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Community Manager

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


Community Advisor Report 10 Apr 2013 13:54

Hi Everyone,

I’m Natasha and I’ve worked at Genes for 2 ½ years and have a keen personal interest in family history. You may have met me before if you have visited one of the family history events we run throughout the year!

I wanted to let you know that I have recently taken on a new position within Genes Reunited as Community Manager. This is a brand new role, we have never had a Community Manager before, so this will be a learning process for us all. My main aim will be to make sure that people are getting the most out of the boards and the thriving online community Genes has to offer. I will be listening to your suggestions, and making recommendations to the Product team for new features and changes that apply to the boards.

I will not be acting as a full time moderator to the boards but I’ll be there to offer some extra support and guidance as to how the boards should be used. You should feel free to PM me and I will do my best to answer your questions and queries when I can but please be patient as I will be fitting this role around other work I have. We still encourage people to contact customer support directly if they are having difficulties with the site or their account.

Looking forward to working with you all,



HeyJudeB4Beatles Report 10 Apr 2013 18:36

Natasha good luck in your new role!

Not your area I know, but the random membership fees are a large bone of contention.

I get charged £7.98 for six months. Some members who have not been with GR as long as me get a year for that amount.

It's divisive and it's not fair.



EVEIE Report 10 Apr 2013 19:53

yeah I pay£7.98 for 6 mths to been with gr for yrs now


Community Advisor Report 11 Apr 2013 11:15

Hi Jude & Eveie, We’re in the middle of a project to move everyone onto the same price package. I’ll keep you updated.


Simon Report 11 Apr 2013 13:07

Good luck Natasha,

I look forward to see how you develop the community pages and the kind of support you can offer.


Flip Report 11 Apr 2013 19:52

Yes, good luck Natasha.

One of the main areas of contention recently is the amount of threads/posts being reported - sometimes for no good reason - which causes lots of comments and animosity. New members are being put off from posting or even continuing their membership, often feeling it is their fault.

If a post is reported and subsequently deleted by Genes, there is not always an explanation as to why given to the poster. Surely persistent reporters could be tagged, so as not to be able to RR a post without Genes reviewing their reason first.

Maybe this is one area on which you could focus some attention? I'm pretty sure many of the "helpers" would agree with this comment.


HeyJudeB4Beatles Report 11 Apr 2013 20:01

Yes Flip you are SO correct....the phantom reporter does so in complete anonymity and often for no and/or random reasons.

If they were not cloaked in their anonymity would they be so "brave"??

I have had several emails from GR warning me about my behaviour when I could see no reason for my post being reported. And I received no apology when my posts were reinstated. And the reporter skulks away back under hsi stone until the next time



Jonesey Report 11 Apr 2013 22:18


Here is a job for you to add to your "To Do" list

There has recently been yet another spate of posts being RRed without good cause. It is my belief that one of the reasons that this happens is that those referring the posts are able to use the shield of anonymity from those whose post they are referring. I would suggest that withdrawing that shield would considerably reduce the number of frivolous or malicious referrals. Either notify the person whose post has been referred, of by whom and for what reason, their post has been referred or alternatively, publish in the thread itself, the referrers name and the reason they have given as to why they have referred the post that has been removed.

A system that allows anyone logged on to your site, whether a fully paid up or a "Free/lapsed" member, to indiscriminately refer posts for review, whether or not the post breeches the site's Terms and conditions, obviously requires radical change. It is a bit like allowing everybody to vote in a general election whether or not they are franchised/eligible to do so. Urgent action is required to ensure that only paid up members can refer posts. I believe that "Free/lapsed" members cannot initiate private messages so such a restriction on referring posts should not be difficult to engineer and enforce.

I would also suggest that some form of retribution against those found guilty of repeatedly referring posts which are subsequently reinstated should be publicly stated and strictly enforced. The possibility of action being taken against those found guilty of repeated frivolous or malicious reporting should be clearly stated on the opening page (Request a Review) of the report procedure.


patchem Report 11 Apr 2013 22:29

Welcome, Natasha.

Can you please do something to stop people reporting posts when it is obvious to everyone that a genuine mistake has been made and the poster has accidentally posted twice.

It must be very disconcerting for a new member to find their posts have apparently disappeared when they cannot understand what they have done wrong.

I can see a reason for anyone to have the capability to report a post when they think it makes public any information that should be kept private. But I also think that their names should show. If they had a genuine reason to rr a post then they should declare themselves, not hide behind anonymity.


Flip Report 11 Apr 2013 22:31

So, I guess this is really an area Natasha needs to find time (among her other tasks) to concentrate on. I'm not the only one thinking this way - and Jonsey, you are far more articulate than me!


