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When life logs you off, how to stay online

This past week Google announced that it will give its users a ‘digital will’ option for their online data. The premise behind it being that users can decide what happens to their online account after they die.

It has been dubbed “data-after-death” and lets users tell Google what to do with emails and other data if their account becomes inactive.

Google email and YouTube posting can be deleted after three, six or twelve months of inactivity. Alternatively they can choose to give access to the data to specific people.

This got me thinking, what happens to all your data when you have gone? What about your Facebook page or Twitter? Social media usage has been increasing at an exponential rate but no one has considered the implications to the data on there.

Both Twitter and Facebook have policies in place to allow users to request that an account be deleted in the event of users passing. Twitter users can obtain a permanent backup of all tweets from a designated account.

What if you do not want to close your Social Media accounts? How about carrying on your social media activity even after you have died?!

Here are a couple of options;

Dead Social

Dead Social enables a user to send out messages after death from various social media accounts.

The key features are;

  • Send messages directly to your private Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin account
  • Send out a final message and / or series of scheduled messages
  • Release unseen video and audio messages

DeadSocial covers all the post-death social media options, scheduling public Facebook posts, Tweets and even LinkedIn posts go out after someone has died. The free service will publish the text, video or audio messages directly from that person’s social media accounts or it can send a series of scheduled messages in the future, say on an anniversary or a loved one’s birthday. For now, all DeadSocial messages will be public, but the company plans to add support for private messages in the future.

LivesOn

This caught my attention because I read about the service and watched an episode of Black Mirror that contained very similar themes.

Essentially LivesOn analyse’s a user’s tweets and learns about what is frequently tweeted and the style of tweets. The idea being that in time a tweet from LivesOn would be identical (or as close) to what the original user would tweet. Tweets will begin to populate on your LivesOn feed. A user has to nominate an executor for the account and they can decide whether to keep the account live.

LivesOn’s slogan is;

When your heart stops beating, you’ll keep tweeting

Legacy Locker

The previous two examples specifically dealt with social media accounts, Legacy Locker deals with your online presence as a whole. Legacy will manage your Facebook, Paypal, Linkedin, iTunes and Gmail to name but a few.

There are different levels of accounts from free to $30 a month. The free account will store and hand over 3 logins to one beneficiary and send out a farewell message to your loved ones, the top tier account has unlimited access.

Would you be interested in any of these services? It would be great to know your thoughts.

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