Posted by on July 2, 2009 in Family Trees

A new look for Ancestry Member Trees is now live on Ancestry.com.  We’ve updated the design and navigation to help you find what you’re looking for quickly and rebuilt the pages so they load faster.

In early June, we launched a preview of these enhancements to the family tree.   Our goal was to help you become familiar with the changes before they were incorporated on the site, as well as give us your opinion of the new design.  We received over 8,000 responses, the large majority of them very much excited to see the preview features implemented. We are very grateful for the time and care you put in to providing such insightful feedback, and made several changes to the preview as a direct result of your feedback.

Since the new look launched (yesterday morning) we have received nearly 4,000 feedback responses.  We’re taking notes and making plans for additional improvements as people get used to the new look and we learn better how to optimize it.  We encourage you to continue sending us your feedback through the feedback link in your family tree.

To learn more about the improvements we’ve made, you can visit our earlier blog post announcing the preview as well as our welcome page which gives a quick overview.

234 Comments

Rina 

Absolutely hate it!
Altogether too busy & messy. Without the previous highlighting, the eye isn’t immediately drawn to the subject as it used to be. All clarity and direction has been lost.

From trying it out over the last 24 hours:

It certainly is NOT faster.

In “Overview” there is no clear distinction between the subject’s spouse and their children.

Subject’s parents are not clearly highlighted.

The “Timeline” events are also less distinctive.

If you navigate away from “Overview” to check “Hints” etc. – there is no clear way back.

The “Media Gallery” is in the way and adds to the general appearance of messiness.

The very useful facility that allowed you to save individuals to separate trees seems to have disappeared.

You appear to have “fixed” characteristics that didn’t need fixing and ignored those that didn’t – such as the relevance of the searches and hints.

July 2, 2009 at 12:28 pm
Valerie 

I have to disagree with #1. I think the new design is very nice. There are enough similarities with the previous design, but it seems as if everything has been streamlined. I find it easy to navigate – more so than the old family trees.

I do agree, however, that the “Media Gallery” is in the way. I’d rather see that further down the page. I wonder if it would be possible to make the page section movable – like on the ancestry.com home page.

July 2, 2009 at 12:51 pm
Nancy 

After working with the new site for many hours yesterday, I, too, like the design. I appreciate your taking into account some of our suggestions during the preview stage, especially the layout and the importance of showing sources on the main timeline. I find navigation much easier, and faster.

The Media Gallery seems to have gotten quite mixed reviews. I agree that having movable sections like on the home page would make everyone happy. The format of the “story” icon bothers me–is there a way to have the title on the icon, or otherwise make it not so distracting.

There seem to be quite a few shortcuts to figure out. Are you planning a Webinar for us?

Thanks, Kenny, for this blog page and your responses.

July 2, 2009 at 1:11 pm
ancestry daig 

Ok, I’ve now tried it out for a day now and I now think it is WAY better than the old style. It does take a bit to get used to, as we were spoiled by the way it was set up. But I do notice more it is faster, and once you try it out for about a day you get used to the new set up and can see all the nice little tricks that have been put in to the new design. At first I myself was frustrated, but like anything else in life, change at first can be a bit difficult. I do appreciate all the time and effort that went in to making this possible. Must have been a tremendous challenge to redesign everything so it loads faster (which it does).
As far as the Media Gallery being in the way, I thought so too, at first, but when you work with it a bit you will understand exactly WHY it was put right there. This was VERY well thought out.
I especially like the way you can now see the siblings and parents, as you open up the small file. People will understand this as they use it. You can switch from one person to another much faster now too.
The one thing I would like to see done, that has been needed for the last 9 years, is a function in the tree, whereby you can “combine” doubles in the tree, instead of having to go back and delete the person you have 3,4, or 5 of. That way, the tree stays concise and organized, and you don’t have muliples of the same person cluttering up the tree.
Keep up the good work.

July 2, 2009 at 1:14 pm
Andy Hatchett 

Rina-

I agree 100%… with one exception.
I have *never* agreed with allowing the ability of saving individuals or families from other member trees. Such a feature invites misuse and bad genealogical practices and promotes junkology.

With that said, it appears to me that the entire functionality has been reduced by at least an order of magnitude.

What was readily accessible before one now must dig for.

All in all, too many clicks are needed to see what was once seen on one screen.

My overall grade-
Concept D-
Implementation F

July 2, 2009 at 1:19 pm
Karen 

Ditto to Rina’s comment dated July 2.
I think there should be a choice of whether someone wants to use the ‘old’ version or the updated version. Have both choices available, if possible.
I do NOT like the updated version at all and want to go back to old one. It’s too busy & the clarity has been lost.
I don’t like that the “note/additional info” line below
the place line for each fact/source is gone. I entered my main source on that line as a quick reference to where the info came from and now it’s all gone. It took a long time to enter all that info. How do I get that info back?
Bottom line – I do NOT like the new version at all.

July 2, 2009 at 1:20 pm
Lisa 

I like the media gallery right where it is, thanks.

But I am missing the # comments indicator that we had before. Nowhere on the persons page is there an indicator for the # of comments existing for the person. We have to click om the comments tab to see if there are any. Please put the indicator of the # of comments back on the person’s page.

July 2, 2009 at 1:49 pm
Kent 

Thank you for continuing to work on changes. While a committee is not known for artistic abilities there are many valid comments shared here. I hope the updates continue until “we mellow out.” :)

- I don’t think it would hurt to have both formats while you work it out.

- I would still like the Media center to be moved to where the birth – death dates are currently listed. This would provide more room for the Tileline listings. Time Line entries need to be condensed – they take out too much space.

- I can live with the changes but I think you need a better approach in making such changes. The end users (those that pay the salaries) need to feel empowered in the process. Currently few of us do.

July 2, 2009 at 2:10 pm
Ken 

Great design. Tell the technical team they are doing a great job.

July 2, 2009 at 2:20 pm
Joyce 

I’m having problem with census not adding all of the family member on to the tree. makes you have to return to the same tree, several times to get all the family on your tree.
When you first log on I don’t know which way to go need to have the list of people on the first page.

July 2, 2009 at 3:59 pm
Damaris K 

So agree – hate it. It is very disjointed – repeated information up the top of profile pages instead of showing the timeline data one sees two copies of the same photo. There appears to be no logic and money has been wasted without any benefit.

Instead of just clicking a button to ad a child you have to click twice – add relation and then add child.

The icons for relatives are far too big and viewing on a laptop causes problem.

Not happy

July 2, 2009 at 4:35 pm
Kenny Freestone 

Thanks for the comments and feedback. We’re listening and considering how to make this work great for everyone.

Rina (#1)–Great feedback. The way back to “Overview” after checking “Hints” is to click again on the overview tab (top left section of page). Others have mentioned this and we’re thinking through how to make this clearer. The feature to save individuals to separate trees is available in the “more options” section.

Valerie (#2)–The placement of the media gallery is something we’ve had hundreds of comments on. There are strong advocates for both above and below the timeline. Perhaps in the end the best resolution will be to offer a preference setting.

Andy (#5)–I’d love to hear more detailed examples of how the functionality has been reduced, and how more clicks are needed.

Lisa (#7)–We agree showing an indicator for comments is important.

Joyce (#10)–I don’t see this problem you describe. Feel free to email me more details if it still comes up. (kfreestone at tgn.com)

July 2, 2009 at 5:04 pm
Lorenzo Harris 

I still don’t understand why there is no data for the state of Virginia after 1930 and also my relatives that have died doing the 1900s I can’t find a death notice for the state of Virginia. Is this because they give you what they want?

July 2, 2009 at 6:03 pm
Jeff Ford 

Why does this comment section seem to float?

The new look doesn’t really bother me. I am more concerned with the content. The searches. Like when I search for someone that was born in, lived in and died in the United States and get results that include England. That your fault, Kenny.

1. I would like to add documents that tie into the timeline.

2. I would like a different way of adding audio. The current way is a joke. Designed by idiots.

July 2, 2009 at 8:46 pm
Sharon Frey 

First off, let me just say I have loved working on this site and up to this point have done so daily for about two years.

This new change has been a huge disappointment though, I think I will get a software program for my computer and just use the site for searches now. I like very little about the new look. I feel really angry that I recently upgraded my membership, and now I don’t like using the site.

I think it would have been best to have the option of which page to use; old or new. I would opt for the old design, even if it did take a bit longer.

I am baffled as to why it was drastically changed in the first place. It was a really great design and easy to navigate. There were a few issues, but nothing that warranted this dramatic change.

I do like one thing. You have added a source citation notice in the timeline that is easily visible with out selecting the heading and going into another window when a source is added by me and not by ancestry. i.e: If I find a marriage notice in a genealogy book or newspaper etc. I can add the citation and see the reference to it just like the other records.

1. I agree with Rina, I don’t like the media gallery in the way. I liked it below the timeline.

2. The fonts are harder to read. And the colors are too much the same. Family members are hard to distinguish. The old colors/fonts were better on the eyes, and made it easier to read.

3. When I collapse the page (reduce its size, so I can have two windows open at once) The “Edit this person” tab disappears. Also much of the other writing merges and is illegible. This is hugely important for me to be able to do.

I always have at least two windows open and visible on my computer when working on this site. Left window: person’s profile page. Right window: search for records page.

4. When I want to add something to the time line, now I must scroll to the bottom of the page to select “Add a fact.”

5. Fonts again: Names and dates are hard to read.

6. You still don’t allow enough space to add information in the timeline under “description.” This has been one of my chief complaints about the site. Rather than copy stories to my person that others have written, I would rather add the information I find to their timeline. Usually in the middle of what I am writing I am unable to add any more due to the size limit you have imposed. It would be great if you removed the size restriction, and only showed the first 4 lines on the page unless you opened the event up. That way you could see most of the event, but it would not take up too much of the page.

7. I liked the old page heading showing a larger photo; Bolder name; Birth and Death etc were right next to the photo with the little box to the right with the events; Photos; Stories: Records. The colors/fonts/icons made this area of the page easy to glance at and read.

8. You were not ready to make this change. You should have tested it on volunteers first, and fixed all of the problems first, then give people the option to change.

I rate the new design: -F

I was once your biggest fan.

July 2, 2009 at 8:49 pm
Jeff Ford 

>Valerie (#2)–The placement of the media gallery is something we’ve had hundreds of comments on. There are strong advocates for both above and below the timeline. Perhaps in the end the best resolution will be to offer a preference setting.

I second the option for a preference setting for the media gallery.

July 2, 2009 at 8:50 pm
Sharon Frey 

One thing I forgot to add. It is very apparent this new page was not designed by genealogists and by people who will be using the page to work. I suggest you hire a few, and get their input. Meanwhile, let us use the old page until you work through these issues. Better yet, let us use the old page as an option if we like, permanently.

July 2, 2009 at 8:59 pm
Claire 

Generally I like the new look. Most of all I applaud your hard work and effort to improve the site…not mater what.

However, I do agree with others about the fonts. Not all of us are 20. I also think there was greater visual difference between the parent and spouse/children area before. It is visually confusing now, though functions better in other ways. Having the parent’s information so far down the page makes it harder to use/see. Usually I want to be able to see the person I am working on and their parents in one glance. The big profile box could have been smaller as it was and the parents moved up. Also having the birth/death information on the person so far to the right is awkward. But again generally it is more pleasing to look at.. design wise.

My biggest problem is still the searches..the main reason for using the site. As mentioned above, too often the results are way off. Also there if no way to SORT results at all. The exact option works to limit results, but due to so many surname spelling errors, often blocks the very result I need. Simply being able to sort results, by user set options, would be a fantastic time saver.

Thanks for all you work and for listening.

July 2, 2009 at 9:24 pm
Claire 

PS..sorry for my typos..hit the send too soon :)

July 2, 2009 at 9:26 pm
Sharon Frey 

My eyes hurt after trying to read the tiny print with too little contrast. I miss the bold black fonts and white back ground on my timeline. The month and day in my timeline is nearly impossible to read comfortably. The overall fonts (size, color, selection) are a huge downgrade.

I don’t like the profile person’s birth/death far to the right. Or the parents below. I liked being able to see the parents on the right of the profile person, now I need to TRY TO distinguish parents from spouse/children.

“Edit this person” is completely lost when I reduce the size of the page so I can open two windows. It slides behind the “Member Connect” tab. And why did we loose the “Edit profile” tab below the photo? This was a great convenience.

I really really really want my old profile pages back. Because I rarely re-boot my computer, and because when you made this change I had several windows open, I still have one window open from the old look. As I look at the new and the old side by side I just don’t get it. Why have you done this? What is the up side?

I agree with other users who recommend improving the search results. This is the only area on ancestry that is not functioning well.

Search suggestion: When I want to search for a marriage reference in a book, I really need to dig to find the reference. I don’t want newspapers, member stories etc. to come up when I want to search for books only. When I want something in a newspaper, I don’t want member stories, etc. to show up. Just newspapers. Also when I finely find what I am looking for I want to be able to save it to some one in my tree, NOT TO MY SHOE BOX. And I want to select where in my timeline it should go.
For example, this is what should happen when I find a record/source from a newspaper or book:
1. I find a record.
2. I select the person in my tree it should go to.
3. A window opens up very much like the “Add another source” window.
4. I add the source information.
5. Done. It shows up in my timeline as a sourced event.

Another thing. Why did you remove the “Add a life event” tab at the top of the timeline? You not only changed its location to a more inconvenient place (below the time-line), but you changed the name to “Add a fact.” The location and name are very confusing and inconvenient.

So many of the changes were unnecessary and have made the page more difficult to navigate.

PLEASE LET ME HAVE THE OLD PAGES BACK!!!!!!

July 2, 2009 at 11:05 pm
Sharon Frey 

I would rather see a small leaf when a hint is available to someone than the box detailing all the hint info. I suspect this is why the birth and death dates are so far to the right of the page and also why the parents have been moved below the profile person instead of to the right.

I would also rather see all of the tabs moved back to above the profile person: Overview; Facts & Sources; Media Gallery: Comments; Hints (why is this tab even on the page? A leaf would be better where it was before); Member Connect (this should be off to the side or somewhere else as it is rarely used).

“Edit this person” should be below the photo of the profile person. And should just say “Edit person” to save space.

You should move the tab for adding info to the timeline back where it was. The new location just adds time and is confusing.

Again, please let me have my old design back. This is horrible. What was once a pleasure is now a frustrating, eye straining hassle.

July 3, 2009 at 12:33 am
Andy Hatchett 

Kenny,

The most obvious example is going to my home page and choosing to view one of my trees. I get a pedigree view that I have to then hover my mouse over the person- (if that is the person I want to see the profile of and then click view profile)-or go the the list of names, find the person, and then hover the mouse on the name of the person, then hover the mouse over the little head icon and then click view profile.

If I have a long time line and I want to add an event to it I either have to scroll to the bottom of the page and click there or click the fact and sources tab then click the add fact button.

If I want to add a spouse or child I have to click add relative and then choose what type of relative.

Unless I’m missing something somewhere, each of thses of these things take more clicks and/or scrolling that the old profile pages did.

July 3, 2009 at 1:01 am
cris 

Hate it. You should have had an opt out. The page is too busy with junk that has noting to do with my family tree. Far too many redundant tabs, confusing to look at, media gallery at the top is annoying and distracting, hate that baby poop green and the whole horrid color scheme. There are 12 tabs right in the middle of my tree under the profiled person. This tree is about my family not tabs. Why do I need a media gallery tab when the media gallery is right there in my face? Show immediate family, I’m already looking at them. Facts and Sources, come on, it’s on the page I’m staring at. Member connect, publish and print, already at the top of the page. Find famous relatives??? Get this idiotic junk off of my tree. Ancestry is being intrusive with all of this superflous garbage cluttering up our trees. There is no reason to put all of your crap in the middle of the tree taking the focus away from the people these trees are really about. What don’t you get about these trees being about us and our families? You are completely missing the point of genealogy and why we spend so much time working on these trees. We don’t want you barging in and rearranging everything all the time.
There is no way to know if you have left a comment, you took away the very important indicator, more clicking. After you leave a comment it does not revert back to the person and there is no way to return to the person, more clicking.
I couldn’t find the edit this person tab, it’s all the way over to the right on top of the other family members, more scrolling.
You made the profiled person’s box smaller, you can’t distinguish him from the rest of the junk on the page.
You need a mangifying glass to see the thumbnail photos. The main photo for the profiled person is showing up cropped, seriously cropped, like in half. I’m too aggravated by all the garbage you clutterd my tree with to even use my tree at this point. I’m copying all my documents and preparing to leave before my membership expires.
I pay a lot of money for this site, my tree and homepage should be in my control to do with as I please. There is no way you can appeal to everyone’s tastes and meet every level of intelligence and experience. The most logical thing to do is let us control
and arrange our own tree and homepage. Stop being such intrusive control freaks.

July 3, 2009 at 2:16 am
NE 

I still dislike the new design immensely.

What was once a simple, uncluttered view is now a nightmare to navigate.

Invitees to view the tree have commented on how difficult it is to navigate. Why do you assume that everyone knows how to navigate internet pages such as this?

You have now alienated older persons, those that have a wealth of family information to offer – the keepers of our family history – because it’s too diffucult to figure out how to navigate the tree!

In effect, you have made our own research more difficult because these older persons have given up on navigating the trees.

This is a setback regarding research and family communication. Those that might have contributed online have backed off and must communicate through E-mail now so that new data can be added – making the Tree owner work three times as hard to add new data.

