Facebook Memorials Already Causing Trauma

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Yesterday, Facebook announced a new feature that would allow users to “memorialise” a friend’s profile. Now though, it seems as though those memorial profiles are causing some trouble for those who were friends with them.

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On Friday, Facebook introduced a new layout, including an updated suggestion box. The new suggestion box routinely tells users that, if there’s a user with whom they used to interact quite regularly but whom they’ve not contacted in a while, they should attempt to “reconnect” with that user. Of course, Facebook did say that memorialised pages wouldn’t be subject to that kind of treatment, because, let’s face it, it’d be a bit hard on the person getting the reconnection request…

Yet, here we are, less than two days later and already many people are leaving comments on Facebook’s blog post about the new feature. Some choice quotes include,

“Hey, I don’t know if you read all of these, but facebook has suggested that I ‘reconnect’ with two friends in the last two days, both of whom died over 18 months ago. Please, please, please stop this as it is disturbing and creepy.”

“Facebook just suggested I reconnect with a friend. A dead one.”

“Ironic that facebook is suggesting I ‘reconnect’ with a friend who was murdered this year… :(“

We’ll have to wait and see how widespread this minor misstep gets before Facebook actually manages to fix it so that “reconnect” messages don’t appear for users with memorialised pages.

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