One day, you're going to die. And when you do, your online presence—like your social network profiles, your blog comments, and your web services—will serve as your very first memorial. Here's how it'll play out.
Twitter is supposed to let people share their lives in something close to real time, so it's especially jarring to come across a deceased Twitter users' feed. The service is used often enough by some so as to give a haunting look at a person's last days, but the Twitter feeds of most deceased people, for obvious reasons, just kind of... stop. Here's what can happen to them after you pass:
• Nothing: Though Twitter is awfully hard to get in touch with, their behavior suggests that they don't actively hunt for dead Twitterer's accounts. There are a number of ways for an account to end up deleted (more on that later), but Twitter actively looking for and closing accounts of the recently deceased isn't one of them.
• Requested deletion: As with Facebook, Twitter does seem to have some provision to allow family members to delete accounts, but their policies aren't at all public. Blogger Daniel Howe did manage to coax a response out of the company a few months back: