Mary Lee Becker
Here, I am posting the FTDNA's "GAP Guidelines," which every group administrator who administrates a DNA project at FTDNA must agree to, before being awarded the position of group administrator. Being able to serve in the role of group administrator is a privilege, and not a right.
If you think that you would like to volunteer as a co-administrator for the Garrison DNA project, and are willing and able to abide by the GAP Guidelines, please contact Mary Lee Becker, head group administrator for the project. The head group administrator is responsible for selecting the co-administrators.
The following is a copy of the actually GAP guidelines that every group administrator has on their GAP pages at FTDNA:
Guidelines for Group Administrators of DNA Projects
Setting up and administrating a DNA project is an exciting opportunity to make discoveries not
available in the paper records. One objective of these guidelines is to ensure that a DNA
Project is a source of enjoyment for all involved, and to avoid or minimize common
misunderstandings. Communication is a critical element of a DNA Project, and good
communication practices are expected from Group Administrators.
As a Group Administrator, you are assuming the responsibility to conduct a DNA Project, and
to interact with and assist participants. The guidelines below have been established to assist
both Group Administrators and participants in understanding their respective roles and
By defining the role and responsibility of a Group Administrator, we are setting the foundation
for a successful project, and years of many exciting discoveries.
Privacy and confidentiality are a key responsibility for a Group Administrator. A Family Tree
DNA Group Administrator is expected to follow the guidelines listed below to protect members’
privacy and confidentiality:
Role of Group Administrators
• Group Administrators have access to data and contact information of the members in
the project. This access is necessary to assist participants in understanding and
interpreting their results.
• Group Administrators are encouraged to set up, at no charge, a DNA Project web site
hosted on a Family Tree DNA server and based on a template using a web builder tool
provided on the Group Administrator’s Page (GAP). If a Group Administrator chooses
to host a web site elsewhere, the web site should specify that the DNA results are from
Family Tree DNA. We strongly suggest that Group Administrators make use of the
Family Tree DNA Public page for the project even if it is only to make results available
for all members of the group. This will ensure updated information to all project
• Group Administrators are eligible to attend the annual Conference of Genetic
Genealogy provided by Family Tree DNA. There is a nominal fee to attend the
conference. These conferences provide an excellent educational opportunity, regarding
both DNA Project administration and Genetic Genealogy.
Responsibility of a Group Administrator:
As a Group Administrator do:
o Refer project members to Family Tree DNA staff to answer questions, when you
are not sure about the answer.
o Ask Family Tree DNA staff when you have any questions about your role or
o Treat each project member and potential project member fairly and equally.
Unless express written consent is given by the project member, as a Group Administrator do
o Share or change private information of the Project member.
o Publish research or information that may disclose or identify a member’s
o Enter your e-mail in the member’s personal contact information field, without that
person’s express authorization by e-mail or letter, with a copy to Family Tree
o Authorize an upgrade to a Project member’s markers.
o Move a member from one project to another.
o Use member information or research for any commercial purpose, unless the
appropriate authorization has been given.
o Use member information or e-mail address to send any correspondence
unrelated to the test or the DNA project the member is part of.
o Provide information or assistance to one project member while withholding the
same from another project member.
A Group Administrator should also never:
• Charge a fee for participation in the project or access to a project website.
• Use the “Join Request” feature for any other purposes than solely accepting a
request for someone to join your project at FTDNA, or explaining the criteria to
join your project. The requester e-mail address should not be used for any other
• Share the DNA project login ID and Password with anyone who is not a co-
administrator of the project or a Family Tree DNA staff member.
• Use a DNA project to advocate a personal or political agenda.
What Project Members expect from a Group Administrator:
• A DNA Project is a collaborative effort, where members perform a test and share
information in order to advance their genealogical research. Therefore, it is natural for
them to expect a functioning, active, and up-to-date Project web site. Because not all
Group Administrators know web programming, Family Tree DNA provides a web builder
tool, which is quick and easy to create a project web site. The web site will display
participant’s results, and it is easy to post and share information about the project
progress, so that the DNA Project web site is always up-to-date.