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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb. 14, 2003
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    Windward Farm, Washougal, WA- our work in progress, our money pit, our home!
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    6,892

    Default When dead people have active Facebook pages...creepy or comforting?

    A high school classmate of mine (class of '86 mind you) died early this fall, suddenly and heartbreakingly in the presence of his teenage daughter. He was a great man, husband and father. But...his FB page remains active, updated with photos of himself doing the sport he loved.

    I find it...kind of disturbing and creepy to see updates from a dead man. Am I being too sensitive? I'm sure it is his wife or daughters doing it.

    I often wonder if my dear Mr. CC would update my page to at least say I died or delete it all together.
    Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar. 4, 2010
    Posts
    1,762

    Default

    Well, my son, who is 24, got a FB birthday notification this week from a classmate's page...only problem is, the poor kid committed suicide in August. Extremely disturbing to my son, who reported it to FB. Maybe his parents are too distraught to take his page down, maybe they don't know his password, maybe they don't know he even was on FB. All I know is - it really really bothered my son.


    3 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb. 14, 2003
    Location
    Windward Farm, Washougal, WA- our work in progress, our money pit, our home!
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    Default

    The internet has created a whole new set of problems to be dealt with when someone passes, hasn't it? I'm sorry for your son, what a terrible thing to find online. Instant information doesn't mean that we don't have to be vigilant and mindful of others.
    Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct. 29, 1999
    Posts
    14,488

    Default

    I think some family members use it to help them heal - kind of a shrine. If it helps them, I am totally ok with it. Maybe easier though for all if the name was changed to In memory of xyz


    2 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec. 30, 2002
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    909

    Default

    I don't think those situations bother me. I understand that family members may not be able to or may not even think of disabling a FB page.

    I'm bothered by comments to the dead on FB. My sister-in-law still posts comments to her stillborn child. She lost the baby 1.5 years ago. It's very sad, but sometimes you would think she were talking to her living child rather than the stillborn baby. It's a bit morbid.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar. 4, 2004
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    3,992

    Default

    I also kind of have mixed feelings. I would think it very strange/kind of disturbing if other people/relatives were posting in the deceased's name, but I had a classmate commit suicide last year, and friends still post thoughts on his wall from time to time. I think it's kind of nice. Mainly just songs, memories, pictures, or random things...nothing morbid, and I imagine it has it's healing properties.
    Caitlin
    *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
    http://community.webshots.com/user/redmare01


    2 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 23, 2005
    Location
    SFBay
    Posts
    1,298

    Default

    Not Facebook, but my grandma's phone still says it's my grandfather's name calling. He died my junior year of college, and I am nearly 30. I find it rather creepy, like he's calling from the grave I know it's a coping mechanism or something and understand it, but it always freaks me out a bit when it displays on the caller ID...


    2 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar. 4, 2010
    Posts
    1,762

    Default

    I think the situation with my son is that the classmate's family didn't have a wake or service, so there was no way to grieve communally. The family was so private about the death (which is, of course, their right) that it's a bit jarring to have the FB page just kind of on autopilot, like nothing ever happened. Not sure that they would have really wanted it to be this way. Very sad.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb. 13, 2005
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    6,816

    Default

    One of my PhD program colleagues does research on this very thing: grief and affective rhetoric in social media spaces. Many family members and friends find it cathartic; others find it uncanny or creepy. Sort of like everything related to death, right?

    If it bugs you, just hide it in your news feed. The next time you see a post, hover to the right of it to get the little hidden drop-down arrow to show up. Click the arrow, then choose "Hide," then click "Change what updates you get from [user name]." Choose "Unsubscribe" if you don't want to see them anymore.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 18, 2011
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    67

    Default

    The best is when your dead friend (who barely used Facebook to begin with, and has no one updating the account) has their account hacked, and starts spamming you constantly. When this happened, I messaged FB to tell them the person had passed away... the spamming stopped, but the account wasn't deleted.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec. 31, 2000
    Location
    El Paso, TX
    Posts
    12,594

    Default

    Do they post in italics? (Like Willem did?)
    Last edited by jetsmom; Nov. 24, 2012 at 01:08 AM.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr. 5, 2012
    Location
    The "Wet" Coast, Canada
    Posts
    168

    Default

    I've seen it go both ways for sure.

    My friend's brother died quite young a couple of years ago. I believe at the time Facebook was notified of his death, and so the account is impossible to access, but people can still post on his wall. Every year on his birthday and the anniversary of his death a few people will post something (myself included). I know his family looks at the wall from their own profiles, and that it brings them comfort to know others think of him.

    On the other hand a local horse professional passed away this year and his wife has kept his profile active-ish. She has her own, but also uses his to comment and post things on other people's walls. I find it a bit...unnecessary...
    He was a local professional, and thus had a lot of friends. Personally I'd met him a handful of times at most. So I find it slightly creepy that he continues to be "active". I've vaguely debated removing him, but feel that would be disrespectful somehow.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun. 20, 2000
    Location
    Full time in Delhi, NY!
    Posts
    6,397

    Default

    A friend suicided almost two years ago and I'm still notified of his birthday. So I checked out his page. Yup, tons of birthday wishes. I didn't post one. I'm pretty sure he's not reading it. Occasionally I get POSTS from this dead friend. I assume they're posts from his partner. I find them off-putting. I wish his partner would just get his own page and be done with it. How's he going to find someone else if he's posting on his dead partner's page?

