyond the time surnames came about and the surname projects are trying to focus on those that match after that particular surname came into existence. It sounds like maybe localnative isn't a close match to these Brown men to be sure his ancestor in fact was a Brown, it is up to the administrator to make those decisions.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              An interesting reply but all it suggests to me in that case is perhaps there should be two projects - one for people of the surname and one that actually follows the DNA. I think that matches at an 111 marker level should be added if they are a GD of 7 or fewer. As localnative points out , many adoptives and people with strong suspicions of NPE take tests. As in my previous example, from the matches to my DNA that I know of, the likely geographic "home" of that DNA (within the genealogical time frame)is pretty tight to a UK location. As only one of 6 folk has joined or had results published though, that knowledge is not evident.

                              Those of the project surname are as likely as not to be totally unrelated to each other but included, yet those that are DNA evidentially genealogically related but not of the surname excluded, and with it is lost possible geographical loci for that branch of the surname.

                              Yes, links for some of us not of the surname may be before the genealogical time frame, but equally many of those of the surname may be descendants of NPEs within the genealogical time frame. The projects may be set up as "surname projects" but DNA matches should count every bit as surnames. After all, if we are chasing relatives DNA trumps name every time even if paper records will generally go by names. Both parties have equal claim to be valid for inclusion, I'd say.

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