Thursday, May 09, 2013

Deadly Fulfillment

There has been an article sitting on the desktop of my computer for a couple of weeks now. It has
been patiently waiting for me to give is some attention by referring to it in a blog post. The reason it has taken so long is because university chores have taken precedent. Yes, ‘chores’ is the correct word, not a single word that has less tedium intonation could fit the bill.

The article that I have been procrastinating over is called “Plan Your Digital Afterlife with Inactive Account Manager”. The irony of this is that a few years ago, I created a business called “Good-bye Friends”, but it never took off. What set this in motion was when friend of mine had passed away, but I had not heard about it for weeks later. By chance, one of his nephews was savvy enough to send out notices to all of those individuals in his e-mail contacts. If it had not been for this nephew, I would never have known why communication suddenly stopped.

I had another friend in Tennessee who did not have a home computer and only read her e-mails sporadically during her teaching day. She and I regularly sent small presents to each other over a number of years. When I wrote my first book, I sent her a copy with an invitation to visit. It was strange that I have never heard from her again. I would have written to the school where she teaches/taught, but she had changed schools and districts the year before.

My idea for “Good-bye Friends” was to create a database for clients who had lists of people to be notified upon death. Two or more trusted people would be the messenger for alerting me that it was time to act. That is the idea in brief. Shortly after getting this little venture up and running, I found an article on the Internet that listed and reviewed 9 similar services. Apparently, my idea was not all that unique.

Now Google is getting in the act with their own slimmed down version. I guess it is true that death is a powerful business.

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