Monday, December 24, 2012



I have a request to make and I am sure, no, I am positive I'm not alone in this request. I would like for you to craft a campaign to increase user adoption of your Member Connect feature. While you may feel that the adoption rate among your membership is sufficient to justify its existence I, personally, am not feeling the love. This situation continues to cause me undue anxiety and I hope with your intervention this anxiety can be lessened. 

I send messages to most Member Connect users that have trees matching mine for multiple generations and appear to have their facts straight. The problem arises when they simply do not reply. Why don't they reply? Do they not see that they are getting messages? Do they not know how to reply? Do they not realize their identity and email addresses are hidden from me and have nothing to fear? Could it be they think Member Connect is some kind of social media mumbo jumbo?

Generally I am a pretty likable person so this non-response bothers me. I also have 11 years of research to share with others. All I'm asking for is a little collaboration to further our research. So you can see and surely understand my befuddlement over this situation. 

I often see you tweet "what can do better?" and then you ask me to click a link to provide my feedback. Well here you have it, this is my feedback. I love everything about your site and your product. Oh no, wait...could you make it easy for me to print all 417 items in my Shoebox to PDF? 

I appreciate your attention to this matter and look forward to a speedy resolution. 




  1. I agree! I am an avid user of Member Connect and I wish more people were. I've sent hundreds of messages that just go unanswered. It's so frustrating!

  2. I know Danielle. I'm going to think positive that people just don't realize they have messages and how much help they could be to their research. Why would anything deliberately not want to collaborate?

  3. Great letter, Jenna. Hope takes note! I think they could do a much better job promoting the Member Connect service and prompting people when they receive messages. Maybe a periodic email reminder about unanswered messages would help?

  4. Being new to Ancestry, I didn't even really know this existed. Now, I'm going to check it out! Thanks!

  5. Good points Shelley. The tiny little icon at the top of the screen could be easy to miss and a one-time email notification can get buried.

  6. Brian, yea! I'm glad my post was helpful. The Member Connect can be very powerful...if people use it! Good luck.

  7. Great letter - hopefully a human bean will read it! I use MemberConnect quite a lot at this point, and normally get about a 20% response. I suspect a number of people started trees, put them up, then went away... perhaps not renewing their membership so therefore they can't use that specialty feature.

    I'd also love to have the option of organizing my Shoebox in some fashion!