I see no benefit whatsoever from the redesign. Way too many clicks needed to view what was once easily seen from the individuals personal view.

sigh….

July 3, 2009 at 3:33 am
NE 

As many have previously requested, PLEASE give us an opt-out for this nightmare of a re-design.

Simple, uncluttered pages once gave all viewing Trees easy navigation throughout the pages.

The nightmare that you have created by adding unnecessary tabs to find information is horrendous.

The first thing to come up should be an individual view, clear in context. Get rid of the Media Gallery boxes. The persons name and timeline should be front and center, so to say – nothing else cluttering the page between their name and the timeline.

July 3, 2009 at 4:04 am
Patrick 

First, a question…how do I “invite” other family members to view/edit my tree? I simply can’t find it.

Second, a comment…my concern over the accuracy of posted trees as “hints” remains. It seems that many people just want to fill in the blanks on their tree. So, rather than doing their own research, they simply “cut and paste” another person’s tree . So, mis-information gets magnified.

However, some folks have done good research and posted useful, verifiable data to their tree. My solution? If a tree is listed as a “hint”, denote whether that tree has any documentation or genuine sources attached to it.

Back to my question…Kenny, can you or anyone else tell me how to find / manage my list of “invitees” ?

thanks very much.

July 3, 2009 at 7:34 am
Nancy 

Hi Patrick,

To manage your list of invitees, you can click “View Family Tree” (right under your person’s picture); then “Tree Settings (all the way to the right, just above the green line); then “Sharing” (on the green line).

There may be a way with fewer clicks, but that’s what I’ve found so far.

July 3, 2009 at 7:49 am
Nancy 

By the way, I agree that having a way to see if a Tree is sourced would be a huge improvement.

I still would like to see separate colored leaves to tell if the hint is a record or a tree (of course, this might add to the clutter, but I think this is important to know in a hint, because as so many have said, many/most trees are not sourced).

I also think it would be helpful if it were possible to “lock” the person’s basic information box on the page (like you can do with a spreadsheet) so that that information is always available as we view the timeline, parents, children, etc.

July 3, 2009 at 7:53 am
Mary Beth Marchant 

Hate it. Too much clicking-too much having to scroll to find things-double clicking to add a child. Too busy. Too much bling. I have opted out of even adding anything more on my 5 trees. Will just concentrate on my OLD FTM version 16 and upload to rootsweb. Sorry to lose the adding pictures format but I have to cut out something.

July 3, 2009 at 8:40 am
Jade 

Kenny,

In your #12 you asked Andy “how the functionality has been reduced, and how more clicks are needed.”

Andy’s reply # touched on a couple of points. Here are more:

–Want to know how many comments there are? (used to be in handy data box at top right of person name/vitals area)? CLICK on tab.

–Want to see comments? (used to be right on person overview page) CLICK on tab.

–Want to add comment? CLICK on tab, to get to what would be done directly on former person overview page.

–Want to see summaries of Stories? CLICK on ‘Media Gallery’ tab, wait for frame to load with thumbnails, CLICK on ‘stories’ link. That’s just to look at them. Or CLICK on ‘View Media Gallery’ link on the media gallery frame, which gives you the same view as clicking on the ‘Media Gallery’ tab. What silly redundancy.

–Want to see more than a couple of the photo thumbnails? CLICK on scrolling arrow or CLICK on either link to view gallery. Oh, there’s no way to set what order the thumbnails are displayed in, and Stories share the space with photos and other Media icons. Old View had an immediate view of thumbnails/icons for **each** type right there on on the person overview page.

–Want to add a photo? Takes 2 or 3 CLICKS by 3 different possible routes to get to the upload page. Old view took just one click to get to upload page.

–Want to add a child? By some routes from the person Overview page it now takes extra CLICKs to select each parent.

You have improved the New View from original rollout in restoring Timeline to left-center, and restoring the (Western culturally biased) gender icons and colors. But some other things have gone wonky, such as location of links to sources for Timeline events (in Firefox browser) that were correctly placed in the original rollout.

You have not eliminated the confusing redundancy. The pages do not load any faster. Even if for some the person overview page does load a little more quickly, that is far outweighed by the additional steps necessary for the tiniest basic thing (like finding out if there are any comments, how many, and viewing them).

Lack of functionality? Now since the Comments are disassociated with the Overview page (where one could see vitals, parents/dates, children/dates, photo thumbnails, story summaries) it is not possible to make a Comment while viewing what the comment may be about. If participants in a Tree use Comments for info exchange on these points, you have put up a substantial barrier for this interchange.

Instead, you now plan in the guise of “Member connect” to notify everyone when someone adds a 1910 US census enumeration link, concerning a 5th cousin 2x removed, to their shoebox. Jeez, what a bonus that will be. Do cease and desist from marketing this marvel as helping with “research on your ancestors”.

July 3, 2009 at 9:01 am
Patrick 

Nancy…

Thanks for your help. I like your suggestions.

July 3, 2009 at 9:10 am
Rina 

Hi Andy,
Just to clarify regarding the facility to save individuals to separate trees: I meant my own trees – if they overlap. I never, ever save information from other people’s trees – enjoy doing my own research too much :-)
Thanks Kenny for clarifying that the facility still exists.

Agree wholeheartedly with the suggestion that we can individually select which version to work with – old or new. Would ensure greater user satisfaction.

I normally use ancestry everyday and now no longer look forward to logging on and working with my trees. I’m afraid it isn’t improving with use – just becoming more annoying.

Am not against change per se, but as Sharon suggested, there appears to have been little or no input from genealogists in formulating the new design.

July 3, 2009 at 9:21 am
Nancy 

Is there a way to add the same source (with the same detail information) for more than one life event at a time?

P.S. You’re welcome, Patrick!

July 3, 2009 at 9:26 am
jean 

ANCESTRY STRIKES AGAIN

re #1 and others

what did any of you expect right from the word go of ancestry launching AMT they have refused to listen to us and just continue to plough ahead with the bells and whistle ridden monstrosity that they deem as progress. its the biggest waste of ancestry resorces on the whole site (exept for the ONE WORLD TREE DISARSTER) paying the clowns in the relevent deptment is helping to keep our subscriptions at a high. they did not learn with the one world tree and they wont learn now.
ever since the AMT was introduced we have been saying WE DONT LIKE IT but have they listened nope they aint bothered about there clints opinions as long as they can make money from us and the advertisers they will continuee to add bells and whistles and tweek it here and there and disregard our pleas for such simple tweeks as alowing us to have our notes shown after all we wrote them to be seen but thats ancestry for you. they hope they will be able tojust put our heads in the sand and we will accept our fate.

in plain words

ANCESTRY ARE NOT GOING TO LISTEN TOO US THEIR CLIANTS REGARDLESS ON OUR GIVING THEM FEED BACK

YES ANCESTRY WILL KEEP MESSING THINGS UP UNTIL ONE DAY THEY RELISE THAT THEY HAVE MADE ANOVER MISTAKE

lets see so far the mistakes are

ONE WORLD TREE (the bigest to date)
ALOWING AMALGUMATING TREES BY THE HINTS SYSTEM
AMT replacing the popular online tree
NEW SEARCH =how to waste your time in sevral clicks and get nowhere fast!
ADVERTISEMENTS ON SITE

WHATS GOING TO BE THE NEXT ONE! ONE THING IS FOR SURE THEY WILL GO AHEAD NO MATTER WHAT FEED BACK WE GIVE THEM

July 3, 2009 at 10:43 am
Rina 

Is it me, or has anyone else noticed that recent updates to family trees don’t appear to have survived the transition from old version to new?

In the last few days I added several items of info from the 1911 (British) census which have apparently disappeared.

Am I going mad?

July 3, 2009 at 2:00 pm
Marshall 

Does anyone really care how their tree looks on ancestry.com. Does anyone at ancestry care that we want our subscription dues to go to records that will help us with our research??

July 3, 2009 at 4:03 pm
Thelma Wade 

looking to see when marriage took place between Thelma Wade and Arthur O. Bonner in Nevada.

July 3, 2009 at 4:33 pm
mike 

thanks for the imformative article

July 3, 2009 at 4:44 pm
ellen 

Simply awful!!!!! I’ve just spent 20 minutes finding what used to take me 5 seconds.

July 3, 2009 at 5:00 pm
Jody 

This is the equivalent of replacing XP with Vista. What was a well designed highly friendly format is now a time consuming visually distracting puzzle.

Anybody got a recommendation where to migrate with my tree?

July 3, 2009 at 5:51 pm
Dennis Bray 

It seems like now I have multiple “events” and sources that are identical, listed 2 or 3 times.

Also have one family group where a great-g-g-grandmother had 3 husbands and children with all of them. The children show up under all the husbands. When I call up the details they are listed with the correct father. And when I delete them under the correct father the children are deleted from BOTH the correct father and the incorrect one.

Think someone has some data pointers messed up in the transition to the new trees.

July 3, 2009 at 5:53 pm
Annette Desautels 

My family tree makes has suddenly added a lot of spouseless relationships to a lot of my people. I can’t figure out how to remove them. Any ideas. I’m desperate!!! It seems random and I have over 5000 people in my file. I need HELP!!!!!!

July 3, 2009 at 6:35 pm
Ellie 

Can’t find how to download tree. Since it didn’t carry over to my computer correctly after the upgrade, I need to re-download and can’t find the proper place/link to do so.
Not too sure if I like it or not, it is just creating problems for me
HELP

July 3, 2009 at 10:18 pm
Nancy 

Hi Ellie,

If you want to upload the tree from your computer to Ancestry, just go to “Family Trees” on the toolbar right under ancestry.com’s logo, to the left just right of the “Home” tab. If you hold your mouse/cursor over the “Family Trees” tab, a drop-down menu will show, and “Upload a GEDCOM” will be the very bottom choice. Click on that and you will get the screen to upload your tree.

If you actually click on the “Family Trees” tab, it will take you to the screen where you manage your trees. At the bottom (underneath all of your trees) are choices to “Create a new tree” or “Upload a GEDCOM file.”

Hope that helps.

July 3, 2009 at 10:30 pm
Kenny Freestone 

Again let me thank you for your feedback and your constructive criticism. Your feedback, as well as the 6,200 messages we’ve received so far from the online feedback tool, will absolutely influence our direction.

We recognize that a change such as this one is exceptionally difficult for many members. We will continue to listen and to refine the new family tree look so as to ease this transition.

We’re very happy to receive your constructive and detailed feedback. We are considering your suggestions carefully and want to make this new experience work for everyone. We plan to methodically review the feedback we receive and while not rushing to making knee-jerk changes, be as quick as we can to improve the product.

“Fonts”–this is a tricky are–many members say they love it, others really don’t like the change. One thing we agree on is the fonts need to be large, high contrast, and easy to read.

“Add a Fact”–Sharon your points are well taken. We agree we should move this back up and will consider reverting the the former name.

“Comments”–We agree that we need to show the number of comments without having to click to see this.

“Description text on timeline”–we agree, and think that more text is important–also the ability to add an image (such as a certificate or photo) would be very helpful.

“Larger photo”–we have heard this quite a bit and are exploring options.

“Spouse/child not different enough”–Yes, we’ll work on this.

“Birth & Death info on right side”–we have heard this quite a bit and are exploring options.

“Hints tab”–Sharon had asked why we added the hints tab. One reason is so that you can access hints you have ignored or previously accepted. Another is to view the hints quicker, without a major page reload.

“Click, click, scroll, scroll”–I appreciate Andy’s giving detailed examples (also Jade). We hear you and will think through options.

“Invite”–Patrick, next to your family tree’s name in the top left section of the screen you’ll see a triangle. Clicking that triangle gives you quick access to inviting family, as well as other options for your family tree.

Rina (#35)–We haven’t heard others mention this, but if this is the case we’d like to investigate. Please feel free to email me details (kfreestone at tgn.com)

Annette (#42)–Perhaps it appears this way because you have multiple duplicates in your family tree? You can call our member services team at 1 800 ANCESTRY for help.

Ellie (#43)–To download your family tree from Ancestry.com, go your your family tree and select “Tree settings” in the top right section of page. You’ll see a button to “Export tree”. After the tree is exported, you’ll see a link to download the exported file (which will be in GEDCOM format).

July 3, 2009 at 10:42 pm
Ellie 

Hi Nancy,

Thanks for the response, but I need to download from Ancestry.com to my Family Tree Maker. I don’t know what happened but I lost about 300 entries during the change over so I need to redownload from ancestry.

July 3, 2009 at 11:19 pm
Nancy 

OH, dear, I thought you had a complete tree on your FTM and were going to load it back up. Well, Kenny told you how to download it.

Good luck repairing your tree.

July 4, 2009 at 12:23 am
NE 

You failed to adddress the fact that what most people here are complaining about is:

1)the ease of navigation
2)the desire for a return to a simple layout for each person’s individual page and links to their family members
3)making the format user-friendly for elderly folks that are not Internet-savy.

No. 3 is a very serious concern. If we lose the elders of our family because the new layouts are too much for them to handle, we may lose them altogether as contributors.

Ancestry should care about our contributors. They are the links to our past, and those memories are lost when they pass on.

July 4, 2009 at 2:30 am
John Hirschmann 

My big issue right now (other than trying to figure out how to navigate again efficiently) is I am loading lots of pictures from a family reunion going on this weekend and pictures abe being cropped terribly by your software.

Also (see #45) that fact you acknowledge you are still sorting through so many issues and deciding how to make it better tells me you had much too short a beta testing/comment period.

I don’t think I find this page nearly as intuitive to use as when I first starting using the prior version a couple of years ago — perhaps too many options are making the most important options less obvious than they ahould be. I say this as well about the 2007 version of all the Microsoft sofware — you need to find a better way to serve the advanced user while still keeping it KISS for the rest (and probably majority) of your users.

July 4, 2009 at 4:20 am
bromaelor 

I can live with it but a couple of small points.
(1) When looking at a person’s profile why does “Media Gallery” appear first? “Timeline” is far more important and should be in the prime position.
(2) In “Family Members” the indent for “Children” needs to be bigger. Currently the children are almost in line with “Spouse”.
(3) There is too much duplication causing screen-clutter. Why do we need the “Ancestral Hints” link below the person’s name when we have a tab for it two cm below? Similarly “Media Gallery”?

July 4, 2009 at 5:02 am
esnolen 

I agree totally. Someone is trying to justify their job.

July 4, 2009 at 6:54 am
Norm Cass 

Do not like any part of it at all.
There is no way that it helps. If anything it confuses everything.

July 4, 2009 at 8:36 am
cris 

This photo cropping is a big issue. I’ve got photos cut in half completely ruining the photos.
This new design really amounts to Ancestry vandalizing our trees. Also stop trying to BS us with it makes things faster, we’re smarter than that.
The focus of the tree should be the family not Ancestry’s tabs. The tree page is a mess of cluttered print that all looks the same. You cannot tell the difference between the tabs and the people. You’ve got at least 15 tabs that are redundant.
Pitiful you felt the need to tinker with this, disastrous results.

July 4, 2009 at 9:37 am
dolores frank 

HI just loged on as I have not been active for a few months and am confused as how to just get information on family members that others are posting just got it by accdent and have not been able to get back.
thanks Dolores

July 4, 2009 at 12:39 pm
Jo 

Appearance and function were both changed making this transition upsetting to some of us.

It is very difficult to remember where everything is now and how to do what you want to do and get where you want to go. That said, the more I use it, the more I like it, and once I start remembering how to do certain things, it is quicker to navigate and I like some of the new functionality.

I’m getting used to the media gallery being at the top, although I would still like the option to move it below the timeline. I especially like being able to add siblings when the parents are unknown, and I love the Facts & Sources page — it’s much easier to manage my sources now. It’s helpful being able to see hints I’ve ignored, too.

I do think some tweaking is still needed in the appearance and I appreciate the responses mentioning what items are being looked at to be tweaked.

It seems ridiculous to expect us to go bumbling about figuring it out on our own, though. Better communication about how everything works now and what new features have been added would be a good idea since it’s not intuitive like the old design was.

Prompt responses to all questions & problems, especially on the message boards but here as well, would go a long way to cut down on member frustration and make the transition easier. It would also result in less hard feelings towards Ancestry and more acceptance of the new design.

Jo

July 4, 2009 at 12:44 pm
rbrewer25 

Out of the, supposedly, 6,200 comments made on this new program, what is the percentage of people who are for it? I am very familiar with computers and databases but this new program does not aid research in a timely manner.

Also, I posted a response yesterday and haven’t seen it.

Since being a Ancestry member since 2003, this is the first new program that is not user friendly; therefore, I am not adding to my family trees because of the time consuming manner with click, click, click.

July 4, 2009 at 1:25 pm
Kenny Freestone 

NE (#48)–The three issues you mention are certainly top of mind for us.

John (#49) and Cris (#53)–The cropping we have done is only part of the photo display–the photos themselves are unchanged. We are reviewing our use of the cropped display and plan to restore photos to their uncropped state. As for our beta/comment period being too short, I am inclined to agree with you. We offered this new look for four weeks while we gathered comments and made changes. If we do a similar change in the future we’ll plan for a longer window.

Bromaelor (#50)–We moved “Media Gallery” above timeline in response to feedback from members. The issue however clearly has advocates on both sides and likely will only be resolved by a user preference setting, which we are considering. We are reviewing the design of the family members section in order to make the distinction much stronger between spouse and children.

