Posted by Ancestry Team on September 19, 2015 in Australia, Canada, United Kingdom, Website

Welcome to our weekly update on the new Ancestry website. Last week we posted an article that covered the upcoming feature to show all events on LifeStory.

These past couple of weeks most of our efforts have been on a few ‘behind the scenes’ initiatives such as:

  • Media Gallery: photo cropping and other improvements
  • Facts View: thumbnails and other
  • Other bug fixes

We also updated Photo Hints and you can now click to view photos from hints and search results and go directly to the new Media Gallery, where you have a richer and fuller viewing experience of the record.

CSU_PhotoHints

Features that we are still working on:

  • Media Viewer enhancements – making it easier to link more people to an image, setting and unsetting an image as a profile image, making the interface more intuitive
  • Profile picture cropping– Edit/crop a profile photo to better fit or from multiple people to a single person.
  • Member Connect – Find other members researching a similar ancestor and save info from their family trees
  • Family Group Sheet – A family view of the of the person and their family

Top Reported Issues

Below is a status on some of the top issues surfacing from your feedback.

  • Inaccurate narrations in LifeStory and Facts view– We are looking at the language in the narrations and how to better generate narratives.
  • A white font on a dark background is hard for some users to see. We have adjusted font size and background color in several areas to improve the experience.
  • Circle photo frames on the profile photos. Some users dislike having a circle profile picture.

We appreciate your feedback and encourage you to keep submitting it. What do you love about the new website? Did you find a bug? Something doesn’t quite work like you think it should? Please submit it via this form. Thank you.

We will be providing more updates over the next couple of weeks.

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136 Comments

  1. Don V

    Thanks for the update. Loving the new changes. More stream lined, the info is all in one place and I really like the visual link of the sources to the facts they support. Keep up the great work. The site just keeps getting better.

  2. Patrick

    Circle photo frames on the profile photos. Some users dislike having a circle profile picture. It’s more than just not liking them… they don’t work for documents or headstones. Not every profile has a portrait. How does one effectively crop a death certificate? It is also an impossible task to go back through our family trees and crop each portrait to properly fit the round profile. I’m not sure what is driving Ancestry’s insistence on maintaining the round porthole format when it obviously doesn’t serve the needs or wishes of your subscribers.

  3. smh

    So many companies have fallen by the wayside when they neglected to listen to their customer base. While I understand the belief that change is sometimes necessary I simply cannot understand the mindset of any company who refuses to listen to, respond to or even acknowledge their paying customers. Your request that we submit what we love about the “New” version seems a bit one sided. So I will not comment about what I don’t love, instead I’ll ask, do you not remember the disaster Coca Cola experienced when they changed their formula or how long it took to rebuild their brand?

  4. Kathy

    Yesterday while in classic in the middle of a search they flliped to the new, changed back, now its very slow like dial up. How come no one is addressing the fact no one can print out a fact sheet.

  5. Dora

    Thank you for letting us, as users, have the opportunity to submit feedback. This is first time I have been a part of a web site build that has taken this approach. Starting from the bottom up has to be a large undertaking. It seems like progress is slow on my side of things, but in the end it looks like it will be a web site that the users have had a huge influence in building.

  6. Crystal

    Hey, Ancestry! Why can’t you give us SPECIFIC updates on what you’ve been doing? What does “other bug fixes” mean? And “behind the scenes” is pretty generic. What are you actually doing? When you say you’re working on “Facts View: thumbnails and other” does that mean you’re working on ADDING that option to the “New” Ancestry or working on eliminating it all together? We probably wouldn’t sound as frustrated as we do in these comments if you’d just let us know what’s really going on.

    Also, I’m still wondering if your plans include fixing the records and documents print process so we can print with a white background. A copy of a Will with faded 100-year-old handwriting on a gray background is pretty darn hard to decipher. And I’m going broke with all the black ink my printer is using.

    We’re trying to work with you, Ancestry. Please don’t make it more difficult than it already is.

  7. arf

    This must be a joke. Why would they even put this in writing? It’s worthless. Not sure which I find more offensive. This is from the Sept. 19 update:
    Top Reported Issues
    Below is a status on some of the top issues surfacing from your feedback.
    Inaccurate narrations in LifeStory and Facts view– We are looking at the language in the narrations and how to better generate narratives. Users want Ancestry to get their hands out of their trees. The real solution, is to eliminate the ridiculous life story and let the user narrate his own ancestor’s story.

    A white font on a dark background is hard for some users to see. We have adjusted font size and background color in several areas to improve the experience. – What adjustment? Nothing has improved the experience, or the fact that pale lettering on a dark background should not be used. Whatever improvement someone thinks they have made is so miniscule it’s unnoticeable. Very snappy looking change to an almost illegible format.

    Circle photo frames on the profile photos. Some users dislike having a circle profile picture. (I I think this is my favorite) This was never a like or dislike issue. Square pictures to NOT fit properly in a round frame, no matter how much cropping you do. The real solution is to give up on that sorry idea and leave people’s photos alone.

  8. douggrf

    To suggest that a mere dislike of circular porthole framing in profiles is a cause of the site members …. well that is far from the point. And the development staff has received plenty of feedback on this since the release of private Beta phase 1 in February 2015!
    And they characterize the members as disliking the circle? ! No this is complete arrogance on their part.
    The circle is a poor design aesthetic – a major finding of the graphic arts forever! It does frame anything common to ancestry and genealogy with any special value at all. It is in juxtaposition the companion graphic element for the profiles in pedigree view which remains a dynamic square. What is wrong with the ancestry management and development staffing? Incompetence comes to mind!

  9. Carmen

    I still can’t get used to how spread out everything feels on the new facts page. I just can’t seem to be able to glance at an individual’s information there and refresh my memory on that person’s facts the way I could on the old overview page.

    Other features I used a lot are missing. Such as:

    1. When viewing the records under the “Related” tab inside the document viewer I used to be able to right click on a suggested record and open it in a separate tab without leaving the document I’m currently viewing. This was extremely helpful. That is no longer possible. Although, it can still be done when clicking on someone who saved the current record to their tree. Which brings up my next issue:

    2. When clicking on someone who saved a record to their tree I used to be taken to the person in their tree to whom the record was saved. But now, I’m taken to the home person in the tree overview! Why? This makes no sense at all.

    3. Not being able to see on the facts page all the media I have attached to a person is a huge setback. I need to be able to easily see what is attached to each person without have to go to a separate media gallery.

    4. The ability to access my “List of All People” without having to first go to the main tree overview page.

    5. For the love of God, give up on the frickin’ circles!

  10. patti

    Doug, my bet is on face-recognition. Why else would they be so stubborn about the circles? They haven’t heard enough complaints? No…there is an ulterior motive for sticking to this terrible decision.

  11. douggrf

    My post above was supposed to be worded as following: The circle is a poor design aesthetic – a major finding of the graphic arts community forever! It does NOT frame anything common to ancestry and genealogy with any special quality value at all. And it appears in juxtaposition to the companion graphic element for the profiles in pedigree view which remains a dynamic square.
    To Patti – yes they were trying for face recognition initially in the beta testing – but it of course, like many automation techs – failed as a whole – then members complaints focused on the team so badly – they just went back to measuring the original photo width to crop with a circle of the same diameter. Looks ugly and totally out of place.

  12. JBon

    I let my subscription expire because I had to reformat my Vista computer and realized I forgot to save the patch Ancestry sent me for FTM Ver 16. When I asked to have the patch again, I was told it is no longer available. It is sad that companies update their software to the point that older computers will not work correctly with it. Some of us cannot afford new computers and new software every time something changes. I enjoyed the FTM Ver 16–cannot stand the busy look of the newer versions. Why not satisfy both your older customers and the ones who want changes, too, instead of totally leaving one group out?

  13. MaryM

    What improvements? All the auto-generated mistakes are still there. And what about those Louisiana “counties” I have been bringing this to Ancestry’s attention for almost six months.

  14. If you want feedback, why do you keep ignoring the many requests to re-install Continue Searching? I am SICK and TIRED of making this comment. Clearly Ancestry does NOT care about their customers. This is the TOP issue requested in the Facebook group.

  15. Jade

    The crucial upper-right elements of main navigation bar are still missing in NewAncestry mode from all tree pages: message envelope, leaf, tiny user avatar, username account-settings link as well as “upgrade” and “help.” Using Firefox 40.03, Win8.1. Seem to disappear from many other pages as well. This is extremely aggravating. I have not changed any browser appearance settings.

  16. Natalie Waugh

    I do find the New Ancestry aesthetically pleasing. I don’t even mind the encircled photo on the Profile page, but it’s a shame not to be able to know how many items are in the Gallery, something that was pretty obvious in Classic.

    What is alarming is how much functionality was lost in the transition from Classic to New, and how many more clicks and keystrokes it takes to input simple information.

    I’m sure you’ve heard the complaint about the absence of Continue Searching, but I’d like to reiterate: it is a huge problem to have to go back to square one after you’ve found something in Search and you want to simply CONTINUE SEARCHING. Why cannot this be fixed? It was in the code for Classic; there has to be a way to translate it to New without an undue amount of work.

    I think your designers need to understand that what most of us Ancestry users do, day in and day out, is input data. We sometimes import data, but much of the time it’s plain old typing into online forms. And, for goodness sake, you’ve turned something that was fairly straightforward into an Olympic sport. We used to be able to fill in vital information on a person’s profile with a few keystrokes. Name, birth place and date, death place and date were all in the same box. Now you have to scroll to different places in the timeline, click into them, and enter the information. So where you once could enter that vital information with one open box and a few entries, now you have scroll, click and enter, scroll, click and enter, and scroll, click and enter. I just don’t understand the rationale for giving the user so much more work to do for something so simple. My fingertips are bleeding! (Not really, but if feels that way after a session on the New Ancestry.)

    Another mystifying issue: In Classic, if an entry had a citation in the Timeline, you could click on it and you’d to straight to the Record – the same Record as in Sources. Now, if you click on a citation in the Timeline, it will take you to a “dead” page and then to an Image. Where is the Record? Secret: you can click backwards and after a bit of churning, the Record come up. But I don’t get it: Why do you think we want to go to the original Image for citations in Timeline, whereas there is a different interface for citations in Sources?

