Tech Tuesday: Keeping up with findmypast

Exciting news from ...

Findmypast has recently made changes to their search engine and project manager Paul Dunlop says they have made some improvements and along with that is a bit of a "learning curve". So, before you plan your next trip into Auckland Libraries to access findmypast you may want to watch this short video or read the article Your handy guide to findmypast’s new search on their website.
Image from findmypast news published 21 March 2014.

The video introduces the new search platform that will provide the user with a "flexible approach" to searching the collections.

As of the beginning of April, the library edition of findmypast is allowing users to start their own accounts similar to the how customers access The British Newspaper Archive website within the library -- "this means they'll be able to use our personalised services and save their own family trees." If you already have an account with findmypast, you will now be able to log in to your own profile on the library computers. For those customer who don't want to set up an account, you will still be able to continue to access records as a guest by using the search all records option on the new-look homepage.
A preview of  findmypast's new homepage.
On an entertaining note, if you are an iPhone user findmypast has introduced an app, I Once Was, according to the developers "it is a fun take on what your job might have been in the past and what you would have looked like." Simply answer two questions and upload an image of yourself, so I gave it a go. Hmm, present day librarian but historically . . . a sailor! Ships ahoy everyone.


We encourage interaction and feedback on all Auckland Libraries' blog. However, apart from that one comment below, we won't be posting any further responses that are complaints about Findmypast. 

While we understand and sympathise with people's frustrations with the current difficulties, this is not the best place for people to vent their concerns. These should more properly be directed to Findmypast's customer services team.

We have been reassured that issues are being prioritised and dealt with accordingly, and hope to see a much improved new Findmypast website in the near future.

We are very excited by the new datasets that Findmypast have released recently, and are waiting in eager anticipation in what is going to come soon.

Kind regards

Seonaid Lewis
family history librarian, Central Auckland Research Centre, Auckland Libraries

This entry was posted on Tuesday, 1 April 2014 and is filed under ,,,,,. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response.

2 Responses to “Tech Tuesday: Keeping up with findmypast”

  1. You might also wish to, and be well advised to, read the storm of furious customer complaints from previously satisfied and loyal findmypast customers who are currently saying that the new format of site has ruined it, and that it is is now completely disfunctional and unusable and that they are threatening to not renew their subscriptions.

    Prior to the end of March 2014 they had nothing but praise for the site, but since then the complete opposite has been the case, and the storm of complaint messages shows no sign of diminishing.

    Customers are demanding that the site be restored to it's former format.

    The findmypast management is claiming that is not technically possiblr, but the customers do not believe that is true.

    The management have now resorted to giveing customers who complain to them directly, a free two month extension of their subscriptions, but that is doing nothing to mollify their enraged customers.

    1. Thank you for your comments. I too was a big fan of the UK version of the Findmypast website. Less so of the search functions in the Findmypast AU website, which they seem to have used as a prototype for the amalgamated site.

      The amalgamation of the three websites and their respective datasets do seem to have created some teething issues that the company says it is working on to rectify.

      From what I understand, having amalgamated all the datasets from the different websites, they now can't simply roll back the changes and will need time to rectify the issues.

      If the company is giving two months free subscription extensions to the website, that would seem to be good customer service - providing that they do fix the website promptly (which I expect will take longer than a few days)

      I plan on being patient for a bit longer to give them a chance to get things working properly. Then I plan on working with the new site for a while to see if I can get used to the changes.


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