Jo #54)–I’m happy to hear that with time it becomes more usable for you. Thanks for your suggestions on improved communication.

July 4, 2009 at 1:46 pm
Mary Hardin 

The example of the page on the “learn about it” does not match what I see on my tree. I would like the sources to be parallel to the timeline so I can see where I looked for certain information, i.e. birth and across from that the source.

Thanks

July 4, 2009 at 2:08 pm
Becky 

Where is the link back to the old ancestry?

July 4, 2009 at 2:41 pm
Sharon Frey 

There is no way back. This is the new “improved” look.

I want my money back. :(

PLEASE REVERT BACK TO THE OLD LOOK FOR THE MAJORITY OF USERS WHO PREFER IT THAT WAY?

July 4, 2009 at 8:23 pm
Patricia OHara 

Havew worked this new version for two days now and am finding it difficult when I am adding hints to get back to the person I was adding the hint to. The program keeps sending me back to the person I originally started with on that day. It is very discouraging to have to retrace your steps to get back to the person you were adding hints t. Maybe this problem can be worked out, I hope so. Thanks for listening. Patricia OHara

July 4, 2009 at 9:33 pm
Carole 

All of you people who are complaining about the “new” look of the “new” Ancestry Member Tree, please take this into consideration:

Over a year ago March Ancestry took a user and viewer-friendly Ancesty World Tree program and eliminated it. This tree was easy to use, notes were visible and invaluable to all researchers. It was a free program available on ancestry.com users and people had the ability to print out information easily, view pedigrees without clicking four times and there was the option of viewing the family summary page, downloading the gedcom of the tree you were viewing, viewing a descendancy chart or the ahnentafel chart. No gimmicks or graphics were involved in this and it was a serious program for serious researchers. People screamed bloody murder and Ancestry DID NOT LISTEN. These trees can now be accessed only through Rootsweb, and they are there because people are using their own genealogy programs at home, exporting their gedcom files and uploading them at Rootweb.

In the place of the original Ancestry World Tree, Ancestry.com forced upon their subscribers without limitation their new Ancestry Member Trees with the little flashing green leaves and the ability to “merge” information from one tree to another. This tactic was to draw in new subscribers, make more money, and give amateur family tree researchers the satisfaction of thinking they had discovered their entire family back to William the Conquerer.

Ancestry’s new member tree is now only available to PAID ancestry subscribers and their invitees, while the original Ancestry World trees, or what is left of them, are still free on Rootsweb.

Many of you don’t realize what you missed.

Now you are complaining because ancestry has again changed the abomination they call a family tree and you don’t like the change.

What they are doing now is formatting the New “New Ancestry Member Tree” to mimic their Family Tree Maker program layout, but still giving the user the option to take other people’s information, pictures, stories and documents.

I have removed my original tree from Ancestry and use a home program now. I no longer share my information or my notes, some of which are invaluable to researchers or my own family. I dig through archives and transcribe original documents and upload them to my tree, but they are now my private information, especially since Ancestry has elminted the notes area in their New New new member trees.

I still use Ancestry for research, but less and less all the time. No matter now many new documents they upload, the new search engine has effected research and even using the old search information no longer helps. I can put in a name in the old search format and it will bring up several areas where my name may be. If I go back and put the same name in again, the old search brings up “no records found.” The new search brings up thousands of worthless pieces of information.

So, that’s my two cents, for what’s it worth.

Rootsmagic is an excellant program that is connected with the LDS FamilySearch.org website. I highly recommend using this program for those who would like to avoid the click click click, change page, click click. It is user friendly, viewer friendly, and provides all the utilities the original Ancestry World Tree used to provide.

July 4, 2009 at 9:54 pm
John Hirschmann 

Kenny (#56) I am glad you are revisiting the picture cropping issue. I realize the actual pictures are uncropped, but I still strongly urge to stop cropping for any display. The cropped pictures are the first and frequently only view of a person who is an invited visitor to the page may see. Visitors you invite will have a terrible impression of your work if people you cropped below the neck appear with the cropping going through the middle of somebody’s chin.

Separately when you are under View Profile, is it possible to split Facts and Sources into two buttons so I do not have to go through two steps to add source information.

July 4, 2009 at 9:57 pm
Ethel 

I am getting use to new but I notice it did not have “Find Famous Relatives Tab”. I really like the old ones. Could you please add “Find Famous Relatives Tab”. In fact, I had about 35 famous relatives that what my father told me.

July 4, 2009 at 10:15 pm
Nancy 

Hi Ethel,

I knew I had seen the “Find Famous Relatives,” but it took me a while to find it again. It’s a drop-down menu on the bar to the right of “Add A Note” == “More Options”

The drop down has “Create Military Page,” “Find Famous Relatives,” and “Save Person To Another Tree.”

July 4, 2009 at 10:45 pm
Andy Hatchett 

Kenny- Re your #45…You said

[QUOTE]
“Fonts”–this is a tricky are–many members say they love it, others really don’t like the change. One thing we agree on is the fonts need to be large, high contrast, and easy to read.

“Add a Fact”–Sharon your points are well taken. We agree we should move this back up and will consider reverting the the former name.

“Comments”–We agree that we need to show the number of comments without having to click to see this.

“Description text on timeline”–we agree, and think that more text is important–also the ability to add an image (such as a certificate or photo) would be very helpful.

“Larger photo”–we have heard this quite a bit and are exploring options.

“Spouse/child not different enough”–Yes, we’ll work on this.

“Birth & Death info on right side”–we have heard this quite a bit and are exploring options.
[UNQUOTE]

My question is this:

Were none of these complaints voiced by internal staff before Ancestry saw fit to unleash this monster?

If they were not then you need to seriously look at your internal operation for this type of thing.

If they were then you need to give greater consideration to the opinions of those staff members who voiced such concerns as they obviously know what they are talking about rather than those who over-road their objections.

All in all it seems you need much more development time in-house before releasing any type of public beta- and I’m not sure that the present release even rises to the level of a beta release considering teh botch up job about the photo cropping- *THAT* should have been caught very early on.

July 4, 2009 at 11:54 pm
PW 

I agree with all these negative coments.

I have used the feedback link several times, but obviously no one at Ancestry is listening.

This new design is a cluttered mess.

We should have the option to opt out of this new design, as we had with the search facility – though after reading the comment that the old search now does not work properly, for me there is not much left at Ancestry that is of any use.

In the Uk we have a saying = “If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix It”

What is your response to that Kenny???

July 5, 2009 at 2:35 am
misty martin 

i can’t respect, and refuse to pay for free public information, rather, the convenience of easier access to website who exploits peoples heritage, and need to be with thier families who still may be alive. furthermore, i do not prefer to associate myself with anything this evil and desparate to feed off the emotions of people to earn a living by. i will pray for your souls and hope you never find yourself alone, trying to find the last remaning family that shares your only blood ties. you should offer a no charge one time free search of relatives

July 5, 2009 at 5:50 am
Nancy 

Type your comment here.

July 5, 2009 at 6:08 am
Isobel Russell 

I have very little time to do my research these days,with working long hours,and these changes are taking too long to get used to.I hate them and would like the old pages back.It is making me question whether I will renew my membership and remove my trees from Ancestry.Why mess with a winning format

July 5, 2009 at 6:47 am
Patrick 

I tend to agree with many of Carole’s (#61) comments. It’s taken a bit of time to get familiar with the new format, but not a big deal.

However, I really can’t find any major benefits in the new format–at least for me. Maybe much of this is due to personal preferences.

My major complaint/concern remains the accuracy of posted information. In her post, Carole refers to “amateur” genealogists who simply want to trace their lineage back to William the Conquerer. Well, I’m an amateur, but I take my research pretty seriously. I look for primary and secondary sources and add them to my tree. If some piece if information looks questionable, I try to note that. As a result, my tree grows VERY slowly. I never simply take another person’s tree (or portion) and graft it to mine. But, that’s what’s going on here at Ancestry.

As a result, much of the “data” in posted trees is utterly worthless.
Kenny, Irealize that Ancestry is not the genealogy police, but I urge Ancestry to help those of us who are serious about our research to more easily plow through the growing mass of erroneous information on the site.

thanks for reading…

July 5, 2009 at 7:18 am
Virginia Daley 

I have been a member for years and research several hours a day. Your new site takes longer to load and is messy and not bright and easy to read. I like to search fast and read fast. Going to the larger print and “spread out” facts slows down the research process. Colors instead of black and white are not easier on the eye and of course take longer to read. You may be setting up for new customers who play around with genealogy but for researchers who are busy and want to research fast, YOU HAVE SLOWED US DOWN.

July 5, 2009 at 8:32 am
Jann 

I am getting comfortable with the new program and only have one problem. I mistakenly uploaded a photo that I had not rotated. I deleted the photo and added a correct one. The initial upload still shows on the profile, but cannot be brought up in the media gallery. Where is it?? Ha

Jan

July 5, 2009 at 9:56 am
mary hardin 

The ancestry hints and other information that are persistent beside the person’s name should be moved down to the matrix area. I do not always want to look at this when working with one of my descendants.

I can appreciate the positive comments that are on the blog, but I am sorry some of them seem somewhat contrived. No matter the cons or pros, we are all working toward a good product.

July 5, 2009 at 12:00 pm
cris 

Why don’t you alleviate this incredible disaster and return to the old tree design so you can focus on fixing your search engine? Just admit you made a mistake and dump the whole thing. There are no benefits for the user in this new tree design. What’s the point of redesigning something if it does not benefit the people who use it?
The content of the site and being able to search the content with an optimized search engine is the number one priority for all of us. Ancestry has the content but it is a maddening,frustrating and time consuming experience trying to find that content. I look through 10 pages of search results and am unable to find the manifest on Ancestry I need. Go to Steve Morse One Step Gold Form search engine and the Elis manifest I need immediately appears in the returned search results. Why should I have to go to Steve Morse to find the date and name of the ship so I can then go back to Ancestry to perform a manual search using the date and name of ship? Same situation with the census. I have to use Steve Morse to search the census records by EUD to find the census I need on Ancestry. This is a chronic problem on the Ancestry site. What is Ancestry doing about it? They’re redesigning our trees. Did we want our trees redesigned? No, but Ancestry did it anyway. Why? Because it serves Ancestry’s organizational needs rather than meeting the needs of the users.
Now that Ancestry has vandalized our family trees and photos with their new redesign I’m going to remove all of my trees from the site. Why? I can’t trust Ancestry and they create more problems for me than they solve. Now all that remains for me as a paying subscriber is the content and being able to efficiently search it. Ancestry has the content I need for my genealogy research but I cannot find the content with their search engine. I hear that Ancestry is going to make the new search permanent and get rid of the old search. We all know that the new search is completely useles. The purpose of Ancestry is to solve it’s user’s problems not create more of them. Please tell me how Ancestry is solving it’s user’s problems? All I have seen while being a paying subscriber is Ancestry carrying out it’s own agenda with no benefit in it for the paying member. I know I’m not alone in this viewpoint, it is a frequent topic of conversation among genealogists.

July 5, 2009 at 2:03 pm
Melissa 

When I first saw the new design, I was a little taken aback, but perhaps because I am very familiar with the internet, I don’t feel as violently opposed.

If you don’t like the font, you can change the size of it yourself with most browsers.

I hate when people just take the family tree and merge it into theirs. I found someone had merged one of my trees with theirs and had done nothing to change conflicting information. (Indeed, they had merged it with two people who were not the same person with the same name). They simply didn’t care because some lines had been filled in.

I enjoy Ancestry. I find it pricey sometimes and occasionally cancel my membership for months at time until I can put together the money. However, I like a lot about the new design. I dislike a lot of it, too. I hate that the Media Gallery is above the timeline, but I can imagine that some people like it.

As for the search engine, I guess people aren’t as patient as I am. I don’t mind going through a few results because I find it I play with the exact matches and advanced search forms, I find exactly what I’m looking for it — if it’s there to be found.

I think this is more a case of people who just hate change and think Ancestry should stay static — a very close-minded point of view.

July 5, 2009 at 4:31 pm
robert sorensen 

why can’t we use the five generation printer friendly site anymore. It was quick and easy.

July 5, 2009 at 4:34 pm
John Easterly 

I’am 79 years and have been using the computer for many years. And was thrilled when Ancestry started their program on the web. I was so used to the the program I just couldn’t wait to start my search each day and was very sucessful. I definatly do not like the new program. There is a saying “If it aint broke, don’t fix it” Got the Picture? J. Easterly

July 5, 2009 at 5:37 pm
Nancy Erwin 

Let’s face it! Ancestry has made it difficult to print out family information. Did anyone think these changes were for our benifit, forget it. I am so upset with these changes. I noticed Ancestry hasn’t posted those of us who posted comments they have requested. Thought I should say again on the blog. THIS IS CRAZY MAKING! All the time we have put in researching information, correcting errors……..I feel I am paying Ancestry to work for them and giving priceless information for their files. My intentions on starting this Family Tree was for future generations and others who are related. I enjoyed connecting with relatives and feed back from them. I am a very detailed person, my tree is very well researched. I AM VERY UP-SET with these changes and Family Tree Maker also! Simple is best…….

July 5, 2009 at 6:06 pm
Sheila 

I detest the new changes. I only maintain my trees here because so many other people check them for updates and combined family information, plus the DNA link questions. The site, now virtually impossible to fix any prior mistakes or make changes. Unlinking people is a nightmare. Try to delete spouses without deleting the person entirely and re-adding all of their information, no place to even allow for that. Searches take twice as much time as before. It’s more work now than necessary and frankly I don’t have the time for it. If these changes remain as is, I will delete my very long running subscription.

Thank you for your time,
Sheila Jean Adkins Metcalf

July 5, 2009 at 8:59 pm
Jane 

I use this site, but I no longer enjoy it. The colors are weak and the combination of colors (baby blue, mauve/pink, and olive green) is ugly. The print is hard to read because of the small size, the fancy font and the weak colors chosen. What genealogist believes the birth and death dates of a person are less important than “Ancestry Hints” or “Family Trees?” I can’t believe ancestry found two or more genealogists to agree that these changes were for the better.

July 5, 2009 at 9:22 pm
Jane 

A useful change for me would be to search USA records only. When I search for marriage records of someone born and raised in the USA, I check the box for USA priority, but I still must wade through page after boring, useless page of info from Canada and England before reaching more USA info.

July 5, 2009 at 9:45 pm
Jane 

The date on the calendar page (the one with the cutesy rings that represent rings holding calendar pages together) has year, then day, then month. Why not put dates in the correct order for genealogy– day, month, year? And why not be consistant? The profile page has dates in two different formats. And why not put the numbers in a straight line? No good purpose is served by having every other number raised and lowered, as on the calendar page.

July 5, 2009 at 11:05 pm
NE 

Regarding the comment on the finding “Famous” relatives search function:

This function at Ancestry has always been questionable to say the least. You can’t perform this search unless you upload your tree to a public database (no matter what it’s called, the information is the made available to the general public)

There’s no reason that a private tree owner should not be able to use the same search function, considering that they are paying members… and without making their research public and available to name grabbers.

I will say this however – after more than a decade of research – that ALL of my Ancestors are much revered and absolutely priceless to me.

Get to know the people in your Tree through valid research. The lives they lead, and the hardships that they suffered throughout their lifetime will leave an everlasting impression on your soul! Much more precious than chasing down rumors of famous ancestors that may or may not pan out.

July 6, 2009 at 4:08 am
NE 

More suggestions:

1) Program the search results list to arrange ALL search results links by Country>State>County> Municipality so that we don’t have to wait for endless pages of irrelevant information to load… page by page…and then have to click through all of the unnecessary results to find what we need. (pages which have no semblance of order whatsoever!) We’d have much more success in finding information on out families if the search results were displayed in an orderly manner.

2) Then, give us ALPHABETICAL ranked search links in the results to fast-forward to the appropriate pages. A, B, C, D, etc. For Example, we could click on U for United States, A for Arkansas, P for Phillips Co, etc.

Filter and sort.

July 6, 2009 at 4:15 am
Billie Ranson 

If you are using an old version of Internet Explorer, IE 6, many of the news screens are not compatible.Downloading Firefox helps, leaving mostly problems with the format, messiness, poor color contrast, poor placement of parents on the profile page or timeline page, not enough separation between spouses and children, prominent placement of the “Hints” block which is redundant, and obscurity of some tabs such as “Add to another tree”, or navigation back to the profile page.

July 6, 2009 at 7:20 am
James G. Jimenez 

Ancestry is trying real hard and Thank You very much. I have no grips at all. The only thing i would like to see in the future is records on the Erie County NY Penitenary 1882. My Great Great Grandfather died there 6 June 1882 . I have been trying to find his burial location Keep up the good work Ancestry. Jim

July 6, 2009 at 8:08 am
BEE 

I have no trouble navigating the new setup, and once I got used to where things were, it presents no problem, but I probably don’t use all the features that people are complaining about.
I personally like the “famous people” feature. If it bothers someone, they don’t have to go there, since it’s hidden.
I do have one complaint – when I add a “family member”, the lower half of my typing is below the space. Maybe it’s a problem with my settings, but I am not proficient enough to try to change anything.

July 6, 2009 at 3:31 pm
Ellen 

I don’t see the 1790′s to 1860′s anymore, what happen?

