To die for

I’ve long been interested in life after digital death.  It does seem to have caught on. Patrick Reilly writes:

I spent the day at an unconference on the topic of what happens to your digital property and rights when you move on to the Big Cloud.

The unconference announcement listed the following questions:

  • Death is a part of life but what does death of the physical self mean for the digital self?
  • What does it mean for loved ones of the departed?
  • What does it mean for professionals in end of life care and post mortem services?
  • What does it mean for online tool and service providers? What does it mean for estate and legacy planners?
  • What do people do to prepare for their own deaths in relationship to their online life?
  • What do friends and relatives do with the digital assets of a loved one when they die?
  • What if aspectsof their online life were secret or just not understood?
  • What does it mean for governments and public records?

I notice they didn’t list, “What does it mean?”  But hey, it’s only an unconference, right?

OK, just one thing.  What’s an unconference, please?  (And why am I supposed to just know that?)  So, here’s this:

An unconference is a facilitated participant-driven face-to-face conference around a theme or purpose.

Oh, so you mean, it’s a conference?  Well…

I think I have said this before but need to speak out about it again. If you set the entirety of your agenda ahead of time whether via wiki or via mailing list – it is NOT an unconference. The magic of an unconference – the “UN” part is the created live on site part where attendees together create the breakout sessions (hopefully using open space technology)

Oh, so it’s not exactly a conference but it’s not an un-conference, really, which would just not be a conference at all, right?  It’s just a poorly planned conference?  Or un-planned, maybe, but still a conference?

Well, don’t bury me, ’cause I’m not dead yet.  Still looks like an interesting un-agenda up there.  For the digitally undead (no, not them–digitally!  digitally!) among us.

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Author:Ron Coleman

I write this blog.

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3 Responses to “To die for”

  1. May 23, 2010 at 12:49 am #

    Maybe there should be a digital dead letters office for the emails, like the one where Bartleby worked.

  2. May 24, 2010 at 10:03 pm #

    Intriguing. I’m sure my estate planner would love to spend some time with me discussing what happens to my avatar in Second Life when I finally migrate elsewhere in the cloud and stop logging on. Will Hamlet Falconer simply turn into a statue in the middle of the road? Will the games finally take senescence into account and establish a land for the eternal selves of the digitally undead, where they can mill about like the lost in Limbo? Are rights to my digital property subject to inheritance tax, or even descendable? Odd, that these are real issues in our times.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Ashes to Ashes, Bits to Bits: Estate Planning for Your Online Self « Blog Law Blog - May 25, 2010

    [...] What will happen to your blog after you die? Last week, an “unconference” (a sort of free-form conference) called Digital Death Day asked “[W]hat does death of the physical self mean for the digital self?” (Hap: Likelihood of Confusion) [...]

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