The fiscal cliff a little more concerning than an accurate Place Names Authority (PNA).
A place in my view is either:
i. A place approved and gazetted given validity (legitimacy) by the relevant government authority,
ii. A place that did exist in times past but does so no longer for a number of reasons; it was renamed, it became a ghost town, etc., and was removed from the official record by the relevant government authority, etc.,
iii. A place that someone without any official sanction decided to name for some reason or other.
“".. that PNA is just a tool to help with spelling and to be a bit of a primitive county finder. It is not a requirement that each and every name in your database conform to the PNA.”
I do not expect that each and every place name should conform to the PNA, a number, for a several reasons won’t, e.g. places from ii & iii above.
The PNA is however a feature within FTM that Ancestry include and should maintain, they don’t. They state that there could be omission and if there is let us know and we will fix it. source: http://ancestryau.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/5224/...
I would have to split legitimate place names that conform with the PNA format to resolve them. You may not be bothered with this but I am. Ancestry provide the feature and for reasons only known to them, don’t have, or haven’t assigned, resources to maintain it. If they did I would not have to split a lot of the place names in my tree as the large majority of the place names in my tree fall in “i” above. Not having to split them would improve their placing in the hierarchical structure. Ancestry introduced the hierarchical view, I like its potential and I want to use it as effectively as possible.
The current ability to split the “place” into two; “Place detail and “Place name”, in my view is helpful for two reasons:
1. It enables the inclusion of Church name, Cemetery name, Hospital name, etc. to be included.
2. Places that fit into “ii” and “iii” above are able to be easily dealt with.
The bottom line for me is, I want Ancestry to honour their commitment to regularly updating the PNA so I don’t have to split legitimate place names to resolve them. The ones that do not fit into the category of legitimate, I will work around.