July 6, 2009 at 4:28 pm
Richard 

Kenny,DoNot Like this New Mess,give me back my old looking tree,have had nothing but trouble with hints,Census loading`s, Dup. tree listings and very disappointed with new look. It`s stopped being fun, for me .Get This Mess fixed or Lose me as a USER….Thank you Richard Gerringer

July 6, 2009 at 6:23 pm
Wayne Seibert 

I’m getting old waiting around for spinning little bugs that never do anything. From my homepage to the search engine your updated web sucks.
Put it back and make it work.
I can tell that the designers do not have any vision problems associated with age; the colors, like on this page, are hard to see. Light tan pages with light brown and pale green lettering; is someone not paying attention to the ages of most of us doing this research?

July 6, 2009 at 6:38 pm
Dallas 

I am not for the new site … but all things change!
I an ready to stop the monthly fee for the service! …. Your doing a good service but … we are older people and … a smaller chage was netter .. But so be it !!!!
55 years old

July 6, 2009 at 6:42 pm
Adrian Tobin 

Dear Kenny,

It will probably be a good move, but I have yet to find my Family Tree which used to be at http://www.familytreemaker.com/users/t/o/b/Adrian-Tobin. I have since done many searches, but all have drawn a blank.
So, What do I need to do now? Do I upload the tree again (802 persons)? And how do I do that? The last contact I had was Sept 24, 2008 when I was logged in as Adrian Tobin 813. I now appear to be ATobin6184. This is all very confusing. But I do want to resume the Listing of this Family Tree. Can you help me to find it, please.
Adrian Tobin

July 6, 2009 at 6:55 pm
Tena 

I do not have all of the tabs you show in your “Learn about these changes” page. You show as tabs, Overview, Facts & Sources, Media Gallery, Comments, Hints, Search and Community.
On my family page, I only have Family Tree, Recent Activity and Media Gallery. Why is that?
Tena Ondeck

July 6, 2009 at 7:07 pm
kay roberts 

Change just for the sake of change?
Not all of us are computer experts, and not all of us – you won’t believe this!- not all of us have high speed net. It’s hard enough to get anything done with a format I’m familiar with, and here you go changing it again.

July 6, 2009 at 7:36 pm
samuel beckwith 

Type your comment here.

July 6, 2009 at 10:31 pm
Fatimah Azzahra Ismail 

hi thre kenny, i’m a new member.already created a new family tree..how can in clude my siblings,his/her spouse n children

July 6, 2009 at 10:47 pm
Kenny Freestone 

Patricia (#60)–This sounds very much like a bug we have found and plan to fix shortly.

Carole (#61)–Ancestry World Tree is still available and still free on Ancestry.com. (http://www.ancestry.com/trees/awt/main.aspx).

John (#62)–We are hoping to resolve the picture cropping issue by the middle of this month. We’ll consider your idea for making it easier to add source information. I like the suggestion. Perhaps there are other ways to make that quicker.

Andy (#65)–Great question. We had questions about some of these issues, yes. What we didn’t know was how concerned to be about each individual item. We judged that in aggregate that the new look was ready to go live. In juggling hundreds of things we lacked perfect foresight and judgment. Clearly we could have done better. Clearly we were not perfect in this launch. Hindsight has given us better understanding and insight, so we are acting on that as quickly as we can.

PW (#66)–I like that quote. In fact I’ve heard it a lot lately. :) And we are listening to your feedback.

Misty (#67)–More than a free one-time search for relatives, we offer a free 14 day trial period.

Patrick (#70)–We agree that we can’t (and don’t want to be) the “genealogy police” and we also agree that it is important (and somewhat urgent) to help people distinguish junk from gem in the family tree haystack. We discuss this topic frequently.

Jan (#72)–if you’ll email me (kfreestone @ tgn.com) more details I’m sure we can help out. Or call 1 800 ANCESTRY for professional help from our member services team.

Robert (#76)–Look for this feature by clicking the icon (at the top right when looking at your pedigree view) that looks like a printer. After you click, select “printer friendly”.

Jane (#79)–We agree that moving the birth & death info for a person back to directly under the name is the right thing to do.

Adrian (#91)–I suggest you work with our member services team to help with this. I am not familiar with that portion of our services. Call 1 800 ANCESTRY.

Tena (#92)–The tabs you do not see are found on the individual ancestor profile page–the tabs you do see are found on the different family tree views (pedigree, family, and family group sheet). To see an individual’s view, click the ‘view profile’ link that shows when you hover your mouse over a name in the pedigree view.

Fatimah (#95)–Click the link “Add a family member” which is found in the “Family Members” section on the ancestor profile page. I also recommend posting similar questions to the Member Trees message board: http://boards.ancestry.com/topics.ancestry.membertrees/mb.ashx

=========

I will be unable to respond to comments for a few days. Please be patient for a response until I return. We continue to welcome your feedback using the online feedback tool. –Kenny

July 6, 2009 at 11:09 pm
geneva hunt 

Too cluttered. Please go back to the nice family pages with thier pictures and family on each page . why is it that everytime we have the near perfect thing someone has to go and change everything and make it nearly impossible to enjoy searching . I at least thing we should be given a choice -old or new and mabey even vote on it ! Makes me want turn it all in .

July 6, 2009 at 11:54 pm
Monika Schaefer 

Hi, Rina,

No, you are not going stark raving mad! I had the same problem! Wrote to technical support about it! All I could get out of them is “Call us”, and I kept saying “No, I want what you have to say in writing!” At wnhich point they decided to “close my file” because I was not willing to hear the explanation over the phone!

ME TOO PLEASE! Give me an “opt out” option. I want the old program back! The only thing that will improve the old program is if: when you search for somebody in Iowa, and you specifically tell the program that you look in Iowa, you are not forced to go through dozens and dozens of pages of people with similar names in other states or other countries, until you stumble again onto the person you are looking for on the 12th page, because the name is slightly misspelled by the person who read the handwritten record! The other thing that would improve that program is some editing work of the clearly obvious mistakes. E.g., there is a family tree that deals with one of the branches in my tree, which shows that the wife was born about 200 years AFTER the husband died! Clearly incorrect and unrealistic, yet about two dozen other ancestry trees have copied this data as if it were the bible!! It makes you distrust all the data when you see these type of errors and the blind copying of this type of data. THIS IS WHAT WOULD HELP US, not whether you have to click to the right or to the left of things!

Monika

July 7, 2009 at 12:02 am
geneva hunt 

Things better change back to the old or I’m changing . I can’t take this agravating mess ! You’ve really got to be kidding us – you want us to pay for this ? Come on everyone let us vote on this ! Kenny put our dang tree back the way it was -

July 7, 2009 at 12:05 am
geneva hunt 

Our tree was good – very good the way it was – it just needed some maintance and clean up-not change the whole sha bang . This reminds me of an old town that is old and has lots of charm – and then some one comes in and decides it is too old and needs up dating and ends up taking the whole town out and ends up an ugly mess that no one enjoys anymore .

July 7, 2009 at 12:16 am
MAUREEN KANE GROVER 

IT STILL TAKES TOO LONG AND THE ANNUAL PRICE IS STILL TOO HIGH BECAUSE I CANT DO THIS BUT A COUPLE TIMES A YEAR. IT DOESNT GIVE ME INCENTIE TO JOIN BECAUSE I DONT BELIEVE I WILL GET MY MONEYS WORTH

July 7, 2009 at 12:31 am
MAUREEN KANE GROVER 

IT STILL TAKES TOO LONG AND THE ANNUAL PRICE IS STILL TOO HIGH BECAUSE I CANT DO THIS BUT A COUPLE TIMES A YEAR. IT DOESNT GIVE ME INCENTIVE TO JOIN BECAUSE I DONT BELIEVE I WILL GET MY MONEYS WORTH

July 7, 2009 at 12:31 am
Monika Schaefer 

I just answered Rina (#35)! Now it’s my turn:

Is it me or do others have that problem? When I try to print out the new individual profile sheets, they print out in a hazy manner–as if I had double vision? Does anyone else have that problem?

Monika

July 7, 2009 at 12:48 am
Monika Schaefer 

I just sent a second e-mail, but it does not show on the blog. I had answered Rina regarding the census data and other data I downloaded also disappearing from my site, and my having contacted Technical Support about that. So, sorry that Kenny had not heard about that!

NOW IT IS MY TURN TO ASK: Does anyone else have a problem with getting a “fuzzy” print when printing out the profile sheets. A little like I am having double vision? Also, when I print out the profile sheets (I think they all them “overview” now!! :-) ), the pictures on it do not print out. Can anyone help me? I am getting to the conclusion that I am getting better feedback on the blog than from Technical Support. So I thought I would try that for a change.

Monika

July 7, 2009 at 12:54 am
Robert Esch 

I agree with all the comments of those who argue against the new format. I especially miss the “People” tab, which sent you back to the family page of the individual you were last researching. The colors and print size are a problem for me too, being a 69 year old. Another pet peeve is the inability to “contract” (partially collapse) the page to allow for other windows for comparison. Sometimes I have 3 or 4 windows operating at once to keep the information available. But there are much worse problems: (1) When I want to access other data bases, it would be handy to have a “search” capability for that data base, and since I don’t know the name of every data base, the search feature should be “friendly” and give suggestions for “partial data base listing.” I have been asking for this search feature for some time now. Also, since I am not currently a World Deluxe member, I shouldn’t have to wade through all the non applicable data bases requiring more money. It is frankly insulting to see these extraneous data bases that I don’t wish to access. There ought to be a filter that shows the US data base first, for those with a US membership. Also, I have found so many cases of incorrect indexing, and have made thousands of corrections of spelling errors, that I would prefer that more people update these corrections. It may not be as “sexy” as a new format, but it would greatly improve the researchability for others. Thanks for listening.

July 7, 2009 at 1:26 am
Patricia 

I do agree with the comments that people are making about the new changes. I’m disappointed and feel the changes are unnecessary. However everyone’s opinions and perferences are different so why can’t we have options on what we want to change.

However the biggest things for me is the photo gallery. The one thing that did not change, which I feel should have. If you have 250 photos in your photo gallery every photo is arranged according to when the photo was uploaded, not arranged by family. Which is a big photo album mess. When visitors are looking at the photos they are confused about which family the person belongs to. Why not take the unnecessary tabs that are on the individual ancestor profile page and move them to the photo gallery. I would like to have tabs within the photo gallery link to organize my photos by family. The same concept as having a folder within a folder. Of course, we would need to be able to upload our photos in each different tab, or be able to move them into the correct tab/folder later.
Thanks for your time.

July 7, 2009 at 2:09 am
NE 

In response to Patricia, I agree with the photo gallery being a mess.

When you click on it, it should bring up only those with the surname of the person’s page that you came through (to get to the photo gallery)

(Example) If you enter the photo gallery from John Smith’s page – the photos displayed are only those with the Smith surname.

Even if you have more than one Smith family, at least it would filter out those that are not connected.

(be sure to put connecting surnames in your photo descriptions)

July 7, 2009 at 3:26 am
NE 

I would like to be able to EDIT a person from their main page without hunting through tabs.

July 7, 2009 at 3:28 am
NE 

As Patricia mentioned, give us an alphabetical index in the photo gallery, please.

July 7, 2009 at 3:32 am
Andy Hatchett 

Kenny- Re #96.

Thank you very much for a frank and no-spin answer to my question! It tends to give me hope after all.

It also has decided me to renew my subscription which was about to expire. We’ll see what next year brings.

July 7, 2009 at 7:59 am
Carole 

Kenny, #96, Your link brought me to the UK website.

Did I call that tree system by the wrong name? You can still view some of the original Ancestry World Trees on Ancestry, but some are old and locked in, and others are uploaded through the Rootsweb website by people who are using home programs and export their gedcoms out to be be uploaded. Ancestry then links these Rootsweb trees into their program and calls it the Ancestry World Tree.

I am talking about the tree system that was in place BEFORE you put permanently in place the NEW Ancestry member tree system with the merge features and the little green leaves. The tree systems that was available before Ancestry.com discarded it,– eliminated it — prevented people from working on it any longer and then locked it out and it was gone forever. And I am not talking that horrible OneWorld Tree with scads of incorrect information dating back to the early 2000s.

I am talking about the tree system that Ancestry provided their members that was simple to use, and also offered a NOTES section that was visible to anyone who was viewing information for a particular person.

Remember all the complaints you received at that time? This was all about a year and a half ago. There were complaints about the elimination of the old trees, the merge feature and the sloppy genealogy that Ancestry was promoting.

Ancestry did NOTHING about it except state that millions of people just LOVED the new tree system.

Now Ancestry is receiving complaints from people because their trees are being cloned, their pictures and documents are being taken. What did they expect? This was predicted and no one listened.

And Patrick, #70, I realize that not all amateur genealogists take information and fail to source it. However, from what I have seen, the majority of those cloned trees are not being sourced and being accepted as gospel. My own sister-in-law built her family tree all the way back to the Viking days in a matter of weeks, uploaded hundreds of photos to her tree from her photo albums including scads of her children’s and granchildren’s baby pictures, and pictures of her mother in the hospital just before she died. She then cancelled her membership because she was bored with Ancestry.com and her “work” was done. She had merged the majority of her information from other people’s trees, took other people’s stories and there it is… a tree in place for perpetuity and the only part of that tree that is sourced are back to her great-grandparents. I won’t even go into what she did with her husband’s (my husband’s too) side of the family. That makes me want to scream.

July 7, 2009 at 9:58 am
Michael 

My family pedigree page will not load. Last person viewed does not work, Home person does not work. Only way to access the tree is through the full list of persons. Error on page is as following;
pedigree Line 745
Code: 0 Char 21
URI: http//trees. ancestry.com/trees/9908249/family/ pedigree?pid=-722984136
This is a waste of my time and money. Your new botched system should be pulled off line until the bugs are out of it!

July 7, 2009 at 10:02 am
BEE 

Can’t see any of my typing when I add “new member” – the space is smaller then before, and I haven’t changed any setting. Why isn’t “return to” on all pages, instead of having to go to “show immediate family, and click on from there?

July 7, 2009 at 11:54 am
PW 

Hi Kenny,

Thank you for noting my comment.

This new look is really not good. It is messy, cluttered and it is not easy to read both physically and optically.

I am also very concerned about the fact that you are also not going to continue with the old style search facility.

THIS WOULD BE CATASTROPHIC.

I have submitted several corrections, due to transcription errors.

I submitted my findings to help other people with their research.

The only way I found these records was by using the old search, and typing in variants of spelling, or, by omitting data such as first name, last name etc.

To quote Geneva Hunt comment 97
“why is it that everytime we have the near perfect thing someone has to go and change everything and make it nearly impossible to enjoy searching.”

July 7, 2009 at 1:17 pm
Jamie Lunn 

OMG, Oh Where Oh Where has my old family tree gone?? Will you please bring it back to me.

As an obsessed user of Ancestry, I find my obsession dwindling faster & faster everyday. I have used this site everyday for several years. I have weathered through most changes but certianly not the new search engine you. Thankfully you left me with the option of using the old search. Other then that I was having no problems until you so drastically changed the view of my tree. I even weathered the fact that you put the photos under the time line, a change I quit frequently bark LOUD & OFTEN about. Photo should be above the time line for other to notice in case some one has never seen a pic of their grandma etc. If some one is not familiar to Ancestry or SCROLLING they may never scroll down to see the many photos posted there for viewing.

To Many tabs to choose from. I didn’t need them before so why do I need them now.

Can’t work on my family tree with out a pair of glasses now. I couldn’t even leave this comment until I set my setting so small that I am practically flying blind while typing this comment.

can some one please tell me how to get to my Ancestry.com inbox with out having to scroll through the hundreds of email messages that I get everyday in my email. There is no direct path the this inbox.

I want my edit this person back where it was. I want the home person tab back where it was. I want the vitals for the person back next to them where it was and not across the page from them. I want the hints back underneath the person where they SHOULD be, not next to them where their vital info should be. I want photos to be labeled Photo as that is what they are. I want overview to take me back to my tree’s homepage so I can find it. I want stories to be back where they were so I only have to click once to read them. I want to see the comments in the same manner as well. In essence, I want to get somewhere with out having to guess what you are calling it and I want to make only one click to get there. Click, Click, Click, that is all I have gotten done these past few days. Very bothersome and not very enjoyable any longer. I have seen it written before and I am going to say it again. WHY FIX SOMETHING THAT WAS NOT BROKEN?????? Truly the only thing broken was the search for records part. IF you take away my option to use the OLD SEARCH, I WILL CANCEL MY SUBSCRIPTION…

July 7, 2009 at 1:32 pm
judy 

hi carole

i think you mean the original
‘online tree’

go here and you will find it use the login in the advert box and the one at the top and it should open.

http://www.ancestry.com/oft/login.asp

you might have to clean your cookies first you can use ccleaner its a free program which cleans out all sorts of junk and is safe and quicker than the windows cleaner its self. dont tick the wipe free space unless you have a long time to spear but tick all else its an efficent tool.

judy

July 7, 2009 at 1:55 pm
Dawn 

I don’t care for the new site… more difficult to navigate, seems way more difficult to read… too busy, too many tabs…. just don’t care for it at all.

July 7, 2009 at 2:59 pm
Shannon 

I have been using the new version since July 2. Not happy with it at all. The old version was more streamlined and easy to read. The new version is very cluttered and not easy to use at all. To many choices to click on when looking at a indviual’s page of information. Too many tabs. I never had any problems with the old page. It was much better than this. I am a very unhappy customer of Ancestry.com

July 7, 2009 at 4:51 pm
Jeff Ford 

Where’s the media section that used to be near the top of the page immediately after logging on? It used to have pictures/icons of newly added content.

