Terry’s Corner. Newsletter - Issue No. 3
Wow! What a spring and summer we’ve had. It’s been too long since our last newsletter, so let me try to catch you up on a variety of things.
New Web Site: We still have some known glitches to fix – and those come first. Keeping our database up to date and making “Search” and all of the project links work correctly is at the top of that list. We need to do a little work on our mtDNA and Geographical Project pages – as their needs are somewhat different from the Surname Project pages. As a part of that – we plan to reverse the names on the “Order” and “Join Project” links – as you can “join” in several ways – but “Order Test” should go straight to FTDNA (except for mtDNA – where the option shouldn’t exist). We’ve also got some display issues to fix – as FireFox and Internet Explorer can behave differently. We hope to provide you the ability to name most of your project pages and to give you two more pages with html upload capability (mtDNA and Disc). We know that most of you want counters on your pages and we’ll also be looking at how to improve the project page’s display capabilities. The Forum needs to link back to your project pages and to give you notice when someone posts on your Forum Board.
Standards and Reporting: The big news is that FTDNA switched to the 2008 YCC Haplogroup Tree on May 5, 2008 – providing the latest formally adopted haplogroup definitions, but causing a lot of disruption for some projects and haplogroups. Hopefully, most of the dust has settled and the projects are switched to the new haplogroup designations, but I still see an old designation from time to time. Expect this formal updating of the Haplogroup Tree to continue, as the learning causes a continuing need to adjust. (hopefully, with fewer actual changes – and mostly more detail) While this is a real pain, think of it as having the possibility to eventually get so detailed that our genetic Lineages can connect to our detailed haplogroup. (but don’t hold your breath – as that is still a long way off) For marker standards, there is really nothing to report – as FTDNA still uses the reporting protocol they’ve used all along, while Sorenson continues to use their different one. As far as I know, GeneBase has never provided a correlation table – so we don’t accept their results. ISOGG has a project to publish a complete correlation table – but it seems to be bogged down. We continue to hope that NIST will step in and bring clarity. We provide a collector table and conversion if you wish to bring in a Sorenson test into your project.
ISOGG and others are working on the mtDNA tree – as it is also in need of a major updating. We know of major efforts in both the H and T haplogroups – which are based on a number of Full Genetic Sequence (FGS) tests and assume there is quite a lot of new knowledge across the whole tree that needs to be brought into the update.
FTDNA 5th Annual Conference: I’ll be there again this year. I hope to renew friendships and to meet many more of you. We haven’t seen an attendance list yet – so let me know if you are coming this year. (For more information about an informational session for World Families administrators, see story below.)
My, how we’ve Grown: I don’t mean WorldFamilies (though we have grown too)! I mean genetic testing and the Surname Projects. (How does your project compare?) Excerpts from Bill Davenport’s 50+ Listing – from June 30, 2006 and June 30, 2008: http://www.worldfamilies.net/fiftyplusprojects
- Clan MacDonald (#1 Surname Project in 2008) from 367 to 664 members
- Williams (#2 Surname Project in 2008) from 302 to 550 members
- Number of Projects with more than 50 members - from 246 to 480
- Number of Projects with more than 100 members - from 66 to 179
- Number of Surname Project Participants – from 48,183 to 91,962
- Number of Surname Projects – from 2730 to 4058
- Yes – these numbers look low. That’s because these totals only include those who are in a surname project. WorldFamilies is proud to provide a site for at least 35 of the largest 480 projects.
Need your insights: As a busy project administrator, I have a good idea of what I’d like to see as new tools and features for both the participants and the projects. Each of you probably shares some of my ideas and likely has a few of your own. I am very open to hearing your ideas about what we should be changing or adding. (and though I can’t promise I’ll be able to follow through on them all, I will be listening and thinking about how to give them fulfillment.)
And – as my Soap Box Derby’s sponsor’s ad said (I was 12 years old):
“If you like our work – tell others. If you don’t – tell us!”
Have Fun, Good Luck with your research, and all the best to your project!
Terry Will Talk About New Site at Conference
FTDNA's 5th Internations Conference on Genetic Genealogy will be held in Houston on November 8 and 9, 2008, and will feature participants from the U.S., Canada, Netherlands and Ireland. Speakers will be members of FTDNA's own highly respected scientific advisory board, as well as representatives from National Geographic's landmark Geographic Project. The Conference was fully booked within one month of its announcement.
World Families will have a table in the "back corner" of FTDNA's Reception room on Friday and Saturday nights from 7-9 pm. with informational materials, and we hope you'll stop by to ask questions, give suggestions, or just let us put a face with your name. Stop by and see us - and meet your fellow admins who use WorldFamilies.
Terry plans to give a presentation on "Using the World Families website in the evening after the FTDNA reception. We need to know the level of interest. If would like to hear Terry's presentation and/or ask him some questions, send him an email to let us know which night you will be able to meet with him. This will allow him to plan accordingly.
If you are not able to attend the conference this year, I hope you'll put it on your calendar for next year. It is a great way to share with other administrators and to learn from the experts.
