New: Theory of Family Relativity™ — Confirm or Reject Theories

New: Theory of Family Relativity™ — Confirm or Reject Theories

We are happy to introduce the ability to confirm or reject a Theory of Family Relativity™ on MyHeritage. This functionality has been widely requested by our DNA users, and we are delighted to deliver it.

Ever since we first released the Theory of Family Relativity™, this feature was a game changer in genetic genealogy. It helps you make the most of your DNA Matches by incorporating genealogical information from all our collections of more than 13 billion historical records and family tree profiles to offer theories on how you and your DNA Matches might be related. If you are unfamiliar with this feature, you can read more about how the Theory of Family Relativity™ works and how to use it on the MyHeritage Knowledge Base. But until now, the ability to confirm or reject theories was missing.

New: Confirming or rejecting a theory

While the theories presented by MyHeritage are often accurate, they are occasionally incorrect. As mentioned above, theories are based on historical records and family tree data. There may be errors in the family trees contributed by other MyHeritage users, or in the historical records, and sometimes the technology used by MyHeritage to match them to each other makes a mistake, leading to an incorrect theory.

Previously, there was no way to confirm or reject a theory — each theory would be permanently displayed on the DNA Match whether you considered it accurate or not. There was no method to systematically review the theories and mark theories that you have already processed, so that new ones would be easy to notice. Now there is!

With the new functionality, you can now confirm the theory if you believe it to be true, or reject it if you believe it is incorrect. New theories will have a pending status when they are neither confirmed nor rejected. This can help you keep track of the theories that you have already reviewed and evaluated. Note that confirming correct theories is not enough on its own, and we encourage you to update your family tree to include new information conveyed in any theory you believe is correct (e.g., by adding individuals currently missing in your tree who are included in the theory).

Accessing your theories

To easily find your DNA Matches that have a theory, visit the DNA Matches page and use the filters to see only those DNA Matches that have a Theory of Family Relativity™, as shown below.

Using the filters to view DNA Matches with a theory (Click to zoom)

Using the filters to view DNA Matches with a theory (Click to zoom)

Whenever a theory is found for a DNA Match, this is indicated in the DNA Match card, as shown in the example above.

A theory can be confirmed or rejected in two places: the Review DNA Match page, which includes a summarized view of the theory, or the full theory view, both of which are explained below.

Summarized view of a theory

Click “Review DNA Match” in the DNA Match card to view a summary of the match. If a theory was found, it will be displayed near the top of the page. You’ll be asked whether this theory is correct, and you’ll be able to confirm or reject it.

Confirming or rejecting a theory from the summarized theory view in the Review DNA Match page (Click to zoom)

Confirming or rejecting a theory from the summarized theory view in the Review DNA Match page (Click to zoom)

Once you confirm a theory, this will be indicated at the top of the page. If you change your mind, you can undo the confirmation to revert its status to pending. When confirmed, you will see a message advising you to visit your tree and add new information to it manually based on the theory. For example, if the theory constructs a relationship path between you and your DNA Match that you believe to be correct, you can add any individuals appearing on this path to your family tree that are not already in it.

Full theory view

Click “View theory” on the DNA Match card or “View full theory” on the Review DNA Match page to access a more detailed view of the theory that shows which family trees and historical records were used to establish it.

Viewing a full theory from a DNA Match card (Click to zoom)

Viewing a full theory from a DNA Match card (Click to zoom)

Viewing a full theory from the Review DNA Match page (Click to zoom)

Viewing a full theory from the Review DNA Match page (Click to zoom)

The theory can be confirmed or rejected from the top of the full theory view.

Confirming or rejecting a theory from the full theory view (Click to zoom)

Confirming or rejecting a theory from the full theory view (Click to zoom)

Theories that were confirmed or rejected

In the list of DNA Matches, once you’ve confirmed a theory, it will be displayed in the DNA Match card as follows:

DNA Match with a confirmed theory (Click to zoom)

DNA Match with a confirmed theory (Click to zoom)

Whereas a rejected theory will be displayed like this:

DNA Match with a rejected theory (Click to zoom)

DNA Match with a rejected theory (Click to zoom)

If you change your mind, you can click “View theory” and then undo your confirmation or rejection, returning the theory to pending status.

