Tulsa, Oklahoma
Not resolved
29 comments

Within the last month I found my sister's obituary on Find a Grave, word for word how my family and I prepared it. It was submitted by someone we do not know, nor were we approached for permission.

At first I was really concerned about their failure to ask permission since my sister was cremated and we are still unable to carry out her wishes for her ashes. It is interesting that we have the ashes of her first husband and those of her beloved pit bull, Snookie. As I thought about it, I decided it was a good thing so I uploaded two pictures of her that seem to display her essence,one she never lost. I also added a photo of an Ichiban plant.

Her last summer, 2011, she talked me into planting a vegetable and herb garden. She wanted the Ichiban, or Japanese Egglplant. It was one of the few vegetables we actually realized during the HOTTEST summer Tulsa had in many decades. But she didn't live to see it or the Sunflowers (her favorite)I secretly planted right in front of the house.

This is the third year I have pretended to start a garden, but something strange happened. Nothing is dying. No shriveling, dry plants that blow away in the wind. As I sit outside surrounded by a dozen fully laden tomato plants, tons of zucchini, half a dozen peppers of different varieties and beautiful sweet smelling herbs.

My sister, who had two green thumbs would love this. So I thought I would remember my sister and our gardening experience just before she died. When I clicked the link to upload the comment, I ended up with a message telling me that something in my message was flagged as needing personal attention before it is published but that it usually only takes 24 hours. Seven days later my comments were still not there.

On my own sister's memorial page, I could not comment. The woman, Okiebran, who published the memorial, the one my family and I wrote, does not allow messages so I had no way to contact her to ask what the problem is. I emailed the appropriate people. Still no answer.

I tried to register with the forum so I could ask other users for help. Although I was able to register, I never received the email with the necessary verification link. Not after the half a dozen times I registered over 72 hours. So I sent another email.

Nothing. Then I decided I would simply add my complaints to the family pages of those listed on the Find a Grave contributors. I left a plethora of lengthy complaints about the fact that a complete stranger can shanghai my writing and then administrators who have no accountability can prevent me from posting a comment to my own sister's memorial. I also suggested that while my older sister, the attorney, could take over my attempts to contact them, I could be contacting their web host and ancestory.com.

who advertises on their pages. I told them I wanted her memorial removed immediately. And it has been.

So my suggestion to those as unhappy with Find a Grave, post on their public message pages and on their family memorial pages.

In a matter of hours, my sister's memorial was removed.

Now I am going to attempt to release the anger their careless disregard created and go back out to my sister's real memorial. The lush, verdant produce in her front yard.

Product or Service Mentioned: Find A Grave Forum.

Do You Have Something To Say ?
Write a review

Comments

You will be automatically registered on our site. Username and password will be sent to you via email.
Post Comment
Anonymous
#915598

I'd like to hold my hand out and tell all the whiners about Findagrave to just 'cry me a handful'!!! True, Findagrave is not what it started out to be and have changed their rules but if you don't like it, then SUCK it up and move on.

Good gosh, I never heard or saw so many whiners when they don't get their way. And for calling people names, SHAME on YOU!

Anonymous
#915756
@Neither pro or ***

I did move on. But before I did so I attempted to determine if the folks at Find a Grave were going to honor the agreement we all sign when we register to use the website.

They hold all the power because once anyone posts/publishes info to their website we find that the administrators of said site have gone to other interests, abdicating any of the responsibilities promised in the agreement we all approve when we register. So forgive us if we fought to make it what they, the owners of the site, promised it would be. Forgive us if we do not easily walk away from a site where we assumed our beloved family members no longer walking amongst us would be honored. Find a Grave made certain assurances and then defaulted in a huge way.

So the majority of us have walked away.

Unfortunately your title "neither pro nor ***" demonstrate you have chosen a side. That is fine, just own it.

Anonymous
#1433946
@Neither pro or ***

It's rude to take over the memorials of people who recently died and with whom you have nothing to do with while being a poor administrator of it. You seem defensive, or like you're taking this personally. Sad you're so ugly.

Anonymous
#845473

I wasn't aware of Find A Grave until the tragic loss of our 17 yr. old son.

