Facebook, User


"And to my precious daughter, Elizabeth, I leave my Facebook account so that the Buzzfeed quizzes that I've tagged people in and the photos of my cat cuddling a stuffed cat will not be forgotten."

OK, Facebook's new feature isn't quite like that, but the "legacy contact" update the website announced today does mean you can pass your account on to someone else in the event of your death.

"Until now, when someone passed away, we offered a basic memorialized account which was viewable, but could not be managed by anyone," the company writes in the announcement. "By talking to people who have experienced loss, we realized there is more we can do to support those who are grieving and those who want a say in what happens to their account after death. Today we're introducing a new feature that lets people choose a legacy contact—a family member or friend who can manage their account when they pass away."

But assigning a legacy contact isn't just about making sure your Facebook is taken care of after you shuffle off this mortal coil; it's also about ensuring that there will be a digital memorial for friends and family to properly mourn you online.

"Once someone lets us know that a person has passed away, we will memorialize the account and the legacy contact will be able to:

•Write a post to display at the top of the memorialized Timeline (for example, to announce a memorial service or share a special message)
•Respond to new friend requests from family members and friends who were not yet connected on Facebook
•Update the profile picture and cover photo

You also have the option of making sure your profile gets automatically deleted once Facebook has been notified of your death.

You can see the step by step instructions on how to assign a legacy contact on Facebook's newsroom. But you must choose your Facebook heir wisely. Imagine getting up to heaven and seeing that your buddy Paul made your final Facebook status something like "My biggest regret in life is never seeing Justin Bieber in concert. BELIEVER 4EVA!"

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