Memorials for the Recently Deceased

[Update: Thank you for your comments on this post. We’ve made some updates to memorials for recently deceased folks based on your feedback. Updates include making it a little easier to get to the memorial and adding options to report duplicates, suggest corrections and add the memorial to a virtual cemetery. We’ve also added a few more details to the types of relationships and made those match up better with the information in the help files.]

Over the years, we’ve heard from members about the timing of memorials for people who are recently deceased. The time directly following the loss of a loved one can be challenging and when a family member finds that an unrelated person has created a Find a Grave® memorial for their loved one before the family has had a reasonable time to mourn, it can add to the emotional strain.

We’ve made some changes on the site that we hope will help close relatives, while still supporting the Find a Grave community’s efforts to catalog death and burial information. These changes include:

  • Limits on what is shown on memorials for people who have died in the past 3 months.
  • An option for memorial creators and managers to indicate their relationship to the person memorialized.
  • A simplified process for family members to request management of memorials of people who have died in the past year.
  • Other updates to support these changes.

These changes will apply to memorials added after January 11, 2022.

We are also updating our transfer guidelines to include some close relatives that are not in a direct line.

Here are a few examples to provide more details about the changes:

Memorials Managed By a Relative

When you add a new memorial, you’ll be asked, “Are you a close relative?” You can also set your relationship to people in memorials you already manage on the Edit page. If you select “Yes” and choose your relationship, the memorial will look and be displayed like any other memorial on the site.

When adding your relationship, use the checkbox to make your relationship public or private. If you choose to “Show relationship in source information,” your relationship will display next to your profile name at the bottom of the memorial. If you choose to keep your relationship private, nothing will be displayed next to your profile name for other members, but you will see a note that your relationship is private.

In memorials lists, you will also see a green dot (public) or lock (private) to indicate memorials for people you are related to.

Memorials Managed By Someone Who is Not Related

For memorials managed by someone who is not a relative, the manager’s view of the memorial will be just the same as any other memorial they manage. To other viewers, the memorial will display with limited information for three months from the death date. Here is an example of what a memorial for a recently deceased person will look like in a search list (for everyone except the manager):

In addition to limiting the information we display, we have also added a simple way for family members to request to manage the memorial. A close relative can click the “Manage” button, add their relationship, and become the manager of a new memorial for that person. Since the manager is related, the memorial will now display and act as any other memorial on the site.

After three months from the death date, the view of the memorial is no longer limited. The memorial will show as others do except that for up to a year from the death date, the option for a close relative to “Manage” the memorial will show on the memorial.

Adding Your Relationship to Memorials You Manage

Relationship information helps us make decisions about merges, transfer requests and memorials for the recently deceased. You can add your relationship to existing memorials that you manage. To add your relationship, go to the memorial, select “Edit,” scroll down, and choose your relationship. We limit the number of memorials you can manage with certain relationship types to help prevent abuse.

You can find a list of memorials you are related to by hovering over your profile name, selecting “My Memorials” and choosing “Related” from the dropdown menu next to “My Memorials.”

Updates to Transfer Guidelines

Memorials are transferred for relatives with these close relationships: child, spouse/partner, sibling, parent, grandchild, great-grandchild, grandparent, great-grandparent, niece/nephew, great niece/nephew, aunt/uncle, great aunt/uncle, or first cousin. This would include adoptive, step, and in-law versions of these relationships. Please show sensitivity to immediate and extended family members and their requests.

If two members are related within these guidelines and both would like to manage the memorial, the member with the closer relationship should be given management.

Learn more from our Help site here.

We sincerely appreciate all the volunteers and their work in adding memorials to the site everyday. We feel that these changes provide an appropriate balance between allowing memorials to be added for those who are recently deceased and showing sensitivity to their family members.


  1. These people who read the obituaries every day and create memorials by copy and pasting the info are grave robbers! There is one such person who dominates a cemetery where I have many family members. She refused to turn over the memorial to me of my nephew, to whom I was very vlose, who died tragically at 22 years old. An only child, his Mother is deceased. His Dad is not on findagrave and his grandparents do not have computers. These grave robbers are most hurtful to family members and should be blocked from managing memorials.

    • Grave Robbers. I like that. I have tried to get my own husband’s transferred to me. Ohio. Refused. Have tried my grand fathers and grand mothers. Same individual. I think they are going for a number how many they maintain versus caring abt family.

      • Surely in the case of a husband and grandparents the Find a Greave admin would intervene and transfer them to you?

      • Nice idea, but too late for me. I quit using or adding to the site because of a completely random person who posted a memorial for my dad two days after he died 5 years ago. It was incorrect, had names of the living and they refused to transfer. They seemed to take pride in their achievement.

