Huffington Post contributor Julie Spira today revisits the delicate topic of “social media obituaries” and how someone who passes away can-should be remembered on Facebook.
When an active user of the social network dies, their profile is usually either immediately deleted or left unattended, leading to spam and, in some cases, future birthday wishes. In the case of Spira’s radio industry friend George Taylor Morris, she writes that his page was tastefully maintained for a year by relatives as a sort of shrine. She suggests that Facebook should perhaps consider adding “deceased” to its menu of relationship statuses:
Recently, when a Los Angeles artist died unexpectedly due to a massive stroke, I viewed her Facebook profile to see if there was anything posted from the family… Nothing had changed on her profile. It was as if she was still alive.
A few days later, her daughter posted an update stating that the family was grieved to announce her sudden passing and stated how she treasured her friends. A website address to the artist’s works was posted for her friends to view. In my opinion, it was graciously done. However, the daughter didn’t have the option to change her mother’s relationship status to deceased.
It’s an interesting suggestion and one FishbowlLA things Facebook should seriously consider.