Updated 05 June to include DNA-Explained post.
#Ancestry.com announced today in a blog post they are ending five services – Mundia.com, Genealogy.com, MyFamily.com, MyCanvas.com, and LegacyDNA (Y and mtDNA testing; autosomal DNA testing will still be available. I received e-mails from several of the sites letting me know of the changes.
The above link includes links to FAQs for each product/service, and here is the direct link for each site’s FAQs:
LegacyDNA FAQs (Y and mtDNA only)
The loss of LegacyDNA had been unofficially confirmed a while back when they made ordering new Y and mtDNA kits next to impossible to order. FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA) offers a reduced transfer rate for Y-DNA from Ancestry ($19 – $38, depending on how many markers were tested at Ancestry).
Not mentioned in the blog article was the removal of BillionGraves links. It was mentioned in Ancestry.com’s Facebook group when someone asked why the BillionGraves links on Ancestry were no longer working.
You can read some opinions and comments on the Ancestry.com blog post and add your own. You can also read some other bloggers’ opinions and comments.
SCGS is about to start their annual Jamboree so I expect more responses and blog posts during and after the Jamboree.
Your Genetic Genealogist (CeCe’s post focuses more on the loss of Y and mtDNA testing)
Genea-musing (Randy Seaver gives a short overview on what will and won’t be available after the change in September).
DNA-Explained (Roberta’s post focuses on the DNA side)
LegacyDNA – bad move as Y-DNA and mtDNA are valuable parts of any DNA testing and not offering them is a less than wise decision for any DNA testing company. In my opinion, one of Ancestry’s biggest mistakes on DNA testing was focusing solely on autosomal testing once it hit $99. Ancestry allowed you to order the Y and mtDNA tests, but did zero marketing to sell them and you had to hunt for the order links. Worse, Ancestry will be destroying those Y-DNA and mtDNA samples. Some of them are the only remaining samples from people who have died. They won’t even use them for their remaining autosomal test if the person had not been tested this way.
Currently, the primary reasonably priced testing for general Y and mtDNA testing is FTDNA. Yseq.net is a great alternative to FTDNA if you are testing specific Y-DNA SNPs (only $25/SNP through Father’s Day) or looking for Y-DNA STRs. If you can afford the $1,099 price tag, Full Genomes (FGC) offers a Comprehensive Y-DNA test. If you want basic Y and mtDNA haplogroups, you can get those as part of 23andMe’s autosomal test.
MyCanvas – never used it, but you can do some of these things through other alternatives which may or may not be less expensive. You can generate a book through later versions of Ancestry’s FamilyTreeMaker software.
Mundia.com - many people love it and enjoy having free access to trees on the site.
MyFamily.com – like the other items being discontinued, had great promise, but Ancestry did little to support them or make them thrive.
Genealogy.com – see MyFamily.com comment.
BillionGraves.com – silly to remove it from their databases. MyHeritage searches several graving websites including Find-A-Grave, BillionGraves, Interment.net and a few others. There is duplication in many cases, but each graving site has a large number of unique records not listed on the other sites. Find-A-Grave has removed memorials in the past – sometimes it is because a member was banned and other times members removed the memorials. After the Ancestry acquisition of Find-A-Grave, many members deleted their memorials from Find-A-Grave in protest. I haven’t seen numbers, but in one case, a person deleted over 30,000 memorials.
I switched to MyHeritage.com after not being able to use my paid subscription for over 3 1/2 months of my last subscription. Ancestry’s response to my inability to use Ancestry.com – tough cookies (paraphrased). Do I miss some of the things available behind Ancestry’s paywall? Yes, but if I can’t access them 99% of the time, why should I keep paying them money? It took another 4+ months before they fixed whatever issue was blocking access. It wasn’t only me, but a fair number of people and some still don’t have consistent access.