      • I’m in that situation with regard to my great-grandparents’ memorials. They were created by a complete stranger who has reportedly created more than 50,000 memorials (this must be a full-time job for him!). I have asked twice for him to transfer management of those two memorials to me since he is not a relative, but no response.

    • I wouldn’t suggest that this is done by all of such people. I recently started posting obits from the original paper to existing memorials and also by posting & creating new memorials; I transfer, I am not one of those strange people, and know others alike who do the same per respect, I understand the frustration with those who don’t transfer and it isn’t just these said people.
      There are many cemeteries with loved ones that have no stones, therefore these obituaries are very useful in helping someone determine that it is in fact their loved one.

      • Yes, Keep posting obits. They are not always accurate but give us clues as to other relatives, etc. that we cannot find other ways.

      • Find A Grave past rules prevented posting Obituaries that included living people, preventing Find a Grave being a source of “Identity Theft.” Many Obituary Listers do not bother to delete living persons names. Obituaries often include incorrect cemeteries, as family members change their mind or are not verified by Cemetery Records. Find a Grave contains many errors as Memorials entered are not researched to include basic vital information, i.e. full dates and locations of birth and death, linking to deceased family members, etc. IMO this is the reason for so many duplicate Memorials, sometimes duplicates appear years later? In most cases deceased information is available on Having 23,000+ names in my, Family Tree. I do have basic documented information for my family members. I have been waiting for ten years for a correction to a Memorial for my 3rd great grandmother. Requested transfer was ignored. it is difficult to keep track of thousands of Memorials managed by one individual. My 3rd great grandmother’s headstone is very readable for dates, incorrect in the Memorial.

      • Agree. These can be helpful for family trying to find a relative or work up a family tree.

    • They are not “grave robbers.”
      They are not doing it to gain anything. The information they put on here is appreciated by many people searching for family members.

      • I agree that most of the people adding memorial are only trying to help the families not upset them. But I do agree only a close family member should add obit the day of the death and before the funeral.

      • Except when the information is wrong. I sent a message to one person who had my uncle’s information wrong in a marriage and they didn’t have the decency to even reply. It is still the same, and that was 10 yrs ago!!! That is not a good manager!

      • Agree. These posts are invaluable in tracing a family tree or trying to locate living family members.

    • Grave robbing is EXACTLY the feeling of violation I experienced on finding my mother and other family members entered and hoarded by strangers. This change is about a decade overdue. Congrats to Ancestry for FINALLY addressing the problem, I guess?

    • Some may think of them as hoarder, but if folks don’t do it, in some cases, others won’t find their family. I’m not sure this is a policy for the greater good. Many newbies are so excited to get memorials and think they can link people correctly when it’s not correct. That makes a much bigger problem for all using FindAGrave as a factual source of information. In my earlier days I spent winter months and rainy days transcribing old 18 and 1900s bio information from history books. It was a lot of work. I’m not so sure I will do this any more if anyone claiming (true?) family can be given all that work just to delete it and screw it up for everybody else.

    • I 100% agree. Imagine my surprise when I went to create a memorial for my father two days after his private funeral, only to find one already created! My family didn’t have an obit printed anywhere, at his request, and the funeral was *6 months* after his death. No one in our family did it. The account name was unknown to me, and I feel it was someone with access to VA records, since we had his ashes interred at a national cemetery and they had that info. It infuriated me. I was able to gain control of his page, but it felt like absolute audacity and invasion of privacy for someone to do this – someone who had to have gotten his info through what is likely their employer.

    • I agree that they are grave robbers. There is a person in my town with 18,000 memorials. Before a family member can get to find-a-grave, these people are posting the newspaper obituaries. I hurried to post my own mother’s death in October, before her funeral even, to prevent these graverobbers who posted my father’s death. This 18,000 person has been into my grandfather’s private mausoleum room taking pictures and at my family gravesite takings pictures and posting them. She created confusion, when my brother who was the III died before my father who was Jr. Then an ancestry person posted incorrect information that took me 2 years to fix, after many people had copied it.
      Obituaries contain all of the close living relatives. This goes beyond what Ancestry contains. My tree is private and I want my research to remain that way. I have given permission to about 40 Ancestry members, because we are related in some way. I am not hiding from people who need to know.
      Thank you, thank you, thank you to Find-A-Grave for stepping in on this out of control situation.

    • We hadn’t had the funeral yet for our daughter when my husband decided to make a memorial for her on Find a Grave. He was surprised to see that someone had already created a memorial for her. We don’t know this person and it was clear they got the information from the obituary. We contacted the woman and asked for the memorial to be transferred over to us because this was our daughter but no reply. After several months of attempts to have it transferred we contacted Find a Grave. They did respond and seemed as if they were going to see it through to the end but still nothing. This was in 2020. As a parent of a deceased child this is heartbreaking. We created another memorial for her and she is linked with family but still the “grave robber” still has yet to let our daughter be totally ours. As of now I would want the stolen memorial to be deleted.

