Our digital belongings are something the laws never envisioned, until recently. Obviously, everything you own in the online world is yours while you are alive, but what happens after you die? Does your present will protect your digital assets? Much of our online content consists of our writings – email, text, tweets, blogs, wikis and more – and our loved ones would surely cherish some of it just as surely as we cherish special old cards and letters. The same goes for our online photos, videos, artwork and other things we’ve created.
Closer to traditional matters of inheritance, do you have money in a PayPal account? Or perhaps you have a thriving online business on eBay? Do you own BitCoins or Second Life Linden dollars, which have a real-world currency exchange value? If so, do your heirs know about these assets and can the executor of your estate retrieve the funds?
The Library of Congress web site has an interesting article by Mike Ashenfelder that provides thought-provoking information, along with several suggestions. He suggests you designate a digital executor, someone who is Internet savvy, who can carry out your instructions and, if necessary, work with the legal executors of your will.
You can find the interesting article at http://goo.gl/T2ofr.
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