“Remembering Madeline Jewell”
Though it’s sad to think about death in any aspect, it’s important to plan for what will happen after we die. Possessions and bank accounts are the things that most people think about, as well as houses and other properties. But what about a person’s Facebook account? According to one source, about 20% of people on Earth have a Facebook account that they access at least once a month, which is roughly 1.39 billion people. What happens when those people die, as all humans do? There are a two options: they can choose to have their account deleted, or they can have their account memorialized, in which case “Remembering” will be shown before the name. This Facebook help screen has more information on the subject.
I will have a legacy contact for my account, and I’m going to prepare some posts for them to put on my Facebook. This is important because the Facebook help screen mentioned above states that “memorialized accounts that don’t have a legacy contact can’t be changed”, and I want to be able to do things like wish my friends happy birthday and commemorate loved ones’ life events such as weddings, births, and anniversaries.
Another good reason to have a legacy contact is that I don’t want my loved ones to have to deal with bureaucracy as well as grief once I pass away. For many families, being locked out of their dead relative’s Facebook by the company itself just rubs salt in the wound of that loved one’s death. In a blog post, Autumn Leopold talks about how she had to go through all of her dead mother’s social media accounts, and that she has decided to memorialize her mom’s Facebook account. She highly encourages people to put a legacy contact onto their accounts, and wishes her mother had done so, as it would have made at least that pat of her death a little easier. She lists things that happen if you don’t have a legacy contact, and posts a link to help people start setting on up for them. She clearly thinks that having a plan in place for these things is a good idea.
Do you have a plan? If yes, what is it? If not, why not?