    • I had something like this happen when my mother passed away. I had to deal with an insensitive jerk and go directly to Findagrave to complain in order to get control of her account. The person added a very sloppy memorial with an incorrect middle name and just years for birth and death. They literally copied and pasted an obituary within an hour of it being posted. I do not understand the motives of some people.

      This three month holding period is a good start, but it should be more like 3 years and it should also be a lot easier to claim direct ancestors’ memorials than it is.

      My g-g-grandfather had a really basic memorial with no birth date, his name spelled wrong and a death year that was posted by a compiler who posted every memorial in the cemetery. He refused to relinquish ownership and refused to add photos and edits, so I had to contact Findagrave directly and jump through hoops to get control of that memorial. This is not a contest and I do not understand why some people behave in this manner.

  2. I personally am offended at the tone of your letter. You are criticizing family members while praising those who put down information that is not yet public, does not yet appear on a gravestone (because one doesn’t yet exist!), and who refuse to change incorrect information. Sorry but I AM a family member who did a memorial within a couple of months of my brothers death. It took me time to gather the correct information, pictures, etc. There is NO REASON for a non-family member to do that “for me” when I can do it for myself. I did get off my butt and do it, as you so callously indicate, but I made sure I did it correctly with NO errors instead of the errors I have seen perpetrated by listings that are incorrect. I have an uncle who did not WANT his information posted. I intend to do it in the future when his wife is amenable to it, but I also will respect his wishes in this. Not every “researcher” is as scrupulous as you would like to make them out to be. NO ONE is in such a hurry to post information for others that they need to be rude, and that is what I consider someone outside the family doing a memorial without being asked before giving the family time to get one together. I think the new guidelines have been needed for a long time. I think the most rude people are not just those who post unasked, but those who refuse to remove incorrect information or refuse to add corrected information even when it is given by a family member who best knows the truth. I don’t know why YOU are so offended unless you ARE one of those rude people who have posted for others quickly without their guidance. If you are, then back off and give family members the opportunity to do what it is their privilege to do.

  3. Thank you for your valuable work on honoring and memorializing our family members. I love Find-A-Grave and always refer to it in my research.

    • I also wanted to thank those who post gravesites images and info. I live far from my family plots and for the most part find them invaluable. On the other hand, after my dad died, we experienced a mystery poster with a little too much info about us. I was not the only one in my immediate family who found it actually very frightening. We still do not know who it was but in retrospect it was akin to someone robbing families while they attend the funeral. Therefore, I think these new rules are good and hopefully will be adjusted as time goes on so that all members of a family can honor and learn from, those they’ve lost.

      • I set up a Find a Grave for anyone that does not have it when I am researching for a client.. I too have inventoried a cemetery but I always transfer when requested. There should be a way to get a grave transfer to you if the person owning it will not transfer or answer your request.

      • If you don’t get an answer from someone after a short period of time (I usually wait about 30 days) or if I have a dispute with someone that is not a relative, and I am. I have always gone through the powers that be at Find A Grave. They have always been extremely helpful in helping me.

  4. The new rules are great. I would like to see the relatives extended to second cousins. The reason is I had been working on genealogy with my second cousin. However, he died before Christmas. The older generations are gone and he and I were the only ones working on our branch of the family. He told me a number of stories that his dad had told him. Needless to say, working on our tree gave us a closer relationship.

    • I had the same concerns (also with great-grandchild) but I’m thinking it should be ok to use “cousin” to suffice for any cousin. I can see from other comments that might be a real issue though.

  5. I hope the powers that be at Find a Grave read these comments, as there are some excellent observations here about potential problems with some of these changes, which should be carefully considered and addressed.

  6. I think that “great-grandparent” and “great-grandchild” needs to be added to the “Close relatives” list.

    • I had the same concerns (also withsecond-cousin) but I’m thinking it should be ok to use “grandchild” to suffice for any great grand-parent.

  7. I agree, Janice. I spent many months photographing stones in almost all of my county’s cemeteries. I gave a copy to my town’s church for their cemetery and copies to the Historical Society of every cemetery I did. I did it for free. I also put in my bio that I’m not related to most of the memorials for this county and I will gladly transfer to ANY family member, which I have done. My advice to those upset about a “hoarder” posting their family member so soon is to post a “pre-need” memorial so someone else doesn’t do it. I posted for my parents so someone else couldn’t and when they passed, all I had to do was fill in the necessary information.

