Help, Support and FAQ: General

Registration issues? Problems logging in? Have a question about our terms of service or privacy policy? We answer some of the most popular questions about these topics below.

Why is the username I want not available?

The most likely answer is that the username you tried to register with has already been taken by another user. If this is the case, you can try adding numbers or punctuation either in the middle of your username or at the end. Also, please choose a username that's between six and twenty characters long, inclusive.


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What do you use my e-mail address for?

At a minimum, we use your e-mail address to:

  • send you a receipt when you order a lookup
  • contact you to resolve any issues that arise in processing your payment
  • inform you of any significant changes to our terms of use or privacy policy that may affect your account
  • notify you of any lookup requests you have received from clients (if you're a lookup provider.)

In addition, depending on preferences to which you have opted-in on the site, we may also:

  • send you a copy of the occasional Genlighten newsletter
  • alert you when one of your lookup requests is completed by the provider
  • notify you when a provider submits a quote on one of your custom lookup requests.

There are several other helpful notifications that you can choose to receive by visiting the preferences page. You can also choose not to receive these notifications if you prefer.


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I just want to see what you offer. Why do I need to agree to your terms and policies?

To see what lookups our providers offer without registering for the site, simply return to the homepage and click on the "Browse the lookups we offer" button or click . If you decide you want to order lookups, provide lookups, or exchange messages with others on our site, you'll need to join our user community to do so. Our terms of use and privacy policy are designed to help that community remain a safe, positive and friendly place to be online.


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What's in the Genlighten newsletter and why would I want to subscribe?

The Genlighten newsletter provides:

  • previews of new features we're planning to introduce
  • profiles of members of our provider network and the unique lookups they offer
  • updates on our growth and progress
  • a schedule of conferences we'll be attending, talks we'll be giving, and other events we participate in
  • behind-the-scenes views of life at Genlighten's "Corporate Headquarters"
  • anything else fun and interesting we can think of to share

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I've forgotten my password. How can I reset it?

No problem. Here's the basic process:

  • First, click on the "Forgot your password?" link towards the bottom of the Sign In screen. You'll be taken to the "Reset your lost password" page.
  • Next, enter the email address you originally registered with and click "Continue."
  • Now look for an email message from us in your inbox. When it arrives, click on the embedded link to confirm to us who you are.
  • You'll be brought back to the "Reset your lost password" page. Now enter your new password (or re-enter the old one) and confirm it by entering it a second time. Then click "Continue."
  • Finally, log in again with your reset password. You should be all set!

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How do you deal with copyright issues relating to the documents you offer?

As explained in our terms of use, we prohibit our providers from uploading documents to the site which would violate the rights of copyright holders. We monitor content uploaded to the site on a limited basis to help enforce these rules. We also will comply with requests submitted by copyright holders to remove material from the site that they claim rights to. Please submit any such requests to copyright (at) genlighten (dot) com.


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When I receive a document image from a provider, who owns that image?

Under our terms of use, our providers retain ownership of the images they upload to our site in the process of fulfilling lookup requests. They then agree to grant a fairly broad license to you as their client (so you can use the images in your genealogical research) and to Genlighten (so we can deliver the images to you). You do not need to credit either the provider or Genlighten should you decide to publish the images you order. You may also use those images as part of your own commercial efforts.


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How do I know that payments I make through your site will be handled securely?

We currently accept payment for lookups via either PayPal or personal credit card. All of our payment processing is handled using PayPal's Web Payments Pro system, which is widely acknowledged to have one of the highest levels of security in the payment-processing industry. We do not store any confidential information about your payment accounts on our site. Despite these measures taken by Genlighten to insure your safety when ordering lookups from us online, you should know that no form of electronic commerce is 100% free of security risks.


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