Wednesday, October 2, 2013 and Find A Grave has bought out Find A Grave.  Based on what I saw on Facebook over the last couple of days, you would have thought that this was on the scale of an invasion by a hostile country. 

The big controversy is whether or not Find A Grave will remain free.  Here is the official press release from and here is an excerpt from it:

“We will maintain Find A Grave as a free website, will retain its existing policies and mode of operation, and look forward to working with Jim Tipton and the entire Find A Grave team to accelerate the development of tools designed to make it even easier for the Find A Grave community to fulfill its original mission to capture every tombstone on Earth."

I think that statement is pretty clear.  I am not sure why people are panicking.  Could change its mind sometime down the road?  Sure, but I doubt they will.  They will still be making oodles of money.  Find A Grave is a very popular website. will be able to funnel some of the Find A Grave traffic into subscriptions and Family Tree Maker purchases. Either way, I don’t plan to get upset about it.   If things change maybe I will get upset then.

The good news is that has a lot of resources that Find A Grave does not so you will see some significant updates.  Here is what is telling us:

“ plans to bolster the resources dedicated to Find A Grave to launch a new mobile app, improve customer support, introduce an enhanced edit system for submitting updates to memorials, foreign-language support, and other site improvements.”

Sounds good to me!

Copyright © 2013 Michele Simmons Lewis


  1. Hi Michele,

    If I want to copy the FAG memorials that I manage to my blog, to my understanding that is not a copyright infringement since FAG's TOS state that I own anything that I upload? What if I want to include a picture of my family's headstone that was taken by another FAG member, how do I give them credit? If another FAG member created a memorial for my family that they transferred to my management, how do I cite the information?

  2. Here is a Find a Grave citation from my own file: "Find A Grave," digital images ( : accessed 05 Jan 2012), Marcus Pennington marker, Memorial #5193808, photograph by "Beverly"; Mount Moriah Methodist Church Cemetey, Matthews, Jefferson County, Georgia.

    You can see that I referenced the memorial number and the name of the person that took the photograph itself. If I want to use the actual photograph, I would have to ask "Beverly" for permission. I would then put a caption on the photo "Photo by Beverly, used with permission" (hopefully after I spoke with her I would have her last name!)

  3. I will be sure to follow your guidelines on the citations. Thanks and enjoy your new computer!