    • I started Find a Grave because of working genealogy. And I use Find aGrave a lot with my research. And there is no way that I can travel to all of these cemeteries for the information that I find on Find a Grave. And I do appreciate everyone that adds memorials and go to the cemeteries to take pictures of the headstones.

  8. This is a great feature. Thanks! I do have a question. I manage the genealogy in both my own family and my wife’s family. I would like to indicate my “in-law” relationship. Is that possible or would their likely be issues. Certainly I would not want to take the management of the memorials away from actual blood relatives.Would it be ‘unfair’ if I just used my wife’s relationship to the deceased?

    • Create an account for your wife and use that account for her relatives. I did that for my husband.

  9. Right ON Find a Grave. Cemetery and Obituary Listers somehow list a lower number Memorial and keep management of merged memorials? In my Mothers case the Obituary Lister pasted in an Obituary that was incorrect. My Mothers name, place of birth and death and burial were wrong. The Obituary included names of living Individuals and included NO family links. The Family Find a Grave Memorial was merged with the Obituary Lister, giving her Memorial Management! This was in disregard to Find a Grave policy of going with a relatives Memorial if the Obituary Lister’s information was wrong. My Mothers name did not even show up on a Find a Grave search when the Family Memorial was created, due to the Obituary Lister’s incorrect information. I demanded all information pirated from the Family Memorial be deleted from the Obituary Lister’s Memorial. I have made over 2,000+ corrections trying to correct Family Memorials created by Cemetery/Obituary Listers who do not have a clue to the individual in the memorial. I created Find a Grave Memorials for all other close family members, with correct vital information and family links. Will relationships be available for existing Family Memorials? I would like Find A Grave Memorial# 80093564 restored and the merged Obituary Lister Memorial deleted. Thank you.

  10. For much older gravestones, such as 18th century, early 19th century, the close relationship obviously can’t apply. However, many people use Find a Grave to contact others searching the same lineage. I was denied a transfer for my 5th great grandfather by someone who was no relation whatsoever. It would be nice to allow relatives of any connection priority over those “collectors” who just want to keep their numbers up.

    • “For much older gravestones, such as 18th century, early 19th century, the close relationship obviously can’t apply.”

      Obviously? President John Tyler still has a living grandson. He’s like 93 but he and his father were born very late in their parent’s lives. President Tyler was born in 1790. Look it up if you don’t believe me. He’s not the only one because having children late into life is very common. I was a late child, myself. My paternal grandparents were born in the 1890s.

  11. In response to Margie Keller, I also feel there will be fewer posts made now that all these complaints are being discussed. I agree to not showing the memorials managed to others but I realize that there are thousands of
    memorials that would not be posted if there had not been an incentive. I don’t begrudge those people as they
    did and continue to perform an amazing service for all of us. Most of us aren’t able to go to the various cemeteries to gather this info for genealogy purposes. Put a limit on the time to enter a new memorial if you must but I’m sure there will be hundreds of people (some that don’t even know what Find a Grave is) that will never enter the info themselves and as time goes on many will let life intrude on doing so. I lost my Mom three years ago and I did go in the day she passed and created her memorial, namely because of the ones who created from the obits and generally refuse to transfer but I’ve learned to live with this. I am not perfect and I realize that no one else is either. I know that no matter how many rules are made there will be someone who will figure out how to break them. You cannot please everyone, no matter how many rules are made. I will continue to post non related memorials when I visit a cemetery that hasn’t even been ‘created’ on Find a Grave but rest assured that if any transfer of the memorials are requested it will be granted. Find a Grave has been a tremendous asset to many genealogists and let’s hope that this doesn’t ever change because of new rules.

  12. I had taken pictures at a local cemetery of ancestrial family, and was usurped (photos removed) by someone who has no familial relationship. And was very upsetting to find my Mother’s obit printed without permission.

  13. Wow! Looks like a can of worms has been opened. I personally have not had any issues with asking anyone to turn over management of a memorial. I was not aware that the “Creator” was changed also – I don’t agree with this. If you created a memorial of my ancestor and/or took a picture of the headstone you deserve credit and your work is much appreciated.
    In fact, when citing the memorial as a source in my genealogy program I make sure to give credit to the creator and photographer.

    • When the “creator” post to the site before you even get home from making final arrangements because they are watching funeral home websites to boost their numbers, nope deserves no credit.

      • Maybe families should ask the funeral homes to not post an obit until after the funeral service.

      • In reply to Dorothy Sunday: Maybe vultures shouldn’t be circling funeral home websites to steal memorials before the family have a chance.

      • I don’t even look at funeral home websites but maybe once a week and there is only four websites I look at. After a certain time I will check to see if the memorial has been added if not I will add it. But most of mine comes from cemeteries that I go to and take pictures.

