Post mortem social networking
June 15, 2010 4:17 PM   Subscribe

Is there facebook after death? Also, here's how to send emails from beyond the grave.
posted by DZack (21 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
O'Blivion Griphus is not the name I was born with. It's my television internet name. Soon, all of us will have special names, names designed to cause the cathode-ray tube LCD panel to resonate. Death to Facebook-o-Drome! Long live the new flesh!
posted by griphus at 4:24 PM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


Friend OD'd last year, and her Facebook page lives on. Thought it was pretty ghastly at first, but it's actually become sort of a virtual gravestone where people have dropped by to pay their respects. It's actually sort of touching, in a weird way.
posted by Afroblanco at 4:25 PM on June 15, 2010


Prior AskMe discussion regarding (Internet-related) Dead Man's Switches.
posted by Smart Dalek at 4:26 PM on June 15, 2010


Friend OD'd last year, and her Facebook page lives on.

My stepfather occasionally logs into my recently deceased mother's Gmail account. I can't tell you how weird it was, the first time, to see "Mom" pop up as active in GChat. Yesterday, I was logged into her account and forgot to logout before going on to Google Reader. It informed me that my aunt and uncle were following my feed and, again not realizing it wasn't my account, followed them back. I wonder how they reacted to that..
posted by griphus at 4:29 PM on June 15, 2010


I was planning to simply posses people and/or get reincarnated.
posted by GuyZero at 4:34 PM on June 15, 2010


I was planning to get uploaded and simply possess the internets.
posted by jamaro at 4:42 PM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


I still have a good friend's cell # preprogrammed on my phone, and his email in my address book. Every once in a while I get faced and feel like calling or sending an email, just to see if i get an answer.
posted by timsteil at 4:44 PM on June 15, 2010


DZack: "here's how to send emails from beyond the grave. "

Also known as a Deathswitch.
posted by yiftach at 4:46 PM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


I feel lucky I haven't lost anyone close who had active internet accounts. It was weird enough when my grandmother died and my grandfather didn't change the answering machine message for a year or so. It was really hard for me to call and hear her voice.
posted by brundlefly at 4:51 PM on June 15, 2010


This one friend of mine died from cancer in late 2008; sometimes I go check facebook and his picture pops up and facebook prompts me to "get back in touch" with him. I sometimes go back to reading old posts of his blog, or our chat conversations, and reminisce. I have email from other people whom I cared for and are no more, and I look at them from time to time, much like you would have done with a faded black and white photograph, or a letter, not so long ago.

It's a faint, evanescent trail, but it's there nevertheless.
posted by _dario at 4:55 PM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


The alternative has been discussed rather clearly in a comment on a previous post.
posted by mahershalal at 5:07 PM on June 15, 2010


This one friend of mine died from cancer in late 2008; sometimes I go check facebook and his picture pops up and facebook prompts me to "get back in touch" with him. I sometimes go back to reading old posts of his blog, or our chat conversations, and reminisce. I have email from other people whom I cared for and are no more, and I look at them from time to time, much like you would have done with a faded black and white photograph, or a letter, not so long ago.

It's a faint, evanescent trail, but it's there nevertheless.
posted by _dario at 4:55 PM on June 15 [+] [!]


I was about to comment on a very similar circumstance. It's rather bizarre in some ways, but in the same regard it's become a place to people to eulogize.
posted by Lacking Subtlety at 5:12 PM on June 15, 2010


I wish. Maybe a termination or migration option for accounts only accessible by employees. Deceased status?
posted by antgly at 5:14 PM on June 15, 2010


Thank you, I had been wondering about that.
posted by treeshar at 5:28 PM on June 15, 2010



I feel lucky I haven't lost anyone close who had active internet accounts. It was weird enough when my grandmother died and my grandfather didn't change the answering machine message for a year or so. It was really hard for me to call and hear her voice.
Wow. It was bad enough getting my mother's mail We shared the same first name and AARP managed to follow me after I moved. I finally had to call them (10 years after she passed) to beg them to stop sending me mail for her.
posted by Karmakaze at 6:32 PM on June 15, 2010


Our daughter died last February. She was only 25 and had a helluva Facebook page. In the general confusion at the time, we had forgotten about it. When we did think to check it we were blown away. Absolutely no other medium could have delivered, and still delivers, the true sense of a human in all her glory. A true and honest legacy.

If it is up to us, we will never take that page down.
posted by Aetius Romulous at 6:40 PM on June 15, 2010 [8 favorites]


DZack: “Is there facebook after death?”

As far as I understand it, only if you've been a particularly bad person in life.
posted by koeselitz at 6:46 PM on June 15, 2010 [4 favorites]


Thanks for posting this - they're measuring the rest of my mother's life in hours now, and it hadn't occurred to me that this could be done with her facebook page.
posted by Lucinda at 6:53 PM on June 15, 2010


this one's free
posted by p3on at 7:09 PM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


This one friend of mine died from cancer in late 2008; sometimes I go check facebook and his picture pops up and facebook prompts me to "get back in touch" with him.

For a while after my dad died, I kept getting cheery Facebook prompts to reconnect with him. Most of the time it just got me down, but sometimes I'd joke to myself that perhaps FB had discovered metaphysical secrets of the universe that mere mortals couldn't know.

I can't think of a better way, and it was more bearable than getting those constant notices, but it's pretty uncomfortable to go looking for a loved one's obituary and send the memorialization request to a faceless support team. I'd imagine it's not too fun to be the guy whose job is to handle those requests.
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:55 AM on June 16, 2010


One of my close friends was killed in a hit & run recently, and I haven't had the heart to de-friend him or remove his phone number from my phone yet. His last text message to me is locked so I won't accidentally delete it. Occasionally I send a text to his old number, just to see if I can connect to the afterworld. (Hey, if you could really text the dead for only a small fee, wouldn't you try too?) Tomorrow's his birthday. I'm already struggling with if I'll have the heart to stop by his profile and see the virtual gathering or not.

The 21st century is weird sometimes.

Here's a good article about digital memories from Gizmodo: Raiding Eternity.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 8:57 AM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


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