Friday, April 06, 2007

Surprises from Ancestry.com

DearREADERS,

There have been some surprises from Ancestry.com in addition to their announcement that LDS libraries including your local Family History Center and the Family History Library will no longer have access to most Ancestry databases, effective 1 April 2007. If you missed that announcement, see:
http://blog.dearmyrtle.com/2007/03/ancestry-to-cut-access-through-fhcs.html

SURPRISE #1 - RESEARCHERS CANNOT USE PERSONAL ACCOUNTS TO VIEW ANCESTRY DATABASES IF AT AN LDS LIBRARY (local or at Salt Lake)

From: apg On Behalf Of Suzanne Russo Adams
Sent: Thursday, April 05, 2007 11:23 AMTo:
apg@rootsweb.com (Association of Professional Genealogists RootsWeb Mailing List
Subject: Re: [APG] Ancestry.com blocked at LDS libraries

Dear Colleagues,
The Family History Library [FHL] and Ancestry.com have used IP authentication for several years to help manage the access to the Ancestry.com experience to the library. Since Ancestry and the FHL started using IP authentication several years ago, patrons at the Family History Library have not been able to use their own personal accounts on Ancestry.com. With the changes in the FHL access to Ancestry.com effective on Monday, this has become more of an issue than it was in the past.

Ancestry learned a few days ago that patrons at the Family History Library had inadvertently used a deep link into Ancestry.com to bypass the IP authentication that made the computer unable to log out of a personal account, even if the user wanted to, creating a security risk. Ancestry closed that hole to protect our site security and customer privacy. Shutting down the deep link log in function on the FHL computers was not a direct or an
intentional ploy to upset current Ancestry.com subscribers.

Ancestry and the FHL are currently exploring solutions to allow people to gain access to their personal accounts at the Family History Library while still protecting the privacy of customers. Rest assured that we (Ancestry and the FHL) are working on a resolution--but there is not yet a timetable for its completion.

Suzanne Russo Adams, AG(r)
Professional Services Desk Manager
ancestry.com
Part of The Generations Network
SURPRISE #2 - LIST OF ALLOWED DATABASES HAS GROWN, BUT DOES NOT INCLUDE ACCESS TO IMAGES


From: FHCNET@yahoogroups.com Behalf Of Venita
Roylance
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/FHCNET
Yesterday I went to Ancestry.com on one of the computers at the Family History Training Center [in Provo, Utah]. On the home page there is a link that takes you to a list of the databases that are available to Family History Centers, so I clicked on it. I found a list of 43 databases!! Wow, I thought, maybe a new agreement has been made and we can access more than we know.

So I clicked on a passenger list that I thought would contain my ancestor, typed in his name, and there he was! I was really excited!! I clicked on his name, saw the extracted information and a link to the digital image so I clicked on that, hoping to see the record itself. Surprise! Instead of the image I got Ancestry's page inviting me to subscribe so I could see the images. I found that very annoying!! No, I'm not going to subscribe. However, if they had offered me a chance to give them a nominal fee for that one image, I probably would have. […]
WHAT ABOUT THE AVERAGE JOE?
I believe that both Ancestry.com and the LDS Church have legitimate points of view in this controversy. However, when it comes to the "average Joe's rights" being curtailed, Ol' Myrt gets concerned and moved to action. Nowhere in the individual (not corporate) sign-up process did Ancestry.com state that I would be denied access to Ancestry.com's service from specific places in the world. The logical assumption was that I could access Ancestry.com anywhere one could log into a computer.

Personally, I find it helpful to look at my family database on my laptop, and then compare it to Ancestry.com's databases when doing research. This is particularly important when I have just learned something new on a microfilm I am reading at my local Family History Center or when visiting the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. To deny Ol' Myrt and "average Joe" this access only frustrates the research process -- the very thing I hoped to avoid by paying for "full" access to Ancestry.com's

I am sending a copy of this column to support@ancestry.com

Happy family tree climbing!
Myrt :)
DearMYRTLE,
Your friend in genealogy.

Myrt@DearMYRTLE.com
www.DearMYRTLE.com

(c) 2007 All Rights Reserved.

No comments:

Post a Comment