      • Dorothy Sunday…an obituary is an announcement of someone’s death and is printed so people can attend the services. Pretty silly to announce the death and time and place of the services after the person is buried.

      • What!!! Find A Grave is not a news service for funerals and memorial services. News papers and Funeral Home Internet provide that information before the event.

      • Yes, but people who post obituary’s for the newly deceased to whom they are not related are creating memorials for them without any other info. When I did my mother’s (2011) I put her obit but then I told her personal story between mother and daughter. After I was finally given control of my father’s I did the same for him.

      • People that will attending a funeral I don’t think is going to be looking on Find a Grave to see who funeral to attend. The family will let them know.

      • I believe, Rebecca, this is the problem the new rules are supposed to prevent. However, your blanket statement that ALL of these posters are evil doers is not necessarily accurate. Some people are truly trying to help. My mother’s memorial was posted before I had a chance to add it. When I asked to have it transferred to me there was no problem from the creator. Most of these folks do deserve some credit for trying to make Find-a-Grave a worthwhile and accurate site.

      • My experience was different. Several “Created by” individuals would not transfer Memorials of immediate family. Some suggested changes were never addressed! I assume their goal was to increase their Find a Grave numbers. Several “Created by” wanted to control whole cemeteries. Memorials belong to the deceased individual. Would they prefer a Memorial from a immediate family member or a cemetery/obituary lister working on numbers.

    • I agree with you. Also, whenever someone has asked me to add something to the BIO section. I always include who the information came from. That way others have a way of contacting that person in case they have questions. Not sure I am supposed to do that but that is what I have always done.

      • I’ve seen people do that with my bio edits. I think it’s great. If I make a mistake or somebody has a question, they can contact me, not the manager.

      • I do the same, adding contributor ID to BIO. It’s the only way to record who suggested the edit and gives you a way to contact them if conflicting information.
        Wish it was like the other edits that leave a documented trail.

  14. I love Find a grave! Without it, I would have never found where my great and gg grandparents were buried. Keep up the great work. I appreciate greatly all the volunteers who work tirelessly taking pictures, posting and everything else on their own dime and time.

  15. I agree with most of the comments, however, I do have a concern. When obituaries appear in newspaper, etc.,, if someone doesn’t create a memorial in Find A Grave immediately and there is no family member interested in posting such, that individual may be “lost” to Find a Grave. I don’t think it’s always about the numbers as much as wanting as many individuals recorded for future generations. Family members can always request a transfer and it looks like the new procedures address this issue to some extent.
    Keep up the great work Find A Grave!!

    • I’m going to be honest. When close family members die I make a placeholder memorial as soon as I know without the full name or identifying information. I’m definitely not ready to “see” them on this site and I don’t want relatives to come across it yet. But I also didn’t want to beat me to it if it took me a month to be ready. No one in that area ever made a memorial so when I was finally ready I made all the relevent updates.

  16. I was very interested in your update and comments for I have been a member for several years and greatly appreciate your website.

    Memos from other members are very interesting, It discusses members comments with praise AND otherwise as well about issues. Very interesting! As well as the human opinions regarding FINDAGRAVE we have been very conscious of the variety of attitudes in our day of COVID. May I always respect another members request to transfer my postings to family members. Many thanks to all Involved.

  17. Good changes! I’d like to see NO memorials for three months unless it comes from direct family. It would be nice if these grave robbers would show some respect. There’s no urgency to create a memorial the day the obit is posted in the paper. My aunt hadn’t even been laid to rest yet when some busybody had created her memorial and copied and pasted her obit. Could we have a moment to grieve first????

  18. And DNA will greatly benefit from Memorials for the Recently Deceased being linked through “Are you a close relative?” How many generations should be included? DNA relationships can now be traced/verified through Find A Grave.

  19. “As for as recent death relatives are concerned, they need to stop crying, get off the kitchen chair and post their loved one’s death.”
    That is the cruelest thing I’ve ever read. When a loved one dies, you go to the family, you travel to the home place, you spend days planning the service, and you cry and grieve for a week or more, then you come back home and find some stranger has created the memorial.
    You should sit in your kitchen chair and think about what you are saying.

  20. This is good. A stranger created a memorial for my best friend and it’s full of inaccuracies!

  21. I am so glad to hear of these changes. Grave robbers indeed! I will never forget how hurt I felt when an obituary reader posted my father’s burial information the day after his funeral. Some members of Find-a-grave are only interested in numbers. The real-life sorrow of others is just a game to them.

