MyHeritage Introduces Cross-Language Record Matches

This sounds like a game-changer to me. MyHeritage (the sponsor of this newsletter) has just introduced new technology that will be of interest to anyone whose ancestors spoke a language other than English, whether they were in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, or still back in “the old country.”

MyHeritage’s web site has long been available in 42 different languages and is the most popular genealogy website in most non-English speaking countries, as well as having millions of international users who built family trees found only on MyHeritage, exclusive global record collections, and unique technology for overcoming language barriers.

Today, the company announced a significant innovation: the already existing Global Name Translation Technology™ has been extended to apply to Record Matches as well. With this new addition, translated Record Matches are now calculated on an ongoing basis, and you’ll receive matches with historical records and family tree profiles in other languages. When you view them, the names will be conveniently spelled out using your own alphabet.

Keep in mind that this translates NAMES, not the entire record. As explained in the announcement below, this can be very useful when names are pronounced differently in various languages, such as the name Alexander which was spelled in the old country as Alejandro, Александр, Саша, or Sasha.

You can learn more, both in the announcement below and even more extensive information, complete with screenshots, is available in the MyHeritage Blog at

Individuals researching their heritage often face a language barrier when researching their ancestors who lived in another country. MyHeritage pioneered Global Name Translation Technology™ to help users overcome this barrier, by automatically translating names between languages. This unique capability, originally conceived by MyHeritage’s Founder and CEO, allows users to locate records that mention their ancestors in different and often unexpected languages (as well as in synonyms in each language). Initially, this was available in our search engine, SuperSearch™, and has now been extended to automatic Record Matches as well.

For example, if you search for an ancestor you know as Alexander, the algorithm may uncover a Spanish record where his name is listed as Alejandro (a Spanish version of Alexander), or a Russian record with the name written Александр in Cyrillic characters (the Russian way to write Alexander), or its common Russian nickname Саша (Sasha).

With this new addition, translated Record Matches are now calculated on an ongoing basis, and you’ll receive matches with historical records and family tree profiles in other languages. When you view them, the names will be conveniently spelled out using your own alphabet. You may already have noticed some records from other languages appearing in your matches.

This feature will help you easily locate records that would otherwise have been very difficult for you to find.

This unique technology is only available on MyHeritage and works hand in hand with our huge database of international records.

You can read more about and see examples of Cross-Language Record Matches on our blog, and see what some of our users have already begun saying about it.

Even more extensive information, complete with screenshots, is available in the MyHeritage Blog at


I’m sure this is great for a lot of people, but perhaps some work on their Theory of Family Relativity™ would be a wise venture! There appears to be no way of telling them that they have it wrong – which is going to lead a number of people down the ‘rabbit hole’ and they have done this with a couple of my lines, not just one!
How can we blame newcomers to genealogy when the ‘big fellows’ present them with such miss information.


I agree, like when they say “This Discovery can add 40 new people to your tree.” Just click. What a horrible idea.


    Barbara Curtindale June 3, 2020 at 5:37 pm

    I have the same situation the DNA is almost a non existent match, but the surname is the same, therefore they are related.. like NO. Let’s get real and do our best genealogy.


    Let me repeat something I have written before: A THEORY of Relativity is NOT a claim that you are related to this person. If you think the person(s) listed in the THEORY of Relativity is always a relative, you certainly will be disappointed.

    If you receive an email message from providing a new Theory of Relativity notice, keep in mind it is a THEORY, not a proven fact.

    In short, it says that the person listed in the email message MAY OR MAY NOT be a relative but the information found by the computers thinks it is interesting and the expectation is that you may be interested.

    In most cases, it is an indication of another family in the same area as where your ancestors lived, probably with the same surname, often with family members with first names that are the same or similar to the names of family members in your (proven) ancestral family, possibly with other matching information such as being the right age, perhaps having military service in the same army regiment, belonging to the same religion, or a possibly a number of other factors.

    In short, the computers are telling you “Here is something we found that looks interesting and MAY OR MAY NOT be a relative. However, we think you might be interested in looking at the information and deciding for yourself.” That is why it is called a THEORY.

    As always, you are expected to prove or disprove the potential match using old fashioned genealogy research techniques, if you are interested.

    In my case, fewer than 50% of the THEORIES I have received have turned out to be relatives but, of course, I had always expected that. I was never disappointed as the software seems to always work exactly as I expected.

    Even though fewer than 50% of the THEORIES have proven to be true, I am still delighted with the small number of THEORIES that turned out to be my relatives.

    In short, you have to set your expectations. The THEORY of Relativity email messages are telling you “This MAY OR MAY NOT be your relative but it looks like a POSSIBILITY. We thought you would want to check it out for yourself.” As long as that is your expectation, I suspect you will be very happy with a new THEORY of Relativity notice.

    No, computers will not provide miracles. But they often can provide clues.


Sorry Dick, you missed the point – when it is clear it is WRONG we have no way of telling My Heritage how off the wall it is to prevent the “computer” from giving that information to others OR to let them know they need to work on how they come up with some of this garbage.
It isn’t a possibility if they don’t have the years or the names right except for one name of the couple. Yes, likely, maybe, possibly related but not as they are presenting it – talk about misleading.
There is a saying “garbage in garbage out” they have reversed the process. I need to be able to say – “No, this is wrong”


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