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Social media and the digital afterlife: Facebook’s new ‘legacy contact’ feature
 Article 
Author
Bethan Byrne
Source
Business Shapers
Date
31 July 2015

Social media and the digital afterlife: Facebook’s new ‘legacy contact’ feature

Facebook is probably the most well-known social networking website, with in excess of one billion users worldwide.  This week it launched a new ‘legacy contact’ feature, but what does this mean for users and what problems might this create in the future?

The new feature, initially introduced in the US earlier this year, enables a user (provided they are over the age of eighteen) to appoint a so-called ‘legacy contact’ who will have the ability to manage a user’s account after death, once that account has been ‘memorialised’ by Facebook having been notified of the user’s death.  That legacy contact will be able to write posts on the user’s Facebook profile, for example a final message from the user or details of a memorial service.  They will be able to respond to new friend requests, add family members as new friends and, possibly most importantly of all, have the option to download a copy of what the user has shared on Facebook including photos and videos.  In an age where people rarely have traditional photo albums and social media accounts are their virtual photo albums, this archive will undoubtedly be of huge sentimental value to family and friends.

Read the full article on Business Shapers.