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TŠltos
04-07-2014, 03:54 AM
>:( http://www.semargl.me/en/dna/ydna/
Obviously due to this. http://dna-explained.com/

Personally I feel the Semargl site is useful and not malicious. Really in this day and age most people have to realize what they put out there on the internet is public. It is a double edge sword with technology, and these guys are filling a void that FTDNA could not. The hysterics in that blog for sensationalism is sad. Quite frankly I'm glad that my brother's results are included in the Ashkenazi Q1b at Semargl. The Haplogroup Q Project at FTDNA does not bother to list project members by individual SNPs. EDIT TO ADD-That project does not even list the project members by subclade in any reasonable viewing order to compare haplotypes, another reason Semargl was helpful. Really Q1bs listed then Q1as, then another subclade of Q1bs??? Too confusing for me to look at!

GTC
04-07-2014, 06:50 AM
Sad indeed. I agree that it was providing a service that FTDNA would never get around to doing, even if its always-in-a-muddle IT department could.

Palisto
04-07-2014, 08:25 AM
>:( http://www.semargl.me/en/dna/ydna/
Obviously due to this. http://dna-explained.com/
Really in this day and age most people have to realize what they put out there on the internet is public.

Sad to see that semargl site is closed down. I hate those people like the hypocritical blogger Roberta Estes of dna-explained.com: Wasting almost 5,000 words of BS just to say: "In my head the Cold War isn't over". BTW, she is doing the same as semargl, just not as quick as semargl, just not as good as semargl, just not for free
http://www.dnaxplain.com/shop/features.aspx



The only difference between cousin Johnny discovering that you descend from the same genealogy/genetic line based on your surname project at Family Tree DNA and Russian data miners harvesting the data is the order of magnitude, intention and methodology. As someone else has pointed out, not dissimilar from the difference between consensual sex and rape.
...
Let me share a parting thought from my husband, after he calmed down enough to speak coherently.

ďI feel unclean. I feel like Iíve been violated. My DNA has been kidnapped and Iíve been genetically raped. Itís wrong. Itís just wrong, in so many ways.Ē

SoÖ.you tell meÖ
Iím not telling you what I think. You decide for yourself. (http://dna-explained.com/2014/04/06/data-mining-and-screen-scraping-right-or-wrong/)



1. Everybody who joins a public DNA project should understand that the data are public. End of story.

2. Much, much worse: Everybody who joins a public FTDNA project should know that not only FTDNA employees but also volunteer administrators of FTDNA projects with unknown background and unknown history have access to private information of all project participants including name, postal address, phone number, and email address.

BTW, the blogger Roberta Estes of dna-explained.com is such an administrator and thus, she has access to private data of thousands of project members.



Roberta manages over 20 surname projects and is the founder of the Lost Colony DNA research projects. Her regional Cumberland Gap Yline and mitochondrial DNA projects have several thousand participants. She also co-administers several Native American and African DNA projects and serves in an advisory capacity for the Melungeon project and other groups.

GTC
04-07-2014, 10:09 AM
On reflection, I don't know why the owners felt compelled to shut down the site because Ms Estes doesn't like it. Borrowing from the Duke of Wellington I say publish and be damned!

lgmayka
04-07-2014, 10:33 AM
The blog post has many debatable points, but I will initially address the one most obvious to me.

I am not a lawyer and I do not mean to give legal advice, but according to my understanding...

Copyright law does extend to Russia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_copyright_relations_of_Russia) through the Berne Convention. However, a copyright does not cover a fact, idea, or principle (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Idea%E2%80%93expression_divide), only the expression of it.

The STR counts associated with a kit number are facts. They cannot be copyrighted, although their stylistic formatting on a page can.

One could argue that the specific order in which the STR counts are listed is copyrightable; but probably not--according to the "merger doctrine" (and the similar "functionality doctrine (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Functionality_doctrine)" of trademark law)--if one order is much more useful than others. If one company and its ordering dominate the market, that company may have great legal difficulty insisting that everyone else must use a different (i.e., nonstandard) order--in fact, such insistence may be an antitrust violation.

The bottom line is that FTDNA must certainly have one or more staff lawyers. If they seriously believe that a web site infringes on their copyright, they are free to take any action required, ranging from a private warning to a public announcement to a lawsuit. I do not know of FTDNA taking any such action with respect to the discussed site.