MarieCeleste Report 11 Apr 2013 23:08

Totally 100% agree with the above posts. There has just been a thread reported tonight when it was obviously a genuine mistake or even a glitch. One of Genes Reunited's selling points are the Community Boards and this silly behaviour is detracting from them.


eileen Report 12 Apr 2013 06:33

Hi all, I live in Australia and I am having trouble finding early information re my GGGrandfather John Gray who was believed to have been born around 1810, maybe in Yorkshire. He married in Babworth Nottinghamshire sometime between 1833 to 1836 to Hannah Kitching of Misson Notts. Hannah's father was Valentine Kitching. He was a tailor in Misson. Her mother was Ann Brooks. John and Hannah emigrated to Australia in 1840 and settled in Victoria. With them on the records was a son William aged 7. Can anyone help me. Eileen


IanPJS Report 12 Apr 2013 07:11

Hi Eileen,

Welcome to GR. Firstly your question would get better results posted on the Finding Ancestors board under a new post with a heading say 'Hannah Kitching 1810, Notts.' or something similar as members probably may not read this particular post.

Secondly, Hannah Kitching baptised 12 March 1810 Mission, Notts., father Valentine Kitching and mother Ann.

Marriage to John Gray 1 December 1836 at Babworth, Notts.

These records I found on FamilySearch.




Cynthia Report 12 Apr 2013 09:08

Hello Natasha and welcome.

I certainly agree with the comments which have been raised above and would like to add my own thoughts.

As you wish to ensure that members get the most out of the Community boards and draw on the experience of the talented members, I would like to suggest that two areas are looked at.

1. Over the past few years, I have sent out over 30,000 advisory pm's to new members who have posted a message but not returned to see the help given them.

The majority of these new folk are grateful for the advice and admit that they hadn't a clue how the boards worked; were waiting for an email from GR or are rather elderly and unused to computers.

My decision to help in this way was based on the fact that some of the helpers were 'scolding' people or not returning to see their replies, and I felt this was unfair in many cases.

The Watched Threads facility doesn't seem to be being used by many, is very hit and miss and doesn't really serve the purpose.

2. Many, many new members who are looking for connections on this site are replying to very old posts and, again, not returning to see the advice given by helpful members.

I no longer contact new members who reply to old threads - as I use the site on a daily basis, it was taking up far too much of my time.

It is a great shame that so many new folk are missing out on information which could be vital to their research . Of course, if they read the guidelines before posting, that would be helpful but, unfortunately, we do not live in an ideal world.

If you wish to promote these boards, then ease of use for new folk is essential.


Edit. I will pm Eileen (above) who is obviously a new user. :-)


GlitterBaby Report 12 Apr 2013 13:54

Anything that can help with posts being sent for review would be a step in the right direction.

BUT surely the Team must be working on this already. If not why not. It must be treated as URGENT.

Agree with everything already said on this matter.


1066ronnie Report 15 Apr 2013 23:29

How come Hey Jude/Eveie only pay such a small amount and I pay £49.95 for six months, something wrong somewhere....
Good Luck in your new position


MarieCeleste Report 16 Apr 2013 08:39

Hi Ron, I only pay £7.98 for 6 months too - but that's only for the very basic standard membership. If I want to view any records I'd have to buy credits.

Do you have platinum membership?


Dea Report 16 Apr 2013 09:22

Hi Natasha,

My first thought when I read your announcement was that, at last, GR seem to be doing something useful and I welcomed the idea of a Community Manager. However, on reflection, I am somewhat disappointed.

I consider the community boards and the members who provide help to others on there to be THE most important part of the site and GR's greatest asset. - There are many members who regularly give help and advice to those starting out on family history, thus GR retains those memberships and more people are encouraged to join.

There is so much skill, knowledge and expertise amongst our experienced members and they give it freely on here to 'your' members, at no cost or effort on your part, making this site the success you claim it to be. If this were to cease, the site would be 'dead in the water'.

Taking this into consideration, they have appointed you as Community Manager and I do sincerely wish you luck in your new role but, as you say in your post..... " I will be fitting this role around other work I have ", I wonder if GR is actually looking at this as a 'serious' position which could actually bring about any 'real' change or improvement ?

I believe that GR needs to have a serious re-assessment of it's priorities.

Dea x


Community Advisor Report 16 Apr 2013 16:08

Thank you for all the feedback everyone, it's really useful. I will look into your concerns.

Sorry you are disappointed Dea - but I certainly plan to bring around improvements to the Community Boards.


Dea Report 16 Apr 2013 16:21

I am very sure you do Natasha but my general opinion, as stated above, remains the same.

I do hope you can prove me wrong and sincerely wish you well.

Good luck,

Dea x