March 28, 2017

Ancestry's Genetic Communities for DNA - My View

So today I login to discover that Ancestry has implemented its new feature, Genetic Communities. Immediately I noticed that I belong to one community and wanted to see how they came about this.

In looking at the layout of what it states, it tells me that I am genetically connected to those in Puerto Rico on the eastern side of the island. Really now?

So what do I have to say about it? FAILURE!

Here is why.  First, it is based upon who has tested.  I am half Puerto Rican and half Dominican.  Of that half Dominican, one eighth of my great grandparents is of Middle Eastern descent.  Why doesn't it associate me to Dominican Republic? Here is why...

I have a family tree on Ancestry associated to my DNA kit.  My tree is more built out on my Puerto Rican side of the family with some lines going back 13 generations.  My tree currently has a total of 6,779 people on it.  I actually descend from the Taino's on that island and the first settlers along with Africans that were enslaved and brought to the island.

I can also say the same thing about my Dominican ancestry, I simply have not added the generations until I can confirm the individuals are truly connected correctly since my tree is public.  However I have many people on that side of the family on my tree. The balance of people who have tested shows that many Dominicans have not tested so the volume is much more less. It is also telling since people that reach out to me are 3 times more likely to be descendants from Puerto Rico.

What Ancestry basically did was look at those that match me, look at their trees (which I have done), and then looked at my tree and said, "Yup you belong to the eastern portion of Puerto Rico".   I did not need their help in that aspect, I figured this out all on my own via documentation. The towns are listed on most of those that I have been able to locate birth, marriage, or death records that speaks to where they are from.

However what Ancestry truly needs to do is provide a chromosome browser and permit their users to use the tool to determine connections. Currently users have to download kits and upload to GEDMatch to confirm and determine relationships. This only works if everyone does this, which they do not.  So Ancestry, stop wasting money on features that are of zero use to many users and provide what we have been demanding; a chromosome browser.

Ancestry Genetic Communities
Nice try but it failed majorly on what I expected. If I pull an example from one of the many kits I manage, which has a limited tree, I get a different result as shown below.  Epic fail on Ancestry's part, better off spending money on a chromosome browser. A waste of money and development.

Genetic Communities 2

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