How to post to Facebook, Twitter after you die - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

How to post to Facebook, Twitter after you die

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(CNN) -- Death already has a surprisingly vivid presence online, with improvised memorials and outpourings of grief for loved ones on social media, and the unintentional mementos the departed leave behind in comments, photo streams and blog posts.

Now technology is changing death again with tools that let you get in one last goodbye after your demise, or even more extensive communications from beyond the grave.

People have long left letters for loved ones (and the rare nemesis) with estate lawyers to be delivered after death. But a new crop of startups will handle sending prewritten e-mails and posting to Facebook or Twitter once a person passes. One company is even toying with a service that tweets just like a specific person after they are gone. The field got a boost last week when the plot of a British show "Black Mirror" featured similar tools, inspiring an article by The Guardian.

"It really allows you to be creative and literally extend the personality you had while alive in death," said James Norris, founder of DeadSocial. "It allows you to be able to say those final goodbyes."

DeadSocial covers all the post-death social media options, scheduling public Facebook posts, tweets and even LinkedIn posts to go out after someone has died. The free service will publish the text, video or audio messages directly from that person's social media accounts, or it can send a series of scheduled messages in the future, say on an anniversary or a loved one's birthday. For now, all DeadSocial messages will be public, but the company plans to add support for private missives in the future.

DeadSocial's founders consulted with end of life specialists while developing their service. They compare the final result to the physical memory boxes sometimes created by terminally ill parents for their children. The boxes are filled with sentimental objects and memorabilia they want to share.

"It's not physical, but there are unseen treasures that can be released over time," Norris said of the posthumous digital messages.

Among the early beta users, Norris observed that younger participants were more likely to make jokes around their own deaths, while people who were slightly older created messages more sincere and emotional. He's considered the potential for abuse but thinks the public nature of messages will be a deterrent. The site also requires members to pick a trusted executor, and there is a limit of six messages per week.

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