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Archiver > GER-VOLGA > 2007-08 > 1186264402-01


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Subject: [GV] Electronic Family Charts
Date: Sat, 04 Aug 2007 14:53:22 -0700


I was among the pioneers in the mid 1990's who painstakingly converted the mass of data in the Family Charts into electronic format (AGS/GenDex/Mills). (These are frequently mis-named "Pleve Chart", after one of the various commercial (for-pay) services that provide family charts.) I put it up at my expense on a personal web page, paying extra for the server space, in classic "GEDList" and HTML family chart form, and offered to provide it in GedEx and LDS formats as an information exchange with other researchers. I had over 5000 individuals with full AGS/Mills sourcing on line.

After less than two years, I took the web site down, due to harassment such as:
1. people saying that I "stole" their research, putting the claims, without evidence, on the various German Russian mail lists and private e-mails.
2. people saying that I violated the "copyright" of the for-hire commercial entity. Utterly untrue. Check the Library of Congress explanation on the lack of copyright for for-hire commercial entities, the copyright is held by the contractee (payer.) In addition, at least at that time, USSR and Russia were not signatories to the International Copyright Convention.
3. people demanding that I misuse the genealogy tags, to meet their refusal to read the AGS, and LDS manuals on what these tags are for. One especially egregious example was the use of the "title (Mr/Mrs/Colonel/Dr./et.al.)" tag for "village religion" when there is a "religion" tag for that info. Another example was to encode the researcher ID code into the "title" when there is a "source" tag for this info.
4. Direct and indirect claims that I was "somehow" making money off this work. In the 25 years of doing this, I have only once accepted "pay" for any expense, including postage. I once got a baseball hat embroidered with the registered "Sterkel" Cattle Brand.

Simply put, I got tired of defending my integrity and for following recognized standards of genealogy documentation. I took the 5000 individuals off the internet and saved the server fees and all the time defending myself.


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