Talk:Rookie MistakesEdit This Page

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None of the points in this article discuss family tree or pedigree research. So it is hard to see how Family Trees are a related topic.

Diltsgd 16:21, 16 July 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for a good article

Since this article is written so well, and I am new to the Wiki, I'd like to add a comment, but not change and potentially damage such a well written article.  If the person or persons who created  this article wish to incorporate these thoughts into the article, please feel free.

Another rookie mistake I have made in the past and often see in others is the willingness to accept another rookie's work as fact and not personally verify new connections to known members of a tree.

Seeing people who are "ancestor hungry" (my term for those who will accept the closest record available as accurate after a less-than-exhausting-search) post their fiction on some of the popular sites out there, I have often longed for a reliability rating field for each ancestor record and each supporting document. I have a g-g-grandmother whose common surname and short life has made documenting her parents a huge challenge, yet the popular ancestry sites contain several different "records" of her parents (at least three different sets of "parents" have been identified to date!).  Yes, I make guesses based on the family history and post supporting documents for those guesses, but those documents are clearly marked as unverified guesses. I have also sincerely appreciated contacts from other researchers who provide documents disproving my guesses.  Accuracy should be the goal - not just getting the blank fields in the pedigree chart filled in.

Conscequences:  Incomplete and/or inaccurate work gets re-published to the point where it is almost accepted as fact (Everyone says the same thing so this must be true!).  It also tends to discourage further research to either verify or refute such connections.  While it could cause some serious disputes between researchers, I believe it is a good practice to tactfully present records with contradictary information and politely request that records in support of an opposing view be provided for the scrutiny of all who are working on a particular family line.

Expert Researchers:  Independently verify each new ancestor or member of a family group.  They also verify the conclusions drawn from other researcher's sources are reasonable and logical.  They will contact other researchers and politely (tactfully, professionally) ask questions and point out alternative theories and documented facts.


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This article is extremely helpful and well thought-out. 


So why did I give it a "poor rating"?


I did so because it contains too much negative language. I am speaking of the language pertaining to the "rookies" and the things they "don't" do.  This puts new users in a dim light and is hardly inspirational. 


Using negative language is a common writing issue, but it is easily fixed simply by changing one's point of view. Then, all the same information can be provided in the same paper using positive language. 


In fact, this article already does so when speaking of the experienced reserachers.

They are always portrayed in a positive light. If the article dropped the corresponding comments about what the "rookies" do badly, and only focussed on what experienced users do well, the same message could be given to new users. .  

I agree with what you have said and that is why I changed the opening line of the article about a year ago as I couldn't get past that point (made it less confrontational). At that time I did not know if I was reading too much into it. If you have specific revisions you would like to see, you can either make notes on this talk page (which I could transfer to the article) or if you feel comfortable with editing you could tweak the article yourself. Either way is fine and I will continue to watch this page for future comments. Time permitting, I will take another look at this article with your comments in mind. Luccagenes 23:16, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
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