Tweeting after death – a new digital Legacy?
I’m tweeting but I’m dead! is a new form of creating a digital legacy that I read about this morning that had me going huh? An Ad agency in London is working to create a way for people to tweet after they have died and my first thought was this was an April fools joke ( but it cant be) or that I had entered the world of science fiction!
@garry12gg it is a tool fro the living, over time creates another you that can then filter all the stuff on the web for you.
— LivesOn (@_Liveson) March 4, 2013
The fact is as we spend more and more time online, social media and many sharing sites have been seeing a surge in creating online memorials for family and friends ( Facebook) and there is little doubt that it gives a way to connect and support in a way that could not be done offline, the question is where do we draw the line?
I find this latest innovation to be unsettling if not downright morbid and it raises questions of:
- How would one interact with this entity ( bot) especially on a venue like Twitter?
- What if the person who is setting up this way of communicating after death was murderer or abuser taunting their still living victims?
- What if the family is against this kind of “memorial”?
- Who has control over these kinds of messages?
- How does a family create closure if they are constantly being sent messages?
While some might argue that this type of service will be useful for those people who can “talk more freely” after they have passed away or publish material that they did not have time(?) to release, I find this kind of “service” something to be questioned in terms of how it could be abused or how it could be offensive to others.
I will say that this story has made me realize that settling our “digital estate” is important and as such we should be mindful of the fact by making sure we have a person we trust become our digital executor and carry out our wishes of either having an account kept open as a memorial or deactivated as our request.
A good article to read is Why You Should Appoint a Digital Executor as Part of Your Estate Plan as it will give you some ideas on what a digital executor is and a couple of places to look at for preparing your digital legacy is Legacy Locker, AssetLock and Cirrus Legacy
The reality is that we have one life and while it is short, we owe it to our family and our friends to help them create closure in a way that will help them move forward in their lives. Where do you weigh in on tweeting after death – the new digital legacy? Will you use it and if so I would love to hear the reasons why.