    Of course, you might say I should just go to the citation in Sources and get to the Record easier. That’s true, but first I get a “dead” (unlinked) page, which I have to get past, then I get to a page with a choice of Record or Image, and then I can get the Record. You may ask, Why is it so darned important to get to the Record? It’s a “live” page, with links to all the people in a census, for example. And there I can find adjacent links that take me to other citations where this individual may or may be referenced. It’s very handy, and many of these links don’t show up in Hints.

    I’m baffled why you would make it any different to get to the Record in the Timeline vs in Sources. Most often I’m looking through a person’s Timeline trying to make sense of what he or she was doing at a particular time. For example, often I can’t remember what family members were with the person in a particular census. In Classic, I could just click the citation there in the Timeline, go to the Record, answer the question, and click thru to other people in the census right there. Now I have to remember: It’s a hassle to do that in Timeline. I should stop, scroll over to Sources, find the citation there, and begin clicking.

    Why make it so hard on the user? Why can’t we have the same interface for citations in both Timeline and Sources. And why can’t we be taken immediately to the Record instead of going through a “dead” page?

    It’s as if someone TRIED to make processes in the New Ancestry more cumbersome than they were in Classic, which in comparison was pretty darned elegant.

    There are many more examples of this same kind user-unfriendly stuff in New Ancestry. Enough for now though.

  17. caz

    I believe we will never be listened to and our comments are being ignored. I have just checked my Trees on my Android app which I must admit I haven’t used it for a while – I can’t stand it …. No more timeline so no more facts showing at all – just horrible horrible LifeStory with all births/deaths of siblings, parents, etc. which I don’t need to see it is NOTHING like the old timeline for each person, I can’t see any way of turning off the extra family ‘facts’ (births/deaths of siblings etc., and the way twins/triplets are noted is ridiculous) which I don’t want to see – it’s all scroll scroll scroll, in my opinion it has changed much too much- I am so disappointed after all these years of hard work you or your hardware or software or whatever it is, is making up stuff that I took time and effort on making right. Visitors on holiday in a hotel on census night are now shown as ‘in 1881 ….. …… lived in …….’ – ok, so I am supposed to go back and change the original, but I have thousands of people and literally can’t do this. Why oh why all this – I still have so many people now supposedly born in Edmonton, Alberta whereas they were born in Middlesex, England. Again yes I know I ‘HAVE’ to change all, but why should I have to when I have spent so many years getting everything to how I wanted. My app was lovely to show people as I don’t have a laptop I can carry around, I use a desktop at home – I truly feel you have ruined everything…… I really do – Nothing is the same, it is all so depressing, you used to be the No. 1 but so far down the line now it’s unbelievable how low you have gone. I have written feedback, written on the blog, written on here, signed the petition, asked for advice, given new stuff a chance but it’s just all so crazy. We aren’t getting answers, we aren’t being listened to, I don’t want to delete the app but I hate it. Don’t know what else to say really, I’m just so upset.

  18. Gene

    My tree was removed the end of July and my subscription expired August 3, and I am still surviving and thriving in my genealogy research. I found 2 paid resources that combined were 1/3 the price of Ancestry. I check back every once in a while to see if there has been any change (maybe change for the worse, if that is possible). I realized their strategy was to provide and place for people to vent – but keep it contained – until after the Christmas season when they will get people giving subscriptions as gifts. Then January 1, the old Ancestry will be gone for good and so will a Forum for venting. Personally, if you have noit marked your tree private and unsearchable and downloaded a good copy, I think you are making a mistake. People are holding out hope that Ancestry will see the light and do the right thing. But if they haven’t made a public statement or any progress since the beginning of June, they ain’t worried about it and don’t plan to. If you owned a Bakery and changed the recipe and people started buying less, complaining and stopped coming in the store, you would be very concerned because your livelihood would be threatened. But there is no single individual at Ancestry that is worried about their livelihood. My advice: rip the Band-Aid off fast and all at once.

  19. Jolene

    My tree has over 7360 people in it and it took over a decade to get it just the way I wanted it and it is still a work in progress. This loss of control is really upsetting… So disappointed…I trusted my tree to Ancestry.com as a storage mechanism and means to share research with others. Now it seems, Ancestry programmers can alter my tree without my permission?
    Our trees have been seriously violated. So frustrated with the bulky new format and unwanted “tweaks”. Not only has the Ancestry Team messed with our media, but they have inserted details that are unnecessary in order for timelines to look fuller and they have done so to ALL of us WITHOUT our permission. This is what I sent to the “leave the new experience” survey today:
    #1 – How dare you insert extra details into my 7360+ person tree individual timelines. I have spent the past 12+ years building this tree and entering data into EACH and EVERY one of these individuals and have EACH and EVERY one of their timelines in OLD ANCESTRY as I [the author and OWNER of this tree] have seen fit. Your New Ancestry program has made grave assumptions that all of us would like to have our trees and timelines “padded” with extraneous details so that it “looks fuller”?????? Really???? LESS is MORE. If I had wanted all that extra stuff in each individual’s page/timeline, I would have put it there MYSELF. Please remove the extra details OR minimally – Give us a “toggle/choice” to turn the extra detail feature OFF. Period.
    #2 – the “relationship to me” status is no longer an option either. We are now forced to view ALL relationships in our trees whether we want to or not.
    I have been a longstanding customer of Ancestry.com 12+ years and am seriously considering removing my tree from both Ancestry.com and FamilyTreemaker 2011 and purchasing INDEPENDENT genealogy software so that I can maintain control over MY TREE. I am looking at RootsMagic 7 as my alternate tree storage software. And, yes, I know I may have to hand enter much of my data again. However, if it is stored on my hard drive and NOT syched with Ancestry.com any longer, it will remain as I have intended it to be.

  20. Jolene

    I agree with Natalie Waugh:
    “I think your designers need to understand that what most of us Ancestry users do, day in and day out, is input data. We sometimes import data, but much of the time it’s plain old typing into online forms. And, for goodness sake, you’ve turned something that was fairly straightforward into an Olympic sport. We used to be able to fill in vital information on a person’s profile with a few keystrokes. Name, birth place and date, death place and date were all in the same box. Now you have to scroll to different places in the timeline, click into them, and enter the information. So where you once could enter that vital information with one open box and a few entries, now you have scroll, click and enter, scroll, click and enter, and scroll, click and enter. I just don’t understand the rationale for giving the user so much more work to do for something so simple…”

    I also agree with Barb Third (Sept 11 blog): A Good Analogy –
    “Barb Third
    Once upon a time, there were thousands of cubicle dwellers. Contentedly in their spare time, many worked for years personalizing their space with family photos, framed documents, tales of true adventures,…in short, they made a house a home. One day, each person entered his home to find complete chaos. Unfamiliar, mass-produced and plastic furniture was anchored where antiques had stood. Carefully tended bookshelves were in disarray. Ancestral photo frames had been torn off, leaving beloved bodies to appear beheaded. Generic pictures from children’s encyclopedias hung like giant posters on the walls. The walls themselves were covered gray and black, and purple arrows pointing to maps that led to nowhere had been spray-painted throughout. Family treasures were later found crammed in closets. The bank that held the mortgages proclaimed, “the times, they are a’changing,” saying newcomers who had few furnishings, records, or history lessons needed more. Hundreds of people wrote and wailed for months, to no avail. Final reactions varied: Pack up and move. Lock up and leave. Stay and accept. A few liked the Instant Family feel. This is what the executives of Ancestry.com did to millions of Family Trees they’d been paid to preserve. Inexperienced and unintelligent computer programmers were allowed to turn a decent genealogical website into a disappointing, flaw-filled waste of time. What a travesty!”

  21. Jolene

    My tree has over 7360 people in it and it took over a decade to get it just the way I wanted it and it is still a work in progress. This loss of control is really upsetting… So disappointed…I trusted my tree to Ancestry.com as a storage mechanism and means to share research with others. Now it seems, Ancestry programmers can alter my tree without my permission?
    Our trees have been seriously violated. So frustrated with the bulky new format and unwanted “tweaks”. Not only has the Ancestry Team messed with our media, but they have inserted details that are unnecessary in order for timelines to look fuller and they have done so to ALL of us without our permission.

  22. Linda Wms

    Every photo, Logo, document, graphic shown on their corporate website is a rectangle. They didn’t put Babe Ruth’s draft card in a circle, nor Steve Job’s yearbook picture. Nor do their examples of Griffith’s Irish land deeds, their ownership pics of Find a Grave (etc) or Family Tree Maker products (etc) appear in circles. I have a friend that earns more than $125,000 yr analyzing websites and telling the client where improvements are needed. So many of you are doing that for ancestry for free.. No, at a loss, because you’re still paying your subscriptions.

  23. Bev

    I am also quite frustrated by the loss of the Continue Search function in new Ancestry. I was working in new Ancestry adding spouses to sibling lines. OK, there are leaf hints. I click on one and pull up a census record, view it, and also see that there is a marriage bond. I attach the census record, but then I can’t go back to look at the marriage bond to see if it is the correct one, especially if there was only one leaf hint to, say, a census record. I got so frustrated with the loss of the ability to automatically resume Continue Searching that I switched back to old Ancestry.
    I also desperately want the ability to completely hide Life Story because I do not want anyone else viewing
    it. Being able to hide historical and family events in Life Story is helpful, but not enough. There aren’t enough hours in the day, or perhaps my lifetime to go through each Life Story profile and proofread and correct errors Ancestry has inserted. I have dna tested here at Ancestry. I have made my main tree private and created and attached a bare bones direct ancestor tree consisting of name, dates, locations to my dna results for matching purposes…no siblings, no source documents. This is my current way of hiding as much of Life Story as possible.
    I have other issues with the functionality of new Ancestry that others have brought up numerous times that haven’t been fixed or seem to have dropped off Ancestry’s to-do list. So here we are into over 3 and half months of new Ancestry, and the only thing I can thank Ancestry for fixing this past week is adjusting the hideous dark gray background to a slightly lighter shade of gray. Sigh…

  24. Monika

    @Dora. Thank you for your input. You must be a relatively new member. If I had just begun creating trees on ancestry, I might possibly feel like you when people show me the courtesy of asking for my feedback. But, those of us who have been members for many years, if not for many decades, and who created trees many years ago that we want to have just as we have created them did NOT give ancestry.com the feedback that we wanted incorrect LifeStories and incorrect historical facts forced on us whether we like it or not. You congratulate ancestry on asking for our feedback. Apparently you have not read enough blogs to notice that the feedback we are giving is being ignored. When you work on a family tree for years, nay DECADES, your tree is tantamount to your family members because it memorializes your ancestors. You do not want to see any of your family members violated by ancestry.com taking over and imposing things on each individual ancestor/family member without your consent. I join those who question the legality of that. Maybe it is time to contact an attorney and see whether this warrants a class action law suit because I simply cannot take the time to go over every single profile sheet to catch every single error or unnecessary diatribe that ancestry.com has created on my trees and I should not be forced to have to live with the changes that ancestry.com has imposed on my trees without my consent.