We personally appreciated it. OkieBran added him and I have had no way to thank her. Very nice to have the information there for family and friends.

Please keep up the good work. Many Thanks...Kerns Family.

Anonymous
#845825
@Kerns Family

My sympathies in the loss of your son. I cannot even imagine how painful that must be to lose a child who so much of his life still ahead.

However, most funeral homes post obituaries online allowing friends and family to post remembrances, comments and even photos which is sort of like an electronic wake. Find a Grave offers no oversight. Okie bran, by refusing to allow personal contact or at the very least contact through the web site, can act with impunity. The fact that she is allowed to post whatever she likes, with impunity is offensive.

The ultimate infringement is the failure of the staff for Find a Grave to respond to those of do have a problem.

I am happy you found some comfort in what this person does, but if you notice the majority of people responding to my original complaint do not feel the same.

Again, my thoughts are with you. Allow yourselves time to grieve. In the western part of so-called-civilization, we think life must resume as normal as soon after the funeral as possible.

But in other cultures any mourning taking less than five years is disrespectful. All the best.

Jan tickbait

Anonymous
#782961

Okiebran is a troll.....will never transfer..okiebran uses the newspaper obits to grab every death. It matters not if it is a son, daughter or spouse that Okiebran will never transfer....Findagrave likes all the memorials being added because they make their money from advertisements on each page!

Just make a duplicate and list as your duplicates, that is the only way you can add or delete anything on a memorial.

Anonymous
#917300
@Mm

I have tried to get the person who took it upon herself to put my family's memorials on Find A Grave.

I tried to do a duplicate, but it was not honored. The additional and CORRECT information I provided the administrator was not used and there are still errors on the memorial.

None of the additional bio information was added as I requested. How do you get an administrator, who is not related and does not have all the information, taken off the memorial?

Anonymous
#747851

I had the same experience with OkieBran . OkieBran somehow got a memorial page I created changed to their name without my permission

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=21643264

OakieBrad has messages and email disabled and I contacted find a grave support and received no replies.

can somebody put me into contact with okiebrad or find a grave corporate?

originally okiebran had link thanking me for creating bio eetc photos but since I wrote to complain that too has been removed. okiebran seems to be big on retaliation

Anonymous
#714926

You post an obit in a public newspaper then get angry when someone copies it to a memorial site? Do you see the nasty webpages that just copy obits after obits? Those sites are crawling with malware but you complain when the date of birth, death and place of burial is publicly entered into an obit than joined with a photo of the headstone on a site dedicated to memorials not putting viruses on your computer.

Anonymous
#821420
@PublicObitNotPublicWhat

It's called copyright and okiebran violated copyright by posting it without permission. Contrary to some views, you can't simply cite something and post it.

You need permission from the copyright holder to use their obits, photos, etc. A few irresponsible people claim fair use, but Findagrave and Ancestry don't fall under the fair use exception as they are both for-profit organizations.

Anonymous
#698704

They did not pick my sister out of millions and billions of people. This person (why are the contributors allowed to hide behind nicknames refusing to allow family members to even contact them through the Find a Grave site?) lifts ALL obits from the newspapers everyday and then reprints them word for word at Find a Grave.

I did not become defensive until I was not allowed to post a comment about my own sister while a stranger was allowed to completely plagiarize my writing and do so with no accountability. When I attempted to write a brief memorial about my own sister, my comment was blocked. My REPEATED efforts to find out why were ignored. You think that is defensive?

I am not suggesting they are posting obits and grave pictures of strangers to make others angry.

I doubt there is any specific concern about the family at all. It appears to be more about self-aggrandizement rather than charitable efforts to memorialize strangers. And you do not respond to the very standards set out by the Find a Grave founder, that all contributors have the permission of the family before proceeding. What a champ you are to defend the anonymous losers stealing thoughts about strangers and criticizing me for wanting to protect how my sister is remembered!

Why should strangers be shown more consideration than the actual family members?

Oh, and rather than jump to conclusions, you want me to ask why these people uploaded information about my sister. I DID! Why don't you read my actual complaint. I repeatedly asked why, but since people are allowed to post obits and grave information without identifying themselves I can't speak to them personally.

Isn't that a twist?

