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Archiver > FreeBMD-Admins > 2009-06 > 1246349194

From: "Robert Waite" <>
Subject: RE: Can anyone give me a reference to a potted history of thetranscription of the uk gro bmd indexes?
Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 09:06:34 +0100
References: <48EC467E466844B38C796567859F9D4A@notreordinateur><>
In-Reply-To: <>

No wonder then that commercial interest transcriptions are
not as accurate as the ones done by FreeBMD! Especially as
we have Independent Double-Keying as a matter of standard
procedure. I for one trust FreeBMD/REG/CEN more than
commercial transcriptions.


-----Original Message-----
[mailto:] On Behalf Of
david mayall
Sent: 30 June 2009 08:18
To: seingier.bouchicot; freebmd-admins
Subject: Re: Can anyone give me a reference to a potted
history of the transcription of the uk gro bmd indexes?

2009/6/28 seingier.bouchicot <>

> Hello,
> Can anyone give me a reference to a potted history of the
> transcription of the uk gro bmd indexes, one which
explains which
> organisations did what in the past and who's doing what
today ?
> I've been a transcribing for freebmd for only a few
months. Using my
> simple minded logic I'd assumed that freebmd was the only
> undertaking such a vast task. Today I'm wondering if that
assumption is true.
> In this space a few days ago there were comparisons of
> available in ancestry and in freebmd. In ancestry there is
an access
> to a database of births 1837 to 1915 labelled as
transcribed by
> freebmd. In ancestry there is a second database for births
from 1916
> onwards, for which there is no mention of freebmd and I
find no
> mention of the origin. This second database
seems to be
> in advance of what is available on freebmd which surprised
me, hence the above question.
> Example : If you search for births of people called SWAIN
mother FLOOD
> between 1916 and 1939, ancestry finds automatically 3
people (the
> correct number), while freebmd only finds two people. It
doesn't seem
> to be an error in freebmd, because one of the
corresponding births in
> 1932 is not yet included in the freebmd transcribed index
> whereas it is indexed in ancestry.
> That made me wonder who did the transcription work for
ancestry and
> hence my search for a history of the transcription process
which I
> have not found using google.

Ancestry has a long standing agreement with FreeBMD that
allows them to use out transcriptions. provided they make no
charge for them (although clearly they use them as a "loss
leader" to attract people to their service.

Recently, Ancestry took a decision, for their own business
reasons, to have
1916-1983 transcribed by their own paid transcribers, and to
offer those transcriptions only as part of their paid

Clearly they believe that 1837-1915 is enough data to offer
as a loss leader, and equally clearly the fact that they can
offer more complete coverage of later records gives them (in
the short term) a distinctive product offering that they can
sell, and which will presumably generate revenue in excess
of the money they paid for transcription. Our work to
transcribe later records continues apace, and in a
relatively short time, we too will haver those records

It is my understanding that the transcription work on the
1916-1983 records would have been carried out by one of a
number of companies that Ancestry regularly use in India.

Dave Mayall
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