Tuesday, January 31, 2012

You will NOT be immortal in cyberspace, after all!

This is something I mused about almost a year ago...

something immortalized later that same year by one dearly departed gentleman by the name of Derek K. Miller...

Now, one of our New York lawmakers brings us this is comforting news. Comforting, one might imagine, for those who want their analog deaths to be reflected digitally.

Ending an “Online Life” After Death

Assemblyman Ortiz looks to provide an option for individuals to terminate their online presence after they pass away.

(Albany, NY) Assemblyman Felix W. Ortiz, Brooklyn, will soon be introducing legislation that will allow individuals to designate a personal representative, in their will, who will have the ability to take control of and terminate, any social networking website, short message service website, or email website. As new technologies and social networking sites begin to develop, it is important that individuals are provided with legal options to delete their accounts, even after they pass away.

Many individuals continue to live on after death through their digital presence. This can prove to be painful for close family members and friends who are constantly reminded of their loss. This legislation will provide individuals with the opportunity to designate an individual as their “online executor”; someone who will have control over their online social networking and messaging accounts. Other States are considering and have even passed similar legislation, such as Oklahoma (LB2800) and Nebraska (LB783).

Furthermore, many social media websites aren’t built to verify users’ deaths and have far too many users to even attempt this. “It is important that we have options for individuals who may not want to continue an online presence after they have passed,” said Ortiz, “This legislation provides personal representative with the authority to take control of and terminate these accounts.”

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