Brough Family Organization

FamilySearch Tree
Problems and Solutions

Updated on 9 June 2016

     The following problems with FamilySearch Tree (FST) have been rated as "serious" by the Research Committee of the Brough Family Organization (BFO).

"BIC" Ordinance Problem on FamilySearch Tree:
     In March 2016 the following two statements were published in FamilySearch Blog (FSB):
     From "John", posted to FSB on 30 March 2016: "I'm sad to see the first time guide sanction the tedious 'find as green icon' game. FamilySearch, please fix your egregious bug in not finding duplicates until many sources are attached as you [are] causing duplicate temple work to be compounded."
     From "Golden Adams", posted to FSB on 31 March 2016: "I heartily agree with John's comment regarding the 'green arrow game'. Because of the problem with BIC [Born In the Covenant] error, there are many green arrows that produce duplicates for temple ordinances that have already been completed, especially with Sealings. Can this be taken care of, or must New FamilySearch be turned off so correct ordinances will show and thus avoid this duplication?"     
     BFO Analysis (updated 9 June 2016): The "problem with" the BIC error" continues to cause considerable frustration to FamilySearch Tree (FST) patrons and unnecessary duplication within the FST database. The BFO and other ancestral family organizations have received reports from frustrated family members whose deceased family members were once BIC but are now listed in FST as needing their LDS "sealings" done. (See for example: Madeline Utahna Brough, PID# MWXZ-F3K). Obviously this problem needs to be corrected by FST computerists as soon as possible.
     FST Response (received 9 June 2016): In the past if a patron had uploaded a GEDCOM or had submitted information to Ancestral File or Pedigree Resource File and had a date or other information in an ordinance field, FamilySearch used that data and inserted “completed” in that ordinance field when Family Tree was created. Those ordinances were considered patron opinion. Now ordinances considered patron opinion no longer appear as “completed” in Family Tree. In other words, Family Tree had been showing ordinances, including BIC, as “completed” if a submitted GEDCOM file or similar program indicated that the ordinance had been done. It was last month that the decision was made to no longer show those ordinances as complete and only show ordinances provided by the Membership and Temple departments on the Family Tree.
     BFO Solution: Unfortunately, there does not appear to be an easy fix to this problem. Therefore, the BFO suggests that LDS members who recognize that their deceased family members do not need their "sealings" done--such as children who were originally BIC (Born In the Covenant) because their parents had been married and/or sealed in the temple prior to such children being born--quickly reserve these sealing ordinances so that they cannot be done for those who do not need them. (This approach was suggested on 24 March 2016 by James Tanner.)

Duplicate Children Problem on FamilySearch Tree via "LDS Church Membership" data:
     On May 22, 2016, the following statement was published on FamilySearch Blog (FSB):
     From "Maurine Nuttall", posted to FSB on 22 May 2016: "I discovered yesterday that some of the records I am 'watching' had changes made by LDS Membership Dept., and also FamilySearch. The changes consisted of additional or duplicate records of children being added to families. These records contained different vital statistics, but were actually incorrect duplicates of children already in the family. In one case, the individual added did not exist at all. I submitted two cases and received the reply that I would soon be able to merge the duplicates. My question is, why is this happening and is it going to keep happening to all branches of my family tree? I have spent thousands of hours true-ing up the records, combining duplicates and fixing things, and now to think I will have to go back to every family group and do it all over again is giving me nightmares. Please help/explain."
     BFO Analysis (updated 9 June 2016): The above mentioned duplicate "changes made by LDS Membership Dept., and also FamilySearch" is still ongoing on FamlySearch Tree (FST). In fact, the BFO and other ancestral family organizations have received reports from frustrated family members who are finding that duplicate or questionable individuals have been added by "LDS Church Membership" to their direct and related family lines, and that much of the information listed about these added individuals is either incorrect, incomplete and/or outdated. An investigation by the BFO Research Committee has found that at least some of these recently added individuals appear to be coming from the old Ancestral File and/or IGI database. What is frustrating to BFO members and other FST patrons is that these recently added individuals cannot be easily "merged" or "deleted" from FST. Obviously this problem needs to be corrected by FST computerists as soon as possible.
     FST Response (received 9 June 2016): We have located the source of the problem. Unfortunately, the records added by LDS Church membership will not be removed. They are records that the membership department has in their database which originally came from Ancestral File submissions. Our support team is currently working on a knowledge article that will explain in detail the problem and how to resolve this issue in the future but because these records are created by membership they will not be able to be merged with another membership record at this time. Patrons will be able to merge duplicate membership records in the very near future, however.
     BFO Solution: The BFO suggests that the least time-consuming way to deal with this problem is to simply 'detach' such duplicate individuals from the parents or families to which they've been added. (See for example: William Tipton, PID# LLMJ-4D5).

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