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Non replies to tree enquiries

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date

Ian James

Ian James Report 29 Oct 2011 08:48

I ecently posted a topic ref above. I had 29 views and one kind person
As things stand at the moment I have 10 old enquiries outstanding, and despite numerous chase ups, no responses have been received.
I would suggest cancelling the membership of these people.
If I have 10 messages awaiting reply, what might that figure be for all
the membership?
Come on genes use some power.


InspectorGreenPen Report 29 Oct 2011 09:29

I have around 20 unanswered since the beginning of 2011. There are many reasons why someone hasn't replied and they are discussed at great length on the chat boards regularly

However, you can't expect GR to cancel memberships just because someone hasn't replied to you. No one is obliged to reply if they choose not to, it isn't part of the terms and conditions of joining the site. Sorry, I fear it might be non-starter.


wisechild Report 29 Oct 2011 13:09

Same thing happens on Ancestry. I reckon to get one rely in every half dozen if I´m lucky.
Just one of the things you have to put up with unfortunately.


jax Report 29 Oct 2011 15:50

As it is free to join Genes anyway if you just want to add your own name or build a tree, it would not be a good idea to cancel someones membership because they do not reply.

I sent a message to my dad some months back through GR...he has not replied either, he never looks at his emails...but oneday he might


Penpal Report 5 Nov 2011 13:44

I have found members generally are extremely polite and helpful in response to my queries. Very few don't reply to emails. I wouldn't expect replies from forums - people pop in and out on a whim - but maybe it's the way the request is phrased or spelt.

Sometimes I feel a little irritated by demands to see my tree before we have discussed whether we might have a relative in common.
Because of the constant updating of trees it's probably best to not share without some correspondence.

It's nice when members offer to swap certificate information, because verifying that you have the correct relative is very important, yet it does take a lot of research and expense, and some members just seem to want to 'collect dead people' as if they were like Facebook friends and Twitter followers.

If another member has provided information for a particular branch of the family that is being inquired about, say relatives by marriage, I refer the inquirer to that member rather than opening my tree, so they get the latest information. I don't have time to keep every one updated.

Finally, I have always had immediate and polite responses from Genes support team to my suggestions or inquiries. I think GR is a top site and very much improved on what it was. There are always tweaks that can be done, but before you whinge, think how you would run a site like this yourself, and how much more (like Ancestry) you would be charged if it wasn't for the ads.


InspectorGreenPen Report 5 Nov 2011 16:58


What a breath of fresh air to read your post - probably the wrong board but so what - your comments echo what many others think but are afraid to say in case they are shot down in flames by the whingers and doom mongers.

I see that you have been a member for a long time so clearly have a wealth of experience of the site so welcome to the Community Boards, and look forward to hearing lots more from you on here.

Yes, G.R. IS a Top Site.....!



Cynthia Report 5 Nov 2011 20:31

I get a great deal of pleasure out of GR too and am on here everyday.

However, I have to admit that no other site I use has as many problems as this site generates. Fortunately, I have been more or less problem free for a couple of weeks now so am quite happy with things at the moment.

I am not sure that being a member since 2003 and having 3 posts to your name constitutes as having a wealth of experience though. I rather think Penpal's experience is mostly in dealing with his tree and tree requests.

I am sure many people may have joined in 2003 but have rarely been on the site since. I know for a fact, from the messages I receive, that many long standing members are only just starting to use the boards and are amazed by the wealth of knowledge and amount of help which is given here.

I see Ian James hasn't returned but, on checking my records, I see I did help him sometime last year but it may be that he has forgotten how to return to his thread.



jax Report 5 Nov 2011 21:02

Yes we know you delete your posts PP maybe penpal does too?

I dont understand this "I have been a member since" business. What does that prove? nothing.

I have been a member of friends reunited since at least 2001 does that mean I am experienced with that site.....No


Cynthia Report 5 Nov 2011 21:27

I don't agree that the amount of posts shown is irrelevant as I have found it extremely helpful in sending out my messages.

If I see someone with a low post number then I try and give that person extra help. A higher number generally means that the member is quite experienced in negotiating the boards.

I used to delete posts in order to 'tidy things up', but stopped that practice long ago. I find that they can come in useful when trying to remember something or someone from long ago.



Cynthia Report 6 Nov 2011 15:20


124 posts are far too many for me to think that anyone would need extra help. I rarely contact members who have over 20 postings to their name as I reckon they have, hopefully, sussed out how things work on here.

The choice is yours as to whether you delete your posts or not, and I can understand deleting duplications. I just know that I have often regretted the 'tidying up' I used to do with my threads when I look at thread and think "I'm sure I've seen the answer to that on another thread I was on a few years ago".