I, the relative, can't post but a complete stranger can steal my words and feelings about my sister and post them wherever he or she chooses. You seem quite offended...perhaps you are one of these people who secretly submits information about people you do not know and are feeling a little miffed that we do not want you to assume so much about our family.

Anonymous
#698428

I think all this was a big misunderstanding. I know most of the find of grave people are out of work ( retired) and trying to do something nice for people who are looking for lost loved ones and more into who they are.

Or for people like me who was just a kid when her dad, grandpa, and aunt died so it is a way for me to actually see the grave site without actually being there. I live on the other side of the United States and I am not able to get to where their graves are to see them. We and since it was in the public newspaper it is now public. so anybody can go through the archives and post what they feel is interesting to them.

And maybe you should have taking it as a compliment instead of someone doing something dirty behind you and your family backs. It is all in how we look at things and if that would of been my sister I would of handled it differently. Why did they put it up there ? I don't know but the fact they pic your sister out of millions and billions that says to me maybe they felt bad that her life way taking and cut short.

I don't know how old your sister was but you have to remember people out live other people so even if your sister was 60 when she died there is somebody who lives to their 80 and they probably just wanted it because they had a something place in their heart for her. The fact that others are there to see it and know her and maybe send her a smile and a cry over her to let her know that somebody else who didn't even know her is thinking about her and sorry that her life was ended for what ever reason. But hey the way to go here in the world is start cussing because it is mine and you had no right. And to be as nasty as possible.

Instead of trying to put the shoe on the other person's foot and figure ( ask) why they posted your sister's stuff on their page. A little compassion goes a long way before you get all defensive and start going off the deep end. Well you got it taken care of so nobody but your family will ever know who she was. So I am glad you got your problem fixed.

Just next time try to be a little more understanding to people who are trying to do good things by posted pics of grave sites for people who can't get their to see them in person. And for them to post as many as they have..... all over the world this didn't start off just by making you mad because they put a family member on it and didn't get your permission. Did you ask your other family members if they gave their permission?

That is how people find relives they never knew about.....right along with Ancestry dot com. And then for you to go on another site and be disrespectful to that family is just tasteless and classless on your part but some people will do what they want to get their way. Instead of waiting patiently and do the right thing you had to bow down less than find a grave to get your point across.

:roll..... :cry :upset :grin I will pray for you :)

Anonymous
#1433948
@Allheart

You're stupid. I thought you were nice and stupid until your last paragraph, then I realized you are just stupid.

Stop *** around with strangers' recently deceased family members in your retirement and find your own things to do that doesn't subject your arrogant stupidity on others.

Maybe you could try learning the basic grammar and spelling of what one would presume is supposed to be your own native language. Or maybe you could learn to read the post you're responding to before spreading your fecal matter on the screen like a monkey or a dotard.

Anonymous
#693777

Iron Horse, technically anything posted in the press is copyrighted material, call your local newspaper if you don't believe it to be true. Even the f.a.g.

it website states not to post copyrighted material including obituaries, which are written by family and submitted to newspapers.

Here are a couple of definitions to helps you...Plagiarism:an act or instance of using or closely imitating the language and thoughts of another author without authorization and the representation of that author's work as one's own, as by not crediting the original author. Copyrights:the exclusive right to make copies, license, and otherwise exploit a literary, musical, or artistic work, whether printed, audio, video, etc.: works granted such right by law on or after January 1, 1978, are protected for the lifetime of the author or creator and for a period of 50 years after his or her death.

Anonymous
#821423
@Anonymous

It's 70 years after death in the U.S.

The admins are best buds with many of the worst offenders so don't expect relief from them.

Maybe once Ancestry gets sued for a ton of money for the numerous copyright violations by admins or cyberbullying, then the admins will get the axe.

Surprised Ancestry was unwise enough to buy Findagrave with all the known copyright violations added by admins. That's a blatant violation very few judges would ignore.

Anonymous
#671199

So sorry for you unnecessary stress. I had a hard time believing the website was legal, so I googled 'complaints'.

I am in a similar situation myself, and it's stress that's not needed.

People are just weird. I just don't get it.