To see previous issues of the World Families' Newsletter for Administrators, click here:
Issue No. 1 http://www.worldfamilies.net/newsletter1
Issue No. 2 http://www.worldfamilies.net/newsletter2
News from World Families.net
Launching our new website as quickly as we did had some drawbacks, chief among them the surprise and frustration many of the admin felt when their familiar website disappeared overnight and a new system, with all new instructions, appeared in its place.
We are so sorry for the upheaval the change caused, but we are prone to look on the positive side, so here are the good things that came out of the quick launch:
- We had dozens of administrators acting as "beta-testers", so flaws and glitches were discovered more quickly than we could ever have done on our own.
- Many admin lent their knowledge and skills to come up with solutions almost as soon as they discovered a problem, and moved us forward very quickly.
- Visits to the website have increased since the launch, bringing more potential project members to your site
- Finding your site and your pedigree forum is much easier, so you will have more visitors who will find the site, post a pedigree, possibly order a test, and then "tell a friend" about the project's website.
- Many of the project admin have decided to take over posting pedigrees or results for their project, as the new system, while having a learning curve, is much easier than the old SiteBuilder system.
- We have reorganized all our pages for admin, so that now you can find a list of all the pages on the Admin's Guide and we have provided new suggestions and sample emails, so you have the information at your fingertips whenever you are at the website.
- The new mtDNA page is being used by many of the projects to display and discuss mtDNA tests and findings, giving mtDNA testing a new prominance and a place in the projects.
- We have received some great suggestions from admin on possible features or improvements we can add in the future.
Sample Emails and Links to www.worldfamilies.net
Now that you've learned your way around the new Project website, you may want to send an email to your project members asking them to view the new webpage and encourage others to do the same. We have prepared a sample email that you can use or modify that gives the information project members will need to navigate and use the project's website.
Click here to see the sample: http://www.worldfamilies.net/sampleinvitation
If your surname has a website for a Family Association, Historical Society, or other Family website, we hope you will put a link to your project's website on the website, and be sure to put a link from the project's website to the family website.
News from Family Tree DNA
FTDNA"Sizzling Summer Sale" ends Aug 31.
This sale has created quite a stir, as these are the lowest prices that FTDNA has ever offered.
These prices could be great for your project:
· -- If you know someone who has been reluctant to order a test because of price
-- If you would like to test a male relative for that "brick-walled" line.
-- If your research needs the test of a specific lineage
-- If you or someone you know wants an mtDNA test
When you click the link to order through the project, you will automatically be given the sale price for the tests. Prices: http://www.worldfamilies.net/summersale
FTDNA reduced-cost tests for non-FTDNA tested persons are available - with no end date.
Don't just bring in the results of someone tested elsewhere, encourage them to retest at FTDNA - so they get full privileges at FTDNA (and reduce your work)
The benefits of retesting: http://worldfamilies.net/retest_at_FTDNA.html
and FTDNA's link to the order form:
Family Tree DNA has created a special Surname Project just for adoptees.
If you have ever been approached by a person who was adopted but thinks he may be a member of your surname family, you know that this is a tough call. If you let him join the project, he usually has no pedigree to share and his results may or may not be part of your genetic family tree. If he doesn't order through a project, however, he will have to pay a higher price for his test. FTDNA has met this need by creating the Adoptees Project. By testing through this project, the individual receives the lower project test price. To order through the project, he must order at least the 37 marker yDNA test ($189) or the mtDNA test ($129). Higher resolution tests are also available, or he may upgrade later. If you know someone who may want to order through this project, click here
Featured FTDNA Tools
You can order multiple kits on invoice.
It is a good idea to have one or more test kits on hand, or to take with you when you go to a family reunion or historical association meeting. On the GAP page is a tool "Order Multiple Kits for Distribution". By clicking this link, you can order test kits on invoice, so that you (or the test taker) only pays for the test when the kit is returned.
FTDNA marks your most recent matches on your personal page.
Some of your project members may not be aware that FTDNA posts your most recent matches at the top of the list under Y-DNA Matches, and that ** indicates additions to your matches since your last login. So, when you get an email that you have a new match, you don't have to go through the whole list to find the new matches.
To learn more about using the Personal Page, take a look at the information on this page: Using Your FTDNA Personal Page: http://worldfamilies.net/accesspersonalpage.html
Please share your tips with us and other administrators. Email email@example.com
Create a newsletter for your project:
Several projects have found that a newsletter is a good way to keep everyone up-to-date on the developments in the project . Some admin have told us it's a good recruiting tool. Whenever a new edition of the newsletter is posted, you can announce it on the message boards at rootsweb and genforum. The "hits" on your page should immediately go up. The higher traffic means that more people find your project website. They come to read the newsletter, but they may stay around to post a pedigree, order a test, or "tell a friend" about the project's website. You can use any page of the website as your newsletter page. Some project's put the newsletter right on the home page, while others use the Discussion Page. You could also put a link to the forum on the newsletter to allow readers to post a comment or question.
