‘Legacy Control’

Andrew Gilden, The Social Afterlife, 33 Harvard Journal of Law and Technology 229 (2020), available at SSRN. The COVID-19 crisis has compelled many of us to move our lives (further) online, creating new social interactions and communities, as well as a larger digital footprint. The pandemic has also forced us to confront the risks and realities of mortality for ourselves and our loved ones. This highlights an important question: What will happen to our digital legacy after death? Legacy has both economic and noneconomic aspects, and inheritance law has primarily focused on the former. The latter, however, has risen to prominence with the growth of intellectual property rights and social media, both of which often have a stronger cultural or emotional legacy component. The law as it stands is thus ill-suited to deal with the noneconomic aspects of legacy … (more)

[Alexander Boni-Saenz, JOTWELL, 14 July]

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