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SylviaInCanada Report 26 Jul 2013 20:54

IGP ...................

it sounds as though you are suggesting that we should keep our mouths shut, and not offer any help ...................

help that has been suggested might be useful by reading loads of complaints about various aspects of finding records, and trying to find ways to help people.

I might point out that I DID try to use GR records when they were first instituted about 5 or so years ago, in an attempt to recreate the problems that people were having.

I replicated searches done by those asking for help ......... and I COULD understand why they might have trouble.

You do not need to have any more than a Standard membership (or even a Free one) in order to search the records, you just cannot see all the results!

You often seem to want to limit the help that we helpers can give, and to question the advice we give ........................

.............. this begs the question of "why do you do that?"


ARSTEE Report 26 Jul 2013 20:44


hi, thank you but i'm not having any troubles finding surnames in the 1911 census.

I purely do this for a hobby now, I love looking at census returns as you see some pretty amazing and interesting things.

If I see anyone mentioned on tv that looks interesting, see old postcards/paperwork with names & addresses on, names off war memorials/gravestones, old criminal photos etc I just like to have a look and see if I can find them, see their life and what they were up to. I also look into trees of family by marriage and friends etc - anyone really....


SylviaInCanada Report 26 Jul 2013 19:48


If you are having problems with finding surnames on the 1911 ..........

............ are you aware that you can search the original 1911 site in the way you describe?

You search for free, see what turns up, then buy credits OR use the information found to check on GR, FMP or ancestry.


ARSTEE Report 26 Jul 2013 19:02

Thanks jax - I was aware of this warning practise when you complain or have an opinion but at least if I get a warning I know they have read what I've wrote ;-)


ARSTEE Report 26 Jul 2013 18:58


your points have been taken and I agree that I'm not the most articulate of people - I try to say things in simple terms so everyone understands me - well I thought everyone understood me until this anyway !! I admit the more people don't understand me or make out they don't get me the worse I get - I don't suffer fools gladly and get very wound up when trying to make a point !!

Anyway, hopefully I've finally made myself clear and what my grumbles are ? If not and anyone is tempted to comment about the joy of downloading & attaching and that they love the new colour green please re-read the posts before you all hear me
holler the length and breadth of the country and I end up with a hole the size of my head in my kitchen wall ......................cheers


jax Report 26 Jul 2013 16:42

I once said to someone "Maybe people do not like using GR's records" in reply to a question she asked as to why people didn't recommend the records on this site.

That person then reported me and I got a even though I was a gold member at one time I will keep my opinions to myself

Be careful no opinions are allowed on this site unless they are in favour of GR


InspectorGreenPen Report 26 Jul 2013 15:27

I think there are two issues here and batting backwards and forwards isn't going to help resolve them.

First of all, can I suggest, as I have done in the past and make no excuses for doing it again, that members who don't use GR's record service to any great extent refrain from making criticism based on hearsay..

If you don't have first hand experience, far better to keep silent. I use the GR record service only occasionally and as a result of having limited experience refrain from making critical comment as to which site is better. None of the alternative sites are perfect either, some worse so than others.

What I will say though as a member of ten years is that GR as a genealogy product is much better for the changes that have happened over the years.

This leads me the other issue which concerns the way in which the thread comes across to anyone reading it.

For example "MY SUGGESTION - STOP YOUR 'IMPROVEMENTS' GENES " and "------ GR's USELESS CENSUS SEARCH FACILITY !! ", - GR'S census records suck" does not engender a sympathetic hearing, and the real message tends to get lost.

Obviously GR are not going to stop making improvements, nor ts the census search entirely useless, but that does not remove the fact that it can be improved either. But perhaps a bit less emotion and a bit more objectivity might be more productive.


ARSTEE Report 26 Jul 2013 09:57

But Reggie - there are LOADS of people who use GR for searching - they're selling their product everyday to poor unsuspecting people !!

There is a much bigger world out there than your 'Community Board Family'..... The fact that SO many people ask for help should tell you that !!

I don't wish to slag you lot off, you mostly do a great job helping people in their searches - I in fact asked for help some while back with the above mentioned Denton family and received some great help and advise - no outcome, I cracked that myself with GR's brilliant old search facility......

BUT - you shouldn't feel that you have to comment on something you know nothing about !! You wont shrivel up and die if you don't hit 50 posts a day !! Take time out, do some recreational searches on a family that interests you to fill your time and just stick to the posts that you have some experience of !!

To also be blunt --- please only bother to comment on my OP if you have experience of what I'm talking about ------ GR's USELESS CENSUS SEARCH FACILITY !!

Thanks xx


ARSTEE Report 26 Jul 2013 09:27

so then why anyone bother to comment on my grumblings if they don't know what I'm talking about ?

Would anybody leave a review on tripadvisor for somewhere they'd never been before ? Leave a comment on the spin cycle of a hotpoint washing machine if they only use a bosch ?

get my point ?

I wasn't bothered about getting any replies to this post when I did it - I was venting to GR mainly even though I know before anyone tells me that they don't often read these boards !!

Genes DID have a brilliant census search 6 months / a year ago when there were numerous drop boxes down the side and you could search for someone with just the first letter of their name or by the names of others in the household for example.........

That search facility enabled me to finally find a family that I'd been struggling years to find because they'd given a totally different surname when the census was done. I was able to put in ALL their first names and then started a 'begins with' search using the letter A for their surname and looked for a family who matched and finally when I got to the letter K I found them - they're name was DENTON but had given the name KEY !!

Now they've scrapped that for whatever insane reason and given me a load of tosh - that's all I was saying !!

