The deceased live on LinkedIn

In the relatively young landscape of social media, one awkward area has to do with the accounts of the deceased on LinkedIn.

I now have 2 friends on LinkedIn who have died unexpectedly young. Both are still active on LinkedIn, and show up as still working at their last job. I dread the day that I am prompted to Congratulate one of them on their n-year anniversary at their ‘current’ employer. As time goes on, the number of dead on social networks will inevitably grow. And grow.

There’s a part of me that rejoices in seeing my friends’ names again, having a way to visit their pages and feel the idle connection come alive. But on the heels of that feeling comes the inevitable knife-in-the-gut, the remembrance of the loss: a cruel, insensitive reminder.

LinkedIn provides a way for members to report accounts of the deceased to initiate account shutdown. Generally, I would hope that a family member would get to make this decision, and not a colleague.

These accounts are living epitaphs. Miss you guys.

Valerie Lanard

Valerie Lanard

Valerie Lanard is a software engineer and fitness lover. Once upon a time, exercise was a chore she did to chase the elusive "skinny". Somewhere along the way, it morphed into a source of daily joy, motivation, and strength. Find her on a bike, on a hike, in a skort, or near a usb port. Chances are, she's wearing a gadget and a smile.

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