Bring it back!

July 7, 2009 at 7:32 pm
Marca Lee 

I do not like the new version. It seems cluttered and hard to find what you have or what you need .

July 7, 2009 at 8:56 pm
Jane 

Kenny, thanks for responding to the concern about the birth and death dates, a concern expressed by many of us. But what about the calendar dates that are out of order (year, then day, then month) and in which the numbers are not in a straight line and where those cutsey rings are stuck in for looks? That whole column, imho, looks more like it belongs in a children’s book than on a genealogy site. And what about the colors? Are you guys going to address the fact that so many of us think they are ugly?

July 7, 2009 at 9:00 pm
Jane 

oops! cutsey=cutesy

July 7, 2009 at 9:02 pm
Pam B. 

I absolutely agree. The pictures on the smaller format profiles are smaller and the timeline is smaller. I really miss the larger pictures I uploaded. They have all been shrunk down to thumbnails. I don’t spend as much time on my tree as I did and I won’t renew this year, since they shrunk my favorite parts.

July 7, 2009 at 9:31 pm
Jane 

This new look gives me a headache. It’s like reading a book with white pages and blue and green writing. The designers should try reading these pages for a couple of hours and see if they agree that it’s torture.

July 7, 2009 at 9:37 pm
cris 

I can’t find words dismal enough to describe how I feel about the Ancestry Hints leaf bar being in the person’s profile box. It truly is sickening. I don’t use hints so I have hundreds of hints I’ve never looked at which are all showing up in the profile box right under the profiled person’s name, where the birth and death date. It really is outrageous that you’ve done this. What would posses you to come up with such a wretched idea. It is scary and depressing how completely out of touch you people are.

July 7, 2009 at 10:23 pm
Arthur Granbury 

Kenny says that they have received 6200+ comments, and would like us to think that most of them are favorable to these abominable changes.

Curious that those percentages don’t hold up here in a public forum where everyone can see all the comments.

July 7, 2009 at 11:59 pm
Melinda 

Hate the new design more because I lost 20,000+ Relatives in the transition and Ancestry.Com Support and Kenny Freestone have refused to acknowledge this. I spent 100′s of hours searching/researching and developing my family tree since last July 2008 and after the June 18, 2009 Maintenance/upgrading to the new Tree’s, my Home Person was erased after this and all but about 10 relatives were left in my Family Tree. My 21,000(have worked on since) relatives are sitting in limbo on my Home Page with my 200+ Photos, Stories and 2,000+ Hints. However, none of this is connected to my Family Tree. I have written and written and have requested a $300.00 credit for all my time (hundreds of hours) and they have tried to blame this on the “Duplicates in my Tree,” well, that is something else Ancestry.Com needs to fix, but, they have never caused me to lose my information from my Tree until this Program Change and the work on June 18, 2009. When I re-entered my Home Person for my Family Tree, there was about 10 relatives left in my Tree. They have also tried to blame my Computer which is a new Dell Inspiron with Windows Vista, my Java Program is updated (latest version) and I always empty my cache, cookies and temporary folders. It is not me and it is NOT my computer!!!! Now they are just ignoring me, they said they don’t give credits “because of duplicates in the Family Tree!!!!” So, I began a whole new Family Tree and guess what, I just spent about 5 hours manually re-entering relatives into my new Family Tree. I just got on the Site to work on it, again, and all my Father’s information is gone from my new Family Tree, but, sitting in limbo on my List of All People for my new Tree, so, the Bug is in the new Program just launched!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They need to get the bugs out before launching a new system which causes customers to lose their work they have spent hundreds of hours on and then they try to blame the customer instead of acknowledging their are “bugs” in their program they need to fix!!!!! I just skimmed through some of the feedback and am seeing other members with this same problem, but, Kenny Freestone is responding that he hasn’t “heard of this.” Well, what is he and Support doing with all my Emails? I got the CEO’s Name and am now writing to him, I have to pursuade all of you to also do this, maybe then they will listen!!!! They need to credit us for errors caused by their program!!!!!!

July 8, 2009 at 1:46 am
Lisa 

#127 Melinda

You probably have multiple logon ids and your tree is attached to one of them.

Go here and get a list of your userids and then logon with each of them and check your trees list for your data.

I hope this helps.

https://www.myfamily.com/welcome/signin.aspx?kurl=%2fdashboard%2f&curl=%2fwelcome%2f&join=False

July 8, 2009 at 5:32 am
Elaine 

I agree that it’s much better with two exceptions.

1. The ability to save individuals from one tree to another shouldn’t be a feature. By having it, ancestry.com is promoting plagiarism rather than good genealogy practices. In addition, no credit is currently given to the originator.

As a solution, more users will change the status of their trees to private, making the service less helpful for everyone.

2. For the tab Comments, there’s no indication that there are any for individuals. The number of comments on the tab would help.

July 8, 2009 at 2:11 pm
Ann Mitchell 

What a disaster! You have taken a wonderful research tool for genealogists and destroyed it. This new system presents findings in a totally unorganized fashion. You have mixed data together, such as census results mixed with military, directories, birth information, etc,

Who has time to read and try and sort through all this “stuff?” And I really label it stuff. I have been doing genealogy research for close to 25 years.

You have wiped out my brain’s ability to research and to draw my own conclusions as to what information was logical and relevant. You have replaced it with a computer system that draws conclusions for me. What hogwash! In most instances the computer is very wrong. Your star system is a joke.

Just think what a beginning genealogists could do with your new, horrible system. They could be led to the wrong conclusions by your matching star system, wasting many hours of their research time by assuming your computer system was right.

The presentation of the information is very disorganized, even mixing census results and years, such as 1900, 1870, 1920, etc.. It leads nowhere, except for reading page after page of messy, inaccurate, disconnected material. A researcher asks for information on a person living in a particular state and gets a jumble of states having nothing to do with their request.

What was wrong with the “old system?” I could use your very organized presentation of categories and in a matter of minutes compare and sort out what I thought was correct conclusions. I know my family better than your computer program! Therefore I am in a better position to judge what information makes the best family connections and I wish to look at further.

This decision on the part of Ancestry.com is a huge mistake! I have applauded your website to other genealogist for years, but that stops immediately. Please return to me what was an excellent website for genealogical research. Please do it, the sooner, the better. If not, then advise me how I can over ride this current mess. Don’t over think my brain, let me think for myself.

In conclusion, “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it!”

July 8, 2009 at 4:24 pm
Marshall 

Does anyone at Ancestry even check this blog after their first post and one usual followup. Do they really care how their subscribers feel??

July 8, 2009 at 5:14 pm
Sharon Frey 

After all the opposition to the new page design, I had hoped you would revert back to the old design or at the very least have an opt out of the new design for the majority who dislike the “new look.” It is clear to most of us, this new design is not user friendly.

Some problems I have been having:

1. Right clicking does not work on the “Search historical records” tab, so I can open up searches in a new window. I use this so I can leave a page open on the person I am searching on the left of my screen, while using the search page open on the right of my screen. This is extremely important. When I am looking at census records for example, I need to know whom should be in the household in my tree. By leaving a window open I should be able to clearly see the profile person, their parents, spouse, and children. In the old design this worked perfectly.

2. The “Edit this person” (should revert back to “Edit profile” to save space) tab slides behind the “Member connect” tab when I make my page smaller to fit half the screen for searches. This tab should be below the profile photo, as it was in the old design.

3. I don’t want a big box showing hints. I, like some of the serious researchers, don’t wish to merge my tree with other trees willy-nilly. The little button to accept this hint is dangerous. I stupidly did this when I first joined ancestry, not knowing I could go into all the trees first and check their records and sources. Merging trees should not be allowed. What should be allowed, is the ability to check the data in other trees. There is a way to do this with the current system, and I know how to add other tree data to my tree safely now, doing it step by step on my own. I have found records this way too. But because of the button on the right as an option to “accept this hint” with out carefully going through each event and person this has made for some really bad trees. Most of the trees have no records, and many have duplicate people. Its very dangerous to merge trees. Maybe only allow merging trees that are sourced and have records to back up the events in their trees.

4. Fonts and colors. I am not that old (50), but this new design is very hard on my eyes when working on it for hours. The old fonts and colors were easier on the eyes, and much less confusing.

5. Media Gallery. I hate to see this in its new placement. I want this out of the way when I am searching. I use this as a storage device, for photographed records, and photos. Who wants their file cabinet or closet smack in the middle of the room? I also don’t like the merging of “Media” I prefer the old way of having “photos” and “stories” in separate compartments. As far as Audio & Video, I don’t use it, but I’m sure its nice for those that do. I think you should give us the option of placing this top, center, or bottom. Also un-merge them back to the separate headings “photos” “stories” etc. Now when I want to look at a story or photo, I have no way back to the profile person if I click on my selection. Unlike some people, I use right clicking to open them up in separate windows and it now takes FOREVER to load the new window.

PLEASE GIVE US THE OPTION TO USE THE OLD DESIGN!!!

July 8, 2009 at 5:43 pm
cris 

I don’t buy that they have gotten mostly positive feedback on this design. Everyone I know who uses this site is furious about it. These people are in serious denial. They don’t care about what the users need only their own agenda.

July 8, 2009 at 7:09 pm
Nancy 

I have been working with my trees a lot over the past week and am one of the few on this blog who likes quite a few things about the new design. I am able to get around to people much more quickly (I like the “Show Immediate Family” and its ability to go to siblings).

I have figured out quite a few of the shortcuts but I would have liked some explanation before or when the new design was rolled out.

I, like so many people on this blog, really dislike the search function. It does seem much worse now, and I can’t even “trick” the search into giving me what I want. I don’t use the searches of single data bases very often–that filter might work. But when I have done a search and am not getting the results I want, and go to refine the search, all the data is lost. So I have to put it in again (which means I have to look up the person again)–all too time consuming and just not necessary.

I think we need a separate blog for all of the problems with the search function. A lot of good suggestions have been made here to correct some of the problems with the new design. I think we would have a lot of good suggestions for the Search team, too.

July 8, 2009 at 7:24 pm
Sherry 

While I cannot relate to many of you as I have not posted a tree to this site, I have contributed to a regional family tree website that now has the “leaves”.

First off, the “leaves” need to be at the bottom of the page and NOT in the middle of that person’s information; it is obtrusive to say the least. The advertisements are bad enough, now this………

Where exactly is ancestry going with this?

For example, my David Williamson, born 1853 Oneida, Ontario, Canada; died 1926 Carnarvon Twp., Ontario in included in this regional tree. The “leaf” shows 3 possible matches and they are all relevant to my David; the 1901, 1911 Census as well as his death record.

If I go to the advanced search function in historical records and enter David Williamson born 1853 “all countries”, died 1926 “all countries”, all I get is his death record.

Using the same criteria but plugging in born Canada, died Canada, all I get is his death record.

If I additionally add to the “residences” Canada, I get no results at all.

I do not pay for trees, I pay for searches. What is the point of having an advanced search function if you have to go to a family tree that hopefully lists your ancestor in order to get relevant results?

It seems to me that ancestry has it bassackwards!!!

July 8, 2009 at 7:53 pm
john 

I find it more difficult to go to a particular individual and edit details.

There needs to be a method for merging duplicate individuals as on the FTM program.

July 8, 2009 at 8:47 pm
Karen C 

Some questions.

Redundancy.

1. Why do we have two places we can click for “Hints”? A little redundant, people. And why next to the person’s name? What does a “Hint” have to do with their name?

2. The same with the “Show Immediate Family” underneath that. Isn’t that what the “Parents” and “Spouse and Children” areas are for?

3. Under the aforementioned “Spouse and Children” we have “Historical Records”. But, we also have a tab that says “Facts and Sources”, where for one of my Ancestors, the 1910 and 1920 Censuses are listed no less than 4 times- under Name, Residence, Birth, and Arrival. Huh?

It doesn’t seem streamlined. At all.
Please stop messing with the ‘look’ of the site, and concentrate on content.

Photos.

1. While I won’t ever have video of my Great-Great Grandfather gallivanting around my backyard, I do have pictures of him. Could it be possible to have his photo a little bigger than 3/4 of an inch? Actually, it’s less than that.(I measured) Thank goodness for me, I still have good eyesight!

2. Agree with other comments, the photos should be in some sort of order, like being attached just to the person they are regarding.

July 8, 2009 at 10:21 pm
Andy Hatchett 

John- re:#136

The Ancestry Member Trees is merely a display application; it is not a genealogy program and thus should not be expected to act as one.

As to duplicate persons appearing in a Member Tree- that is always the fault of the person constructing the tree; either by copying stuff from another tree (which, IMHO, should never even be allowed- much less actually done) or by failing to check to see if a person is already in a tree before adding them.

I am one of Ancestry’s harshest critics but in these two cases I can’t fault them at all.

July 9, 2009 at 4:16 am
Patrick 

I agree with many of Carole’s comments (July 7).

Kenny, I believe that this issue of “cloning” trees is a very serious one…and not just for the users. When my trees were “public”, I found that some (many) people merged them, and, in some cases, made changes that were clearly wrong. So, I finally changed my trees to “private”. But, going private defeats the collaborative efforts that Ancestry is trying to promote.

I have NEVER found anything useful in any of the unsourced public trees that I’ve pored through. In a few cases, I’ve contacted other “private” tree posters for more information or clarification. That has been of some help.

One area that has been of great help to me are the “message boards”. Yes, there’s a lot of junk posted there, but I’ve found a few researchers who have done substantive work and are willing to share it. Kenny, it might be useful to have the ability to “cut and paste” message postings to our own trees.

A final thought/suggestion: have two versions of this program…one for “amateurs” and one for serious or professional users. In the serious version, ALL posted data must be sourced and no merging is allowed.

Ancestry.com has been of great help to me in my research. Some of the complaints about the new format deal mainly with style. While I share some of those complaints, I realize that Ancestry can’t satisfy all of us. However, with respect to substance, my concerns are more objective. I believe that Ancestry needs to address these issues in an aggressive manner.
thanks for reading this missive.

July 9, 2009 at 8:50 am
Linda 

I need to find the father and mother of Aquila Giles, born 1758- died 1822. Ancestor.com is making it hard to know how to find this. Linda

July 9, 2009 at 9:13 am
Rhonda 

I am so relieved to discover that I am not the only one who dislikes the “new and improved” look and feel of Ancestry.com. In fact, it appears the vast majority of these comments are negative. So, who was it you listened to? I know it wasn’t the feedback I sent in.

So, with that said, my subscription is up in January 2010 and you can mark me down as one who will not be renewing.

July 9, 2009 at 10:11 am
Isobel Russell 

I still hate the new look and have deleted my tree from Ancestry.I hope the powers that be are happy now.After years of research and buying discs (before they went on line)I just cannot bear to do anything with my research at the moment.My Ancestry subscription expires on August 10th and I will not be renewing,unless it changes back to how it was.

July 9, 2009 at 11:16 am
Curt Gates 

We want to print what we see!!! When we print a person’s page, the photo that we see on the screen does not appear on the printout. Our paper trail is important to us because it helps us plan our research and it helps us communicate our findings to our children and grandchildren when we visit them. It is a great loss not to be able to show them what somebody looked like — every bit as important as all the dates and places. At first I thought it was Safari, but we got Firefox, and the problem is still there.

July 9, 2009 at 12:14 pm
Diane Harman-Hoog 

I completely hate it. I have had to go to other possible source. I need a table overview look, not pages and pages of results to scroll through. I was searching in one case for a Vietnam vet born in about 1944. Specific name was entered and year of birth and my results cover Civil WAr vets as well. It is not searching for just the parameters but adding what it thinks I want.

I am so angry as I was right in the middle of several searches and now cannot even focus in on the areas i was researching,

The refine your search capability is also missing from many of the screens again.

Every time I hear of an improvement I cringe. Who tests these things. I know I complained that the preview a few month ago made it harder, not easier to access information.

Give me back a table of results option that I can just scan to see if I even have the right person.

July 9, 2009 at 1:12 pm
Diane Harman-Hoog 

I completely agree with Ann Mitchel, comment 130. I cannot possibly use the results the way they are presented now for the large amount of research i do. I am stymied as to how I can get the information now in the time I have available. I am taking about the regular “historic facts” results interface. I mostly use rootsweb if I want good family tree info anyway so there is an alternative there.

July 9, 2009 at 1:19 pm
Ellie 

I am very discussed with the fact that after editing a person profile it jumps back to the HOME person, which could be 45 generations back.

When I entered my directly related child first then the rest of the siblings. Now I find that they have all been arranged either by date of birth or alphabetically, Countless clicks to find the correct sibling that goes down to the next generation.
I am having to start from the beginning and all caps the first names of the direct relatives (over 2000) to do.
Just one more thing. Could you make the LIST OF PEOPLE printer friendly, so that each page contains more than 20 +/- people on each page (uses too much paper). I like to be able to do research and write out notes as I go

Also the submit button for this blog is beyond the bottom of the page at full screen for us OLD people who have to enlarge the text.

July 9, 2009 at 2:32 pm
Alton Irwin 

The sickly green color of the fonts are much harder to read and do not print nearly as well as the bold black colors in the old format.Can this be remedied?

July 9, 2009 at 3:14 pm
Alton Irwin 

Adding a child to a family is more difficult now. Can we go back to the old way?