  25. Monika

    @Linda Wms. Note that the one positive review is from May 2015 at which time we did not have the current issues. Had I written a review in May, I might have written it very similarly to that one. Times have changed!

  26. Becky Ornold

    I absolutely HATE and despise this new ancestry format! It gets worse each time it is changed. Way less info and connections since the very first Ancestry program. I HATE spending hard earned income on this crappy program!!!!!

  27. RobinH

    @Monika If you have concerns about the legality of what has happened to your work, you might consider contacting the Utah Attorney General, Seth Reyes, at uag@utah.gov. There is also a phone number and a mailing address on his website.

  28. Monika

    @Robin H. What a brilliant idea. I will do so! I have already written to most parties suggested by Elhura, but I believe that people like Tim Sullivan and John Coyle do not give a hoot or we would not keep getting what I consider canned and, in my opinion, useless updates every week.

  29. toni

    Not paying again, even with the $49 special offer. I spent most of yesterday at find my past. Nice clean tree layout. Edits are easy. All I’ve been using ancestry for lately is to review individuals already in my tree as I have uploaded GEDcoms to some other sites already in preparation of moving elsewhere. Soon I won’t use ancestry for anything.

  30. In New ancestry, your theory of showing sources by clicking on a fact is moot when a person’s profile has a long Fact list and scrolls down several pages. the purple lines are not visible connected to the source. so what’s the point? i would prefer to have the family column closer to the facts and put the sources underneath the family column, then you can still have the purple lines connected to Facts, and make the family and source columns wider. TIA.

  31. IMO lifestory is fraught with so many errors it is not useful. i do not create a profile for every child and the auto-narrative “had one child” is fiction. a simple Hide Lifestory would be a big relief to me. others can use theirs for their own purposes, but i am not planning to spend time editing aka correcting the auto-narratives.

  32. Trisha

    Top reported issue surely is WE JUST DON’T LIKE ANYTHING ABOUT THE NEW ANCESTRY, YOU CAN MESS ABOUT WITH IT ALL YOU WANT, WILL NOT DO A SCRAP OF GOOD, IT’S THE COMPLETE WRONG FORMAT FOR RESEARCHING OUR FAMILY TREES. WE DON’T WANT STORYTIME, WE ARE NOT LITTLE KIDS. WE TAKE PRIDE IN OUR RESEARCH AND HOW WE DISPLAY IT. WE DO NOT WANT TO READ THAT SUCH A BODY LIVED TO AN IMPRESSIVE AGE, WHAT’S SO IMPRESSIVE IF THE POOR BUGGER DROPPED DEAD WHILE FLOGGING HIMSELF DOWN A COALMINE WELL INTO HIS SEVENTIES, WE DO NOT WANT OUR STORIES SUGAR COATED, WE WANT TO TELL OUR STORIES OUR WAY, NOT YOURS. BECAUSE WE GET IT RIGHT. DO YOU KNOW ANCESTRY HAD ONE OF MY ANCESTORS LIVING IN TEXAS IN 1881 APPARENTLY FIGHTING OFF INDIANS! SHE ACTUALLY WAS A CHARWOMAN AGE 75 AND LIVING IN STAFFORDSHIRE ENGLAND IN 1881, AND I DOUBT VERY MUCH SHE WOULD HAVE HAD ANY ENERGY LEFT TO FIGHT INDIANS! THEY ALSO HAD MY 4TH GREAT GRANDFATHER DOWN AS HAVING FOUGHT THE BATTLE OF WATERLOO IN 1815 IN ONTARIO, ONTARIO, FOR GOODNESS SAKE! WHAT AN INSULT TO MY ANCESTOR WHO WAS BADLY WOUNDED AT WATERLOO (IN BELGIUM) AND WAS VERY LUCKY TO SURVIVE THE BATTLE, HE WAS ONLY 20.
    SWALLOW YOUR PRIDE ANCESTRY NOW, ADMIT YOU HAVE GOT IT COMPLETELY WRONG THIS TIME, KEEP OUR VERY MUCH LOVED OLD CLASSIC LAYOUT, AND WE WILL RESPECT YOU FOR THAT, WE WILL STAY WITH YOU. IGNORE US AND YOU ARE ABOUT TO MAKE THE BIGGEST BLUNDER AND RUIN WHAT WAS ONCE I CONSIDER, THE BEST SITE OF ALL OF THEM. BUT NOT IF YOU PERSIST WITH THIS S—

  33. Mildrilyn Davis

    I have previously commented twice (it’s possible only one was a public comment on one of the blogs) concerning the New Ancestry, but as far as I can tell, Ancestry has yet to acknowledge it. Perhaps I didn’t explain it well, or perhaps I was too diplomatic, or both. So I am trying again. I have not spent a lot of time on the New Ancestry, because, frankly, I was highly offended by the Lifestory feature, which as an African American I find to be culturally insensitive. I previously expressed my displeasure (which has now become anger and outrage) that, on the page of an enslaved ancestor, there was an item stating that he lived in North Carolina when cotton was king, accompanied by a photo of slaves. It’s been changed slightly; it now says “when cotton reigned as lifeblood to the state’s economy.” This is not an improvement. OK, both are true statements. But my objection is to what is NOT said– that cotton also led to the expansion and entrenchment of slavery. Where is the cultural balance that might address what the preeminence of cotton meant to MY ancestor and others like him?? Similarly (and this is a new comment), there is now also another historical insight associated with this ancestor which says “For American Southerners, 1861 to 1865 were long and difficult years that saw families uprooted and women and children forced to head households as more than a million men marched off to fight in the Civil War.” True, but what about the triumph for newly freed slaves at the end of the Civil War? Again, culturally insensitive. And why no lament in the earlier historical insight about slave families being uprooted to be taken or sold South because of the cotton industry?? Finally, my ancestor in question was the son of his slaveholder, and this is reflected in my tree. (A bit off-point, but several family members and I have DNA matches that support this claim, although documentation is lacking.) I have this on my tree because I believe it to be fact, but I have no desire to see the births of the slaveholders legitimate children celebrated on my ancestor’s tree as births of his half-siblings (one of whom became his next slaveholder). I would like a way to remove such items individually. Ancestry, please listen– if you can’t find a way to make your historical insights culturally sensitive for ALL racial/cultural groups in your membership, please just eliminate them. I know I can simply remove it, but I would rather have it be balanced. I empathize and would probably agree with most of what those who are unhappy with the New Ancestry are saying. However, the things I’ve mentioned have made me so angry that I cannot stay on the new site long enough to focus on its technical features. However, I don’t need to spend time on the site to agree with those who are unhappy with Ancestry’s desire for round photos. The vast majority of photos are rectangular— WHY should anyone waste time trying to put hundreds or thousands of rectangular pegs into round holes??? I tend to “go with the flow” when changes are for the better, but the ones I’ve commented on here are definitely, in my view, for the worse. Until now my experience with Ancestry (including AncestryDNA and, before it was sold, MyCanvas) has been extremely positive; phenomenal in fact. I have recommended it to practically everyone I know. Sadly, I may no longer be able to do that.

  34. Vince

    Anne, no regret needed — I tried to follow what was mentioned about the Continue Search function by Bev and Natalie Waugh but couldn’t find it either, although I’m sure it is a useful feature of Classic Ancestry given its mention by them and others.

  35. BEE

    What do I “like” about “new” ancestry? NOT MUCH!
    I HATE the colors! Why the black? Why in the WORLD are we still dealing with “phantom hints” still in “new” ancestry? I’ve been dealing with this problem for YEARS!

  36. Alexandra

    It is impossible to express in words how upsetting this horrible change is for those of us who are serious researchers and use Ancestry to work on and build our family trees. I have been in tears more than once. I’ve worked so hard to make my tree(s) clean, accurate and very clear. My main tree has almost 8000 people in it. If I have to go through it page by page… I’m going to scream *and* cry! I’ve been avoiding new ancestry as much as possible by using classic because I cannot face the problems in New.
    I have an eye issue and like others have reported the colors alone give me a headache… Life story is just stupid on so many levels, the round frames are so wrong and the length of time everything takes is just appalling!
    If you feel the way I do make your voice heard, speak up; call, write badger, sign the petition, call again.

  37. Vince

    Ancestry: Please provide a way for tree owners to prevent the entire LifeStory view from appearing at all in trees that he or she owns, so that no one can see it unless the tree owner or an invited editor for the tree chooses to display it. This choice could be provided as an extension of the way the system currently refrains from showing the Historical Insights generated for the LifeStory view to anyone other than the tree owner and members invited as editors for a tree, unless a given Historical Insight is “accepted” for display to other members by the tree owner or an editor.

    Also, please allow the Classic/Old view to remain permanently as a working option for those who prefer it. The new interface has way too much forcibly added fluff that is unnecessary, misleading, and often downright inaccurate, making it unacceptable for regular use by serious genealogical researchers.

