"CBC Marketplace investigates the science and marketing behind popular DNA ancestry kits. Host Charlsie Agro and her identical twin sister Carly test five top brands. Find out why ancestry test kits are not as accurate as you might think."
I took the ancestry DNA test like a year ago, I was Supposedly 54% German and about 27% Irish (the Irish was a huge surprise) and 2-5% of this and that from several small areas close to those two. After about 6 months I got an E-mail from ancestry saying that due to recent advances in "the science" they
"re-evaluated" my profile, and I was now 51% German and 30% western european 2-5% Bla bla bla.....so I take it all with a grain of salt
I'm from the Netherlands and as can be expected from a line of people that had to struggle to come around. Day-laborers or serving the rich in one or another way. Just like most people did. 1% enjoys, 99% struggles. That's all that counts for me. I would be interested in a kind of a social DNA, based on income, social status, and living circumstances.
I know many people who have spent money on such test and told me they are such and such % "viking", "Jewish", or " English". I gently as possible tell them that such notions are cultural and not natural categories, and the genes do not have nationalities.
Everybody's DNA ancestry winds up in Africa, eventually. What more do you need to know?
These companies are capitalizing on our more rootless culture, in a time when families have split up and spread across the country and sometimes around the world, as opposed to decades ago when several generations of an extended family might live in the same town and have family history and lore at their fingertips. They also (in their ads) appeal those who want to "trace" their DNA back across the ocean to families broken up by the slave trade. Since DNA has at best a tenuous connection to national origin, all this strikes me as promising much more than they can deliver.
I'm trying to figure out why people even want them. What would it really tell you about your ancestry if anything? If you are encouraged to do DNA and then store or keep it in some database you can rest assured that the authorities will have your DNA. This is probably what it is really all about. Otherwise it's just companies wanting to make money.