Anonymous
#667991

First I am sorry for your loss. There is no defense for what the Find A Grave contributor did.

It is against site guidelines. What you could have done that would have been much more appropriate was to go to the site's FAQs or Help With Find A Grave and get the administrators' contact information there. Apparently, whatever was flagged for review in the comments was deemed abusive and was refused.

Posting nasty items to other memorials is even lower class than someone posting an obituary with out asking. It was not intended to be mean, but a respectful memorial to your sister.

tickbait
#668063
@P***in' Through

Thank-you, Passin' Through for your kind words. I did read the FAQs and sent emails to the staff members whose purview I thought my question would fall under.

More than two weeks I waited, sending out more emails to staff members. I wanted to know what could have been so wrong in my simple rememberance of my sister that would have flagged their attention. As I watch my crops grow, I think of my sister so often and how thrilled (and maybe slightly jealous) she would be to see me in charge of plants that are not only not dying, but thriving and setting fruit and vegetables. That was all I talked about and that I missed I could not share that with her or our Grandfather.

After two weeks I became angry that a complete stanger could hijack our words about our sister and post them but that I could not. I was able to upoad a few pictures of her with no problem but not my farming comments. I did not use abusive language, not in a comment about my younger sister. I find it interesting that your main defense is for Find a Grave and not for their failute to act.

In fact their own rules posted for anyone to read, as I did, state that volunteers who upload information or pictures about gravesites or memorials must confirm they have permission of the family to do so. And yet they allow contributors to refuse messages from anyone attempting to see who is behind the posting. Then when I attempted to contact those in charge of the entire sight, I was ignored by one and all. Have you read the other complaints posted here about Find a Grave?

My experience is not unique. The contributors have some sort of ghoulish contest to see who can post the most graves, memorials and cremations. The woman who posted my sister's obit did so the day after it was published in the Tulsa World. In that obit, I left my phone number and email address for anyone that wanted to reach me about her memorial.

Did Okiebran contact me and ask me for permission to use my text on a web site that would be viewed by strangers? If it was meant to be a respectful memorial of my sister, should not we, her family have been contacted? I am groubled by your use of the word "apparently" when you have no idea, until I have explained here in detail what my comments were about my sister. I did not post nasty items to other memorials, I posted one or two on memorials hosted by staff members saying that I envied that they were able to post comments about their family but I could not.

My strongly worded posts were public posts on individual staff message boards. Have all the information before you write suggestions to me assuming I am a half-wit who simply got mad over a little thing. I contacted every single staff member by email over a two week period. I check my spam folder diligently to be sure something from Find a Grave got lost.

They did not respond once to me. They did not respong directly after I began posting on the public staff pages. No apology, no "oops". No suggestion they could handle matters differently.

People whose motives and intentions are sincere and respectful do not show such disdain toward the surviving family of one of their subjects. Are you on the staff? Because your chastisment smacks of someone who is on the staff trying to defend their actions or one who is ignorant of exactly what I experienced. There is no accountability set up at Find a Grave.

Actually, that is not exactly correct.

Their rules, as I quoted above, do outline what they expect from contributors. Unfortunately, they do not enforce those rules so they mean nothing.

Anonymous
#680773
@tickbait

I share your frustration. I've been loosely looking into the impact that complaints by the public on social media sites has had or might have on companies, politicians, etc.

Seems the PR people and articles I have read or agree that it would behoove these folks to respond, even if it's just a note saying they received the complaint and an apology. Of course, even better would be a "we're looking into it." Silence is deafening and leads to anger and more complaints, but most seem to think ignoring complaints is the answer. My biggest gripe with *** is their *** rule about what relationships can be transferred! I asked for a transfer of my great-grandmother, my great-uncle and several cousins from a complete stranger, whom, it turned out had disabled all avenues for contact.

I wrote *** who immediately transferred my gr. grandmother, but not the other family members as they did not fit the "relationship rule." Ridiculous.

Anonymous
#680775
@La

I don't know why there are asterisks in my posts above as I did not post anything offensive. Unless it's the Find-A-Grave abbreviation I used.

Ooops.

I don't even know what I said before the word rule that would be controversial. Oh well, just wanted readers to know I did not write anything "bad." LOL