  38. Vince

    Still missing from New Ancestry is the “Not you?” option in the “Relationship to me” view. So I repeat here the gist of my posts of September 4, 2015, at 12:34 am to the August 29th blog and September 12, 2015 at 4:29 pm to the September 11th blog:

    The “Not you?” option, which I use all the time from the Profile pages of Classic Ancestry, has survived at least on the “All Hints” list of New Ancestry. But the option’s presence via the “All Hints” list is of little solace in practice. I’ve posted elsewhere that the “Not you?” option, appearing right on the Profile page in Classic Ancestry, takes just seven (7) clicks and two data entries from the Profile page to see the relationship to someone other than “Who you are in this tree” and to return to the original “Who you are in this tree” setting. New Ancestry requires seventeen (17) clicks and two data entries to do the same thing by going into Tree Settings and changing “Who you are in this tree” back and forth. To do the same thing via the “All Hints” list in New Ancestry from a given Facts page, you still have to bring up the Tree View separately and select “All Hints” from “Tree Pages”, which gets you to “People With Hints” instead of to “All Hints” (A separate issue: Why, for crying out loud, do you land on “People With Hints” when you just clicked on “All Hints”?). Then you can click on the actual “All Hints” link to show the beginning of the entire list that appears in some unspecified order. Then you type the name of the person whose Facts page you had been looking at and search the list for it. But wait, if that person currently has no hints, guess what — he or she is not on the list. So you might as well have gone the route of changing the “Who you are in this tree” in the first place.

    What the presence of the “Not you?” option via the “All Hints” list does show is that the New Ancestry programmers have already built the basic code needed to provide that option (or copied it from Classic Ancestry). Now they just need to make a link to that code from the “Relationship to me” view currently available on each Facts page in New Ancestry, as is available in the view of the relationship path shown on Profile pages in Classic Ancestry. Ancestry: Please do add the “Not you?” option directly to the “Relationship to me” view.

  39. Justies

    Even though I don’t have any problem with the new updates website to ancestry yet. I’ve to say one thing I don’t like about the new updated version is now if you need to edit the names and birth and death date of someone in your tree. You can have to use the fact timeline and stroll through each one to do the editing. I miss the old one where you just click edit and a single box appears where you can edit information in one place. I’d say maybe keep both the new and old classical ancestry sites. Let your members decide if they want to stay with the new one or go back to the old version of ancestry. That way you’ll have happy customers and a good balance and maybe better feedback to your site.

  40. bob

    The classic website wasn’t broken. The new website is broken. Serious researchers can’t work with the new site. It is an obstacle.

  41. Alexandra

    Gene, and anybody who can answer….

    I want to know how to copy my almost 8000 person tree, and my three smaller trees successfully out of ancestry. I have downloaded my trees and dumped them into FTM, but there are so many errors to fix and cleanup to do… It’s just too depressing. Not to mention that as a native Mac user I find FTM ” unfriendly”.
    I’d love to go elsewhere and do really worry about the future of this corporate monstrosity called Ancestry.com… Anyone out there who has a good solution please post what you did so if worse comes to worst we can leave with our precious research intact.

  42. Dave Marshall

    What it all boils down to is the fact that “New Ancestry” should not have been publicly released until it was completely finish, fully functional and thoroughly bug tested! Ancestry should have restricted its use to volunteers to test and debug before offering it to all subscribers.

  43. Marilyn

    I cannot express how thankful I am to those who have seriously attempted to use the new ancestry and are able to communicate their findings. My one-time access left me horrified when I saw weird additions to my tree. I scurried back to classic and will remain there until forced to go private and leave. I, like Alexandra, have been researching the best way to copy my information and am anxious to find a new home when it is obvious the pleas to retain classic are ignored.

  44. Dave Marshall

    @Crystal said:
    > Also, I’m still wondering if your plans
    > include fixing the records and
    > documents print process so we can
    > print with a white background. A copy
    > of a Will with faded 100-year-old
    > handwriting on a gray background is
    > pretty darn hard to decipher. And I’m
    > going broke with all the black ink my
    > printer is using

    Those old documents are not black writing or printing on white paper. In most cases, the paper was a light beige color. Regardless or howthe document was scanned or photographed, it is going to appear as a shaded background. Today, white paper is common, but white is not the natural color. Paper is white because it is bleached in the process. Also, today we have what is called “permanent” or non-fading ink. Bleached paper and non-fading ink were not available 100 years ago.

    A person with the skills and time can use Photoshop or other image editing programs to enhance images and change the contrast of those old wills, censuses and other documents, but it is not easy. It is not a process that can be automated because each original document is different in appearance and problems that need to be fixed.

  45. Jeri

    I’ve been watching all of the comments on this blog since this started. They aren’t listening. They don’t care. It’s going to happen no matter what we say or do. I noticed once I started complaining it seemed like nothing ran well. Am I paranoid? Maybe. I yelled a lot and next think I know all of the windows I had open and working on in Classic mode were all of a sudden in New mode when I sat back down from dinner. Ancestry did it, not me. No drop down box by my user name to go back. Finally someone on a FB group listed a link, I changed back to classic and all was great until the wills/probate records. Free, BUT, you must be on the new Ancestry. Nope, I worked my way around it but it was a pain in the rear so finally I called Ancestry and I explained all of this and the lady told me that yes that were taking batches of people and moving them over to the new! What? How dare they do that? I told her I was tired of fighting the slow site and crazy steps it took to use the wills/probates so go put me on the new view. She did and now it’s flying or at least until they read this! No problems at all other than I despise the new layout and for all of those that say crap like “some people just don’t like change” blablabla. I change all the time, I despise the new cumbersome, time consuming, ugly, stupid storyline, crap that they have created. If they think it will pull new people in because it’s pretty well they will be the ones that don’t life a finger to do real research, they will be the copiers that just replicate the lies non-serious collectors of names have already got on their so called trees. They will not stay on the site. What they might do is the DNA test which will make the database grow and I’m sure somewhere down the line we are going to have some regrets on that one too. I’m a serious researcher and spend no less that 10 hours a day at what I do and now about 4 of those are wasted with extra steps and correcting things that have been changed in the switch. Whew, I got on a roll again. The one great thing Ancestry could do that would keep their client database loyal is make this change an option and one that runs as good one way as the other. If it’s not an option for technical issues then explain it, soon. Why would it be working right now but not always? Answer our questions and stop disrespecting us. Please Answer our Questions.

  46. Jesse

    Congratulations Ancestry! It only took you a few weeks to ruin what took me 23 years to put together. I absolutely hate the new Ancestry. The life story part of it is just awful. My 3rd great grandfather did not live in Georgia in 1863, he was a POW at Andersonville for Pete’s sake! I have about 6 trees on here with thousands of names. If you think I can go through every one of them to correct what YOU messed up, you are mistaken. How about this, You messed them up, You fix them!! Now I know this is your website, but those are MY trees you are messing with, without my permission by the way! You look at a tree name and next to it it has owner, with the username of the person it belongs to. It does not say owner:Ancestry.com! So, I will thank you to not include my trees in your new disaster. Leave the Classic site open for real researchers [which I can tell your designers are clueless about the subject] and let all the copiers have the new. I have paid to use this site for 10 years now. I pay to search your records databases and build my trees. The records databases is what this site is about. Our trees are where we store our information to show our personal family line. It’s not up to you to tell our story and is really not your business to do so. I mean really, how would you like it if you payed me money to paint your house blue and I painted it bright hunter orange instead because I thought it would enhance your living experience in your home? You tell me it wasn’t right and I tell you where the paint brushes are so you can make it right and go to the bank with your money. I think you would be livid! That is exactly what you are doing to our trees. So, please, bite the bullet and just drop this New Ancestry cesspool.

  47. Anne Scott Frankland

    In your update you say — “We also updated Photo Hints and you can now click to view photos from hints and search results and go directly to the new Media Gallery, where you have a richer and fuller viewing experience of the record.”. Richer? Fuller? Only you would think so. Why did you change that? The other page that comes up was preferable. Is it because it looked too much like Classic? It’s bad enough having to go to the Media Viewer page AFTER the picture is saved — but having to go to the Media Viewer to SAVE the picture is even worse.

    Another thing. All the other update information doesn’t seem very specific. For instance — “behind the scenes initiatives, other improvements, other bug fixes”. Ancestry is so focused on Lifestory, round profile pictures and photo cropping that you are ignoring the other functions, links and tools we had in Classic, and want in New. I have sent feedback time and time again yet it seems to do no good.

  48. Jackie

    You ruined the search to the point where I can only find a fraction of what I used to be able to find. Now you make it hideous black and gray with a round hole for square pictures. The green leaves are gone. It is totally depressing. You have no real competition, so you simply ignore thousands of paying customers. Not a good way to run a business. I have been paying for this for NINE years and it gets worse every year. Idiots.

  49. Elhura

    CONTACT information is repeated here. Thanks to all who have provided these links in prior posts.

    The petition to “Keep Classic” is growing every day. Sign it if you have not – and send the link to others who need to know: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/en-gb/600/803/575/save-ancestrycom-classic/
    Call the Ancestry reps at 1-800-262-3787 and make sure they pass your concerns along.

    Call the executive office line during the work week at 1-801-705-7000 or FAX to 1-801-705-7001. A call will quickly pass you on the reps, but may still “register” there.

    Someone blogged that the email to John Coyle, head of the holding company that owns Ancestry had been blocked, but others say it is now open again: John.Coyle@permira.com

    Here is also the Permira office and contact home page. Select “New York” for the US numbers which are 1-212-386-7480 telephone and 1-212-386-7481 FAX: http://www.permira.com/technology

    Better Business Bureau: http://www.bbb.org/utah/business-reviews/genealogists/ancestry-com-in-provo-ut-2003190/Customer-Reviews
    Better Business Bureau of Utah
    3703 West 6200 South
    Salt Lake City, Utah 84129

    Tim Sullivan, CEO
    Ancestry.com
    P. O. Box 990
    Orme, Utah 84059

    Utah Attorney General: uag@utah.gov

    I, among so many of you, strongly believe that Classic Ancestry should be kept as a “work option”. No one expects that the new will be scrapped, but it is clearly a long way from meeting the needs of huge numbers of serious researchers. We have to be sure we continue to be heard and that the Classic work option continues to be offered to subscribers who so choose.

  50. Elhura

    The phone number posted on the BBB Review Page, URL listed above, is actually for the Ancestry.com Executive Offices. Notice the only positive review to-date was dated 5 June 2015. Interesting! The phone number for the BBB in Salt Lake City is: 801-892-6009.