CelticGerman
04-07-2014, 10:44 AM
On reflection, I don't know why the owners felt compelled to shut down the site because Ms Estes doesn't like it. Borrowing from the Duke of Wellington I say publish and be damned!

Nothing against the work of semargl as such. In principle every additional analysis of our data is welcome. However, I would be grateful being asked before. If we give our DNA to FTDNA or other companies, this does not imply aggreement for each and every third party to use it as well. Probably I would give this aggreement. But, I would like to have an explanation before, who this semargl is. Palisto, it's not very useful, in my opinion, to insult other people. There is an issue concerning (DNA)-data protection and it must be addressed. I am sure there is a way for semargl to continue his/her work.

leonardo
04-07-2014, 11:09 AM
What a shame. A great tool has been lost and the clock on y-dna research has just turned back.

leonardo
04-07-2014, 11:17 AM
Nothing against the work of semargl as such. In principle every additional analysis of our data is welcome. However, I would be grateful being asked before. If we give our DNA to FTDNA or other companies, this does not imply aggreement for each and every third party to use it as well. Probably I would give this aggreement. But, I would like to have an explanation before, who this semargl is. Palisto, it's not very useful, in my opinion, to insult other people. There is an issue concerning (DNA)-data protection and it must be addressed. I am sure there is a way for semargl to continue his/her work.

And how many people would reply to an email asking if their dna can be transferred from FTDNA's public site to his (gasp) Russian site? Most people likely would not respond. Semargl's site lists the same STR markers, in the same format, as FTDNA. How is there even a question about data protection? Your data is already out there. By the way, a Google search will get me the same results, and then some. As far as I am concerned, when you join a project you make your data public. I can go on FTDNA's website and access every single project and see the same information that semargl offered, only he did it in a more organized, and thus informative fashion.

Muircheartaigh
04-07-2014, 11:18 AM
She says she has known about the site for more than a year yet waits until her husbands tirade before blogging. Will the yahoo groups be next in her firing line?

leonardo
04-07-2014, 11:28 AM
She says she has known about the site for more than a year yet waits until her husbands tirade before blogging. Will the yahoo groups be next in her firing line?

There are others who access this information too. I won't say, but do a Google search with your FTDNA id number and you will see the results. There is nothing nefarious going on here. It is a simple transfer of the same data listed on FTDNA's public project sites. If one doesn't want their STR markers listed, then don't join a project. All this information is accessible on FTDNA by the way. And you don't need to be a member. Just do a Google search and they show because they are public.

Mehrdad
04-07-2014, 01:37 PM
The question is, when has Russia ever followed through with copyright laws? Something doesn't add up at the moment.

Edit: The company I work for has had a lot issues with our software being pirated in Russia, they only render lip service of following up but they never do.

Clinton P
04-07-2014, 01:46 PM
I note that Roberta Estes' company 'DNAeXplain' charges $349.00 for 'Personal DNA Analysis - Male', and that....


In 2009, DNAeXplain and Family Tree DNA teamed to jointly offer Personalized DNA Reports for customers.

This wouldn't be an attempt to eliminate the competition, would it? ;)

Just me being cynical.

Clinton P

lgmayka
04-07-2014, 02:27 PM
However, a copyright does not cover a fact, idea, or principle (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Idea%E2%80%93expression_divide), only the expression of it.

The STR counts associated with a kit number are facts. They cannot be copyrighted, although their stylistic formatting on a page can.
If we ignore the blog post's wild emotional exaggeration ("rape," "slavery," "genocidal," etc.), Ms. Estes makes one serious accusation, that of copyright violation. If my amateur analysis is correct, that accusation is false. A false accusation in a serious legal matter could be construed as libel. I must then ask:

- Did Ms. Estes' lawyer approve her blog post before publication?

- Ms. Estes is not only an FTDNA project administrator; she has a cozy contractual relationship with FTDNA. Did FTDNA's lawyer approve her blog post before publication?

Mehrdad
04-07-2014, 02:54 PM
If we ignore the blog post's wild emotional exaggeration ("rape," "slavery," "genocidal," etc.), Ms. Estes makes one serious accusation, that of copyright violation. If my amateur analysis is correct, that accusation is false. A false accusation in a serious legal matter could be construed as libel. I must then ask:

- Did Ms. Estes' lawyer approve her blog post before publication?

- Ms. Estes is not only an FTDNA project administrator; she has a cozy contractual relationship with FTDNA. Did FTDNA's lawyer approve her blog post before publication?

