Inevitably, when I mention that I am involved in genealogy, I am asked how many names I have in my family tree. If that question doesn't come up immediately, then I will probably be asked how far back in time I have researched. I am used to both questions and to the first, I will usually say something vague such as "As far back as there are records" or something similar. Although I should be answering about a billion because I use the FamilySearch.org website. The second question is bothersome. The main reason being is that I don't know the answer. I usually end the conversation by saying, "Far enough" or whatever.
The real issue with these and similar questions is that genealogy is being portrayed as some sort of game or competition. It has been a long time since I wrote about this issue, but nothing has changed. I call this the savings stamp syndrome. When I was a lot younger, many stores and gas stations would have a way to track sales that included giving away stamps to put in a savings book. Books filled with stamps would give the customer access to "buying" items in a catalog that were "purchased" with savings stamps. Gas stations would do the same, usually giving away dinnerware such as decorative glasses with a certain amount of purchases. When you made your purchase, you had to make sure you got your stamps or whatever showed that you were collecting for a premium.
Genealogy is the antithesis of premium giveaways. Of course, there are rewards. As must be abundantly apparent, I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As members, we have some rather complex beliefs that reinforce an interest in seeking out our ancestors. See Temple Work. These beliefs provide a built-in incentive but surprisingly few members of the church are involved in any form of family history or genealogical research. Estimates of active involvement in genealogy run as low as 3% of the members. This is probably well above the small percentage of the population of the world who are so inclined. One surprising aspect of the members' involvement in genealogy is their surprise that those outside of the church are interested in genealogy. Even those who have never looked at a family group record in their life seem to believe that an interest in genealogy is uniquely limited to members.