GENEALOGY-DNA-L ArchivesArchiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2009-09 > 1252340970
From: "Diana Gale Matthiesen" <>
Subject: Re: [DNA] (no subject)
Date: Mon, 7 Sep 2009 12:29:30 -0400
I think you are over-generalizing from your own experience, Bob. In my
projects, I don't find the chances "slim," at all.
What I tell my new and prospective members is that there is simply no way to
predict how soon you will get a meaningful match -- unless you have a paper
connection to a line that has already been tested. I have members (and lines of
my own) where there was a match "out of the gate." I also have other members
(and personal lines) where we're still waiting for a match after six years.
When I started my projects six years ago, not that many people had been tested.
Back then, more often than not, a new member got no match. But that's changing.
Back then, kit numbers were in the low 20 thousands; now, they're in the 160
thousands. The probability of a new member getting a match out of the gate goes
up every day.
The projects I started were, not surprisingly, for surnames with which I was
already quite familiar. I made lists of the known and, especially, the major
American progenitors of these surnames, and I went on a deliberate and
purposeful campaign to find and test a patrilineal descendant of each one. And,
yes, that meant I paid for, or helped pay for, quite a few tests, but that
testing is paying off because now the probability that a new member will get a
meaningful match is good.
When you pay for a DNA test it *is* certain that you will get a result, and
every result tells you something. You may have to wait for a "breakthrough"
match, but as long as you're not impatient, waiting is "easy." Do the testing
companies go too far? Yes, sometimes, but I simply don't find the situation as
bleak as describe. Perhaps we represent the two ends of the spectrum.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: On Behalf Of Robert Stafford
> Sent: Monday, September 07, 2009 11:05 AM
> Subject: Re: [DNA] (no subject)
> I agree. I think even a slim chance is well worth the cost of testing.
> However, I think it behooves us to dispel the notion left by
> testing firms that it is an easy and/or certain process.
> Bob Stafford