Library module Keyword gets automatically changed -how to prevent?

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process

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For some reason, when entering a certain keyword it gets expanded to something else.
The keyword I've written stays but it followed by a "less than" (<) character and a keyword description I've obviously used for some other photos in the past.

Why is this happening, and what can I do to prevent it (instead of choosing another keyword which doesn't "trigger" it?
Maybe I need to reset something?
 
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This means that the same keyword is also used in another hierarchy.
 
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The < symbol is a link to a parent keyword in a hierarchy. If in your hierarchy you have "Yellow" as a child for "Butterfly" and a "Yellow" as a child for "Flower", then images containing "Yellow" and "Butterfly". will show up in the list as "Yellow<Butterfly". If the image also contains a yellow flower and you key word that for the flower. The result will be "Yellow<Butterfly", "Yellow<Flower".
 

process

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Yes, I understand.
But here that same keyword automatically expands to a sentence which starts with that common keyword.
How do I prevent this from happening?

For instance: I want to add the following keywords to some new photos:
Travel, vacation, family trip

But apparently the word "vacation" has been used before, so this happens:
Travel, vacation < African summer, family trip

I don't know, but what I'm experiencing might have something to do with years ago, having used a script (which someone else had made) which transferred the folder/sub-folder names (which were descriptions of their contents) of photos which I had for years organized in Adobe Bridge, over to the same folder organizing in Lightroom. With those folders I see the < character being used to separate folders although it's not consistent so I'm at loss exactly why it's there.
In any case, is there a way to reset all the keywords in LR, if that's the solution to fixing this problem.
And can I do that without losing all the keywords I've assigned to my photos?
 
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How do I prevent this from happening?
The only way to prevent the disambiguation symbol (<) is to only create unique keywords or don't use a hierarchy where the same word can appear in multiple hierarchies.
 

process

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Cless01l : I saw your reply after I had posted the above...
Thanks for explaining. I believe I need to re-read the manual to find out what parent keywords are and what their use is, but the bottom line is that LR is overriding what I intend and I want to eliminate that.
My LR use and setup is probably very simple compared to most people: just about all my photos are organized in folders by date (year, month) and further by event or subject. Those event/subject folders have brief descriptions on what the photos are about, and I copy/paste each folder's name over to all the photos' keywords.
I know LR can do a whole lot more with "Collections", but I only use this for organizing certain keywords across all those folders (i.e. "Aunt Mabel" for showing all photos of Aunt Mabel in my entire library).
So will resetting/deleting something within keywords fix my problem but without removing the keywords I've assigned to my photos?

Oops! Posting again while a new reply comes in ;)
Thanks for your suggestion. I'll look into what you're saying.
A quick look point me to the "Keywords list" section where I see several keywords with a white arrow in front. I assume this is what you're pointing to.
Can I safely delete all of those and eliminate the problem?
 
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Can I safely delete all of those and eliminate the problem?
You can’t “safely” delete these until you understand what the impact is going to be. Those triangles left of the keyword indicate there are child keywords. Eliminating the parents will eliminate the children. Click on the triangle to expose the children. In that Keyword list, you can drag each of the children out to the top level eliminating any hierarchy. This sounds like what you want when you encounter two “yellow” children, only one of them will be able to reside at the top level and you will need to decide what to do with the second instance and any images assigned to the second instance of that child keyword


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For instance: I want to add the following keywords to some new photos:
Travel, vacation, family trip

But apparently the word "vacation" has been used before, so this happens:
Travel, vacation < African summer, family trip
That means that if you look up "African summer" in the keyword list, you will see that there is a 'vacation' sub-keyword. Somewhere else in the keyword list there is a second 'vacation' keyword. Because 'African summer' is higher up in the alphabet than the parent of that other 'vacation' keyword, Lightroom will choose this one if you do not tell it which one to choose.

The easiest solution is to change that 'vacation' keyword under 'African summer' to 'African vacation'.
 

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OK, I finally found the keyword phrase which is automatically inserted.
First, they do indeed appear to be a parent as there's a triangle next to it (in the "Keyword list") but nothing comes up when I expand it! When I go to the very right of it I see a number, and when I point to the right of that a small white arrow comes up which I click and a number of photos come up with that keyword phrase. The problem is that none of those photos are available (they're likely on an external drive which I haven't attached).
Maybe this is what is causing things to get messed up and I need to attach that hard drive first.

I think I'm going to go with dragging the "children" out and on to the top level in order to eliminate the hierarchies when I work all this out.
 
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Keywords are stored in the catalog. It should not matter if the original file is on a disk that is not attached.

But if the file is on a disk that is not attached, you will get that file missing indicator which you are free to ignore.


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But if the file is on a disk that is not attached, you will get that file missing indicator which you are free to ignore.

Yes, that's what I thought too.
But I believe I've solved the problem! First I applied Johan Elzenga's solution: to use a slightly different keyword.
Then I finally found the keyword which caused all, as a "child". Guess it was hidden well (or my eyes aren't what they used to be!) ;)
So I dragged that out of the hierarchy, and now the problem was gone with the photos where the keywords were automatically changed.

I don't know how it got this way to begin with, but I see that when I finally complete organizing my photos I need to clean up the keyword list. Thanks for the help everybody!
 
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