Say Goodbye to the Internet in Your Will

by James Wallace Harris, Monday, April 9, 2018

I’ve been using the internet long enough to have online friends pass away. I’m in one online book club that has had three members die. I’ve had other internet friends just disappear, and I’ve wondered what has happened to them. Sometimes on Facebook family members will post a goodbye. I greatly appreciate that when it happens.

Quite often I don’t know where my internet friends live. And even when I do, the standard of publishing an obituary in the local paper seems to be fading along with print journalism.

Last Will

There is much anger directed at Facebook in recent weeks. However, Facebook is how many people stay in contact with friends and family. Few reports count all the positive benefits of Facebook. As many as two billion people use the service. In recent years, Facebook is often how I find out internet friends are sick, dying, or have passed away. It’s become the new obituary page.

We all need to leave login credentials to our social media groups in our wills with instructions to contact these sites after our death. And even provide a parting farewell to publish.

Social media is often dismissed as shallow. Maybe it is, maybe it’s not. Maybe we should make it better.





6 thoughts on “Say Goodbye to the Internet in Your Will”

  1. I’ve never thought about that – login credentials in wills. FB does offer a service that allows trusted FB friends to access one’s account if one passed away or is unable to access their account for other reasons.
    I also appreciate updates on when someone passed away, though it’s sad news, and agree that it’s taken the place of obits in papers. My friends and fam are all over the world, so sometimes it’s hard to quickly get in touch, even by phone, or to inform friends since family members don’t always know all of a person’s friends.

  2. You make a lot of sense. As you point out, traditional obituaries in newspapers are going the way of the dinosaur. Most people find it uncomfortable with estate planning and end-of-life issues. But, it’s essential.

  3. Your close family and friends can surely post on your timeline? If you die, they are sure to do so. They don’t need your log-in details to do so.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s