July 9, 2009 at 3:18 pm
Jean 

How do you access and edit each To-Do item?

July 9, 2009 at 4:03 pm
Eileen 

I Total dislike the new LOOK!!!
Please put it back to the old way. It’s not faster or easier. I will end my membership-NOT going to pay for something that is a pain.

July 9, 2009 at 4:04 pm
linda bruder 

HATE it!!! Everything is more difficult to find. It has a totally “unfocused” and unattractive look. Photos are not as large and visible. Has a “spreadsheet” look that is not suited to the purpose of displaying family info clearly and in attractive format. I could go on and on. Get RID of it!!!!

July 9, 2009 at 5:19 pm
Nancy Eller 

I am very disappointed with the new format. Do not like it at all.

July 9, 2009 at 5:48 pm
Kent 

“We really do appreciate your feedback.” NOT. There is no feedback by Ancestry to these comments and concerns. There is no list of “direction”, or “future updates.” There are no “polls” of user feedback.

You really need to rethink how you are approaching this project. It seems like it is run by the IT Department rather than being geared to the people who are paying for this service.

July 10, 2009 at 7:19 am
Andy Hatchett 

Kent- re:#153

There is feedback-Kenny has responded more than once.

On the 6th he said he wouldn’t be able to respond for a few days.

In actuality it is the Marketing Dept that runs Ancestry. It is all about getting new members.

July 10, 2009 at 8:05 am
Marni 

I am very disappointed in the “new” site improvements and wish we had the option of chosing the old style versus the new one. My own tree is now harder to access. Instead of a tab on a toolbar, I have lines and lines that monopolize the screen so I must scroll down to even see family information that used to be immediately to the right of the person “pulled up”. Also, if I am shown a hint, which I consider ancestry.com’s claim to fame, I have to click that, scroll down to another hint line, click that and then access the hint. Way too many clicks for things that used to be immediate and convenient. I have written and asked for help and hope this isn’t a general problem for everyone. I will stay with ancestry.com for a while and hope they can fix my problem and anyone else who is experiencing this. If it doesn’t get remedied, I will do what others have mentioned and get some software to build my tree and only use ancestry.com when researching.

July 10, 2009 at 8:53 am
Shirley Herring 

I am beginning to hate the new Ancestry. 2 days ago I posted a comment about not finding the area to invite people to your tree. I have searched for an hour this morning trying to find it. I have recently found a 2nd cousin, who is ancious to view and contribute to my tree. BUT i CAN NOT SEND HER AN INVITE. WILL SOME ONE PLEASE HELP ME!

July 10, 2009 at 10:07 am
Kate 

I must admit I hate the new look as well. I have used Ancestry for several years now and my disapointment is extreme.

My biggest issue at the moment is how the search historical records has seemingly gone back to the old old days. I can no longer refine and it is tedious and horrible at best.

Correcting relationship issues is a nightmare and have now ended up with 9 windows open in order to fix a 5 child mistake. A mistake which was made when I added relatives to the tree from the census feature. Every single child was added as “unknown father” although the father was there in my tree.

The new look is incredibly busy.
1. requires a great deal of work to figure out what is where and is no longer very intuitive (bad bad bad).

2. The colors are too close in shade and blend without clear definition between sections.

3. Sections are not laid out in any kind of intuitive manner. Most simple corrections now require multiple menu clicks to achieve.

4. Historical record search feature is absolutely horrible, horrible, horrible. For some reason it is the old old days style search. I can no longer refine a search but instead have to manually drill through all the titles. I hate this more than I can say. This alone makes me want to simply log off and cancel my subscription.

5. This was obviously NOT designed by a genealogist. It is poorly laid out, searches are cumbersome and poorly organized, data is poorly presented as well as not being posted correctly to the tree. See comment above about children not being attached appropriately.

There definitely needs to be an option to use the “old” system while you experiment on someone who wants to be a beta tester. I do not have the time or energy to be a beta tester for Ancestry for free. Sorry to be so strong, but I pay a serious amount a year to have this subscription and for it to be rendered all but unusable is infuriating. I have spent FIVE hours today just trying to do a simple stupid search!!!!!

Please give us back the option of using the old system.

July 10, 2009 at 10:43 am
Nancy 

Hi Shirley (#156),

See my answer in #27.

Also, in #45, Kenny said:

“Invite”–Patrick, next to your family tree’s name in the top left section of the screen you’ll see a triangle. Clicking that triangle gives you quick access to inviting family, as well as other options for your family tree.

July 10, 2009 at 10:58 am
Jamie Munn 

To Shirley Herring,

To get to the place where you invite a person to view your tree you must first click on your tree’s mane at the top of the page underneath the FIRST TOOL BAR.. After you click on that it will take you to whatever new page Ancestry decides you should go. NEXT in the SECOND TOOL BAR you will see a tab named (recent activity), click on that. This will take you to a page that resembles what once looked like your tree’s home page where your recent added photos, stories & comments are. If you scroll down a short ways and on your left you will see where to invite people to your tree.

Sorry there are so many steps to get to this one VERY IMPORTANT capability that used to take just one click from anyone’s persons page that was in your tree.

This is JUST ONE example of how difficult and not user friendly Ancestry has become.

July 10, 2009 at 11:18 am
Jamie Munn 

Nancy,

Pardon me but I did just notice that little triangle thing next to the name of my tree, Thanks a bunch.

To Ancestry, It is still unclear to me why we must search and search to figure this stuff out. This would be an impossible task for any new user or an ivitee to find this stuff when seasoned users of Ancestry such as my self cant hardly figure it out. Way to many tabs for things that were just simply spelled out before. Believe me when I say I am a clicler, but the amount of clicks it takes me to find and figure this stuff out is a bit ridiculous to say the least. How in the world is any new user to Ancestry going to figure it all out.

I have been almost at a complete standstill this whole week because of the new changes. I can not stand the new Ancestry.com

July 10, 2009 at 11:38 am
Angel 

Not real clear on certain things and information give on the leaf. not sure if the link is my ancestry or
not. It is very hard to find out anything, very little on africiana
american people. I have put in all I know where do I go from here. The new design is nice, but I need more help how to what to at this point.

July 10, 2009 at 1:56 pm
Nita Wagner 

Please give us the option of the “old” or “new” version. I do a lot of research in other countries and had a long list of countries which I could easily access with my world subscription. Now I find I am limited to about half as many countries (after a long search). Why pay extra for WorldAncestry when I don’t have the access that I was using on Tues. morning before I found the new version Tues. afternoon. I am very disappointed and frustrated with the new Ancestry version.

July 10, 2009 at 4:36 pm
vicki bearden 

Your new version seems to be bit complicated and too hard to read. I wear glasses but even then I have to squint to read all the events. There is a lot of wasted space and I don’t understand why you have to have a magnifying glass in order to read it. thanks

July 10, 2009 at 5:02 pm
Diane 

PLEASE, give us the option of having our old way back! I agree, my pictures aren’t showing up right, and when I print out, it doesn’t even print the pictures with the tree…used to.
I am getting to be one of the “older” generation, and it isn’t fun anymore, when I can’t even figure out what I’m to do.
I thought this was a safe place to always keep my trees but I’m beginning to wonder…….HELP!

July 10, 2009 at 11:59 pm
Mary Beth Marchant 

Is anyone listening today. Whole Member tRee has just gone KABLOOEY-cannot add, cannot change, cannot even bring up the tree right now. What gives, guys. Just in time for the weekend again. Great timing.

July 11, 2009 at 9:17 am
Wesley Hodges 

This “new” view and “faster” system is NOT good. The profile view is terrible, the speed is slower and this morning Sat July 11th – I can’t even get records to update with simple changes! Shame on you guys for taking something that was bad and making it worse!!!!!!!!!!! And we pay good money for this! At least give us the option to keep the old view. If you guys take away to option for “old search” – I will cancel my subscription and use some stand alone software so I can get something done!!!!!!!!!!!!!

July 11, 2009 at 9:27 am
Connie 

The pedigree page is now non-existent. What happened? It was there yesterday.
I like the new hints tab–I can now access hints I have previously discarded. I’m not real crazy about having the big hints box front and center.

July 11, 2009 at 9:46 am
April 

I can’t seem to save any information to my trees today. Can you PLEASE look into this issue and fix ASAP.

Thank you!

July 11, 2009 at 9:56 am
Sheila 

I am not liking these new changes and have tried a few times. Thought I’d give it another try this morning. But, I am also wondering why I can’t save anything to my own tree today. What is going on?
Help!

July 11, 2009 at 10:05 am
Andy Hatchett 

There was a problem with the trees earlier this AM but Eric Shoup has said it is fixed now.

July 11, 2009 at 10:53 am
Mary 

Hate it!

This is designed for someone who is beginner which may explain all that new advertising on TV. I don’t need stars to tell me that the search is right or maybe or wrong. Too much gooey and not enough substance.

I want my old style back.

July 11, 2009 at 1:43 pm
Debbie 

I have tried the new site for a couple of weeks now and do not care for it. I don’t think it’s faster and information that I previously entered has disappeared. It’s like I have to start all over again.

I agree that we should be able to go back to the old style if we prefer it.

July 11, 2009 at 4:20 pm
Vivian Kessler 

I have worked with the new format for a few days, and I still am not completely comfortable with it. I agree with those who say it takes too many mouse clicks to do some functions such as adding photos. Why would I need to go through a hierarchy of Media content to get to photos, if photos are all I’m going to add? Your assumptions about how your customers use the personal family trees does not seem too accurate. I don’t plan to add audio or video. I agree with message #60 by Patricia OHara that ancestry sending me back to the person I started with is aggravating. Take me back to the person I’m working on now after I upload a photo about them.

I would hope ancestry might give us the choice of old and new formats also.

Maybe this is not the place, but I am constantly going to the Old Search, and I hate the New Search. I hope you don’t eliminate the old search format. At least there I can truck on down to the state or database that makes sense.

July 11, 2009 at 5:38 pm
Judy Sue 

I have refrained from commenting until I had used the new system enough to feel comfortable with it. While it does get easier to use with experience, I have some of the same concerns as many others, including:
1. Placement of the media gallery, and photo cropping.
2. Legibility of the fonts. I find my eyes burning.
3. Difficulty in telling the difference between Spouse and Children, and placement of Parents.
4. Too many redundant tabs.Cluttered.

I appreciate knowing that many of these concerns are being addressed, and realize that it must be really difficult to produce a product that pleases the needs of everyone using this sight. But the membership is costly, and with today’s economy people want to know that they are getting their money’s worth.

I am especially thankful for the amount of data Ancestry.com makes available, and have been able to link to many sources. However, I am also often frustrated by the amount of time and effort it takes to sort through the results of a search. Hopefully THAT will be addressed soon.

One other comment I have concerns a main reason I have for appreciating the Ancestry’s Family Trees: The ability to connect with relatives who are working on the same family. I have learned so much about some branches of my family that I would not have access to otherwise, including some great photos. The ability to see a picture of someone who is a part of you is priceless. I have also shared A LOT of information and photos. Often my searches bring me to my own material on someone else’s sight- a slight inconvenience when you are trying to find new information. But I like that merged information and photos are cited as to original submitter. Why would someone spend years accumulating information to bring to life people who would otherwise remain forgotten, and then not want to share that information with others. Wouldn’t that make all our work less meaningful?

I look forward to seeing improvements so that using Ancestry.com continues to be as fruitful and exciting as it has been. Thanks for your efforts.

July 11, 2009 at 9:08 pm
pat clary 

I’ve been a daily user…not now. It’s a pain to have so many clicks. The esthetic appeal of the pages have been lost. Key info has beenspread around. I’m spending my time having to scroll up and down. I’ve used Ancestry since 1999…have always loved it. Unfortunately the miriad of grey boxes for recent activity, media, etc. are a major interference…please please move it to the bottom, since it is of no use. I do realize that the typical reaction of the designer is a recurring response that “we need time to take time to get comfortable with the change”. I love change…just not this change. Cut your losses and accommodate your paying members. you can see for yourself that the grievances are SO profound that an error has been made. Don’t waste time defending it just because you developed it. It’s a mistake……….swallow you pride and work to get it right. Did you bother to consult with memebers, pilot it and work out the bugs ahead of time. The negative response is so overwhelming…it is only your own pride of ownership that makes you use the excuse that we’re all wrong…next timeuse a professonal with personal working knowledge of using the sight. It reminds of archaic sights that were being used in early 90′s It’s the first time that I’ve questioned the talent annd understnding of the team that did this. Please get those boxes out of the way! Not a happy customer…

July 11, 2009 at 11:29 pm
cris 

This is without a doubt one of the most disturbing website experiences I’ve ever had. I think the majority of subscribers feel the same way as #175 and Ancestry is in serious denial. This website is a maddening, frustrating, clicking and scrolling ordeal where everything is hidden, nothing is intuitive, the search engine can’t return comprehensible results and the slowness is like being back on dial-up. Ancestry is humming with their fingers in their ears.

July 12, 2009 at 1:25 am
Sodindo Banana 

I don’t like the new look for several reasons, the main one being that it just looks like crap.

All of it. It really does now, from top to bottom.

Why change the old format at all? This certainly didn’t speed *anything* up in the least…

July 12, 2009 at 9:01 am
Mal 

I, too, am not all that happy with the new look pages, but I’m also concerned with a couple of things that are not working as they were before the changes. I’ve sent feedback from my home page but thought I’d voice it here to find out if anyone else has the same problems.
The first thing is the age calculation in the Timeline. Previously, if you added the month to a census date, it would use this in calculating the age of the individual. As an example, I have a person born in Sep 1815, so at the date of the census in Apr 1871, he was 55 years old, but the Timeline now shows 56, where prior to the changes, it showed 55 because I had added the months to birth and census entries. Is this a bug and will it be rectified?
The other thing I’ve noticed is that when adding birth or death sources, on the ‘Review and save changes to your tree’ page, I’m now getting the ‘Show relatives on this record’ link, when surely there should not be any linked relatives for births or deaths?! What’s happening, guys? Are these known bugs?
Another dissatisfied customer hoping things will improve real soon now!

July 12, 2009 at 3:12 pm
Nancy 

I have also been getting the “Show Relatives on this Record” where there aren’t any. It seems to have saved them from either a previous search or a previous person I was working on.

July 12, 2009 at 5:40 pm
Sharon Frey 

HELP! I am finding duplicate children and spouses in my tree!!! The dups lead down the tree to the same people….my tree is a mess. I never had dups before the new “look” ruined my tree. I was always VERY CAREFUL NEVER TO DUPLICATE PEOPLE. What is going on???

AGAIN: I want my old tree back. Are you people not listening?? We hate this change.

July 12, 2009 at 10:03 pm
Joyce 

I cannot load my Pedigree file with this new format. However, I can access other’s with public trees. Is anyone else having this problem? I had a technician check-out my computer . . he says the problem is with Ancestry.com. I have asked them several times if others have this problem – of course I did not get an answer. They have never yet, admitted responsibility for anything. Very annoying, when you don’t know where the problem lies. I have the world deluxe membership. Beginning to wonder if it’s worth it.
And as others have said . . their search engine does suck!!
Joyce

July 12, 2009 at 10:24 pm
Nelda 

I am also having trouble with researching with this New Look. I went to research the census records and you have to put in the the Year, State, then it asks for County and then it asks for another choice. If I knew all of this, then I would not have to reseach the census. I could not research just by state. This is the first time that I have not been able to search by state. Does anyone have a solution for this?

July 12, 2009 at 10:32 pm
Monika Schaefer 

Re: Andy Hatchett #138.
Andy, Do not automatically assume that you know better! When ancestry.com told me that the reason my Census data had disappeared from my family trees, after I laboriously added it, was that I had duplicates: I immediately went to my trees and checked. I am germanic when it comes to detail work and could not believe I had done so. And, sure enough THERE WERE NO DUPLICATES IN ANY OF MY INDIVIDUALS TREES!!! (What I do have is several smaller trees consisting of branches of one larger tree! This, because some members of my family are not interested in great detail about the families that married into the family. I am! So, the same individual may show up in different trees, but I do not have duplicates in one andthe same tree! I should be able to have several trees on my site (instead of one of these trees that has 20,000 names in it where you cannot find the trees because of the forest!!) and the same person should be able to show up in DIFFERENT trees without being considered a DUPLICATE! And, I laboriously added the data to each one of these trees! So, the point here is still: Census data was deleted and I do NOT have duplicates in one and the same tree! THis has nothing to do with “downloading” other members trees as you imply! I have probably contributed more unique data to ancestry.com than you have, having personally travelled to the Czech Republic and spent weeks in Archives obtaining data that ancestry.com does not have. And, I have personally travelled to Austria to look through church records and archives there! So, do not lecture me on cloning and copying, thereby distracting from the real issue! Which is: when I work my head off downloading Census data, I do not want to be told that the reason why it has disappeared is “duplicate records”, and I do not want to be told that they only want to deal with that over the phone, not in writing! There is no question in my mind that the only reason they wanted to talk to me over the phone is to sell me the Family Tree Maker program in which I am not interested.

July 13, 2009 at 1:23 am
Andy Hatchett 

Re: Monika Schafer #183

Monika, A couple of things

1) Since my #138 was in reply to John’s post #136 I’m really confused. My post dealt with duplicates within the same tree – which you say isn’t your problem.

2). Since it was a reply to john’s post just where do you get off accusing me of lecturing you?? !!!

