Click here to access the GeneaNet website.
A major characteristic of this free service is that you can communicate with other researchers who are examining surnames that interest you. This feature can sometimes put you in contact with a researcher who has already carried out work that concerns you. In most cases, though, you come upon research results that simply don't ring a bell in any useful way.
As a registered user of GeneaNet, I made a request to be informed of all ongoing research concerning individuals named Skeffington. As soon as I receive an email from GeneaNet stating that one of their members has just uploaded Skeffington data into his family tree, I try to understand the circumstances in which this operation has been carried out. That's to say: Who are these researchers who appear to be interested in the Skeffington family? What is the exact nature of their uploaded data? Etc. Let me simply say that, in spite of countless emails indicating that dozens of GeneaNet member have inserted Skeffington data into their family trees, I have never yet found an iota of pertinent Skeffington information through this service. On the other hand, GeneaNet has helped me considerably concerning the history of former owners of my house at Gamone. So, I continue half-heartedly with the service.
The community of GeneaNet users appears to include researchers who are happy to get involved in what I would refer to as genealogy fiction. That's to say, their research starts out with serious facts, of the kind that we expect in a genealogical context, but they soon link their family tree to massive blocks of existing data whose authenticity is often nebulous, to say the least. Within these blocks of data, many of the individuals appear to be members of the nobility, but their credentials are open to doubt. Meanwhile, other individuals whose names appear in these blocks of remote "cousins" are personages from history and even from legends. A few days ago, for example, I was told that a French researcher had inserted the names of several 17th-century Skeffington individuals into his family tree. When I examined his tree, I was amazed to discover that it contained a gigantic horde of people stretching over more than a hundred generations. One of his alleged cousins was Attila the Hun.
A little earlier on, our well-connected Frenchman had also announced that he was related to Cleopatra and the pharaoh Ramses.