    On the other hand, another friend died unexpectedly from surgical complications earlier this year and his page receives posts from time to time from friends, mostly along the lines of "hey Buddy, thought of you today when yada, yada, yada." His wife has said she loves reading those and also feels that being able to post helps his friends cope with his untimely tragic death. So I guess it's an individual thing.
    ~Kryswyn~ Always look on the bright side of life, de doo, de doo de doo de doo
    Check out my Kryswyn JRTs on Facebook

    "Life is merrier with a terrier!"


    1 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2002
    Location
    Calera, AL
    Posts
    1,901

    Default

    Well, definitely not comforting. I would be completely weirded out to get a message from the dead.

    *Sigh* Yet another password to give my SO so he can delete my account if I fall over dead. Dying is so damn complicated. There really are just too many loose ends. How the hell does anyone die gracefully???


    5 members found this post helpful.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun. 10, 2001
    Location
    Rising Sun, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    5,125

    Default

    My husband is dead so I've got a different view that others. I loved him with all my heart and soul and I'll never be the same person I was when he was alive.

    My thought is if you don't like it- unfriend/ hide in news feed or be done with it.

    Death is a part of life and all of us will die sometime. Everybody has different views- some people are comforted by going and looking at old pics and remember the good times. Other people are creeped out and repulsed.

    Facebook pages can be memorialized which means that basically nobody can log in and post in that person's name or log into their account, but things can be posted on their wall. Somebody did that to my husband's page without consulting me... I never posted as him, but it was healing to log in and see the FB games we used to play, see our messages. And then it was all gone. Back then "memorializing" removed all comments that my husband had ever posted on other people's walls as well.

    I felt like he'd died all over again... back then videos were stripped and other things that aren't stripped away now... But take a step back and imagine if you can't see the videos of your beloved husband playing with your 3 month old son.... and then imagine that those were FB videos and not You-Tube videos... and imagine that that has been ripped away?

    Do you see things in a different light?

    I still post on my husband's wall from time time to time as do a few of his friends.

    So before you report to FB think about what it might do to the loved one who find one small sliver of comfort.

    If you don't like it... un-friend or hide notifications. That's my 2 cents ;-)
    http://www.leakycreek.com/
    http://leakycreek.wordpress.com/ Rainbows & Mourning Doves Blog
    John P. Smith II 1973-2009 Love Always
    Father, Husband, Friend, Firefighter- Cancer Sucks- Cure Melanoma


    9 members found this post helpful.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun. 10, 2001
    Location
    Rising Sun, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    5,125

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by alabama View Post
    *Sigh* Yet another password to give my SO so he can delete my account if I fall over dead. Dying is so damn complicated. There really are just too many loose ends. How the hell does anyone die gracefully???
    You have a very good point... if you don't want your FB page around anymore after you die... make your wishes known and have a loved one log in and delete it. Memorializing freezes it and you can't delete it.
    http://www.leakycreek.com/
    http://leakycreek.wordpress.com/ Rainbows & Mourning Doves Blog
    John P. Smith II 1973-2009 Love Always
    Father, Husband, Friend, Firefighter- Cancer Sucks- Cure Melanoma



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb. 14, 2003
    Location
    Windward Farm, Washougal, WA- our work in progress, our money pit, our home!
    Posts
    6,892

    Default

    I understand both viewpoints, and I'm sure his wife finds comfort in the "hey, bud, missed you at the race today" kinds of posts. Today, though, it was simply a picture. It was jarring. Not upsetting, simply odd and off-putting I guess. If this man were a dear friend/relative, I could see it being a comfort as you do, MK Smith.

    I do think that this is a new situation that will take some time to become normed in society; for us to learn the rules.
    Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!



  18. #18
    Join Date
    May. 11, 2010
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    864

    Default

    One thing I find weird is when people wish the person happy birthday and clearly are not aware they are no longer alive...awkward!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct. 14, 2000
    Location
    Now In the Sandhills, NC mostly
    Posts
    6,769

    Default

    The "people you may know" pops up a few dead people. It gives me the creeps.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jan. 10, 2008
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    5,871

    Default

    My friend who passed away three years ago now still has an active FB page, and people frequently post memorial messages to her on it (she was a well-known poet and had a huge community of friends). It's a little disconcerting on birthdays, or when FB used to give me the "You haven't talked to X in a while, post on her wall!" pop-up in the corner.

    My dad's page is still active. That was tough on my parents' birthday a couple weeks ago, and when I start to type in another name and his comes up. I was more upset when he was in a coma in the hospital and my mother logged in to his page and posted a comment on one of my pictures in his name. I really flipped out about that. I haven't been to his page in a while, but I know a couple people posted memorial birthday wishes to him there.



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