So, GR - bring back that search facility or one using the same principles now you've given all the techies their hyperlinks, attachment and download bumf so we mere mortals and the newbies can successfully find families in your census records - PLEASE !!


ErikaH Report 26 Jul 2013 09:24


Hardly anyone uses GR for research.............we use other sites.

We have BASIC membership ONLY of GR

So we CANNOT comment on your complaints about the GR census records, and searches thereof.

Please try to understand that...............

You want us to 'read' your post........perhaps you would do others the courtesy of reading theirs.

Without wishing to appear unduly blunt.......remove the blinkers


SylviaInCanada Report 26 Jul 2013 01:33

Arstee ...............

and did you not read MY post ....................

I said that the reason that none of us had really commented on your post and your problems was because we do not use the GR records, censuses or others ........... and therefore we CANNOT comment on the problems that you are having!

I do know of many people who have given up on GR's records, as they found they were not the easiest to search ..................... ever! That goes way back to when the records first began to appear on this site, which was post-2007, I believe.


ARSTEE Report 25 Jul 2013 22:55

I'm sorry but have you actually read what my post was - any of you ??

I feel like you all just aren't getting the point !!

I don't care that the tech stuff is better than it used to be, that you can import docs and photos and attach bits to goodness knows what, that 'YOU ALL' did your census search a long time ago - I in fact also finished my tree a long time ago, or where people look for answers to members questions........

The point I was making from the start and continue to be making is that regardless of all that stuff GR has still made the census searches utterly screamable !!

I do not do my tree, as I said it's done, I do however look into friends / relatives by marriage trees and the trees of anyone who I read about etc that interests me so I still do like to look at census records.

GR still sells itself as a genealogy website where you can search for your ancestors and still has countless people signing up to it - but in my opinion it just doesn't deliver with any ease the most basic of genealogy records and where everyone starts - THE CENSUS RECORDS anymore !!!!!

To put it in simple terms - GR'S census records suck - everything else is good !!

Just to double clarify that - it's not the content of the census records or the transcriptions of the census records - it's the SEARCHABILITY of them which is only down to GR's website and nobody else !!


SylviaInCanada Report 25 Jul 2013 21:38

Arstee .....................

Perhaps that is because we do NOT use the GR censuses.

Most of us did our researching on censuses, and many other records, way before GR carried any records at all.

We HAD to take out memberships in other sites ................... including the specific 1901 and 1911 sites. As a point of interest, I still prefer the specific 1911 site over and above the transcriptions available on findmypast or ancestry!

When you ask for help on Find Ancestors or Genealogy Chat, those other sites are where the helpers will look.

It is true that GR has not done any transcribing of censuses .......... they have the rights to use the records transcribed by their sister site, findmypast.


ARSTEE Report 25 Jul 2013 21:17

PLEASE ------- Before anyone else comments on my post try and do some census searching as THAT is what I'm complaining about !!!

I AGREE ------ the extra features GR now have are good and up to date tech wise if you decide to use them BUT the census searches are APPALLING !!!

Just the fact that you have hardly any information given to you on the results page so that you have to go into multiple entries before you find the right one (if your lucky) is enough to drive you bonkers without inadequate refining of results !!!

I spent ages searching for some Nottingham ancestors who I KNEW were there before only to find that they wouldn't appear under Nottingham as the keyword as before but that it wanted a more specific BASFORD - agh !!!!

I see that NOBODY has said that they think the census searches are better while trumpeting the virtues of GR ??


InspectorGreenPen Report 25 Jul 2013 20:53

Going back to the OP, I have been a member now for ten years and in that time have seen regular changes to the site - at least one, often two major upgrades each year.

Each time there are those who don't like the changes and want the site putting back to what it was before. Of course 'before' is as it was after the previous upgrade six months or so ago which itself attracted criticism at the time but is now seen as ok!

As Rollo and Ken have said, I too believe the site is very much improved, even compared to what it was just a couple of years ago, never mind going back ten years.


SylviaInCanada Report 25 Jul 2013 19:29

Davu ...................

Welcome to the Boards, but ...........


do not ask for a search to be done on this thread, or on this Board.

This Board, and therefore the threads on it, are purely for suggestions TO GR on ideas to improve the site and its workings.

You will get much more help if you post your request on Find Ancestors.

That's where most of the helpers ................. members of GR who help other members ............... can be found. Most of them do not look on this Suggestions Board.

As for presence or absence of ancestors on the various censuses ............... did you try for alternate spellings of names?

Do not blame GR for you not being able to find someone on a census ................ GR has not done the transcriptions.

You should check other sites, or ask someone to do it for you,.

It is always possible that ancestors could have been missed by the census takers ............... or that they are present, just under a name that has been mis-spelled.



ARSTEE Report 25 Jul 2013 08:10

Hi Davu,

what details do you have already ? I or somebody else on here might be able to help you ?

Mothers name, birth year, birth area and any info on anyone else you might know....

To find her father you might need to order her birth certificate to be sure ?


Davu Report 25 Jul 2013 03:29

Looking in the UK census for 1911 I found someone who might have been my mother. No details of father (I don't know who he was as my grandmother married 3 times), mother or even date of birth. Waste of time and the one month subscription seems like a waste of money also.
:View matching trees... nothing happens when I press this button. I will have to transfer everything to another site I guess.


+++DetEcTive+++ Report 14 Jul 2013 18:13

Myra - someone else has said on another board that they are having that problem today.

One suggestion is to log out and close the window (brower) and then remove the Genesreunited cookies

If that doesn't work, then contact GR for advice


Myra Report 14 Jul 2013 16:04

why do I have to reregister ever other page very annoying.