  51. Kelly

    Clearly Ancestry isn’t interested in feedback – they’ve received plenty of specific, doable items to focus on since February from beta testers, and since June 1 from paying customers. Who puts out a grossly inferior product for review, and then fixes ‘other bugs’? What is that? No, it’s re-arrange deck chairs on the Titanic time. They have used our subscription money to pay for a terrible product, but the ‘developers’ (aka cheap outsourced zero talent) have moved on. Ancestry is playing with us pretending to care about feedback, just trying to make end-of-quarter, and possibly end-of-year revenue projections, waiting for the complainers to get in step. It truly is a shame, but the only word they understand now is cancellation.

  52. Elhura

    @ Kelly. I have questioned their sincere interest as well, but still feel that a strong, strong ourpouring of our requests to KEEP CLASSIC AS A WORK OPTION can’t totally fall on deaf ears. It has to be a lot, however, and has to be continious from multiple avenues to at least make them think twice. Ancestry is on the verge of making a huge mistake they cannot easily undo. Sadly, it is the work of serious and steady rearchers – and the repuation of Ancestry.com – that are at stake!

  53. Mary Rawson

    It’s not just an App problem. The New Ancestry has done that to EVERYONE on all hardware. Public Trees, Private Trees, Unsearchable Trees: they’ve all been ruined. My Dad had 13 siblings. His father had 15. All Timelines that I’d worked painstakingly on for years (as thousands of you have done) were so trashed that I just deleted aunts, uncles, my parents, and my grandparents. I haven’t even been able to look at any of the other 2300. I’m printing out important profiles in the Old format, putting them in plastic pages in binders and including all the jpg records and photos I’d saved previously to my hard drive. I think my children and grandchildren will look at these before they’ll ever try to navigate the New format. You can’t get rid of the births and deaths of siblings/parents in LifeStories and, if you look at one of the last two updates, you’ll see that they say they’ve enabled LifeStories to add even more “facts,” even though we’ve all been asking them to let us hide LifeStory permanently. There seems to be some complicated way to get rid of historical insights, but when is everyone going to say, “Enough is enough!” Their turning deaf ears to subscribers borders on the sadistic. Why doesn’t everyone just cancel his or her subscription? You STILL will be able to go into your “New” trees and spend countless hours trying to “fix” them, but you won’t be paying for the torture. You can always get back on and begin paying them should you ever want. Really, it’s going to take months for most people to “fix” their trees, so it’s not like you’ll be using time wisely to search for new records or make any progress. And should you find anything new? The software will just insert wrong relationships and wrong towns anyway!

  54. pmm

    I miss the ‘Continue Searching’ feature. I do try to remember to open the hits in a new tab, which helps, but I should not have to do that with well-written code.

    I also dislike that so many additional clicks are needed to do the same thing that before required only one or two.

    Mostly, I would like to see an improved search algorithm- functionality is more important to serious genealogists rather than a fancy new interface. A box on the right side still lists some additional records after one clicks on a record to view in Old A. (don’t know about new), and they are mostly pertinent, in my experience, but don’t show up in the regular search results. Why not? And why do hits for other states and countries show up when the person was born, lived, and died in one place? I am getting more hits that are out of the time frame for their life, as well. Only burial, wills and probate should be coming up after death. Another problem is multiple hits for virtually the same thing, esp with FAG and its indexes. I hope that Ancestry will address these really significant problems while retooling the website.

  55. pmm

    Being able to attach items like book pages, wills, etc. to more than one person would be very helpful too. I do like the page that slides on so that one can complete the date, place, etc., and like having a description area, but it would be SO helpful to be able to attach to many persons at once-like pictures or stories-. I find I do not repeat all that typing for everyone listed, only my closest relatives. If you are going to have us indexing this material, in a sense, allow us to be thorough about it!

  56. Robin

    My first comment addresses the blog added after this one…it deals with military uniforms. I want to ask the people at Ancestry why they didn’t illustrate that blog with circular pictures? Because you would have taken a lot of information out of the pictures that you were trying to convey. Circular pictures are good for us, why don’t you have to use them too?
    Second, my subscription to Ancestry expired two days ago. It will not be renewed. I refuse to pay you for the priviledge of going back and fixing all the errors you created in my tree and believe me they are legion. My tree is now private so the errors you created don’t spread, and worse, people don’t think I’m responsible for them. Slowly transferring all my information to another site, when that is done, my tree will be deleted. I used to recommend ancestry all over the place. Now, in the past two weeks, I have told two people, don’t go near it. So much I want to scream at you about, but we are all coming to the realization that nobody gives two hoots. Adios.

  57. John Brown

    Once again all the comments seem to be about how serious genealogists are pulling their hair out over all the childish new “improvements” to Ancestry. Round Pictures, incorrect locations, incorrect general history comments added to trees without being asked, assuming that the number of children shown on a tree is the ACTUAL number of children a person had and making a statement to that fact, showing people as being 125 years old because nobody has GUESSED when they died etc etc etc.
    Once again this weeks update does absolutely nothing to put anything right. ARE YOU LISTENING ANCESTRY. Assuming that it was so obvious New Ancestry was going to be complete failure within hours of it going “live”, all those employed on the fiasco should have now worked out their 3 months notice (the only explanation for the lack of work putting it right) and new staff with a background knowledge of Genealogy should now be employed in their place, so I look forward to seeing the corrections implemented and unrequired functions deleted in the next few days.

  58. Pat

    I haven’t gone back to old ancestry in a while, so I just tried to, and in doing so, left some comments as requested. It never went through, and simply took me back to the new version. I am beyond disgusted with this whole thing.

  59. Elhura

    For those who may be interested, my tree, a geographic area pioneer family study, contains 33,000 individuals and 7000 photos. I upgraded temporarily to the fastest commercial internet service available here (60 megabytes, I am told). It took 3 1/2 hours to download my tree to Family Tree Maker and an additional 15 hours to download the media. During this time, I could not use my computer at all and had to disable screensaver so the download would not be interrupted.

    My tree has been downloaded twice – first linked on my computer with manual sync to Ancestry – and second, copied to an unlinked external harddrive that will not change.

    I did not choose to do a GED COM file which may have been advisable, but I understood only text and not media download to a GED COM.

    I have done this as a precaution and keep trusting Ancestry will gain some wisdom and compassion in the end and allow Classic Ancestry to continue as a work option. In the meantime, I am working as quickly as I can from Classic, trying to polish up my tree which has been a growing “labor of love” for my native area and people.

    Ancestry, clean up the poor color vision problems, the unprofessional distracting and blinding purple lines, get your Life Story facts straight, cut through the many useless layers of clicks to accomplish real genealogy work, bring back Member Connect and then come back and talk to us about how great the new Ancestry is.

    For those who need Classic to continue, don’t give up making the needed contacts (see above post of 21 Sept), signing the petition, telling others, etc.

  60. Alexandra

    Elhura, how did you download your tree in anything other than a GED COM file? I’ve done the gedcom ; downloaded to FTM ~another program I dislike, but at least all the names and dates are there, messy, with errors, but better than nothing.
    Has anyone had experience downloading a tree from Ancestry into the Reunion program (Mac users generally find FTM difficult and non-intuitive)~ or alternately, another online site?
    I got an answer back from my complaints letter saying they are sorry I don’t like the new site but, basically telling me to buck up and learn the new program… But I can’t use it long enough to learn it because the dark fields give me a headache. So, everyone, it’s still worth a try….keep calling, writing, complaining!

  61. Caz

    Has anyone got any experience with My Heritage App? I need to delete Ancestry App – it’s an absolute total mess now…. Or can anyone recommend an App for an i pad that’s easy to use, basically just for ‘taking my tree with me’, enabling me to show family the basics – preferably one that’s easy to use, that photo’s can be added to, and that can be edited easily..

  62. Ancestry.com More rotten reviews on Sitejabber (now 25% satisfaction). Yet more glowing reviews on Trust Pilot (still at 9.5/10). Someone must have realised the Trust Pilot reviews were a bit too professional – there’s now an edge of illiteracy (maybe to give that ‘normal person’ review) but still all 5/5 with very little mention of the fabulous New Ancestry. 15 new reviews in last 5 days. Note that ancestry.co.uk on Trustpilot gets 6.3/10 with the last review on 7 Sep.

  63. Robin

    I have been working on a MyCanvas project for some time. Wanted to finish that up also. Starting yesterday, it won’t let me access my family tree through old ancestry. “Records don’t exist”. Well, Alexander’s lost my business too, as I won’t work through the garbage that is new ancestry.

  64. Elhura

    @ Alexandra. I had help getting my tree downloaded to my computer – as a linked tree which was NOT a GED COM since GED COM takes text only and not media. My tree, a geographic area study, contains 33,000 individuals and 7,000 media. I upgraded temporarily to the fastest internet service available here (60 megabytes). The tree took 3 1/2 hours to download and the media at least another 15 hours. Hope this is a help as you download yours.

    Once FTM is installed on your computer, follow the next step to download your tree. You will need to be logged in to ancestry. Click on “link” and also “sync”, when the sync option comes up. At some point, I think later, you will need to choose between “auto” or “manual” sync. I chose “manual” at that time upon another’s advice until, if and when, the bugs are removed from the new. You will also be given an option something about “downloading media” which you will want to do.

    Keep in mind that only one download can be “linked”. If ever unlinked, you will need to download the whole tree all over again to relink – therefore I have kept mine linked for the time being, but now on manual sync . Also be sure to have turned off your screensaver and “sleep” mode while downloading as any interruption will also require starting the download over.

    Once the download process started, I was unable to minimize the process or use my computer. In my case, this was approximately 20 hours total. After the initial download of the tree, a message will appear that your “media will continue to download in the background”. A close option will appear, but I was told by an ancestry rep NOT TO CLOSE during this time either or it would stop the process.

    As I recall, after the several hours wait, that pretty much completes the download of tree and media to your computer. If you have any questions during the process, call the ancestry reps at 1-800-262-3787. I found them patient and helpful in answering the couple of questions that came up.

    To backup to the external hard drive, locate the file with the extension of .ftmb (family tree maker backup). Mine was 24gb in size. My external hard drive is a terabyte. Copy and paste to the external device for backup. This process took about 30 minutes. I also subscribe to Carbonite and it appears my tree has had a third backup there from the linked tree first downloaded to my computer. This also took a couple of hours or perhaps more.