    • Someone did my grandmother’s before my family even got home or there abouts. It was posted within a few minutes of her being buried. I’d stayed home due to being ill after having all my skin slough off a month before. I was going to post her memorial as my own, private ceremony. I never got that private ceremony. Since yesterday seeing this news post and making my own comments I feel like I’ve been grieving all over again.

  22. I have had good results in working with people on transferring relatives memorials to me. One jumps out that makes these changes worthy. My sister’s memorial was posted before she was buried! She passed on the 18th, the memorial was posted on the 20th, and she was buried on the 24th, I worked to clear her apartment and finished on the 15th of the next month, drove 1500 miles home, went to post the memorial …. The suggested edits have been made. The transfer has not. The person writes on their page, “Virtual cemeteries are the way to ‘gather’ your ancestors together.” Today, I requested the transfer again.

    One commentator said they would no longer be posting pictures. That has nothing to do with managing the memorial. In my sister’s case the picture was taken after the stone was updated. Their page says,

    “If I have created a memorial for a family member of yours, I am happy to transfer management to you. I don’t mind unless it’s a relative of mine. If it is, let’s discuss!

    “Please do not transfer memorials to me without asking. Corrections I request to a memorial do not mean I desire, or deserve, to manage it. I reserve the right to return it to you.”

    That is the spirit, I believe, that most of the community wants.

    Both of these contributors have helped make Find A Grave a valuable resource. One, however, is much more willing to share with the family.

  23. Thank you so much for this. I think it is a good idea. However I have been having a problem. Can you address this or give me a reply on how to handle this? I have a large family. I have reached my limit on “Niece” for accounts that I have managed. I have many aunts and uncles due to large families. How do I rectify this? I don’t want to have to rank my aunt’s and uncle’s to who I should keep and not keep as a close relative, that has caused me stress.

  24. I am a volunteer for findagrave in my area because others have been kind enough to post pictures and obituaries of my relatives which I would never see otherwise. I’ve spent hours adding over 200+ names to a cemetery where was grandmother was so others could find listing for their loved ones. I’ve never denied a transfer or been denied one. Its so sad this has become an issue. I think this will discourage many future post.

  25. Thank You! Previously 3 years ago, I had a deceased 1st cousin’s memorial pirated by a “non-related” manager who refused to relinquish management and also refused to make corrections even though I had family photos and documental proof! Too bad many Find a Grave Contributors’ only goal was to get another “notch” in their Memorial Gun Belt!

  26. I think something needed to be done. I don’t understand why some people are immediately posting memorials of people they do not know, depriving family and friends of that privilege. A memorial is to a close friend or family member almost a sacred duty to those who are active on Findagrave. I am offended when I see a memorial posted by someone who has literally tens of thousands of memorials posted. It is what I would call obituary harvesting of newspapers and websites. Please—have a little self-control and allow someone close to the deceased person to have that privilege. Go forth into the cemeteries and do your harvesting there.

    • Many ppl are homebound and that’s how they contribute. Y’all are getting your knickers in a knot about the wrong thing. Ppl who refuse to transfer within guidelines is the issue.

  27. This change and more should have been in place from the beginning to protect basic human dignity and to respect families’ grief from grave robbers and vultures. Thank you, Ancestry.

  28. As a long time subscriber to Find A Grave, I was very dismayed to see that a man who is “head” of our old high school group, took it upon himself to put my former brother in law into a Find a Grave listing, and put the deceased person in the local cemetery where we grew up. The deceased is not buried there, in fact his ashes were scattered elsewhere, by his family. When I spoke to the man who listed the deceased as being buried where he was not, the man said he did that all the time for our old school mates. What? He is posting deceased people as being buried in a cemetery where they aren’t? How can that happen? He refused to remove the listing because he “did it all the time”. Makes me very, very angry.

  29. Most of the memorials I have created are for family members be they current or ancestors. I have created a few others with permission from the families as they are not involved with Find A Grave or Genealogy but happy that there is a permanent memorial out here. For the most part, I have not had issue with anyone refusing to transfer a memorial to me when I have asked. If the memorial is managed by another relative, be they distant or near, I don’t as a rule ask. I’m up in years and won’t be here forever and the younger generation I think should be stepping up to manage them. I have sent dozen’s of corrections to managers who clearly created memorials from obituary’s or headstones. I’ve even come across a headstone photo with a death date two years prior to the death certificate and obituary (??). But I agree with and respect the changes that Find A Grave has made. I appreciate this website and the help it has provided me in tracking down and connecting family.

  30. A few more issues or just unsettling things people do on Find a Grave.

    I find there are some people who like to post their very distant relationship to many of my relatives when they add a flower (ie Wife of brother-in-law of 4th cousin). I don’t know why they do this because I know they didn’t know my dad or my mother or others personally.