It looks as if she is trying to monopolize it and make money out of it instead of the greater good for science. Which in my opinion is just based on greed. I'm pretty irate about what happened to be honest.

leonardo
04-07-2014, 03:30 PM
I note that Roberta Estes' company 'DNAeXplain' charges $349.00 for 'Personal DNA Analysis - Male', and that....



This wouldn't be an attempt to eliminate the competition, would it? ;)

Just me being cynical.

Clinton P

A cynical person could question the blogger's motive. By the way, comments on her site for this topic are now closed. I made one and attempted to reply to two others. My one reply, in response to a post that wished ill upon the Semargl team, was not posted for some reason, even though it merely stated how awful it is to make such a comment upon people the poster neither knows, nor their intentions. Seems odd that this would be censored but not the original comment. There is a poll as well, running about 52% to 39 % in favor of what Semargl provides. Perhaps the blogger did not anticipate so much opposition to her opinion.

razyn
04-07-2014, 03:46 PM
This week's episode of Cosmos, which airs again tonight, has a segment about five minutes before the end in which the host (Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson) makes a nice statement about scientific research advancing when people realize that if scientific knowledge is about us all, it belongs to us all.* The context of the remark was the story of Fraunhofer's research into the properties of optical glass, knowledge of which was held as a state secret by the Bavarian government for over a century (and that held up a lot of other people's ability to do research).

Here's a little synopsis, if you care to watch the episode and listen for Tyson's statement (which is not quoted in this summary):


Applications of Spectra

After the commercial, we are back at the Abbey with Tyson looking again through the telescope and through the prism. He tells us Joseph Fraunhofer brought the stars much closer to us. When he was only 39, he fell ill, possibly from the exposure to the toxic chemicals in the mirror factory. As he was dying, the government of Bavaria had to get all of his secrets of optical glass. This type of top secret information could only be entrusted to the director of the mint. The director wrote down all of what Fraunhofer dictated until he died. The state kept those secrets for another hundred years.

Luckily, Fraunhofer had already published everything he knew about the spectral lines he had discovered. He knew that science needed to have open lines of communication in order to grow.

Source for that: http://evolution.about.com/od/Cosmos/fl/Cosmos-A-Spacetime-Odyssey-Recap-Episode-105_2.htm

*In edit, I think this is what he said: "He knew that to advance scientific knowledge requires cooperation; that our understanding of nature belongs to the world."

Ann Turner
04-07-2014, 03:48 PM
A cynical person could question the blogger's motive. By the way, comments on her site for this topic are now closed. I made one and attempted to reply to two others. My one reply. In response to a post that wished ill upon the Semargl team, was not posted for some reason, even though it merely stated how awful it is to make such a comment upon people the poster neither knows, nor their intentions. Seems odd that this would be censored but not the original comment. There is a poll as well, running about 52% to 39 % in favor of what Semargl provides. Perhaps the blogger did not anticipate so much opposition to her opinion.
I too am distressed by this chain of events, but to be absolutely even-handed here, I don't believe Roberta is motivated by money. Her custom reports are extremely labor-intensive, and they are not always available for purchase if she has a backlog. There's no button to click to order one from the FTDNA site right now.

I have mixed feelings about encouraging people to vote in the poll, since they would have to wade through the blog in order to vote in favor of Semargl.

vettor
04-07-2014, 06:21 PM
In regards to what Semargl provide, well I know for a fact that while I had only tested for 37 markers, my results never appeared there for years, as soon as I upgraded to 67 marker, it appears. On writing to Semargl, they stated there site only has 67 markers or above on it. ..............How handy is this really for us!

And on ethics of Semargl, do we not live with other companies onselling our results to other companies for medical purposes!

leonardo
04-07-2014, 06:33 PM
In regards to what Semargl provide, well I know for a fact that while I had only tested for 37 markers, my results never appeared there for years, as soon as I upgraded to 67 marker, it appears. On writing to Semargl, they stated there site only has 67 markers or above on it. ..............How handy is this really !

Very handy for those with 67 or more markers. It has been most helpful to me.

GTC
04-08-2014, 01:45 AM
Reportedly from the ISOGG Facebook group (though I have not found it myself):


Statement from the Director of ISOGG, Katherine Borges:
I've corresponded with Family Tree DNA President, Bennett Greenspan about the semargl.me website issue and he said that FTDNA was not a party to the blog posting nor did they ask the semargl.me to stop scraping FTDNA's website even though the scraping does eat bandwidth and bogs down the company's web site and can lengthen server responsiveness.

