We never know when the end is near, so it’s always a good (and awkward) idea to have someone to take care of your Facebook account when the inevitable comes. Instead of leaving your sign-in credentials, you now have the opportunity to assign a person for the grim task of informing your friends about your demise.
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.
This legacy contact will be assigned by users, and upon their death they will notify Facebook about the death of the account owner. Facebook will then memorialise the account adding a ‘Remembering’ text over the deceased’s name.
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Legacy contacts will have the right to write a post that will be added at the top of the memorialised timeline, respond to friend requests from friends and family and update profile and cover photos.
Users can grant their legacy contacts permission to download an archive with their photos, posts and profile information. However, these contacts will not be able to log in to the profile of the deceased, nor read the messages.
Adding a legacy contact is easy. Users can visit their settings page and then choose the option ‘ Legacy Contact’, situated at the bottom of the page. After that, they will select their legacy contact with the option to send him or her a message to inform them about the decision. Users can then select whether they want to grant download access to the photos, posts and info archive posted on their profile.
Legacy profiles are rolling out to US accounts and will be soon available to more countries. It is not obligatory for users to set a contact and they can still request the deletion of their profile upon their death.