    Thanks, Alexandra, for your encouragement to continue to let ancestry know of our concerns. Only by keeping the CLASSIC WORK OPTION will some of us be able to continue to make the contributions to ancestry and our family and area research that we have previously been able to do.

    Incidentially, I also found that the size of my tree shown under FTM PLAN once downloaded to FTM is misleading and quite small compared to the actual tree size. Must be that FTM registered only individuals and not media while the download to the external hard drive also counted media ???

  65. Rebecca K

    How do I download my online family tree to my computer? to a flash drive? How do I download to a GEDCOM? Ancestry has removed the link to allow downloading to GEDCOM. I just get an error NO LONGER AVAILABLE message when I follow instructions I researched elsewhere. How can we dissatisfied customers reclaim our family trees and prevent Ancestry from ruining decades of research?

  66. Alexandra

    Thanks Elhura, I’ll get on that. I only have 8000 people on my main tree, lots of media though… I hope it doesn’t take too long!
    Rebecca K, call the customer service line, even corporate uncaring Ancestry.com cannot possibly have taken away our right to copy our work. While your at it, tell them how much you dislike New Ancestry & wish they would let Classic Ancestry stand as a work option. The reps are generally friendly and helpful.

  67. Andrea M

    I am very unhappy with the new site…it is cluttered and very time consuming to wade through and makes it a chore rather than a pleasure to participate. The baby boomer generation of which I am a member has a lot of discretionary income and I think you are making a very big mistake to make such massive changes to appeal to a younger generation when the baby boomers are going to be the ones who have the time and inclination to use your service for the foreseeable future. I would hope if you must push the new look for ancestry.com that you would at least offer long time members the option of being able to use the old ancestry site. If not, I ask the same question as Rebecca K above: give me the best way to reclaim my family tree and prevent ancestry from ruining decades of research. Thank you.

  68. Rebecca K

    Found the answer to my own question about saving the family tree to GEDCOM! How to download a copy of your family tree from Old Ancestry to your personal computer: 1) Go to your family tree in Old Ancestry. 2) Under the menu bar, find the drop-down link labeled Tree pages with a down arrow. 3) Select Tree Settings from the drop-down menu. 4) About midway down the right side of the page find the green button labeled Export tree and click it. 5) Ancestry will now process your tree and eventually you will see a button labeled Download your GEDCOM file. Click it. 6) Save the file to your computer.

  69. Vince

    Rebecca K — Note that a GEDCOM file captures only the basic textual data from your on-line tree, not any images or stories you may have attached to individuals in your on-line tree. To get all (or at least most) of the data, including images and stories, from your on-line you need to use the TreeSync feature of Ancestry’s Family Tree Maker (FTM) program, preferably the 2014 version, as outlined by Elhura at 7:51 am earlier in this blog. For more details about the process, see my posts about it on September 8, 2015 at 9:35 pm and September 9, 2015 at 12:53 pm in the The New Ancestry: September 4th Feature Update blog (blogs.ancestry.com/ancestry/2015/09/04/the-new-ancestry-september-4th-feature-update/).

    Elhura — Be sure that the FTM backup “.fmtb” file that you have saved to an external hard drive is the file with the name of the downloaded tree created by FTM and a date, not the file with “_AutoBackup” in the file name. For instance, copy “TreeName_2015-09-23.fmtb”, not just “TreeName_AutoBackup.fmtb” to the external drive. The “AutoBackup” version is much smaller and contains only links to media items in the sub-folder named “TreeName Media” in the “Family Tree Maker” folder where FTM stored the downloaded data and made the FTM version of the tree. It looks like you picked the correct backup file, as you mentioned it has 24 gigabytes. Of course, if you have space on the external drive, you could also copy the entire “Family Tree Maker” folder to that drive so you have a working version of the FTM tree, as well as the backup file for FTM to use to recreate the tree. That’s what I do to my external 2 terabyte drive for trees much smaller that yours.

  70. Elizabeth Anderson

    My biggest disappointed with New Ancestry is the inability to print a profile page on one sheet of paper. As far as I can tell it will now take 3. I find the vertical timeline awkward and so full of “secondary” events that it’s very unclear (i.e. “death of a sister”). Additionally it appears that on pages 2 and 3 the right half of the paper is completely blank. I have already cancelled my usual yearly subscription and am currently subscribing one month at a time until I see how things “pan out”. While it deeply saddens me, I’ve been a member for 4 years, I’m afraid once the new format is in place, I’ll be discontinuing my monthly membership as well. My greatest hope is that the company would continue offering both formats.

  71. Tracy B

    I just want to say that overall I haven’t had any problems with the “new” Ancestry but I do have a suggestion on the Research Tools. Can the View Notes icon be highlighted when there are notes there? I did post a screenshot in the Ancestry facebook page and I used the green as you use for the hints. It would be nice to have a visual to remind you of the notes you have placed. Also I know this beating a dead horse so to speak but the rectangle is much better suited to the pictures rather than the circle.

  72. RobinH

    Thanks, Vince, for the helpful information about copying the tree to the external hard drive. I had just been trying to figure out how to do that when I saw your post. And I thank you, Elhura, for always encouraging people to speak up and for providing the contact information so that peoople might know where to do that. Like you, Steve, I am going to miss Ancestry. Like you, Robin, I am not sure who gives two hoots about the long-time customers (actually, it’s a bit unclear to me who even gives one hoot!). I called today to ask Ancestry not to automatically renew my account – and I was reminded of how nice and helpful I always thought the customer service reps were in the good old days of Classic Ancestry. The challenges that New Ancestry has brought to the world of customer service must be especially hard on the long-time reps who are also serious genealogists and share many of our concerns.

  73. caith

    Rebecca K: How long did it take you to download from Ancestry to your personal computer? Were you happy with the results? Seems an easier process than some of the others outlined, and although we would not get as much data, some of my fellow dinosaurs who are not as computer savvy could tackle this.

  74. Martin

    3 weeks have passed and you have still not fixed the date format problem on the UK version of the website, dates here are always in format of DD/MM/YYYY, not MM/DD/YYYY.

    It’s not difficult to change just change the date format setting in the software.

    Still getting towns located out in the North Sea, you don’t appear to be making much progress on the mapping front.

    Good job I am not planning to access life story at all, but just to occasional glimpse to see what progress is being or not being made. just would like the ability to turn it off permanently so doesn’t clutter the web page with its irrelevancy.

  75. Alexandra

    I just called The Ancestry reps (again) this time to tell them not to automatically renew my subscription and had a lovely conversation with a rep there who told me “not to give up hope” and that corporate was listening. She said she heard the same complaints about “new” many times a day, she typed out all my comments and was sending them up. I could tell she agreed with me for the most part.

    So everyone call again, write again, tell your ancestry contacts to call and write….keep saying it out loud; NEW Ancestry is not going to work for you, keep Classic alive!

  76. douggrf

    Just found another problem today with the New site when viewing media in the new viewer page of the individual profile. You can see the media is shared and copied to other trees by silly little icons for the member owners of each sharing tree. Problem with New is that you cannot tell which person(s) of the sharing tree are identified. This is one piece of important information that was exposed in the Classic view and now has been taken away. The write of new code and the New site in general is a boondoggle beyond belief. Give up Ancestry, give up before you bankrupt the entire company with this folly!

  77. Lindsay

    I hate the Font, the “Old Ancestry” Font was much better and clearer to read I do not like the Profile facts page at all. It is too confusing and I perfer the family members right next to my timeline and the sources underneath. Also I do not like the space….it’s too much space and hard to read. Also, the links and button are all hidden and should all be right on that page easy for researching, The new Ancestry is not easy at all for researchers!!

  78. Monika

    Like so many other people I am offended that ancestry gives itself the right to change my data AFTER I have created my family trees. (If they had told me beforehand that they will give themselves the right to do so, I would have no right to complain. But, AFTER I have created my trees they should not have the right to change ANY data on my trees by adding or removing something from my trees.) So, I was going to copy all the blogs to forward to an attorney who handles class action law suits only to discover that–what ancestry writes in their section is very legible when you print it out, but the comments below it are barely readable in print. But, that’s okay! I will just have to take my laptop with me for show and tell.

  79. emam

    To Anne and Vince, when you search in Classic Ancestry and then save a record to your tree, it takes you back to your timeline view. If you want to look for more records there is a green button to click on called ‘continue searching’ which takes you back to the page that you found the record on that you have just saved.
    It is very handy especially if you have gone into one of the set’s of records like Military etc or looked at a few pages in a record set. It saves you having to go through all of the search again.

  80. Elhura

    @RobinH. Thanks for all you have done to spread the word as well and for caring about what is happening and @Alexandra for the encouragement to hope. I, too, have gotten the feeling from some of the reps I have recently spoken with that our message is being repeated many times over and – yes – is being heard. Let’s hope it falls on the right ears, the right minds and the right hearts. To me, the answer is simple: KEEP CLASSIC ANCESTRY AS A WORK OPTION.

    The petition continues to grow daily and will continue to do so as we help spread the word to others who have not signed it or truly don’t know about what is going on: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/en-gb/600/803/575/save-ancestrycom-classic/

    The number for the Ancestry Corporate Office is 1-801-705-7000 and FAX 1-801-705-7001.
    I believe continued contacts there, although brief, are “countable” and will have an impact although you will be passed to the rep number 1-800-262-3787 to state your concerns and requests. As Alexandra noted, the reps type in our messages and will also pass them on.

    Other contact information can be found in my 09/21/2015 earlier post.

    We all share in the desire to see the “class act” Ancestry.com has been in the past to continue. We all share in the desire to be able to continue to do our work. The new, as so many of us know “doesn’t get it”. Only by keeping our message alive can we be heard.

  81. Roger

    Agree. Those representatives I’ve spoken with have sympathised with this situation even to say that “they really prefer working in the Classic site, too” But I guess they have to keep a low profile. Hope they are somehow getting their point of view across somehow.

  82. Vince

    Karen — the “Send” icon lets other viewers of the petition website send you a “Green Star” as thanks for signing, which I just did!

  83. Elhura

    @karen in england and @Roger. Thanks to both of you and please help spread the contact information and word of the petition to others who need to know. I don’t know what the green star with SEND means on the petition. Does anyone know?

