No one wants to really admit thinking about it, but we have to accept the fact that we do wonder what will become with our social media accounts when we suddenly pass away. It’s a reality that we have to face, especially now that these social networks have become as natural to us as eating. The largest social network of them all, Facebook, has now introduced the Legacy Contact feature, which gives us the option to choose who will be our “emergency contact” to manage your account when you die.
The Legacy Contact will become the curator of a Facebook account, which will become a memorial to the person who has been confirmed to have passed away. The contact will only have basic editing rights, like updating the profile pic and cover photo, or seeing and approving new friend requests. The contact can also write a post which will be pinned to the top, if you need to let everyone know about memorial services or pertinent details about the deceased. But full access will not be given, and will instead still be locked down, including the Messenger messages to the deceased.
But if you don’t trust anyone you know to properly manage your account when you’re gone, you also have the option to let Facebook auto-destruct your account so everything will also die with you, so to speak. There is also an option to download your account archive, which includes photos, posts, and profile information. Having these different options may be a relief for some people who are worried about what will happen to all these information once they’ve already passed on. Yes, this is a genuine concern for the past years, and Facebook is proactively facing this issue now, after receiving criticism for their automatically-generated “year-end” videos from earlier this year.
You can nominate your Legacy Contact in the settings options of your Facebook page. For now, it’s only open for US users but of course, they will probably introduce it to other countries eventually.