Facebook celebrated their 10th birthday by giving users a gift in the way of a video montage called Lookback of our best moments using their service (get yours here). These videos offered a nice look back on our lives shared through the service over the years. But an unexpected thing happened when John Berlin saw several of these videos pop up in his stream. What was a joyful experience for most people, had a different effect on him. His son Jesse passed away in 2012 and his photos were appearing in some of these videos which made him choke back tears.
John wanted to see his son’s Lookback video but apparently hasn’t been able to get access to his son’s account. He tried emailing and other ways of contacting Facebook without any luck. So John took to YouTube to recorded a video plea in which he asked friends to share in the hopes that somehow his message would get to Facebook. Sure enough it caught their attention and Facebook made a personalized video for Jesse.
The process of memorializing an account on Facebook can be challenging. This post can provide some details regarding the process and you can visit this Facebook help page with information on how to memorialize accounts. You should also visit the digital legacy section for more information.
CNN stated that in Facebook’s response to John Berlin that they’ve already been providing memorial pages since 2009 but want to give users better ways to honor their loved ones on the site. Facebook also stated the following:
“This experience reinforced to us that there’s more Facebook can do to help people celebrate and commemorate the lives of people they have lost. We’ll have more to share in the coming weeks and months.”
It will be interesting to monitor the steps Facebook and other social networks continue to take as the issue around policies of their users who die continue to surface more challenges.