Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Common Merging Questions


The following information is from the Family Tree reference guide, last updated on 3 January 2013. Check back to the reference guide for updates and changes. But currently, these are the steps to take when facing some common problems while trying to merge possible duplicates. The "duplicate record" refers to the one that is on the right side of your screen and "the record being kept" refers to the record on the left side of your screen, while in the merging process.

What do I do when...

The duplicate record contains a more accurate or complete piece of information.
  • Click Add or Replace to move the information to the record being kept.


The duplicate record contains information that is not correct.
  • Do not move the information over to the record being kept. Click Reject. Before you finish the merge, make sure that all incorrect information remains on the right side of the screen.


The duplicate record contains a nickname or other name variation that should be preserved. 
  • Write down the name from the duplicate record. After you finish merging the record, add the name as an Alternate name in the person’s Other Information section.


One record contains an accurate date. The other contains an accurate place. Neither record contains both the correct date and place. 
  • 1. Click the information to see the contributor and reason statement.
  • 2. Keep the version that is easiest to correct. If one version has a good reason statement, keep that version. It is often easier to enter a date or place than it is to write a clear reason statement.
  • 3. Write down what corrections you need to make after the merge is done.


Both records contain different versions of a piece of information, but you do not know which is accurate.
  • 1. Keep the most reasonable version. Reasonable information fits with the time, the place, and the family data that you already know is accurate.
  • 2. Keep notes so that you know what further research to conduct about this person after you complete the merge.
  • 3. Enter your concerns in the reason statement for the merge.
  • 4. Enter your concerns in the person’s discussions.


The duplicate record contains duplicate spouses and children.
  • 1. For each duplicate person, click Accept or Add to move him or her to the record that is being kept.
  • 2. Finish the merge.
  • 3. Go to the spouse's record, and merge the duplicates.
  • 4. Go to the records of each child, and merge the duplicates.


The duplicate record contains duplicate parents. 
  • 1. For each duplicate person, click Accept or Add to move him or her to the record that is being kept.
  • 2. Finish the merge.
  • 3. Go to the record of each parent, and merge the duplicates.


The duplicate record contains spouses, children, or parents that are not accurate.
  • Do not move the information over to the record being kept.


The record being kept contains spouses, children, or parents that are not accurate.
  • Return to the person’s record. Delete the relationships to the wrong spouses, children, or parents.


One or both records contain inaccurate sources. 
  • 1. Finish the merge.
  • 2. Go back to the person’s details page.
  • 3. Detach or edit incorrect sources.


The duplicate record appears to be about a completely different person. 
  • 1. Scroll to the bottom.
  • 2. Click Not a Match.

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