Featured Tools for your new World Families Project Website:
Insert an image: this tool lets you display a family photo on your projects webpage:
You may display images (photos) on your project's web pages, as long as they are stored somewhere on the internet. If you have photos you would like to display on the project's web pages, but do not have them saved as a file on the internet, there are a number of websites that will do this for you. A website that we tried and liked because of its ease of use is FileAve.com. This website will upload and will store your photos for free, making them available for you to display on your project webpages. (You must log back into the website at least once a month to maintain the account, or they may take your photo down.) For complete instruction on how to add a photo to your web page, take a look at this page: http://www.worldfamilies.net/editpage#image
View Editing Screen as a Full Page: (This will only work in Internet Explorer)
If you find it difficult to edit in the little box that you are given with the "Edit this page" tool, you have a tool that will make the box bigger, as long as you are using Internet Explorer as your browser. Click on "Edit this page". When the screen opens look in the top row of the toolbar for an icon that looks like a monitor. ("Maximize the editor size"). When you click on it, it enlarges the editing screen to the full size of your monitor screen. You may make any edits you like. You will have to click the icon again to minimize the screen so that you can "Save and Publish". (We're working on getting it to work in Firefox, as well)
Viewing your Results Page as a Full Page (This will only work in Firefox).Insert a hyperlink. If you would like to include a link to another website (a family association website, a photo gallery, a newsletter page, etc.) you can do so using the tools in the toolbar for "Edit this page". For complete instructions for creating a hyperlink on your webpage, take a look at this page: http://www.worldfamilies.net/editpage#hyperlink
Some admin with large Results tables on the Results page have found it difficult for project members to see the results and move around the page. Until we can find a permanent fix for this, here is what you can tell your project members to do: Using Firefox as your browser, go to the Results Page. Right click on the table, then select "This Frame", then "Show only this frame". The Table will then display on the entire screen. To go back to the regular screen, just click on the "back" arrow.
This is an excerpt from an email that Mark Beasley, Project Administrator for the Beasley Project, recently sent to Bennett Greenspan, CEO of Family Tree DNA
I first tested with DNA Heritage because I did a search on the net in 2005 for a Beasley yDNA testing group and found Doug Beezley of Nebraska. He was the Beezley/ Beasley Group Administrator. Doug had a started this group back in 2004 with no takers. I was the second Beezley/Beasley to test with this company and tested at the end of 2005. My results came back in March of 2006 and Doug sent me a copy of our results that he compiled on a graph. We found that Doug and I did not match, I also found that DNA Heritage had nothing more to offer, so I dropped the idea of a DNA match to confirm my Beasley line . I guess that Doug did too, since he never did get another Beasley to test.
In 2007, I was told about FTDNA through my Uncle Manuel Tenorio, who tested as a J1. I found out that World Families had a Beasley testing group and I then wrote Terry and asked if I could convert my Heritage DNA scores. Terry told me that FTDNA offered a discount if I had tested with another DNA testing company. Terry was really pleasant and with this positive response I then joined the FTDNA family and ordered a 67 marker yDNA test.
When I tested with World Families - FTDNA Beasley group at the end of 2007, I was number 13 to join. When my 67 marker yDNA test results came in and I did not match any of the other 12 Beasley/Beardsley/Easley's in our group, I then thought of Doug Beezley. After a little searching, I found our tests results and looked at our 37 markers from DNA Heritage. With my FTDNA results, I compared them to my old DNA Heritage results and compared them to the DYS#'s . With Doug's yDNA markers, I made of graph to compare to the Beasley group of World Families, Bingo. Doug Beezley now had a couple of Beasley's that his yDNA markers matched. I e-mailed Doug Beezley and told him that he matched a couple of Beasley's with FTDNA, trying to talk him in to testing with FTDNA and told him what the company had to offer. I left the idea open to future FTDNA testing with Doug and did not think of it anymore.
Since I joined the group as the Administrator, I have increased the number to 29 Beasley's testing in our group and guess who joined our group today? Doug Beezley of Nebraska from the DNA Heritage Beasley test group. Thank you Terry and Marilyn for helping me with the Beasley site and getting me started with FTDNA. Within this Beasley group, I have now confimed my Beasley line back to Austin Beasley Sr. b: 1755 d: fall of 1822 Duplin County, NC. I have the former SC Governor David Beasley tested, the former AL Lt. Governor Jere Beasley had tested and his kit should be in FTDNA's office by next week.
My 2nd great-grandfather Austin Beasley Jr's b: 1812 older brother Bass Beasley's 5th great-grandson's still own the Beasley Plantation of 1788 in Duplin County, NC. I was able to talk my cousin into taking the yDNA test and Bingo. We matched. When I sent cousin Lon a copy of my results and he compared them to his, he called me and said, "We really are cousin's". Most importantly, my son, Cpl. Jarod M. Beasley who came back from Iraq last September took the FTDNA yDNA test and when his results came in, he compared them to my results and with a smile, he said "This is Austin Beasley Sr's yDNA who served in the American Revolutionary War to help build our country."
Footnote: When I contacted Mark to ask permission to use his email in our newsletter, he graciously replied, "Yes, please share this story. We have just had another success story with a group of 10 Beasley/Beezley/Beeesley's who all connect to an earlier time in America than thought of. "
Please share your success stories with us. We'd love to include your successes in the next newsletter. Email firstname.lastname@example.org