Next time you choose to upbraid someone I suggest you get your thoughts more organized and address what they actually said rather than post an emotional rant on what you think they said.

About the number of contributions you claim to have made to Ancestry- big deal-NOT!

To quote Rhett Butler- “Frankly my dear,…”

July 13, 2009 at 2:06 am
BEE 

I first discovered that I had “duplicates” when I went to “list of all people”, even with the old version. It happened because sisters married brothers, or somewhere in the family, a relative married a distant relative, and the families overlapped. The only way I could figure out not to have all those people repeated, as in the case of my mother’s two sisters, was to delete the parents of one of the brothers. It gets much more complicated when you don’t know that there was a relationship farther back in the family, and I just had to accept that I had early “history” in twice, and tried to distinguish them by a slight difference in a date of birth or something. I’m sure there is a better way, or not??

July 13, 2009 at 6:49 am
Marianne Granoff 

I do not much like the changes, but I really do not understand why we can no longer invite family members to see our trees? That section/option appears to have been completely removed. Why?

July 13, 2009 at 8:57 am
Andy Hatchett 

Re: Marianne #186

They moved it-see post #27.

July 13, 2009 at 9:47 am
Marianne Granoff 

RE #187 Andy

Thank you. That brings up another complaint though. The “Help” section is still designed for the old format. It tells me to look on the bottom right of the “Overview” page. When will “Help” be fixed to reflect this new format?

July 13, 2009 at 9:59 am
Marianne Granoff 

There is a “save changes” button on the “description” of my tree, but there does not appear to be any way to edit what is in the box currently??? Deletions do not work. Adding info does not work. Is this another new change?

July 13, 2009 at 10:18 am
Andy Hatchett 

Re: Marianne #188

LOL!

Your guess as to when the Help section will be updated is as good as mine.

Maybe when they decide what this abomination is *finally* going to really look like?

:0

July 13, 2009 at 11:20 am
Windy 

Bee #185
Yes, there is a better way:

Many of us have ancestors who married relatives.

Prior to adding a new person check to make sure that person is not already in your tree. If they are: use the offered option ‘select someone already in my tree’ and connect from there. That will integrate the ‘new’ person in to the family. If you add them as a new person they WILL show up as a duplicate.

July 13, 2009 at 2:21 pm
Monika Schaefer 

re: #184
Andy, Thank you so much for taking the time to respond to my blog. If you had not been so courteous in your response, I would have erroneously assumed that I was dealing with a young and immature punk. In the 70 years of my life I have come across a few of them!

I have absolutely no expertise in the rules of “blogging”. Several people complained, on this blog, about the fact that records they placed on a profile sheet have disappeared from their profile sheets. They further stated that ancestry.com told them that this has something to do with our having “duplicates” in our trees. So, when I read your statement, regardless of whom it was addressed to, I felt that you were “painting with a broad brush”, and I took the liberty to “chime in”. I stand corrected and profusely apologize for my mistake!

Not that I understand why “duplicates” should make records disappear. I can tell the records were there at one time, before they disappeared, because as I keep downloading them onto the same profile sheets, I find myself with e.g., three lines saying “Residence in 1910 – Des Moines, Iowa”–the latest addition “sourced” and the two previous ones “unsourced”. It is a puzzlement! And, like that other blogger, (# ?), I, too, have a very new Dell computer with all latest bells and whistles. So, the canned response from ancestry.com that it may be my web browser does not sound right either.

Keep up the good work!

Monika

July 13, 2009 at 4:53 pm
Kenny Freestone 

Thanks for your patience while I was out. During this time the team has been working on an update to the product that incorporates a few (not all, yet) of the most common feedback items we have received. I expect Wednesday this week we’ll make these updates. We expect this to be the beginning, not the end, of our feedback-based updates. We now also have more activity-based metrics to measure how you are using the new product, and what areas are seeing more (or less) traffic because of the change. This will also guide us as we refine the experience. We appreciate your continued feedback as you work with the product and get used to the change. We understand and acknowledge that change is hard, and I think we also see ways we could have made this change easier, so thank you for sticking with us.

===========================

Carole (#111)–Judy’s post 116 gives a link to the original Online Family Tree product. This link did not work for me. If you had trees in this system you can access them from the ancestry.com home page. In the bottom right section of that page you’ll see a “Other Links” section with a link to Online Family Tree inside it. After listening to feedback from many members we determined to postpone its eventual retirement, and the product is still available.

Michael (#1112)–if you are still seeing this error please contact our member services team (1 800 ANCESTRY).

Jeff (#119)–Are you referring to the “recent activity” tab? You can access this page when looking at the pedigree view by clicking the “Recent Activity” tab. From any page in the tree system you can get there by clicking the triangle to the right of your tree name in the upper left-hand section of the page.

Sharon (#132)–For item #1, which browser are you using? I’m able to right click and select “Open in New Window”. For item #2, we agree and hope to make this change soon.

Karen (#137)–The idea with the “Show Immediate Family” link is so you can see family members for a person even when not on the “overview” tab for that person. The most likely cause for the 1920 census showing up multiple times is perhaps it is cited multiple times for that individual.

Curt (#143)–We have this bug on our list to address soon. In the meantime a workaround is to have your browser print “background image” when you print.

Mal (#178)–The age calculation in the timeline is a bug and is being addressed.

Nancy (#179)–We’ve heard of this happening rarely in the past, but have not had an example to look at. We would love to have an example–if this comes up for you again please hold off on merging the person and email me (kfreestone at ancestry.com) a link to the page so we can investigate.

Sharon (#180)–We’d like to investigate this more. Please email me (kfreestone at ancestry.com) a link to an example of the duplicate people in your tree. Our recent changes have been strictly at the presentation level–the underlying data was not changed at all.

Joyce (#181)–It sounds like there is a problem with your family tree that is preventing us from displaying it properly. Please email me (kfreestone at ancestry.com) a link to your pedigree page and we’ll investigate further.

Monika (#183)–Please give our member services team the chance to help.

Marianne (#189)—The “Save changes” button on the tree description field seems to be working fine for us. Perhaps we can investigate why this is not working in your case. Please email me (kfreestone at ancestry.com) a link to your family tree and we will investigate.

July 13, 2009 at 5:50 pm
Andy Hatchett 

Monika Re: #192

Thanks for your reply. No immature punk here- just a 66 year old grumpy old man.
*grin*

I also fail to understand why “duplicates” should make records disappear. I’ve seen a lot of strange things lately on Ancestry but that is just flat weird!

July 13, 2009 at 7:46 pm
Mary Beth Marchant 

Kenny, I would never, ever have guessed about the little triangle to the right of my tree name. It’s nice to find it but who wudda thunk it.

July 13, 2009 at 9:34 pm
Jade 

Andy, re: #194,

Not to butt in here in-depth, but having seen trees that have 7 or more duplicates of a person and varying quantities and permutations of the person’s descendants, I can see how it would occur to a telephone call-center person that perhaps a record was attached to one of a duplicated person, but the tree owner didn’t keep going back to that specific version of the individual.

That is, the record was duly attached, but not to all of the possible clones or semi-clones that the owner returned to (say, via a bookmark rather than by name-searching).

Sometimes communications between call-center persons and customers are hard. The CCP has to start with basics, which may offend the frustrated customer . . . .

Many tree owners do not realize what the effects are of clicking on those Very Disruptive And Hazardous “Tree” hints. That harmless-looking little green “Accept” button should be a large red sign reading “Danger, clicking this button could add 2,573 duplicated persons from each of 85 trees to your tree” — and a loud Klaxon should sound when a mouse pointer gets anywhere near it.

July 13, 2009 at 9:44 pm
Linda 

I know that this is the wrong page to say this but, I need someone to make the family group sheets that are filled in during research to be printable. I have done so much work on this and have so many people listed with their families. Then I found out that after all the work all I can print out is the pedigree. I am so upset that I am thinking of quiting. Please help us all out by allowing us to print out the “filled in” forms that would go along with the family tree. Thanks for your time. Linda

July 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm
BEE 

Windy #191, thank you for your help. After some trial and error it worked.

July 14, 2009 at 6:45 am
Windy 

Linda #197
I see that no one from Ancestry has responded to your question so will put in my 2 cents worth. I agree with you re: being able to print out all the work you have done. Don’t give up. Ancestry offers us a lot of research info but seems to flounder when it comes to the basics. I’ve found it worthwhile to take advantage of what Ancestry has to offer while at the same time maintaining a ‘duplicate’ tree on tribal pages. TP is a back to the basics site which may be perceived by some as a little old fashioned and I hope they stay that way. They offer EXCELLENT print options.

July 14, 2009 at 12:01 pm
Jamie Lynn 

Since my last post to this blog I have had to set my settings even smaller so bear with me as I can not see what I am writing.

Just a few comments and then I will shut my mouth.

# 1, After many years of hitting the EDIT button at the bottom of some ones name I am now constantly hitting the show immediate family tab when ever I try to edit someone’s information.. Just wondering why I would need to see immediate family when they are already on the same page??? Siblings are already one click away when you click their parents name. Now I an having to scroll across the page to find the edit button that is suspended in space and off by it self with out any connection to anyone. Wondering again why the edit button is so far away from the person I want to edit. After all, isn’t that the point, to Edit these people when we find new information on them..

# 2, I do like the option of seeing all the photos I have downloaded for the same person, BUT,, I can now click MEDIA GALLERY under the MEDIA GALLERY Tab, or click VIEW THE MEDIA GALLERY, under the Media Gallery header, or click the word PHOTO’S in the tiny little box under the header labeled media gallery. Three places to click to get to the same place with in inches of each other, WHY!!!!! This brings me back to my complaint of the new looks being way to busy with to many tabs and to many tool bars that lead to the same places with way to many clicks, Hello!!! Honestly, do we really need three places to click to get to the same place?????

# 3, Cant remember where it was but I believe the search for other people looking for the same person is not longer available, Bummer I cant find it any more.

# 4, Thankfully I still have the option to go to the OLD SEARCH as I now have no idea how to get to the 1850 census with the new search with out scrolling through the 186.284 pages of the census & voters list and then it suddenly appears, walla, like magic but not before I have started clicking & scrolling through all the pages….

I’ll repeat myself AGAIN. DON’T TAKE THE OLD SEARCH AWAY FROM ME, CAUSE I WILL CANCEL MY SUBSCRIPTION……
I will no longer have the need to pay for a subscription when I can no longer access any records, don’t you think???

This new LOOK sucks big time. For those of us who do not have 20/20 vision, the page all starts to run together and I can’t stay on for hours at a time like I used to. I get to many HEADACHES..

On another note. I have just had a MAJOR break through in my tree. When I say break through, I am talking about the kind of break through that only happens once in a life time for some people.. Now it seems the people I want notified with the new updates on their direct line are NOT being notified.

Look, I know I have become spoiled over the years with all that you provide, BUT when you take it away or change something so drastically, it it is truly devastating.

July 14, 2009 at 12:28 pm
Linda Holley 

Hate the new format. Will not be using it for my tree and will take it down as soon as I find a program I like.

Time would have been better spent giving members more records. As usual the solftware group have to “invent” something new. Sad!

July 14, 2009 at 3:19 pm
Carole 

Kenny, re #193 and Judy’s link.

Sigh.

Let’s go back a year or so when Ancestry first announced the transition from the old online tree system to the new ancestry tree system. At that time you announced that the original system would be shut down, but due to screams and protests, the shut down of the old online tree was postponed until a later date. I believe you were giving it another 6 months or so of life before the shut down.

You declared that any new modifications to the old online tree system would not be updated or reflected, and this proved to be true because people were working on their trees through the old system, and the information was not being updated through ancestry’s servers. All we were told was that we must now transfer our trees over to the NEW ancestry tree system, and if we did not transfer our trees over, the information in the old tree system would be frozen in time and once frozen, nothing could be added or removed.

I immediately removed my tree from Ancestry.com and started working on a home program.

However, the complaints still came pouring in regarding the elmination of the old online tree system. Judy herself was one of the most vocal complainers as I recall.

One day during the extended timeline predicted by Ancestry.com, the links to the old online tree system disappeared. I had no idea where they went, did not bother to look for the link and presumed that ancestry had followed through on their promise to get rid of that old system so that subscribers would focus on the new tree with all the clicks and graphics.

If there still is a hidden link to the old tree system, even if it is a “working” tree sytem, that old online tree system is now is a moot point. New subscribers will never know it’s there and won’t use the old tree system. All new subscribers are immediately directed to the new tree tree system which is AGAIN being changed; this time to resemble the Family Tree Maker program (which I detest by the way)and which AGAIN does not allow any researchers to view notes or sources for accuracy.

It’s much easier for me to use my Rootsmagic program at home, export my gedcom file and upload it into Rootsweb. That way, people can read my detailed source information, with Will transcriptions or other documents that I choose to post.

All the fancy graphics, drop down boxes, flashing green leaves, and the inadequate bug-laden irreparable new search feature will not keep subscribers. Some of these features will drive them away. I use Ancestry less and less all the time and I used to love your webstite. Now it has become a frustrating and exhausting chore to find most of the information I need.

Get your act together Ancestry. Gebweb sites, County historical and genealogical sites, State genealogical sites, FamilySearch, Footnotes, HeritageQuest, State Archive sites, NARA, private family webpages and countless other websites offer the same or more information with less aggravation.

People can work on their family trees at home, and blog on the internet on family websites.

So, I vote thumbs down on your “new” new Ancestry Member tree. No afhtenal, no notes, the pedigree view is deficient and there is nothing but sloppy genealogy out there now.

Today just for a comparison factor I put in the last name of one of my immediatee family members, and the search brought up 28 Ancestry members trees. Of those 28 member trees, 24 of them were absolutely identical. How does that help the researcher? Nothing is sourced. And those trees were wrong by the way. My information is sourced directly by original documents through the Czech archives so whoever put the first tree up was guessing at their information and 23 people cloned that person’s wrong information without hesitation.

And now you are messing around with the Rootsweb trees. Shame on you.

July 14, 2009 at 3:21 pm
Cindy 

I have been a long time user of Ancestry.com and appreciate all the time, effort and energy that goes into maintaining a sight like Ancestry. The incredible amount of information that is available and all of the other things that Ancestry offers makes it fun to do research. It is not perfect but I have made many connections with unknown relatives and have been able to fill in a lot of my family history through the efforts of Ancestry. Having done research long before computers it is amazing what can now be found through Ancestry sitting in my office, instead of long drawn out correspondences and travel. Thanks for all you do.

July 14, 2009 at 6:55 pm
Cindy 

I too agree with Rina and others. It is too messy, harder to find things and too much looking here and there. The old way was much easier to see and find things. Karen…I totally agree with your idea of having the choice of using the Old or the new.

I too work on site almost daily and this is a big disappointment to me.

PLEASE give us the option of using the old version!! Especially since we do pay to use this site we should have an option that is easiest for us.

I too will be removing my family trees if we are not given the choice to use the OLD VERSION. Why pay that much money for something I don’t like and is hard to find stuff and navigate. There are other websites out there that will maybe LISTEN to their PAYING customers!!

July 14, 2009 at 9:02 pm
Andy Hatchett 

Just because you pay a subscription fee does not mean you get to demand what options, if any, you get.

If you and others will be leaving if you can’t use the old version, so be it; but believe me- the old version is dead and gone and will not return.

Your choices are limited to two:

1) Use the new version
2) Quit using Ancestry

If you choose #1 you can make suggestions on how the new version may be improved (as long as the suggestion is *not* returnig to the old version) and could thus influence future development of teh new version.

If you choose #2 then you have no influence on future developments.

These are the cold hard facts – and threats of not renewing subscriptions won’t move Ancestry one inch.

July 14, 2009 at 10:28 pm
Tanya 

Click, Click, and Re-Click. Research Information, Relationship Events and Notes have disappeared from my trees. I am constantly having to resize the page, look at blurry fonts, and try to wade my way through a confusing mess. This new format is a pain. One minute I have multiple tabs, the next time I log on I only have three (am I missing something here?). I have been wasting time for days just trying to find my previous research, leaving no time to continue searching (and wasting more time wading through irrelevant search information in places such as Timbuktu in 1930 when I was looking for Kentucky in 1820). People I have invited to join my trees are just as unable to quickly find info as I am. It is too convoluted and confusing.

I have always had a problem with the unrelated search results, but at least I could look at my trees and see relevant information at a glance. Now, I am wasting time just looking for the info I have accumulated for years — a lot that seems to be gone forever. Not only do I now have to flip flop back and forth between my offline program and Ancestry, but if I want my trees to offer the same info before this “new look” I am going to have to enter it online all over again. Why should I bother with Ancestry at all????

At first I thought this change might be a good idea. I made the mistake of assuming Ancestry would set it up similar to an offline genealogy program and that the tabs might help. Wrong! I should have remembered that old saying about those of us that make assumptions…

I pay Ancestry.com in order to work on my family genealogy. I don’t care about their advertising concerns. I don’t care about adding unconfirmed/unsourced information to my own tree with just (another) click. As a subscriber I should have the ability and options to set up and view my trees in a manner that suits me. Now I am caught in a catch 22 situation; I would like to cancel my subscription and get out of here, but… what happens to my ability to communicate, research, and share with others I have connected with online??? Ancestry continues to ignore their subscribers suggestions and comments and push ahead with their advertising campaigns. Is anyone else sick and tired of seeing ads on pages that we are already paying for?