    The phone number that can be called toll free from the United Kingdom is: 0800-404-9723. The list of international numbers can be found (US Code, if required by some, is “1”) at: http://c.ancestry.com/Affiliate/Knowledgebase/contact/contact.html

  84. John Dalmas

    What happened to the nice compact family group format on the Ancestry Public Member Trees? I find these trees to be a very valuable source of information, and the new format makes it much more difficult to compare notes. Is there some way I can opt for the old format, or are we now stuck with the life story format?

  85. Martin

    Just had this response back from UK Ancestry Support – “The Lifestory is actually working as designed and so it is not the case that our team are working to fix errors as such.”

    So despite customers raising issues with life story if this is true they are not attempting to fix any of the issues people have raised.

  86. Caz

    Martin – is that for real? What a joke… Is there a new ‘update’ out today does anyone know? If there is, could someone post link to it please?

  87. Martin

    I can assure you its for real, was in an email response I got from UK Support.

    Got the impression from the response that if you don’t like it, tough!

  88. Vince

    Please provide a way for the tree owner to prevent the entire LifeStory view from appearing at all in trees that he or she owns, so that no one can see it unless the tree owner or an invited editor for the tree chooses to display it. This choice could be provided as an extension of the way the system currently refrains from showing the Historical Insights generated for the LifeStory view to anyone other than the tree owner and members invited as editors for a tree, unless a given Historical Insight is “accepted” for display to other members by the tree owner or an editor.

    Also, please allow the Classic/Old view to remain permanently as a working option for those who prefer it. The new interface has way too much forcibly added fluff that is unnecessary, misleading, and often downright inaccurate, making it unacceptable for regular use by serious genealogical researchers.

  89. RobinH

    @Martin, I tried to post the response you received from the UK on Ancestry’s Facebook page – to ask if the comment was true, but Ancestry didn’t answer the question – and took down my post. It was just a question. We all deserve to know whether or not that was true.

  90. Martin

    Not surprised they took it down, I have suffered that fate also, not keen on criticism on the facebook page.

    I must admit I was surprised to receive the comment in the email from the support team, but its the so I must assume its true.

  91. Elhura

    I agree with Vince. Please provide a way to block Life Story from view to all upon choice of the tree owner. I, unfortunately – and not having been warned not to – added some additional notations to the birthplace line (birth date line would not accept) pertinent to the 1900 US Federal Census. That notation now triggers such gross errors as my GA-USA g-grandmother’s being born in Barvaria, Germany! With 33,000 people in a study of area pioneer families – a significant number with this notataion – it is impossible to correct all in my tree. Thus, Life Story will always be grossly wrong.

    CLASSIC ANCESTRY DOES NEED TO BE KEPT AS A WORKING OPTION TO ALL because, for whatever reasons for many of us, new Ancestry is impossible to use!

    WIth 98 responses to-date here and only 3 or maybe 4 positive, something MUST BE WRONG!

  92. caz

    Ancestry aren’t looking at this are they, I don’t believe they have taken in or understood a word of what we are all saying. I’ve left so much feedback and nothing is different, we are getting no answers, no response, extremely little response that is worth anything on Face book, the same answers over and over – ‘we will pass on’. LifeStory has made a farce out of most of our trees, the ‘Profile’ or ‘fact’ page or whatever they are now calling it is so so different to old ‘profile’ page, media from Facts & Events has gone, the app is just as disappointing now, the whole thing has been taken over, OUR ancestors lives have been made up – OUR ANCESTORS places of birth, marriages, deaths, burials, etc. etc. have been changed – OUR ancestors, their Life Story that we have worked so very hard to put together, Churches Visited, photo’s begged, stolen or borrowed, money spent on travels, joy of taking pictures, AND SO SO SO MUCH MORE has been ruined literally overnight. WHAT can we all do, as a group, together, because WE NEED TO….. Any ideas anyone???

  93. Monika

    @ Elhura: I love you to death for all the effort you are putting into this. believing that ancestry will do anything other than what it wants to do. This is why I am not kidding when I keep bringing up the option of a class action law suit. And, @caz: Ancestry IS looking at this. They just do not give a damn.

  94. Vince

    I think the new interface has been changed for the worse (hard to do!) regarding clicks needed to do things. Unless I’m dreaming, in both the Pedigree and Family versions of the tree view of the new interface, hovering the cursor over the box of any individual previously popped up a dialog with various options, just as in the Classic interface. But now you have hover the cursor over an individual’s box AND click on the box to get the dialog of options. Why force that extra step, Ancestry??

  95. Deborah

    While I am still begging for the Classic/Old Ancestry, and I have the same problems as all have mentioned, and I have left lots of comments, I don’t think I have seen one concerning this:
    ANCESTRY: YOU HAVE BEEN SHOUTING FROM THE HEAVENS ABOUT THE NEW WILL AND PROBATE RECORDS……. I just went to my tree and tried to look at the “170 million documents from all 50 states”. AND, immediately saw the following: “ONLY AVAILABLE ON THE NEW SITE, WHICH GIVES YOU A BETTER WAY TO SEARCH, VIEW AND BROWSE.”
    I call time out!!!! Ancestry, I am paying a fee (quite hefty, in my opionion) as are all of the people responding on this blog. So, now you are telling me that for the same price, I can see the 170 million records, BUT ONLY IF I USE NEW ANCESTRY?!?! HOW DARE YOU!!!!! This is false and misleading. Perhaps more calls to the Better Business Bureau?

    Have I just missed posts complaining about this, or does this just not add to the anger for most of you over the new site??? 170 million records from all 50 states that we cannot access unless we conform?

  96. Vince

    Deborah: I too was appalled to learn early this month that the records of the new Wills & Probate database are viewable only in the new interface. Somebody suggested that might be because the new database uses fields that are unknown to the viewer available in the Classic interface. For whatever reason, you do get thrown in automatically and without notice to the new interface if you try to view a record in the Wills & Probate database from the Classic interface. I commented obliquely about this on September 9 at 12:53 pm in the September 4th Feature Update blog (blogs.ancestry.com/ancestry/2015/09/04/the-new-ancestry-september-4th-feature-update) in the context of using TreeSync in Family Tree Maker 2014 to capture data from my on-line tree:

    “While I’m still deciding whether to keep using Ancestry on-line trees at all, which I likely won’t do if the Classic interface is turned off entirely or the silly LifeStory gambit is not allowed to be killed entirely by tree owners so that no one can see it, I do still make changes to the on-line tree via the Classic interface and periodically initiate a sync from FTM 2014 to get the changes into my local tree. That even worked to get the image of a will from the new Wills & Probate database into the FTM tree. As long as I didn’t view the will in the on-line tree, I didn’t get thrown out of the Classic interface and into the new one. That new database is apparently set up to allow viewing of images only through the new interface. But after I got the document image into FTM 2014, I could view and read it normally. For the time being, I can also let the on-line system throw me into the new interface to view items retrieved in a search of the Wills & Probate database and then switch back to the Classic interface.”

    So, for whatever small consolation it provides, it is possible to search the new Wills & Probate database and attach records from it to individuals, all from within the Classic interface, IF you don’t view a retrieved record first. Of course, most people will want to view any record before deciding to attach it to someone in their tree.

  97. gp_4hbc

    Vince, the Wills and Probate database is also available to members of NEHGS. This one in particular has been useful to me: Middlesex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1648-1871.Online database. AmericanAncestors.org. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2014. (From records supplied by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Archives.)

    Description:

    This database was created from digital images and index contributed to NEHGS by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Archives. The collection contains the records of 45,383 Middlesex County probate cases filed between 1648 and 1871. The probate cases include wills, guardianships, administrations, and various other types of probate records. The cases range in length from one to over 1,500 pages, with a total of over 668,000 individual file papers.

    Also, they have many other useful databases (internal and external) plus many other features. Consider becoming a member of this non-profit organization, as at least your money is for a useful cause. I have been a member for many years and they are constantly adding new information and also offer classes to members, no matter what your genealogical expertise may be. For a mere $89.95 (tax-deductible) it is worth considering. You will also receive a weekly newsletter with valuable info. Check it out at:
    http://www.americanancestors.org/Search/

    As far as Ancestry.com offering some database that you can retrieve but then again find yourself back to the “new” interface is nothing but a bait and switch scam. You paying exorbitant prices only to find your work ruined with phantom stories of your ancestors. As a professional, I’ll have no part of any of it.

    Good luck in all your endeavors.

  98. Vince

    To gp_4hbc: Thanks for the note. I have been a member of NEHGS for a couple of years but obviously have not explored their offerings as much as I should. That will be changing. . .

  99. Vince

    For the record, it should be noted that the “Court, Land and Probate Records” collection at NEHGS currently offers just 27 databases from jurisdictions in the northeastern US, including the one from Massachusetts that gp_4hbc mentioned above. Ancestry’s new “Wills and Probate” collection includes 316 databases from all 50 states and the District of Columbia, 62 from the United Kingdom, 74 from European countries and 26 from a variety of other countries.

  100. Following on from glen-swartz, I ventured back into New Ancestry and see all my custom events have now been added into Life Story with ALL my photos, newspaper clippings, etc. I have a nasty feeling that the return of thumbnails to facts line is highly unlikely now that all media can be viewed attached to events on Life Story. The narrative is still mind-numbingly awful and generally incorrect and, as someone on facebook so aptly called them, the hysterical insights are still beyond stupid and so totally unnecessary. I find myself shrinking as I read what Ancestry thinks my family story should look like. As far as I can see, Ancestry are determined that Life Story will be the display mode for sharing with others (as if such an embarrassment could be shared). I will continue to print as many profiles as I can from classic ancestry. I am becoming more convinced that my only choice is to leave Ancestry when New Ancestry becomes the only option. I will be sorry to go but when a pleasure becomes a chore, it’s time to give it up

  101. Jade

    Why have so many New Jersey Wills been deleted from the site (posted here because the newish estate databases can only be viewed through “New Ancestry”) and what else in the probate databases has been deleted?

  102. Jeff Anderson

    On 9/20 JADE wrote “The crucial upper-right elements of main navigation bar are still missing in NewAncestry mode from all tree pages: message envelope, leaf, tiny user avatar, username account-settings link as well as “upgrade” and “help.” Using Firefox 40.03, Win8.1. Seem to disappear…” .

