Thursday, 12 April 2018

FTDNA settings revision for 28th May 2018

Those who tested at FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA) should have all received the message below this week.

There is a wonderful improvement in there.
The separation of matching and notifications.
You can now elect to remain in the matching pools for all levels of tests but NOT be notified of eg all those yDNA12 marker matches and those HVR1 mtDNA ones.
I've always put up with them and simply deleted the messages because someone somewhere might want to know the match exists and explore further.
This has not been possible up to now (or from May 28th 2018 when these all take effect).
Opting out of the matching at the lower levels to get rid of the notifications hid the match and details from view, from both yourself, and any matches, along with your desired effect, fewer emails.

I was initially concerned about the apparent changes to the Family Tree visibility as there was no explicit setting obvious to continue to allow you to hide the living, or those born within 100 years
But actually reading the FAQ pointed to below eased that concern.
It reads:
The Family Tree Sharing section is where you can choose whether or not to share your family tree and with whom you share it.
For family tree sharing, select one of the following options in the drop-down list:
  • Public – By Public, we mean that if you are linked to a match’s tree and that match shares their tree, or if one of their matches views the tree, your information will be displayed on their shared tree.
  • My Matches
  • Private 
Please note that when you select to share your family tree, living people born less than 100 years ago will not be displayed. You, deceased individuals, and individuals born more than 100 years ago will be displayed.
For most people, the current settings will continue to be fine, you belong to your projects, your privacy settings remain the same but you can now tweak your notifications more finely without messing your matches.
For the future, new testers will appear to need more education on the impacts of the defaults, particularly for projects. More information once impacts learnt and digested.

The email received from FTDNA:

Dear Valued Customer,

We’re updating our Account Settings options and wanted to give you an overview of some of what’s new. These changes impact the options for Privacy & Sharing, Project Preferences, and Email Notifications.

Anytime we make updates, we hope to make it easy for you to understand your choices and the control you have over your data on FamilyTreeDNA.

Check out the below posts in the Learning Center for full details.

Here's what has changed

Privacy & Sharing

We are updating the options in your matching preferences and will allow you to opt out of match email notifications but still participate in matching.

Family Tree sharing is now located in Privacy & Sharing.
LEARN MORE (link takes you to: )

Project Preferences

When joining a Group Project, members can select a Group Administrator access level for each individual Group Administrator.
LEARN MORE (link takes you to:

Email Notifications

We’ve separated DNA matching and new match email notification settings, allowing you to disable email notifications without disabling matching.
LEARN MORE (link takes you to:

Next steps

Please visit your My Profile pages to see the above changes and to review and update your Matching Levels, Email Notifications, and Project Preferences. Please note that changes to Project Preferences will not go into effect until May 25th, 2018. This means you can choose your settings but they will not be implemented until May 25th.

In addition to the above changes, we have also updated the Account Information and Genealogy sections in your My Profile pages. For more details on these changes, click the links to visit the Learning Center.

Your privacy comes first in all of these updates. We now meet the high standard for data privacy introduced by the new European data protection law known as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which goes into effect later in May. FamilyTreeDNA members around the world will benefit from the new privacy requirements mandated by the GDPR.


We will be sure to keep you informed as we continue to release updates to your account settings.

Thanks for being a part of the family,



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