Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Making Yourself Visible

Some people have been surprised to find that they don't appear on the DNA Results pages even when they have joined the project. Why is this?? The explanation is quite simple.

FamilyTreeDNA changed their privacy settings during the past year and the result has been that customers have to set the Privacy settings themselves. However, not everyone knows about this so some people are inadvertently hiding themselves from view when they don't mean to do so.

Here is an example of the DNA Results page for Lineage II a) when I am signed out of my FTDNA account and b) when I am signed in. 

In the first view, 5 people are missing. These are indicated by the red arrows in the second view. These participants are probably unaware that their Privacy settings are such that they cannot be seen in the project by anyone from outside the project (and they can only see themselves if they are signed in to their account).

The problem with this is that it may inadvertently stop new potential recruits from testing. Would you be less inclined to sign up to a project if there were only 11 members instead of 16? I think so. Bigger projects look more impressive. There is more of a chance that you might find a match. Also, supposing the new recruit was called Glisson, they would not see that there is already a Glisson in the project. Or if their ancestor came from Boherlahan - they would not see that there was already someone there with ancestry from exactly the same area. In both these situations, the prospective tester might have been encouraged to take the test if he had seen this information.

The good news is that it is easy to fix. Just follow these simple steps:

  • Sign in to your FTDNA account
  • Hover over your Name in the top right
  • Click on Account Settings, then the Privacy & Sharing tab at the end of the menu bar above
  • Then simply change the settings under My DNA Results by clicking on the words "Project Members" at the end, and on the next screen checking the box beside "Make my mtDNA & Y-DNA data public". Then press Save.

Before the change
After the change

For comparison, this is what my own Privacy Settings look like:

If you need any help with this, please don't hesitate to email me and I can do it for you in 2 minutes.

Here's hoping someone will see your details on the DNA Results page and will decide to join the project simply because they like something they see there.

Every little helps.

Maurice Gleeson
Dec 2015

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