So I have been on Genealogy Wise for a week now. They are celebrating their one week birthday. As with any new site they have had some growing pains. Some I understand, some have been down right irritating. I have to say so far though I have been enjoying the community. Once I configured my email alerts so i no longer got notified when anyone sneezed, it’s been an OK place.
Today they had some fun with DNS, you couldn’t even get to the site, it went to a parking page. Totally understandable, technical stuff happens all the time. But then there was a little out cry from a member that his forum posts had been “wrongly” deleted. He then wrote a lengthy bog post on Genealogy Wise about how they were censoring their members. That is where I got irritated. I am one that is all about transparency in a social community.
Again I was able to chalk that up as a silly mistake and growing pain. But then I noticed a support person on the site made a post to this user and pointed out every misspelling in his post, then went on to lecture him about constructive criticism. That one made me speak up and call them out on absolute unprofessional behavior.
I was notified by email of two other posts to the discussion and MUCH TO MY SURPRISE, when I went back the whole post had been deleted.
So I tweeted about it and it looks like I’m not alone in my disappointment. I did get a tweet back from Genealogy wise (@GenealogyWise) assuring me that the issue has their attention and they are looking for input. I want to say i am proud of them for that move. That takes guts.
In the thread I saw this post which made me a lot happier about the situation.
“I just spoke with Paul Allen, our CEO, and he feels that we should allow all feedback about GenealogyWise without removing it, even if it is disrespectful. I apologize for the posts I removed that I felt were discrespectful to GW. That will not be our policy going forward. So, go ahead and bash away.
I think it might make sense to have some kind of rules about treating other community members with respect, but we won’t have those same rules for negative posts about GW. What do each of you think about that?
Also, Paul would like us to ask the community what you think about profanity. Should that be censored at all, and if so, what types of profanity?”
You can chime in by clicking here.
I Like Paul Allen and I respect him very much. He is a evangelist of the social community. That’s why I had had such a hard time understanding why one of his web properties was reacting like this. Heaven knows they have taken their share of lumps about their FaceBook App “We’re Related”. Check out some of the comments on their uservoice page. Its not all sunshine, but I think it takes a strong company to listen and make adjustments.
I’m not a fan of the way they are running the contest they just launched either. The first rules came and and seemed a little suspect to people about building quantity and not quality. Which is fine if that’s what they are trying to do. I can’t fault them for wanting to jump start a new site. The thing that made me really sad about it is when they altered the rules and re-posted them. They looked even more suspect to me and left a lot of subjective wiggle room.
Don’t go away thinking I don’t like Genealogy Wise. I frankly haven’t made up my mind yet. I will continue to watch and see. I will always try to give you the most honest opinion and information here. I think so far there have been some mistakes that hopefully can change for them to have a good future.