From: Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter
April 29, 2007
FreeOnAncestry.com Closed Down by Legal Threats
If you go to the web site FreeOnAncestry.com, you will find the following sad words:
The website "FreeOnAncestry.com" was forced offline by The Generations Network, the parent company of Ancestry.com.
FreeOnAncestry.com was originally built with the approval of the previous affiliate marketing staff of MyFamily.com, the same company before the name change to The Generations Network. They felt a site like FreeOnAncestry.com was a great way to create a positive image and branding to the genealogical community by highlighting the free tools and databases available to the public. It was a way to show genealogists that Ancestry.com was not just a big greedy cash cow that everyone seems to think it is, but a site that does in fact give back to the community.
But the new marketing staff didn't agree. They threatened us with legal action if we didn't take the site down. They claimed that the domain name, "freeonancestry.com" is a violation of their trademark, because it contains the word, "ancestry.com". AS IF they have rights to any and all domain names with the word "ancestry" in it.
So, we've taken the FreeOnAncestry.com site down, because The Generations Network is still the primary source of income on our flagship website, Interment.net. We can't afford to jeopardize that relationship. There just isn't another source of income that can provide us with the funds that Interment.net requires.
- Steve Johnson, Clear Digital Media, Inc.