As the Director of the International Society of Genetic Genealogy, I'd like to ask that Vladimir Semargl restore the semargl.me website and I also ask that the YFull website be restored if its still offline. We need to open the lines of communication between the companies, the customers, and the third-party websites to work together for the benefit of the genetic genealogy community to get these issues resolved.

Rathna
04-08-2014, 02:38 AM
I wrote this letter to the site of Roberta Estes, who of course didn't publish it:

Gioiello Tognoni on April 7, 2014 at 8:58 am said:
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

And how do you name the gift of mtDNA clones from FTDNA to Behar for his reassessment? You could say that each of us gave his/her consent, but what to think about the fact that Behar says that he (and his team) sequenced those clones again in Israel? Do you believe to that? Isn’t it that he did his research with data (FMS) paid from each of us? Why not to say it?
And wouldn’t anything be if those researches would be right. Often they have their agenda, and researches like that of Semargl and others permit that the point of view isn’t only one.
Why does FTDNA insist to use the SNP L150 for unifying two haplogroups (R-M269* and R-L23*) which are completely different, causing a mistake also to the Morley’s tree?
Reply ↓
-------------------------
P.S. We have used for testing both FTDNA and other companies, as we hope to do also in the future. Hope that in this new spirit all the contributes, of Semargl but of us all, are taken only as the simple research of the truth of the facts, in a free and open confrontation of hypotheses, but which, like always in the science, must find objective and shared proofs.

TŠltos
04-08-2014, 03:48 AM
Reportedly from the ISOGG Facebook group (though I have not found it myself): Statement from the Director of ISOGG, Katherine Borges:
I've corresponded with Family Tree DNA President, Bennett Greenspan about the semargl.me website issue and he said that FTDNA was not a party to the blog posting nor did they ask the semargl.me to stop scraping FTDNA's website even though the scraping does eat bandwidth and bogs down the company's web site and can lengthen server responsiveness.

As the Director of the International Society of Genetic Genealogy, I'd like to ask that Vladimir Semargl restore the semargl.me website and I also ask that the YFull website be restored if its still offline. We need to open the lines of communication between the companies, the customers, and the third-party websites to work together for the benefit of the genetic genealogy community to get these issues resolved.
Thanks GTC for posting. I hope that Semargl goes online again soon.

Lots of great points made in this thread about how helpful the Semargl website is, even to FTDNA itself to encourage upgrade to 111 markers. That site is for everyone, the creator of it and anyone involved are hobbyists. They do what they do for the love and passion of genetic genealogy. And that benefits everyone.

Roberta Estes should apologize to Semargl and the Russian people in general for her offensive blog. Any concerns that she had, she could have addressed in a more tactful manner.

leonardo
04-08-2014, 10:39 AM
It appears semargl.me is back on line. Our voices were heard!

Шад
04-08-2014, 11:34 AM
Statement from the Director of ISOGG, Katherine Borges:
I've corresponded with Family Tree DNA President, Bennett Greenspan about the semargl.me website issue and he said that FTDNA was not a party to the blog posting nor did they ask the semargl.me to stop scraping FTDNA's website even though the scraping does eat bandwidth and bogs down the company's web site and can lengthen server responsiveness.

As the Director of the International Society of Genetic Genealogy, I'd like to ask that Vladimir Semargl restore the semargl.me website and I also ask that the YFull website be restored if its still offline. We need to open the lines of communication between the companies, the customers, and the third-party websites to work together for the benefit of the genetic genealogy community to get these issues resolved.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/yfullcom/permalink/292242370934308/?comment_id=292349164256962&offset=0&total_comments=21

Thanks to everyone who supported Semargl!
Thanks to Katherine Borges!

LUKE33
04-08-2014, 04:28 PM
Yes, good to see the site up again. ::thumb:

TŠltos
04-09-2014, 04:12 AM
https://www.facebook.com/groups/yfullcom/permalink/292242370934308/?comment_id=292349164256962&offset=0&total_comments=21

Thanks to everyone who supported Semargl!
Thanks to Katherine Borges!
Excellent! :) Carry on with the good work in Russia!

delegz
09-04-2015, 04:03 AM
The Semargl site has been down for about a week. Does this happen from time to time? I only discovered the site about three weeks ago.