Data and ID after Death

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Session Topic: Data and ID after Death

Wednesday 5D

Convener: Akiko Orita

Notes-taker(s): Akiko Orita

Tags for the session - technology discussed/ideas considered: deceased, data, privacy, archive

This session started to review several cases of treatment of deceased users. Facebook has two options: “Memorializing” or “Removing” the account, only the former options are allowed to be requested by non-family. Google’s “Inactive Account Manager” released in April 2013, which enable users to reflect their will what happen to their account after their death. A user can set an alert notification followed by 3-12 months inactivity periods followed by two options; to be removed completely or to be notified to “trusted contacts” to share their data with.


We considered not only personal or public space but also “third” place where we have social activity there.


Our discussion expanded this issue to “Authorship” and “Archiving” of data. For example, my data after death may be personal data then , however, after a century, it will be historical data. Individual data is more important than aggregated data because it’s a story of a person. Archival data is valuable to family and society as well. Thus, it is necessary to consider how to treat non-physical, digital stuff after death.