I honestly feel that Ancestry has become a corporate monster that has absolutely no desire to meet its subscribers needs.

From a Very Unhappy Paying Customer.

July 15, 2009 at 7:58 am
Tanya 

Andy,

I should have read your comment #205 before I posted mine regarding my wish to leave Ancestry. You are so right; it is one of the those no-win types of situations.

Tanya

July 15, 2009 at 8:03 am
Nancy Rogers 

Having looked at all the comments that have been given here just verifies for me one thing…DO NOT keep your family tree file on line. Purchase one of the stand alone programs and use it. About two years ago I realized that Ancestry was pulling the family trees from Rootsweb and charging for them at which point I pulled my tree off line. I am still getting about the same number of contacts as I was before and I am no longer afraid that 20 years worth of work is going to end up lost.

July 15, 2009 at 8:59 am
Kenny Freestone 

Today we have rolled to the site a handful of updates designed to respond to feedback we have received through this blog and through our online feedback tool. The changes we made this morning include:

* Bigger picture area on person’s profile (but only if a there is a picture to show.)
* Edit button returned to near person’s name & vital information
* Birth and death dates and places restored to area just under the name
* Ancestry Hints moved away from vital info to right hand side of person card
* “show immediate family” link moved slightly into the toolbar section (to make a spot for the “edit” button)
* Sharpened distinction between parent/child in family members section
* Tightened spacing on family members section
* Easier to read font in the timeline section

Also we have addressed a handful of bugs that have hampered navigation and caused frustration.

Once again, this is the beginning, not the end, of our feedback-based updates. We appreciate your continued feedback as you work with the product and get used to the change.

==========================

Mary Beth (#195)–We agree it is a handy navigation aid that is much too hard to find.

Linda (#197)–We hear you and many others expressing the same need for a printer friendly version of the family group sheet. It is on our list.

Jamie (#200)–We hope our changes this morning help with your item #1. For #3 you should see that link in the row of tools just above the tabs. Congratulations on your major breakthrough–Were the people you want notified getting updates before the change? Sometimes the notification emails are lost to the SPAM folder, or a recipient might change their settings to no longer receive them. We did not make changes to that portion of our service with this change.

Linda (#201)–We maintain an astounding pace of adding new and updating existing records. Please visit http://www.ancestry.com/search/rectype/recent.aspx for an updated list.

Tanya (#206)–A corporation lives and dies by its ability to serve its customers’ needs. We’re keenly aware of this and have multiple avenues to better understand what all our members want. We are listening and responding, and invite everyone to participate in the discussion on how to improve the experience.

July 15, 2009 at 9:03 am
Jamie Lynn 

Kenny Freestone, Ancestry.com # 209

Thanks a bunch for moving my edit button back where it belongs. This will help me tremendously. See, I knew there was some one in there listening to me, lol..

As for my major breakthrough, I got a message from someone through Ancestry and that’s where it all started. The new message system you have is great but I can’t find it unless I go back to my email. Anyway I can find it other then refering back to my email?? This breakthrough was awesome but as far as the notification, Yes, everyone was getting them before. I haven’t even received any and I have added allot. I had this problem before and then it just corrected itself. I did contact everybody through email about the new updates, photos, documents, etc.

I can’t find my shoe box either. Do you know where it went??

Just so you ALL know, I will NEVER DELETE MY TREE. This has taken me years of hard work and it is a Legacy I leave for my children, Grand-children, and so on. My username & password is in my Will.. So regardless if I cancel my subscription because I cant find anything in the new search method, my tree will always remain.

I love Ancestry!! I would work on my tree 27/7 if I had the time. My husband would agree and believes Ancestry.com is a good birth control method, lol. I have been spending more time with my husband now because of my frustration with the new layout, colors, fonts, tab’s tool bars, etc.

I will give you time to work out all the bugs as I see now that you are actually listening and have already rectified some of the problems. But, PLEASE don’t take away the OLD SEARCH!! Don’t let that be one of your permanent changes.

Thanks again Kenny

July 15, 2009 at 10:37 am
Billie Ranson 

Thank you for the changes this morning. Now if you could move parents back to the space vacated by birth and death dates it would make navigation quicker. Surely the “Hints” there could be moved.
I like to see parents without having to scroll down the page to find them.

July 15, 2009 at 10:44 am
mary hardin 

Better, Thanks. I miss the pictures next to the person’s box however. Like to see whose I have and those I do not have at a glance rather than clicking on the name.

July 15, 2009 at 10:52 am
Tanya 

Kenny (#209),

Thank you for your feedback. I sincerely hope that Ancestry is listening. A few years ago I cancelled my membership mainly due to the inaccuracies in the databases (primarily incorrect transcriptions). I came back in Jan 2008; since then I try to be conscientious about making corrections/comments when applicable and I appreciate that this ability is available.

Reading this blog indicates many subscribers are leaning more towards the negative side of the new changes rather than the positive. However, I am happy to see that changes are already being made due to the feedback.

I use Ancestry because it has a tremendous amount of historical records in one place. Having an online tree, sharing pictures/stories, and inviting others to view and participate is nice and convenient, but it is secondary to my research.

The search results are still a big problem and it doesn’t matter if I use the old or new search. Time management is an issue both during searches and with the alleged “new site improvements.” I don’t believe there is any question that Ancestry has really bumped up their advertising campaign this year; I see it on the majority of genealogy sites I use, as well on television commercials, etc. The concept that advertising creates new subscribers and generates dollars for the corporation is a no-brainer, but imo the research aspect of Ancestry is suffering. In an attempt to make the site more commercially pleasing the main purpose, Ancestry’s databases and the subscribers’ ability to do research, seems to have lessened in value.

I realize we will never see the old version of our research and trees again. However, I sincerely hope Ancestry will continue to fix the new version and the search parameters to make the site more user friendly for both old and new subscribers.

Tanya

July 15, 2009 at 11:04 am
Mary Beth Marchant 

This comment is directed to comment 210-Jamie Lynn

I do hope that you are keeping your family tree research in a stand alone Family Tree soft ware program. If you are leaving your log on,etc to Ancestry.com, do not depend on this web site to keep the results of your research. Ancestry has started and abandoned many different family tree options over the years and this one may go that way as well. Do not ever depend on a website to keep your research for you. Keep it yourself, make a book, keep records. I do hope you are doing all of that and then some. Your grandchildren will bless you for it.

July 15, 2009 at 11:12 am
Mary Beth Marchant 

Kenny, I am glad to see some of the new corrections this morning. However, I do not see any distinction between parents and children listings on the right side of the page. In the one I am looking at, the mother’s name is only slightly(maybe 1/32 of an inch) over from the children. This distinction should be much greater. The pink and blue colors still look very faded to me. The only way I can tell it is the mother is to look at the age of the parent. This definitely needs more work. As far as adding siblings, in my opinion, under the “show siblings” box on the right side of the page, y’all need to bring back the ability to add siblings and children here rather than having to click back over to some other area to add children/siblings. At least, y’all have made a good start on it. Not there yet but a good start.

July 15, 2009 at 11:22 am
Mary Beth Marchant 

One other comment–under “show immediate family” I still do not understand why only 1 child can be added here. “Add spouse” shows as well as “Add child” but ONLY ONE CHILD. Why??? This does not make sense. Either do not allow addition of any children here or allow all children to be added one after the other. But ONE CHILD does not make sense.

July 15, 2009 at 11:28 am
Barbara 

I too, like Jamie #210, would like to know what happened to the “Shoebox”. I have a lot saved in it. Some things for future reference and other things because I was not able to save them to a tree because I found them manually and did not go though a search. This is very frustrating to finally find a record and not be able to save it to a person in a tree. So were is the shoebox?

Also, on the “Recent Activity” page please put back the “Last person viewed” feature. I used that all the time. I would be able to go directly to the last person I was working on without having to make a note or remember whose page I was on. It is especially helpful when you have gone off the path in researching records and you want to get back to the person you were originally working on.

July 15, 2009 at 11:54 am
Barbara 

re my post: #217
Found the “Shoebox”. It’s on the Home page. With all the changes I’m forgetting where things are. All these changes are just too confusing, distracting, frustrating and annoying.

July 15, 2009 at 1:01 pm
Jamie Lynn 

Mary Beth # 214

Yes I export my tree all the time to a personal family file. The only thing it wont export is all my photo’s. That is a bummer but I have them ALL on CD’s and labeled accordingly as it has taken me many years to locate them all. I also have filing cabinet’s full of stuff.

Barbara # 218

Where on earth on the homepage did you find it? I have been searching for 2 day’s and can’t find it anywhere, ARG.

Also, Anybody know whats going on with the quick links? I can add things to my Quick links but cant get to them other then through the tool bar I had to install on my computer. But, when I click on the “my quick links” in the tool bar on my computer it just loads & loads all day long with out anything ever showing up. I DID have allot in there but now I cant get to it…

Kenny Freestone # 209

One last thing. I really need my last person viewed back on my homepage like everybody else. I can be a bit forgetful and I used that ALLOT to remind me where I left off..

Thanks a bunch!!!

July 15, 2009 at 1:29 pm
Barbara 

Jamie #219
If you can’t find the “Shoebox” on your homepage your probably have to add it from the “Customize your homepage” on the top right.

Kenny
It would be nice to have a link to the “Shoebox” somewhere else in addition to the homepage maybe on the drop bar across the top.

July 15, 2009 at 1:59 pm
Pat Secord 

So far – much better! Thank-you!

July 15, 2009 at 4:24 pm
Andy Hatchett 

Kenny and others.

I’ve posted a message and a proposed layouot for the new profile view on the Member Trees Message Board.

http://boards.rootsweb.com/topics.ancestry.membertrees/410/mb.ashx

I’d be interested in what others think.

July 15, 2009 at 5:06 pm
Sodindo Banana 

Really, why not just change the format back to what it was? It worked.

What’s the point of “tinkering” with this new setup? Admit that it’s a goof, scrap it, and give the subscribers what they want. If not, I’m seriously considering dropping my tree too: this new arrangement is just hideous in too many ways to list.

There was just never a good reason to make things *worse*. Change it back already.

July 15, 2009 at 11:14 pm
Robert Esch 

Thanks Kenny for the changes. As long as you are making a few changes, I have a suggestion. The Database menu called “card catalog” might better be called Database; it is more descriptive of what it contains. I found it once, then forgot, and finally found it again.

July 15, 2009 at 11:16 pm
Robert Esch 

I just looked at Andy Hatchett’s proposed alternative “overview.” I agree with it; it was an idea I considered also. Having the parents of the individual to the right of the individual reminds us of the initial pedigree, and prevents confusing the parents with the spouse/children, the type of mistake I am prone to make when I am in a hurry.

July 15, 2009 at 11:27 pm
Marni 

I just looked at Andy Hatchett’s proposed new look for ancestry.com and it’s just what we need. Everyone and everything easily in front of you with tabs to go to places from there. I appreciate the updates that occurred today, but on my screen I have a bunch of black boxes all over my profile page – some have names, some do not. I clicked on a few without names and found that one is meant to go to the top of the page and another is an “edit the person” box. I still do not like to have to scroll my screen down to be able to see spouse, children and sources that used to be very handy.

July 16, 2009 at 9:57 am
Jamie Lynn 

Andy Hatchett # 222

Hi Andy, you are off to a good start. Wish I knew how to do that as I have some really great idea’s that I will try to explain.

First, with both views, the now new look and Andy’s version.

My biggest problem are the many boxes and lines. The tool bar at the very top HOME, FAMILY TREE”S ETC needs to stay as that is where we go to get out side of the tree.

Then there is the box with the persons name, photo, vitals etc. I love Andy’s idea of putting the parents back up and to the right of that person. Makes it clear that they are Parents and not children.

Now as for the tool bar directly under the person. (show immediate family, view family tree etc”.

SHOW IMMEDIATE FAMILY. We could get rid of the show immediate family as we already have the show siblings under the parents which will do the same thing by dropping down the siblings and showing ALL immediate family already. Just a thought so don’t crucify me for asking.. If people want to keep the SHOW IMMEDIATE FAMILY it could be moved just above the person and out of the way.

VIEW FAMILY TREE. This is a must to keep as I refer to it every time I come across some another tree to see how closely related they are to people in my own tree. But this could also be put above the person with the SHOW IMMEDIATLY FAMILY.

SEARCH HISTORICAL RECORDS should be placed below the person as that is what we do, look for more records…

PRINT OR PUBLISH needs to go above the person with the others as that is not something we are constantly doing over & over again every day. get it out of the way with the rest.

ADD A NOTE is good but no one but you can add a note so we could get that out of the way by putting it at the top also.

MORE OPTIONS while I do like this little feature we could move this at the top as well or incorperate it into the page below the historical records down on the right side like it was before. Makes it fun for new to explore this feature. They will never know it is there under more options.

NOW that we got the first tool bar out of the way and out of our faces we cleaned it up a bit with the exception of the SEARCH HISTORICAL RECORDS. I’ll get back to that later.

NoW on to the TABS

OVERVIEW is nice but is only a valuable tool to get back to the person when clicking on the other tab’s. Why not put BACK TO SO & SO like before??

FACTS & SOURCES. Maybe this is just me but all the fact’s and sources are already on the page. You can easily see the sources by clicking on the source citations. I think it could go also but for those of you who may need this FACTS & SOURCES we could move that above the person in a nice streamline box that would include the other stuff I mentioned above.

MEDIA GALLERY. We already have a media gallery for that person so why not put a media gallery or photo thingy up above the person that will take us back to ALL of the photos in our tree like before.

COMMENTS should be some where easily seen and SHOULD also include the # of Comments made so if there are comments they will NOT be over looked.

HINTS We already have hints but should be underneath the person so we don’t have to scroll across the page.

MEMBER CONTACT ?? Still can’t access this thing..

THE MEDIA GALLERY BOX that includes the photos and the little tiny box on the left that has photos, stories, audio & video is enough. But take the Stories out of there. I’ll tell you where to put that in a minute. Leave the photos visable but get rid of the view the media gallery below the photos and just add a little box that says add photos. Simple and not to hard to figure out. We can already see the photos by clicking on the arrows and we can also see ALL the photos for that person when we click on the word photo. Thus there is no reason for the MEDIA GALLERY TAB or the VIEW MEDIA GALLERY under the photos.

Now for SEARCH FOR HISTORICAL RECORDS, COMMENTS, STORIES etc. These things should be placed underneath the person where the SHOW IMMEDIATE FAMILY, VIEW FAMILY TREE ETC are now. If you place them underneath the edit button but still inside the box where the edit button has been returned to they will be out of the way and easily accessable and will eliminate the need for all the tabs. Thus getting rid of the toll bar underneath the person and the tabs as well. Walla, a cleaned up Family tree page.

Also, as for the persons box, as in where their photo is, the vital info like birth & death date & place and where the parents should be on the far right. Could we clean that up a bit, like getting rid of all those lines. If I was more of a Computer wiz like Andy, I could show you what I mean. God, I wish I knew how to do that. It would save me allot of time typing something I can’t see, lol…

Anyway, those are my ideas. The tool bar above the person should also be a dark green to separate it from the rest of the page. like the MEDIA GALLERY, TIME LINE, FAMILY MEMBERS and so on.

July 16, 2009 at 11:31 am
Suzanne 

My pages, instead of having tabs across with Facts/Sources, Comments, Hints, etc., look like an old venetian blind that goes half-way down the page. Is anyone else having this problem? Also EDIT Person floats to different areas.

Iam not thrilled with the new design. There is too much on the page and the colors blend, so it is hard to find anything.

I have updated to the new version.

July 16, 2009 at 12:24 pm
Marni 

To Suzanne #228 -
That is exactly what my page looks like. I tried sending a link to the tech dept., but they say they can’t access attachments. I did a screenshot and got the same response. It is very frustrating to have to scroll down all those rows of “venetian blinds” (great name for it, by the way!) to even see family info. How does that get fixed? Are we the only two that are affected by this?

July 16, 2009 at 1:37 pm
Andy Hatchett 

Jamie Re: #227

What I did was fairly simple.

Just open a profile view of a person and then do a control-print screen. Open the Windows “Paint” program and then do a control-v to paste it in. You can then play with it however you want. it took maybe 15 minutes for me to put that together.

July 16, 2009 at 1:54 pm
Kenny Freestone 

Jamie (#219)–we agree the link to last person viewed needs to be returned.

Mary Beth (#215)–we’ll explore some other design options to further distinguish spouse/children. We’re hearing from several that the change was good, but not good enough.

Andy (#222)–thanks for such a clear example of what you are thinking–we’re looking and it and discussing.

Jamie (#227)–Thanks for the excellent description. (It is also a great example of the saying a picture is worth a thousand words–you typed 965. :) )

Suzanne and Marni (#s228 & 229)–Please send a screen shot to me via email (kfreestone at ancestry.com). We’ll investigate what you are seeing. Also please include information about which browser you are using.

July 16, 2009 at 2:43 pm
Billie Ranson 

For #228 and #229 : Internet Explorer 6 causes this.It can’t handle the new release. Do you know if you are using this browser? Records such as Censuses also do not show on the profile page until you click “View Details”. I downloaded Firefox but upgrading the browswer to IE 7 will also work. I know exactly what you are seeing. Everything seems to be working properly now for me with Firefox except the elevator bar when using the Image enhancer requires extra clicking to view the page.It is covered by the image and I have to reduce the size to 25% and then enlarge to be able to move around on the page.

July 16, 2009 at 3:37 pm