Friday, April 13, 2012

Follow-Up Friday - 1940 Census and More

On Fridays, I like to follow-up on blog comments and email comments from my readers, especially those that provide useful information to readers or that challenge my take on things.

1)  On Using the MyHeritage Mobile App, Anonymous wrote:

"Here are instructions for taking a screen shot with your iPhone:"

My response:  Thanks - just what I wanted!  Blogging works, eh?  It's easy to do  - you just have to remember the process.

2)  On Feeding my Family Tree - Massachusetts Folks, reader WyoSpring commented:

"Randy this is my first post to you and have been wanting to write to you for a long time--don't see where I can just post a note to you about your blog as a whole which I REALLY LIKE. Tell me where I can do that. "

My response:  You can email me at  The eddress is in my "About Me" section in the right sidebar.  Thanks for the compliment!

3)  There were several comments on my post Before Doing FamilySearch Indexing, RTFM, including:

a)  DianaR commented:

"*FANCY* - now I know what the F stands mistake ;-) But then I work in aerospace and we have more ,um, interesting "technical" language being used!!"

My comment:  I was in aerospace too, but I thought that some of my genea-readers might not understand  the real technical term.  Ever hear of SRDH?  I thought so!

b)  Celia commented:

"Hah! I always tell my class (genealogy beginners) to READ HELP or the manual or the FAQ or whatever the website says will be helpful to the searcher. So, of course I was perfect and read that #@!* manual first. But the truth is that some handwriting (or weird printing) is very challenging to read, even when checking several pages for examples of an ending "e" or a middle "d" etc.... so I'm happy to be getting 98-99% on many, and 100% on some."

My response:  But do you use the aerospace technical language when you teach?  Yep, the handwriting is sometimes confusing, and my interpretation is not always the other indexer's interpretation.  I'm learning to accept correction.  Slowly...using with more technical language to make me feel better.

c)  Linda commented:

"I had actually read most of the guidelines and got a few 100%, but am mostly getting 98%...and one 92%!! When I go to review the "mistakes", I am finding that I am right about 99% of the ones marked as wrong!! It is quite frustrating. In those cases, I click the button asking them to review the entry again, but so far it doesn't appear that anyone has reviewed them!!"

My response:  I had some responses about the Review option on other posts (see below), Facebook and Google Plus - everybody said that nothing ever comes from clicking on Review.  My guess is that it's purpose is to make you feel a little better about being corrected (whether rightly or wrongly).  I know that I felt better clicking on it - "take that, you stupid indexer/arbitrator!  RTFM!"

4)  There were lots of comments in Accuracy in FamilySearch Indexing - My Results To Date - some were:

a)  Candace commented:

"There is a standard list for relationships. If you click on the drop down box in the relationship field and then select the bottom choice (I don't have a batch active now and don't remember the exact wording) you can select from a list.   My main complaint with the arbitrations is that the instructions say to correct the spelling of geographic locations, but whenever I have done that, the arbitrator has changed it back to what appeared in the record."

My response:  Thanks - I found it.  Another "Eureka" moment.  I know - RTFM.  BTDT.

b)  April Robertson offered:

"So with the relationships always use the lookup (drop down lists) first and then if you can't find it in there type what you see.  Blank lines should not have the line numbers included so the arbitrator in the one batch who put them in was wrong.

"As far as the review nothing will come back to you at this time. FamilySearch is working on a new indexing program that will have more features that the indexers have been asking for. Currently the review goes to a special team that looks them over and new updates are created from the reviews. It doesn't go back to the arbitrator and doesn't get redone unless the project has too many errors. Which has happened.

"Otherwise the problems are with the field helps and the spread out places where the updates and other information are located.

If you're on Facebook check out our share batch group if you ever want more help."

My response:  Very helpful information - thank you!  Clicking the Review button does permit me to use more technical language.

c)  Kimberly Powell noted:

"RE: Line Numbers The Project Instructions say "If an entry line on the census form is blank or has no data to be indexed, mark the record as blank in the data entry area." The important part of this instruction is "Record" as this refers to the entire record, including the line number (you can view each record individually in the Form Entry view). The easiest way to mark an entire record (line) as blank is to enter Ctrl+Shift+B while your cursor is in the line number tab location. The arbitrator that said the line number is required was incorrect to my knowledge."

My response:  Thanks!  Something else to read (I did!).  RTFM seems to be in several places... Does the arbitrator have to read the Project Instructions too?

a) Russ Worthington offered:

"I see that you were on Ancestry for that record. Hint: Rotate the page to the RIGHT if you have a Street Name. Rotate is back to the Left when you see your street name. BUT don't stop there, keep going til the end of that ED if you don't find who you are looking for. That street may or WILL appear on more than one page and probably NOT the "next" page. At the end, of the ED, may be a page of people who were not home when their house was canvased.  Glad you found who you were looking for and posted your findings."

My response:  Good suggestion, and it works.  It's relatively easy to see the street address number too.  
b)  Elizabeth commented:

"Another item to be aware of - a child with his step-father's surname rather than his own surname - see my post about all the errors in my Dad's household at From Maine to Kentucky."

My response:  Excellent tip.  All of this demonstrates that the enumerators were not perfect. 

copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

1 comment:

Celia Lewis said...

Ah perfection... that unattainable goal we all strive for. I'm trying to be as correct as possible, which is enough of a challenge. Sigh. I'd like a reward... Is it time for a scotch?