Tuesday, April 12, 2016

How Many Persons Are "Watching" Your Family Tree Persons?

I wrote Checking My Watch List on FamilySearch Family Tree (1 August 2014) and haven't revisited the topic since then.  I now have over 300 on my Watch List - almost all of them are my ancestors.

But how many other people (possibly my cousins?) are also watching the ancestors I am watching?  Can I find out who they are?

I checked quite a few of my ancestors, and it appears that only one person is watching them - probably ME.

I had to search a bit to find ancestors who are watched by more than one person.  George Soule  (1595-1680) (LZ8P-MSK), the Mayflower passenger, is one of them.  Here is the top of his profile on the FamilySearch Family tree:



In the line below George's name and his birth and death dates, the profile says "Unwatch."  This is because I have chosen to "Watch" this profile.

Further down the "Vital information" section is the Birth date and place.  I clicked on "Birth" and then on "Edit" and saw:


Below the "Modified" line is a light blue area that says:

"10 users of Family Tree are watching this person. If you change this information, these users will be notified."

Okay, that's nice - there are 9 other persons "Watching" George Soule besides myself.  Who are they?  There is no way to tell explicitly who the other watchers may be.

There is one way to see who might be Watching - look at the Change Log:

I clicked on the "Show All Changes" in the "Latest Changes" box on the right side of the screen (not shown above, but is directly below the "Print" box):



Looking down this list, there are more than 15 FamilySearch UserIDs who have contributed to this profile, in addition to FamilySearch which continues to add material.  I can click on each person's UserID on the Change list and send them a message if I choose to.  

There are also at least five profiles for this person, who cannot be merged at this time.  That is another problem.

I know I saw someone mention this method to see how many Watchers there are, but I cannot find it in a Google search.  


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3 comments:

jane thompson said...

Randy,
I recall that someone from Family Search at Roots Tech, talked about this issue of not being able to merge certain people. They indicated that when they close down the old Family Tree system (can't think of the right name) some time this year, then this issue would be resolved.

Thanks for the post
Jane

Jay said...

Randy, the talk that Jane is referring to is Ron Tanner's talk "Family Tree in 2016 and Beyond" and how in 2016 they will completely shut down NFS - the old New.FamilySearch.org. Very nice explanation. After trying several times to fix the same problem in my family tree, I decided to wait for this shutdown before fixing some of the problems in my tree. See this link from the Ancestry Insider:

http://www.ancestryinsider.org/2016/03/rootstech-ron-tanner-family-tree-in.html

Jay

Devon Noel Lee said...

Great post. Apparently, I'm in a portion of the tree that doesn't have any watchers. Just little old me! Now I really feel like I'm pushing a wagon on my own!

Regardless, thanks for the insight.