    I have stopped posting pictures on most of my memorials simply because people download the pictures (without asking permission) and I then find them posted on other sites. I told one guy that pictures are copyrighted to the person who took them and he told me that since they are on the internet, they are fair game. I have also had people download photos from the funeral home site (without permission) and nothing is more jarring to me than to see a picture of my son somewhere on the internet. If someone takes a picture for their own files, I will never know about it but when they just have to post it publicly, I insist it be removed.

    I manage memorials of 2 sons. One was a suicide 2 years ago and I would never post anything specific about his death. It’s no one’s business. Strangers seem to find entertainment in Find a Grave memorials which is why I posted my son’s memorial before the obit appeared in the local paper. He was my son in life and I wasn’t going to have a fight over his memorial after his death.

    I have personal situations with divorce and adoption in my family. Half sisters and very distant passive-aggressive relatives by marriage have created problems over ‘ownership’ of some of my closest family members. So, the memorials I post are very personal to me. They are my family, not just another memorial for a dead person.

    • When we start claiming “copyright” on pictures we’ve taken, it’s also important to note that even copyrights expire.

  31. I love Find A Grave. Many of my ancestors are buried in different states & I’ve not been able to see all their gravesites. This site has to given me much info to ad to our family tree. Thank you very much. Keep up the good work. Also, is it possible to request a picture of a gravestone that I don’t have?

  32. This was a long time coming. I think there is a special place in the afterworld for people who are selfish with the memorials of people they didn’t even know.

  33. I do Not like the ‘grave robbers’ name as it is extremely hurtful to good folks that mean to help, care and tell the deceased’s story. If errors, then make edits unless that is off limits to those who have done good research. I am one who sends edits on a long distance relative and I only do so with good research and sources. Many distant family have found me and I have found them by Find a Grave and I pray that this is not going to be a hurt to researchers. The numbers of memorials is in error and then they should turn over to family and the folks continue their wonderful story telling to benefit all deceased so they are not ever forgotten. Kindness and respect is two key words and we all can do this together. tml.

  34. After receiving the email with changes, I decided I would update my memorials. I’m not sure the number I edited, but the last one said I had exceeded the allowed number of niece/nephew category! What? My father was one of 17 children, there are a lot of us to fill the niece/nephew category and there are a lot of us to fill the aunt/uncle category! This is ridiculous!😡

    • I started updating my family as many others have done also, only to find out that I am not allowed to have all of my AUNTS/UNCLES. On my father’s side are 8 aunts/uncles and on my mother’s side is 12 AUNTS/UNCLES. I do manage most of them, but am not allowed to claim them. I agree!

  35. I understand that a reasonable policy is important, but this policy takes things too far. There are many people that add gravesite/memorial photo and info of the deceased to be helpful. Now by making it so complicated, fewer people will be willing to contribute information to the website. There are many families that would never think to post a memorial listing on Find a Grave of their loved one. You could have made this much simpler and amiable without complicating the whole thing. This is too bad.

  36. I have read a lot, but not all of the comments. There are some good points for delaying a posting of obituaries, but I think the net result will be fewer, good-hearted people will contribute to the Find a Grave database. Thus, some people may never find the connections to their relatives. To call contributors “grave robbers” is an insult. If newspapers and funeral homes publish obituaries for a fee (with relatives’ permission), what is the harm in sharing that with people who would not otherwise see them?

  37. I think this change is wonderful and I support it. I have always held the belief that a memorial is best with someone who has a relationship to the deceased and have always welcomed a transfer request.

  38. I am wondering about in-laws being considered close relatives, particularly for deceased fathers- and mothers-in-law. I maintain and manage memorials for my in-laws, yet it doesn’t seem quite right to select “child” for the close relative category.

    The guideline revision has been much needed and is appreciated. Hopefully people who tend to hoard memorials that have absolutely no relationship to them other than adding to their “count” will show more compassion when requests are made by others to manage a memorial. While most findagrave memorial managers will gladly transfer management, especially when the relationship is explained, some absolutely will not…and I have unfortunately had first-hand experience with that.

  39. I guess I’m from the old school and believe going to gravesite and taking picture of a memorial, requested or not, the grave site belongs to families. I personally believe I’m nothing more than a picture taker trying to help families who have lost a loved one in what ever way I can. I’ve taken over 3,000 pictures and added many miles to my car in this venture. If asked for a transfer, I only have two question: “Are you a family member or a close personal friend?” I have no way of knowing if the answer is truthful or not but that’s between the person asking for the transfer and their God. I always transfer if I can. I try to do timely updates when contacted to do so and ask if that person wants to control the memorial. If the answer is “yes”, I do it in a timely manner! I don’t understand the numbers thing ……. for what reason?

