The Afterlife of your Social Media Presence

Most of us here at Geeks are Sexy have a social media presence, a virtual personality made up of everything you’ve ever posted online: Facebook status updates, tweets, online videos, blog entries, and so much more. So here’s a question to you dear readers: What do you want to happen to your online “personality” once you’re gone for good? Let us know in the comments section below, but in the meantime, listen to journalist Adam Ostrow as he explores a few possibilities for your online “afterlife.”


13 Responses to The Afterlife of your Social Media Presence

  1. That is incredibly creepy. I would want all of my 'personality' deleted. Death has always been part of human existence, and it seems disrespectful to the actual life of a loved one to keep pretending they are alive through holograms after they die.

  2. My grandpa's profile is still up (obviously since nobody else had his password) and it's like i can visit him. His pictures are all of him while happy, his comments are all his thoughts. It's better, if you ask me, than a photo album. It seems to be more like he is alive still than anything else. As far as disrespectful I have to disagree. You keep pictures of the dead, how is a facebook profile any different? Should we not burn all the photos of the dead and shred their journal entries and letters between friends?

  3. wasn't that the central premise of Caprica? that said, I want my content edited to leave only the best parts for future generations. Imagine how we would consider (insert revered historical figure here) if we were privy to all their banal and petty thoughts via Twitter. How unmercifully emo would Edgar Alan Poe's facebook updates be?!

  4. i like the idea of having things still available for viewing and reading. my dad died suddenly and the whole memorial service was a cluster, and it gave me no sense of closure. i still have our old emails in addition to pictures, and it's nice to go through them once in a while. he didn't have a facebook page, but if he did i'm sure i'd view it and maybe even post a 'miss you dad' now and then.

  5. I actually think this is quite a serious topic and one that society needs to address. It is certainly something people need to think about and address in their Wills. Some people will see an ongoing online presence as some kind of proof they existed; a form of immortality. Others might rather not leave such a legacy. I think it will become the new "buried or cremated" debate, once it start affecting more and more people. Interesting!

  6. i dont like the idea of someone like my family projecting a hologram of myself and interacting with that image since it isnt me and surely would hurt my family even more if they did have the opportunity to see me every day even after death. although this might be good if you just want to say goodbye i think this sort of thing wouldnt be that healthy for a person to do since it may also be harder to let go of their loved one

  7. i once had a runescape character. i quit and gave it away, my character still lives on. my friends removed it from their friends list on it when i told them about it

  8. I didn't watch the video (I'm at work…I'll watch later), but my personal experience says leaving behind a social media "presence"–intentional or not–can help those you leave behind.
    My sister lost her best friend of over ten years to cancer at the age of 19 and she still occasionally writes on her friend's Facebook wall when she's feeling particularly down about missing her. It may seem silly but it helps.

  9. I think it would be great if Facebook would develop an export program that took all of your information, photos, posts and related content and flowed it into a format that reads like a book. Even better, if you could blend in (by date) all posts from your other social media sites. Of course, this presupposes that you have given your URLs and passwords to someone who would be willing to hit the "generate biography" button.

  10. I wrote a blog post a couple of years ago on what happens to your digital legacy after you're gone, and what you need to consider now so that your family has access to it after you die. It's not in the realms of science fiction or how technology can preserve your presence, as Ostrow's TED Talk speculates — it's a little more practical than that. Go to:

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