Monday, August 20, 2012

Monday Mailbox: Uploading Images to FamilySearch

Dear Insider,

Recently, I have had a few genealogy people insist that FamilySearch has no intention of making it possible to upload images to the FamilyTree.

I have heard from people who attend Riverton Family History seminars that the feature is coming. Some missionaries/directors have even told me they've seen image upload demonstrated even though it is not in the beta yet.

Why would said employee insist so strongly that there is no intent to create such a feature and that it is not possible that a demo was ever shown?

PS. I forgot to clarify that the person who told me this will not happen is an employee of FamilySearch. A missionary of FamilySearch or a volunteer or someone who is very involved at least said the same thing. (We were speaking as FamilySearch volunteers about the topic of FamilyTree)

Michael W. McCormick *

Dear Michael,

I have heard Ron Tanner, group product manager, state many times that FamilySearch will one day allow uploading images of source documents. Why would an employee insist so strongly that this is not the case? I don’t know, but they are definitely misinformed.

It is interesting that some think they’ve seen the feature demonstrated. I attend a lot of public demonstrations and see a few private demonstrations and I have never seen anything demonstrated. This feature is far in the future; I believe it is too early to have anything to demonstrate.

Just in case something has changed since last I heard Tanner, I asked the question of FamilySearch’s official spokesperson, Paul Nauta. This is his response:

Dear Mr. Insider,

It is definitely in the development plans for the FamilySearch Family Tree to allow the upload of images pertaining to individuals in the Tree. We have more pressing feature priorities this year, but the image upload feature is in the development plans for 2013.

Paul Nauta

I hope that settles your mind concerning this question.

The Insider


  1. Could a demonstration of the new MySourceBox feature have been misunderstood in that way?

  2. Perhaps the reported demos were of the Family Tree feature that allows external web content to be linked to Family Tree sources - I have used this to link pdf and jpg images to my FT sources - including the use of a url link to a folder of multiple photographs for an individual that when linked to displays all the photographs and embedded text in the folder in a slide show format. I use free cloud storage providers Dropbox for my photographs and Microsoft Sky Drive for my pdf files - each allows any single file or folder to generate a unique url that can be used for insertion into the FT source definition.


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