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Tech Talk Radio Show 13 of 2010
Transmission date: March 29, 2010
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Ep 13 of 2010
March 29, 2010

Some food for thought as we all plunge head first in the world of the 21st century - a world where social networking, Twitter, Facebook, and youtube reign supreme. What happens to your online presence when you die? Yes, I bet you hadn’t thought of that because neither had I until I caught a recent episode of the ABC’s program, Hungry Beast.  Quite a vexing question really. Death in the physical world is inevitable, but is immortality assured in the virtual world?

It’s a dilemma which needs some careful consideration, as the digital you will certainly live on. So what will the people you leave behind discover about the digital you? The more active you are in social networking sites and email, the bigger your digital footprint becomes. Regardless of what you’ve sent via email, uploaded to a video site such as youtube or kept buried in your Facebook page, could become available to your next of kin after your sudden demise. Oh, and if your demise is too sudden, then law enforcement agencies may also get the keys to your to your online boudoir.

Hungry Beast went on to reveal that “digital legacy is such a new idea that all companies do not have a policy on it yet.” Yahoo requires a court order to hand over your password to the next of kin. Facebook will “Memorialize” your page meaning it stays up but is locked or frozen, meaning no changes or comments are possible. Gmail and Hotmail will hand over passwords providing they receive a death certificate as well as proof of your relationship to the deceased and Myspace has no policy.

So as the technological revolution continues to change life as we know it, it might be timely to leave the keys to the online palace somewhere accessible by a will. Also, the thought of an emerging industry of digital undertakers is quite creepy. Just think about it – a company full of people not unlike yourself, trawling the internet deleting the digital you after your six foot under – pushing up the daises.

 This week on TTR

What happens to the digital you after the real you dies?
A hacker gets 20 years for credit card fraud,
More low income Telstra users seek bill help,
Firefox puts windows 7 support on hold and
Adam checks out the AFL’s online dream team application