Believe it or not, social media is already bridging the gap between life and death; a controversial new app called LivesOn was recently launched on Twitter, which you can authorise to create a personal digital afterlife.
As its slogan explains, "When your heart stops beating, you'll keep tweeting."
The tool was introduced in March, attracting 7,000 volunteers before its launch. The service is, in effect, a digital robot thatuses algorithms to understand a person's online behaviour, learn about what they like to read and watch and the way they speak in order to keep them present in the digital space, still “favouriting” tweets and posting stuff they like.
Currently, there are around 30 million Facebook accounts of deceased people. Thousands of Twitter feeds stop flowing suddenly or end with floods of tributes from friends, family members and colleagues. LivesOn gives Twitter users the chance to create a parallel "you" that will continue to exist in the online world, eventually outliving the real you, The Independent writes.
Alongside the obvious challenges of keeping people tweeting after they pass away, the purpose of the app seems somewhat weird and many have already labelled it as "sick" for trying to bring people back from the dead and causing distress at a time of deep grief. Dave Bedwood, creative partner at the company behind the service, Lean Mean Fighting Machine, says that this was never the idea. The experiment is simply aimed at finding out "how much of ourselves we really give up to technology." The agency is now working with Queen Mary University in London and plans to begin testing the tool as soon as possible.
What do you think - one step too far or a great digital legacy?