Tweeting from the Great Beyond?
Imagine seeing a friend's name pop up on your twitter feed. No big deal, right? Except his funeral was last month. At first blush, the idea is nothing short of creepy, but more businesses are popping up offering social media services in the after life. No kidding.
Lives On, for instance has a website with the tag line, “When your heart stops beating, you'll keep tweeting.”
When you sign up with their service, their software program analyzes your main twitter feed, learns your likes, tastes and syntax. The system gradually populates your Lives On feed. You can “help it become a better you” by providing feedback regarding the system-generated tweets. Apparently the service is not perpetual unless you nominate an “executor” to decide whether to keep your account live after you're gone.
Whether you plan to keep tweeting from the grave is up to you, but you certainly should consider digital assets in estate planning. Digital assets may include personal or business websites and blogs, email, social media, financial accounts managed online, business loyalty rewards and online photo albums. The list will grow as technology continues developing.
Steps you can take to protect your digital assets include:
- Preparing a comprehensive inventory of online accounts
- Making a plan to provide someone with information needed to access online accounts in case of emergency
- Preparing a power of attorney or other legal document authorizing an agent to access digital assets in case of your death or incapacity
- Considering placing digital assets in a trust
- Considering revising your will to include digital asset information
- Researching and discussing the use of an online afterlife company with your attorney
The current legal environment regarding digital assets is in flux, but clients can still make their intentions and desires clear in a will or other legal document. For help drafting such a will or legal document, or any other estate planning need, contact an experienced Bryan-College Station, Texas estate planning attorney at Peterson Law Group at 979-703-7014 or fill out our online contact form.