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Facebook is on the way to a digital Ghost town

In 50 years, will dominate the dead Facebook . This is the morbid conclusion of researchers at the University of Oxford, after you pay the growth in the social network, and with the death rates of the United Nations, compared, and examined. According to this account will be dead by 2100, approximately 4.9 billion account holders: The same number of dead would be as living users.

Will has geunkt Facebook in this way to a digital Ghost town, or to the "zombie book", as the "Germany radio"? Facebook is not idle: in mid-April, the managing Director Sheryl Sandberg announced in a blog post, new features for the accounts of dead members, and they allow us to commemorate the Deceased, and facilitate survivors the management of the user accounts. In addition, should be ensured by means of artificial intelligence, the Profiles of the deceased show up unexpectedly in the message flow, and so potentially painful memories to trigger.

The discount contact lives forever

However, not all are convinced that Facebook has penetrated to the problems really. In an Interview with the magazine "Wired" showed Sheryl Sandberg baffled by the idea that there is a need for more than one discount contact. Because there is the possibility that you killed, for example, in an accident, together with his designate, the administrator of the estate, and no one is left who could take care of the accounts: "The proposal is a good one! This is neither me nor anyone else could think of."

The researchers, it is not a matter of Facebook: they demand a broad discussion about how the digital legacies to be dealt with. "We have to put up with the often difficult questions of this inheritance apart", you are asking for. And not only on the individual, but also on the societal level. "These Profiles of the dead users are more than the sum of their parts: they become a part of our global digital Inheritance," says the study's lead author, Carl Öhman, in the press release on the study.

"Whoever controls this, controls our history"

His Co-author David Watson twice. Never have there been such a large archive about human behavior and our culture: "Who controls this archive, and also controls the story – that's why the access should not be left to a single, profit-oriented company." Instead, Facebook, historians, archivists, archaeologists, and ethicists should invite to take care of these data and to preserve it for as long as possible.

Because the survive in the longer term, is anything but safe. Because even if digital information have the semblance of immortality, they are more fragile than you would believe, say the researchers: file formats change, and the data must be adjusted to the new circumstances, in order to remain usable. (Editorial Tamedia)

Created: 30.04.2019, 21:06 PM

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