Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Dear Randy: Why Does FamilySearch Remove Records and Collections?

Genea-Musings reader Lucy asked this question in email recently.  Some of my readers may want to know the answer too, or perhaps have a better answer.

Lucy was referring to my blog post Added and Updated Record Collections at - Week of 6 to 12 October 2019 which had:

*  one record collection (the Denmark, Copenhagen City, Burial Registers, 1805-1968) removed

*  four record collections with images removed

*  three record collections with records removed.

Unfortunately, FamilySearch does not provide a reason for these actions, so my speculation is that:

1)  The one removed collection may have not been authorized by contract to be displayed on FamilySearch, or the contract to display it was not renewed, or, perhaps the removed collection will be included in another collection.  I clicked on the link for the collection and then to the FamilySearch Wiki article about the collection, but it didn't answer the question.

Unfortunately, FamilySearch does not note that a record collection has been removed.

2)  The images and records removed from a collection may have been duplicate images or records, may have been poor quality images, may have been included in the named collections by mistake, may be included in another collection, or may have been displayed without permission.

The collection that stands out in the "Records removed" category is the one for:

*  Denmark, Copenhagen City, Civil Marriages, 1739-1964, Index 1877-1964   (; Browse 112,568 Images only, no index (was 190,047 records with 112,568 images),  1 May 2018

In this collection, the images can be browsed but they removed the indexed records for some reason.  

3)  Unfortunately, FamilySearch does not note that records or images have been removed from or added to a collection, but Marshall's program that compares the collection list each week finds the differences. 

Updating a collection is different - perhaps it is a significant change to an index or image set that qualifies it for inclusion on the "Recently Added or Updated" list.

I wish we had a better explanation for why these removals happen.  Perhaps a friendly FamilySearch expert will tell us in general or specific terms.


Copyright (c) 2019, Randall J. Seaver

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1 comment:

Marshall said...

I am glad to see those minor improvements (small numbers of records added/removed). That means that FamilySearch is curating those collections. Someone is looking at them and making changes.