    After all that said I have a couple questions for the Find a Grave staff …

    Who controls memorials after the living person that created the memorial dies?

    Second questions: Why don’t you set up a party or group to escalate problems like these is to. You make the final decision on who should be the owner regardless of who “took the pictures” or set up the memorial! Family and close friends should be the answer in all cases.

    Finally, for those out there that do this for “numbers” and could care less about the feelings of the family, maybe you should do some soul searching on why you do this sort of work! Mel Doss

  40. My issue is with those who place incorrect info and refuse a family member with correct info to change it.

  41. I have to say many of these posts are disheartening and make me question my future volunteer work with Find a Grave. And I do view it as volunteer work.

    I have posted 16,000+ photos on memorials – most of whom I am not related to – so the families have them. I have fulfilled more than 600 photo requests. I have created almost 6,000 memorials from work with cemetery records and walking through cemeteries finding graves. I have identified family members who people never knew existed, many children who were not in public records, because I added a memorial for them and photos of their grave.

    This volunteer work takes time, and sometimes money, if you travel to cemeteries a distance from where you live, which is the norm in my rural state. I work in my state with an incredible group of contributors. They are not doing it for “numbers”. They are not “grave robbers”. They are volunteers who spend countless hours taking, editing and uploading photos. They spend hours researching genealogical information and updating bios and links. They do that work because they RESPECT the dead, and they want them ALL memorialized.

    Do I create memorials from obituaries? No, but I respect the time of the people who do that work. I appreciate that may be difficult to see for a grieving family, but I assume good intentions when that happens with memorials for my family and friends.

    Are memorials perfect? Of course not, that is what the edit function is for. If you want a transfer, ask nicely and provide your relationship information. I have never had one declined. If a contributor is not responding to or is denying your requests for edits or transfers, instead of passively whining about them, you should be reporting those contributors to Find a Grave.

  42. I learned to put my relatives up before the obituaries got published. One time it was already up when I went to do it anyway. The person got the information from the funeral home, but he was very nice and turned it over to me. Now as soon as I hear about a relative dying I put it up. My advice is don’t wait.

  43. I really don’t understand how posting an obit on Find A Grave differs from posting the obit in the newspaper, radio or even TV. It is out there for the public to see, even some of the death notices make the news. I say don’t discourage those that take on the responsibility of surveying cemeteries and trying to maintain it as current info solely for the purpose of helping others locate their loved ones.

    • It’s different because the FAMILY are posting the obit in the newspaper, radio and news, or someone who knew the deceased, or at least someone of authority in the community who has authorization if the person had no known relatives or friends.

      Just because it’s in the public view once in tv or paper doesn’t mean a random person seeing that has a right to post someone’s personal information (in this case, their obituary) on a online platform where it will be available at all times for as long as these servers exist, any more than anyone else has any right to dox a living person online, many times with the obits they do both, which should be cracked down on HARD because slipping the names of living people is actually illegal in a lot of places.

      Many of these Findagrave people are completely random strangers posting memorials, sometimes they create them for living people who simply pre-purchase their headstones or plots, many times before the family can even get home from the funeral, sometimes even before the funeral. That’s what happened to me with my grandmother’s memorial, the burial had just happened and there it was a newly created memorial. You can read about that on another of my comments.

      It would be one thing if they were doing this to gravesites and records that are years old, in fact that’s what they should be focusing on, it’s another taking away something from the newly deceased’s family. I agree that it feels like grave robbing.

      • Without these strangers most of the deceased are forgotten as soon as the family leaves the cemetery. And I walk a lot of cemeteries and see the graves with fake flowers that have been there for years and no marker on the grave. And it is not only the older people but infants also.

  44. This is a big step in the right direction. But why limited to grand? AS long as the person managing the memorial is not closer, why not mandate transfer to relative, for sure a person in a direct line. And any relation is better than none.

  45. I have a local “volunteer” who attaches low-quality duplicate photos to existing memorials, and photos of cemetery signs, roads and statuary until they finally reach the limit of allowable pictures. They create duplicate memorials and worse yet, memorials for people who aren’t dead yet! They don’t respond to requests from family to remove their photos or take down inappropriate memorials. They hijacked my parents’ and grandparents’ memorials and, like other comments here, I’ve been unsuccessful in getting the memorials restored to their original state. As a relative of a memorial I manage, I should be able to remove undesired postings.

  46. FindAGrave has had “contributors” to their website since the beginning. He has dominated my family memorials and refuses to hand over the memorials to my care. AND, he is NOT welcoming any emails, so you can’t contact him. The deceased are direct descendants to my family. I have posted Grave Markers with locations, and he has NOT. In fact, I had to update him when he got it wrong, and sent a letter to him in Utah.

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