Tributes & Video Biographies
Sharing Life Stories, Connecting Generations, Preserving Legacies

Beyond Wills and Trusts – What Do You Do With Your Intellectual Property?

Most people that have families take on the onerous and reflective task of writing a will which provides instructions for the distribution and disposable of our physical assets after we die. Some are very complicated and involve the establishment of trusts to by-pass generations, leaving collections and assets to future generations. Some are very simple distribution of property to surviving relatives. But most people neglect considering how to pass on their accumulated knowledge and memoirs, who they are and what they’ve done, to their heirs.

Personal historians and video biographers have taken on this task and there has been a growing recognition of how important this is. Sharing that mission is something that I have been committed to in this blog as well as the other writing and public speaking that I do. However a new realm of social media has appeared over the past few years and there is a new awareness of the question of what you do with all that media when you are no longer around to manage it?

Facebook allows you to report a person as deceased which “memorializes” their profile page. But what about your website or blog? I received a call yesterday from the sister of a woman whose genealogy website I helped build and occasionally update. She had passed away last week and her sister wanted to know what we do with the website?

What do you do if you keep a blog? People have business blogs, personal blogs, special interest blogs. What will happen to all that information? Darren Rowse has written a very succinct blog article entitled “Do You Have a Blogging Will?” which guides you through creating a document detailing your business and blog’s objectives, people to notify, passwords and access codes, and other information that might help transfer or close your business.

I can really see the value of creating this guide to your online world. Obviously I would be in a similar situation with my blog and website if anything were to happen to me.

Stefani Twyford is a personal historian and video biographer sharing life stories, connecting generations and preserving legacies. To learn more, visit her web site, find her on Twitter as @stefanitwyford, visit the Legacy Multimedia Facebook Fan Page, or send her an e-mail.

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