    You must have browser fonts set to accept the web page fonts, rather than only use fonts available on your computer. At least that solved the problem for me.

  103. Dave Marshall

    Monika said:
    > Like so many other people I am offended that
    > ancestry gives itself the right to change my data
    > AFTER I have created my family trees. (If they had
    > told me beforehand that they will give themselves
    > the right to do so, I would have no right to
    > complain. But, AFTER I have created my trees they
    > should not have the right to change ANY data on
    > my trees by adding or removing something from my
    > trees.) So, I was going to copy all the blogs to
    > forward to an attorney who handles class action
    > law suits only to discover that–what ancestry writes
    > in their section is very legible when you print it out,
    > but the comments below it are barely readable in
    > print. But, that’s okay! I will just have to take my
    > laptop with me for show and tell.

    @Monika Try this: Highlight the text you want to save with your mouse, then copy and paste into Windows Notepad. Next, highlight the text in Notepad and copy it again and paste it into your favorite word processing program, you will have clearly readable text.

    You should keep both your original printouts from the comments AND print the word processing program copied text for your presentation.

  104. Dave Marshall

    FYI for everyone, Member Connect is working again, at least in Old Ancestry. I received a message from another member yesterday, sent a reply, and received a reply back to me today.

  105. Vince

    To Steve: I’ve done limited testing of New Ancestry in Windows 10 Pro on a 2008 Dell laptop PC and have found no significant differences from its behavior in Windows 7 Pro on my 2010 Dell desktop PC. One cosmetic difference is that the color of the full background in the tree view and the top part of the individual profile view is a dark brown shade on the desktop in Win 7 but a clearly different dark grey shade on the laptop in Win 10. That difference could be a result of the different machines rather than the different operating systems or different presentations by Ancestry. I don’t like either of the shades and much prefer the light background of Classic Ancestry, which looks the same and is easier on the eyes on both the desktop in Win 7 and the laptop in Win 10. I again call on Ancestry to keep Classic Ancestry as a permanent option to the new interface which has way too much forcibly added fluff that is unnecessary, misleading, and often downright inaccurate, making it unacceptable for regular use by serious genealogical researchers.

  106. Vince

    By the way, my previous comment was based on using Firefox. Ancestry now also works with the Edge browser in Windows 10, which it did not as of August 3, although I see the message, “While using Windows 10, please use a mouse for the best experience. Thank you for your patience while we work on this issue.”

  107. CPM

    Virtually every “Life Story” that I have read in my assorted family trees, contains compupter-generated errors! This means that there are thousands of COMPUPUTER-GENERATED Errors, that will now be repeatedly COPIED by novice researchers, on the internet. What a disaster, the “Life Story” feature has turned out to be!!!!! Please, please. Remove the “Life Story” feature from the New Ancestry. It is a dreadful failure, and is undermining the long-standing good reputation of Ancestry.com — which will not benefit *anyone* (genealogy researchers OR the financial “business” aspect of Ancestry.com), in the long-run. Thank-you for listening.

  108. CPM

    CPM Virtually every “Life Story” that I have read in my assorted family trees, contains computer-generated errors! This means that there are now thousands of newly created COMPUTER-GENERATED Errors, that will now be repeatedly COPIED by novice researchers, on the internet. What a disaster, the “Life Story” feature has turned out to be!!!!! Please, please. Remove the “Life Story” feature from the New Ancestry. It is a dreadful failure, and is undermining the long-standing good reputation of Ancestry.com — which will not benefit *anyone* (genealogy researchers OR the financial “business” aspect of Ancestry.com), in the long-run. Thank-you for listening.

  109. Mary

    Perhaps this is the man we should be flooding with emails and calls: KENDALL HULET –
    Senior Vice President of Product Management
    Kendall Hulet has served as our Senior Vice President of Product Management at Ancestry since March 2015. He joined the Company in 2003 has held a variety of roles in the product organization including Director of International Product Management and most recently Vice President of Product Management for AncestryDNA. During his tenure, he was deeply involved in some of the most popular innovations at Ancestry, including the “Shaky Leaf” hinting system that has delivered over five billion discoveries; the Ancestry Family Tree system that has led to the creation of over 70 million family trees containing six billion ancestors; and the creation of the award winning Ancestry mobile app, which has been downloaded more than 12 million times. Kendall most recently led the product efforts around AncestryDNA, including launching DNA Circles, and initiatives that aggregate and mine massive amounts of family history data to tell stories. Prior to joining Ancestry, Kendall worked in product marketing at Monster.com. Kendall holds an M.B.A. from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and graduated cum laude with university honors and a B.S. degree in Information Systems from Brigham Young University. http://corporate.ancestry.com/about-ancestry/leadership/

  110. Donna

    I am so disappointed in the “new” Ancestry. I do not like the Lifestory feature or the fact that it has been imposed – without my permission – on every single one of my trees, complete with computer generated errors! Really? Is that what I’m paying for? To have decades of work bastardized by someone in your back room and their poor code? Shame on you, Ancestry. Serious researchers like myself have long used your software as a way to manage their family trees, hoping to keep them for posterity. This is a joke. Like so many others, after being a loyal user of your service, I am seriously considering a change to another application. Give us the old Ancestry back.

  111. Marjorie McLean

    I have copied my tree to FTM, using manual sync. I am not very computer savy. Does this mean i need to sync my tree everytime I want to send changes from ancestory? I don’t want Ancestory to automatically update the FTM. Also…when I am forced to use the NEW ANCESTORY…will a snc make changes in the appearance of my FTM..In other words will it turn it into another New Ancestory nightmare..??

  112. Marjorie McLean

    I did try the New Ancestory but was able to get a temporary reprieve back to the Old Ancestory. I very much doubt that they will ever give us a choice between the New and the Old……simply because noone would ever choose to use the “New Ancestory”.
    I have never seen a product before that has recieved such bad ratings and still been put on the market. They must believe that they have a monopoly. Do they? Are there any other sites that will hold as much media. At looking at a couple of them…they only allow very short texts when you want to write a story and limit the photos.
    All the friends I have made on Ancestory thru the years are leaving.
    I feel like I am losing my family and its very sad.
    What is most sad is that Ancestory DOESN’T Care”. We are just so many dollars to them. I wonder what their Find-A-Grave memorial will say? They lined their pockets on the Graves of others, uncaring about the people they hurt”

  113. RobinH

    @Marjorie I am also not much of a techie but I have found that the customer service reps when I call and select the Family Tree Maker support option have been very knowledgeable and helpful and pleasant. I would encourage you to call and ask your questions of them. I wondered if you had seen or taken the survey at https:/ancestry.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_02mXKrYAQtgUG4B?Q_CHL=si
    There was sort of a glitch with it that may be fixed now. When you select thumbs up or thumbs down, be sure to click in the box you want, but don’t click directly on the thumb. Click outside the outline of the thumb.

  114. Marjorie Mclean

    Robin, Thank you. I took the survey..though I have doubts that anyone will read it or that it will make any difference

  115. Lynn

    1) What did you DO to the search feature in Ancestry DNA???? We can no longer search for our matches by name. What good is that? Nothing to me. Kinda hard to go page by page through 250 pages of matches looking for someone.

    2) We need to be able to update trees via GEDCOM without losing the people we share with. I will NEVER be able to put my full tree on Ancestry because I will lose the capacity to share with relatives. And I will NEVER make a tree directly on here – especially not since your system went out for almost a month last year – and people have actually changed my parents’ information and spread it through your system!

    3) Websites in tablet form are a PITA to people who use computers. I don’t want weird cutesy pictures. I want DATA.

  116. William Coleman

    I am just now seeing the new Ancestry. Working with it. I’m trying to be patient with the new placements and links. Everything seems to be working ok — once I figure out how to navigate it — but I’m concerned about the integrity of the information being presented. For example try doing a search on one of the patriarch for the Scottish Witherspoon family, Alexander Wetherspun b. 1400. Here’s what comes back: http://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?ssrc=pt_t36865069_p19446733750&srchb=r&gss=pt&rank=1&gl=allgs&tid=36865069&pid=19446733750&gpid=&gsfn=Alexander&gsln=Wetherspun&msbdy=1400&msddy=1451&msbpn=91205&msbpn_PInfo=8-%7c0%7c0%7c0%7c3252%7c0%7c0%7c0%7c91181%7c91205%7c0%7c&msbpn__ftp=Edinburgh%2c+Scotland&msdpn=91205&msdpn_PInfo=8-%7c0%7c0%7c0%7c3252%7c0%7c0%7c0%7c91181%7c91205%7c0%7c&msdpn__ftp=Edinburgh%2c+Scotland&cp=12&cpxt=1&msfng=Johannes&msfns=Wythspone&msmng=Margareta&mscng0=James&mscns0=Wydderspoon&_83004003-n_xcl=f&MSAV=1&so=4. It’s all gibberish. 18th and 19th century ‘information’ about a 15th century figurehead. Yikes.

    Wm. Coleman, San Francisco

  117. Vivian

    Hate it! Not only is it slow you cannot work in split screen when entering data. The colors are awful. Leave it the way it is now. Please!!!!

  118. JoAnn

    For over 24 hours, the LifeStory section in the Android app has not downloaded or functioned properly. It downloaded once, for about 10 minutes, but the birth, marriage, and death boxes would not open. Also, in the list of people, some have no birth or death data showing but it does appear in LifeStory.

  119. Chris Manning

    Other contributors are right, Ancestry has not listened to us at all. I know of nobody who wants this ridiculous so-called ‘family history feature’. Keep your hands out of my family, Ancestry, I don’t need or want you to do it for me – that’s the OBJECT of the site, or have you forgotten? I see no point in taking part in any more surveys, they’re simply a red herring. The bigger they are, the harder they fall – and you guys ought to learn a lesson from a little company you may remember. They’re called Findmypast and then went from being a serious contender to a genealogical joke. The new Ancestry? HORRIBLE!

    • Kristie Wells

      @Chris: The product team has been listening to member feedback and has been developing features and functionality based off of that. I would love to know what, specifically, you do not like in the new Ancestry as that will help me find a resolution to the issue. Looking forward to your feedback.

  120. Karen

    Why can I not find the relationship to me option….this is sooooo annoying…..like the old ancestry format better….this sucks!!!

Comments are closed.