Ah well. Each to their own. :-D



jax Report 6 Nov 2011 16:14

As Cynthia has said PP anything over a dozen you would think they had got the gist of it? not in all cases.

Deleting duplicates I do straight away so they would never really show, but I would never delete because the poster has not returned or because I have no need for that comment or peice if infomation anymore.

I saw one the other day where the poster had returned to an old thread to gain more info on that family....It was just a thread full of him talking to himself, as whoever helped him with the census's and whatever had deleted all their replies??? So that was a lot of good when GR advise people to stick to one thread

I have a fair number of posts in just under two years so I think I know how to use the boards now :-D ...But dont ask me anything about how to do this, that or the other with a tree on here....I gave up after 50 people


Iris Report 19 Nov 2011 01:32

I thought I was the only one with this problem of people not answering my emails, but obviously it is a BIG problem


chrissiex Report 19 Nov 2011 23:35

well the 20th time I saw this raised on the boards I thought about it and the whole thing seemed pretty obvious to me

people get notices of private messages they receive at this site, by an email sent to them from the website

has any of us changed our email address in the last five years ? I have changed mine three times in that period

if we got a new email address did we run to every website we have ever registered at ... including genesreunited ... and put our new email address in our account information ?

I sure did not I know that

so I do not imagine that every casual user of this website, people who put family trees on here one day but do not use the site on any regular basis, updates their email address here when they get a new one

so unless they come to the website to use it they do not know they have messages here

or they could have died

the way to tell whether someone has even -read- your message is to look in your 'sent messages' folder and if the little envelope beside the message you sent is still purple then it was never read

if it was read but you got no reply there is no harm in gently asking whether the person has had a chance to consider your message, I did that once after a year and the person apologised for forgetting to reply and now we are in touch about our shared family

just don't do as Penpal says and send one of those abrupt 'please let me see your tree' messages, always explain your connection and say hello, not just that you want the person's tree information :-)

and ..................... be sure to keep your email address up to date here

or do what I started doing, get an online email address like hotmail or gmail and use it for websites like this .... and remember to check it for messages !

and Ian James ..................... maybe somebody you sent a message to just plain does not want to reply to you, so your idea of cancelling their membership is a little out of order, nobody has to reply to any message you send them just because you send it


SueMaid Report 20 Nov 2011 11:43

My cousin passed away in May this year. He was a member on here and his membership is still active and will be until the end of the year - I assume his tree will stay. He would come up if you searched a surname that is common to our family but if you sent him a message he wouldn't answer....obviously. So that is at least one reason why you may not get an answer.

I have recently been overseas travelling for 9 weeks - another good reason.

I have another good reason but for the sake of my family's privacy I won't discuss that on here.

I would be mortified if my membership was cancelled because I failed to reply to a message - would I then have to contact GR and explain myself?


SylviaInCanada Report 21 Nov 2011 03:48

Like SueMaid, I would be mortified if my membership was cancelled for not replying

In fact, I have to say that I currently have one pm that is waiting for me to asnwer it ...... ti has been waiting for a week. The reason being, that I have absolutely no idea how to answer!

It is not to do with my tree, nor my family, but has presented me with a quandary.

There are lots more reasons why messages may be unanswered

but it all goes back to the same thing ............. no-one is forced to answer a pm, and no-one has the right to demand a reply, nor to demand punishment for people who do not reply.



jax Report 21 Nov 2011 04:07

It would also be nice if people acknowledged their threads :-)


SylviaInCanada Report 21 Nov 2011 04:23



Valerie Report 21 Nov 2011 13:27

perhaps a way could be found of informing us before we try to contact someone that their tree has been dormant for say - a year - so then we know that the chances of a reply are slim


Flick Report 21 Nov 2011 13:31

Ian James obviously doesn't think that the rules of courtesy apply to him

"Do as I say......not as I do" would seem to be his motto


SylviaInCanada Report 21 Nov 2011 20:34


That idea has been suggested before

but there are many problems

For example .................. that would show that MY tree has been dormant for longer than a year, yet I am active on the site almost every day.

I just never go into my tree ...................... my main tree is on another site and my computer. It must be at least 4 years since I actually made any changes to my tree.

I know of people who check GR about once a year or once every 2 years.

Similarly with various suggestions that have been re some way to tell when a person last logged on .................

I never log out unless forced to (eg, when my computer has been to the computer hospital, or GR has done something strange), so my last actual log in might be more than 6 months ago ............. yet, as I said, I am on here almost every day.