PodCamp Montreal: Death and Digital Legacy

September 18, 2009 · Posted in Event, Speaking · Comment 

Cross posted from adelemcalear.com

podcampmtl-logoMy PodCamp Montreal session on Death and Digital Legacy is scheduled for Saturday @ 2:30 PM. And, to be honest, I considered canceling it.

This morning, news spread of the murder of Montreal blogger Renée Wathelet (@endirectdesiles). A fixture in the community, Renée fell in love with Mexico’s Isla Mujeres and moved there last year March. Although, we spoke on Twitter a few times, I only met her once, when she was in town for a visit last February and* came to Twestival.

So many people here loved Renée and were close to her. Many of those same people may be attending PodCamp Montreal. And so, I questioned whether I should cancel my session out of respect to her grieving friends. But, after consideration, I’m going ahead with the session in honour of all that Renée has created and her own digital legacy.

So, if you are interested in the topic of Death and Digital Legacy, I encourage you to attend my session. It will be a round table discussion and participation is encouraged. I will not be making a formal presentation, but instead will share stories that illustrate different discussion points. Some of these may include:

  • how do communities mourn online?
  • what are the policies of online social sites for families to access loved ones’ accounts?
  • do you need a digital trustee named in your will?
  • what are some of the new services that have started to manage digital legacy?
  • what are the hazards of dormant accounts, whether the user is deceased or not?

I hope to see you there.

Saturday, September 19, 2009
2:30 PM
UQAM Design Centre
1440 rue Sanguinet

*UPDATE 9/21/09: For more about Renée Wathelet, her friend and YulBiz founder Philippe Martin was interviewed about her on Montreal radio (in French) on 9/21. Listen here.

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SXSW 2010: Panel Voting

August 17, 2009 · Posted in Event, Speaking · Comment 

Cross posted from adelemcalear.com

sxsw-ia-logoI’m pleased to announce that my panel submission for SXSW interactive 2010 has passed the first stage and is open for voting in the PanelPicker. You’ll need sign in to SXSW or create an account to vote, but it only takes a moment.

Posts Mortem: Death and Digital Legacy

If you passed away today, how would your online friends find out? Should logins and passwords be in your will? Has technology changed mourning? Will your digital media stay online forever? Our lives are lived and documented online, it’s time to talk about the implications of death and digital legacy.

Some of the questions that the panel will seek to discuss are:

  1. If you passed away, how would your online friends be notified?
  2. Should logins and passwords be included in your will?
  3. Would you want your digital presence to remain online forever?
  4. What the policies of the major social networks for profile access by the family of the deceased?
  5. What are the repercussions of the phenomenon of the suicide note as Facebook status?
  6. How has the Internet changed how people come together to mourn?
  7. Will pre-programmed updates from friends who have passed give them digital immortality?
  8. How have recent celebrity deaths brought digital mourning to the mainstream?
  9. If digital profiles truly have inherent value and equity, can they be bequeathed?
  10. What societal shifts will be required to handle ownership of our online footprints?

In the coming weeks I’ll be addressing some of these questions and seeking feedback. I want to know your personal experience and thoughts on these questions. Have I missed something that you’d like to see discussed? Then, please let me know in the comments.

My thanks to the ever-clever Ike Pigott for coining “posts mortem” and allowing me to use it in my title. My thanks also to all of those who’ve had conversations with me about different aspects of this topic. Your perspectives enrich the discussion.

Panel voting ends on September 4th. I appreciate your support and thank you for your vote.


Some of my colleagues at Technically Women have also submitted panels to SXSW Interactive, outlined in today’s post. Please consider voting for theirs as well:

Maggie Fox
Scaling Social Media: Getting Credible Content to Mass Audiences
News 2.0 – How Old Media Companies Are Inventing New Models

Rachel Happe
Building Social Strategies at Fortune 100 Companies

Jennifer Leggio
Inherent Dangers of Real-Time Social Networking
How (Not) to Get Banned on Social Networks!

Shireen Mitchell
Is There A Technological Fix for Human Behavior?
Social Media Women of Color

And I’m certain that many more of my colleagues and friends on Twitter are on the SXSW PanelPicker. Please feel free to add your session link in the comments.

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