Multiple theories for one DNA Match

Sometimes, our system finds multiple theories for the same DNA Match, in cases where we identify more than one way you may be related to that match.  In these situations, you can choose the one theory you believe is correct and reject the other ones. Alternatively, if your DNA Match is related to you in more than one way, you may confirm multiple theories.

For multiple theories, once you have confirmed at least one of them, you will see “confirmed” in the DNA Match card. If you have rejected one of the theories, the next one will move up the list and be displayed on the DNA Match page by default.

Who can use this?

Theory of Family Relativity™ is a premium feature that requires a site subscription on MyHeritage (Premium or PremiumPlus or Complete). Users who upload their raw DNA data from another testing service to MyHeritage and do not wish to purchase a subscription can pay a one-time fee of $29 per kit to unlock all advanced DNA features offered by MyHeritage, including Theory of Family Relativity™. Learn more about our subscription plans here. Users without a subscription will still see all theories that we found for them, but when they click to see the full theory details, some of the information will be hidden, and they will not be able to confirm or reject theories.

Bonus Feature: Filtering DNA Matches by Genetic Groups

In addition to the above, we also wanted to bring your attention to another recently launched feature. Since introducing Genetic Groups in late 2020, we have been working on further improvements — most recently, the capability to compare your Genetic Groups to those of your DNA Matches. Another new improvement that we’ve implemented in the DNA Match page, which was widely requested by our users, is the ability to filter DNA Matches by Genetic Groups.

The new filtering option allows you to see all of your DNA Matches belonging to a certain Genetic Group on one page and eliminates the need to scroll through your DNA Matches one by one to see their Genetic Groups. Filtering your DNA Matches allows you to make more sense out of your many matches and focus on the ones that interest you most. This can help you concentrate on the matches most likely to lead to your next exciting discovery in your family history research.

In addition to the previous DNA Match filtering options of tree details, relationship, location, and ethnicity, we now offer the option to filter by Genetic Group.

DNA Matches can be filtered by clicking “All Genetic Groups” and selecting one of the options from the drop-down menu. Use the search bar to locate a specific group among the 2,114 Genetic Groups currently available on MyHeritage.

Filtering DNA Matches by Genetic Groups (Click to zoom)

Filtering DNA Matches by Genetic Groups (Click to zoom)

You can also apply several filters concurrently, allowing you to, for example, filter your DNA Matches by Genetic Group and a specific location. If more than one filter is selected, they will be applied inclusively using AND logic. For example, you can filter your DNA Matches to see all the matches who have the Genetic Group “Finland (Jakobstad)” AND reside in the United States, as shown here:

Applying multiple filters on DNA Matches (Click to zoom)

Applying multiple filters on DNA Matches (Click to zoom)

Conclusion

The DNA database on MyHeritage has grown tremendously and as of today it has
5.1 million kits.

As we continue to add historical records to MyHeritage, and new family trees are added, our users continue to receive new Theories of Family Relativity™ that attempt to explain how they are related to some of their DNA Matches. The ability to confirm or reject any Theory of Family Relativity™ was requested by our users, and we’re happy to oblige them. This new functionality provides our users with the means to systematically review theories, mark their verdict on their correctness and ensure that new information is never missed.

Most DNA users on MyHeritage have thousands of DNA Matches. The ability to filter DNA Matches by Genetic Groups allows our users to drill down and focus on the matches that are relevant to their research or interest areas.

We hope you enjoy these new additions. Stay tuned, more good stuff is coming soon!

Comments

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  • Don

    July 6, 2021

    All well and good, but when will we get the long awaited ethnicity update?

    • Esther

      July 7, 2021

      Hi Don,

      We hope that we will have an update before the end of the year. Stay tuned!

  • M

    Marcy

    July 20, 2021

    Thank you so much for this added feature – there have been times that a relativity theory is not valid as it has linked similar names/dates but were actual matches.