Welcome to the BillionGraves Community! An amazing community of users from every corner of the globe here to help you in your BillionGraves endeavors! Join the movement and connect with others to create the world's largest GPS cemetery database!
Welcome to BillionGraves Q&A, where you can ask questions, receive support, and look at answers from other members of the BillionGraves community.

3.2k questions

4.2k answers


2.8k users

1 like 0 dislike
asked in Rating by dswright BG Master (37.8k points)

Didn't mean to enter the question without comments. How hard is it for some people to admit that THEY can't read Russian,  or don't have the Croatian character set on their machine, or or don't even read enough Croation to know that "Obitelj" means Family. I spent yesterday working through corrections for May and found numerous examples of such travesties in transcription.

This is so insulting to the photographers for those cemeteries. The photos are generally quite good and the names and dates are clear, and for all their work to be mangled by poor transcriptions is just awful.

 I do wish there was a polite way to tell these people to desist, but too often it is too late. I also wish there was a way to return these to the queue and properly marked with the correct language. 

Just my rant for the day. Carry on.


1 Answer

0 like 0 dislike
HI DSWright

For some people it's all about numbers. Especially with the current competition going on for May. So what if the transcribed record is useless to anyone - they want to claim their prize!!

In answer to your question there is a way to contact the transcriber. If you go to the transcribed record and in the top section called life information just below the cemetery name there is a show more link. This will open a drop down section which will give you the photographer and transcriber details. If you click the thumbs up sign you can send them a message thanking them for transcribing the record and at the same time explain to them the error of their ways. This only works if they have their account set to receive these messages.

Hope this helps

answered by SteveN BG Explorer (4.4k points)
Steve N, I agree with you on this point, it's all about the numbers.  At the present time I'm working through a cemetery in England that was fully photographed by one individual which contains headstones a lot of headstones from the 1800's, so they're in fairly rough shape.  The pictures for the most part are fairly good and with some zooming and playing around can be made legible.  But for some reason one or many transcribers have deemed the photos bad and they have been removed from the transcription list for that cemetery.  If I go to the cemetery page, there are about a half and half mix of orange and green pins, that means of the nearly 600 images taken half of them have been deemed bad.  I am having to go in and click on each individual green pin and transcribe them using records available on Ancestry, Family Search, FreeBMD, etc. to aid in the transcription process.  It's not the photographer at fault, it's the transcribers.  IF THE PHOTO IS SEMI-LEGIBLE AND YOU DON'T WANT TO SPEND THE TIME RESEARCHING AND TRYING TO READ THE HEADSTONE, THEN DON'T.  JUST SKIP IT AND LEAVE IT FOR SOMEONE ELSE.  YOU'RE NOT HELPING ANYTHING BY MARKING IT BAD JUST BECAUSE YOU DON'T WANT TO PUT SOME EFFORT INTO IT!

Time to get back at it. 250+ pins to go.
What I would like is for us to be able to clear those bad transcriptions and return that image back to the queue, especially for the now probably thousands of "unknowns" that are garbled versions of some other language or culture. So many good photos are languishing in the "neverland" because of these bad transcribers.

I recently was clearing problems in a US cemetery that was an Eagle scout project, and darn if some kid who happened to be the photographer of a good photo went on to label his own photo "BAD" because he did not recognize the Greek language on the stone! EDUCATION is the key, ALWAYS.

How can we get BG to help us with this?
I started transcribing a few months ago. I also do work for Ancestry and Family Search. I find this site is the worst for trying to find out how to transcribe!  Now, in reading your post, it says that you do all this research in order to decipher a gravestone. News to me!  I just skip what I can't decipher. The only photos that I flag are the ones with the photographer's shadow hulking over the gravestone. Not only is he blocking out the writing on the stone, it seems rude. And that's my rant for the day.  Carry on.