Tamura Jones at Modern Software Experience wrote back in 2009 -
"It is possible for someone to always live and work in the same town, yet be born in Saint Petersburg, marry in Petrograd (1914-1924), have children born in Leningrad (1924-1991), and die in Saint Petersburg. If that is how it happened, that is how it should be documented. Events should be documented using the names that were current at the time of the event."I side with Tamura. If a software program requires me to lie about my ancestors in order to use it, I will not use the software program. That's the only term I can imagine using, for if I know the information isn't true, and I speak the information or write the information down as truth, it is a lie.
If the hypothetical genealogy software adds fields for "current name of geographical location" I wouldn't mind filling in that field, but it is by its nature a field that would constantly have to be updated. Place names are still in flux. As databases grow, the need to constantly check to see if place names are 'current' would be cumbersome.
I guess that could be computerized, but I can also envision software making a decision that the user doesn't like. A current example - is someone born in Jerusalem born in Israel or Palestine? Regardless of your personal preference, would you allow a software program to make that decision for you?
I remember once writing a post referencing my Transylvanian-born grandfather, and mentioned that I preferred saying 'Transylvanian' to either 'Hungarian' or 'Romanian'. I received a fiery comment insisting that All Transylvanians are Romanians, and Hungary has nothing whatsoever to do with Transylvania. Nationalistic pride in the commenter clearly colored his historical vision, but the area of Transylvania in which my grandfather was born was in Hungary at the time of his birth. For me to write down that his birthplace was Almasu, Romania would be wrong. He considered himself of Hungarian birth, and was proud that his father had served in the army of Franz Josef. He was born in Varalmas, Hungary.
It also occurred to me that if you are creating any reports or charts from the database for relatives, one might be able to include the notes field in a report, but there isn't always space in charts, so if the historically inaccurate place name is in the database, that is the place name that will appear in the chart, and you're left with a product that might confuse your kin.
It also troubles me greatly that any software produced by major genealogy websites (such as FamilySearch, which Randy mentioned) would encourage genealogists to 'standardize' in this fashion.