Today I got a birthday reminder from Facebook. It reminded me to wish a person who bid adieu to this world 7 years ago. He died in the prime of his life, leaving behind lots of dreams, hopes and wishes to be fulfilled, leaving behind a family whose tears have not yet dried and a child who never got a chance to know her father. He was very active on social media and was one of "those people"; the ones who are fastidious about leaving a like or a positive comment on every small thing on everybody's timelines. His name pops up regularly in my reminder list to remind me of the memories we made on Facebook and to rewind back on our "friend-versary"! And every time I think of him and other similar ghosts on social media, the truth hits me that there is no death on social media. Unless and until somebody goes into their profiles and deletes it off. They just float about in people's reminder lists and move about in auto created videos as a reminder of the lives they have led.
Do we need social media to remind us of those who are no longer with us? No, I would venture to say, but then I stop to think and realize, instead of occasionally remembering somebody on random days, isn't it a way of honoring the dead when we remember them on the same days we would have wished them when they were alive? People alive mostly only remember the day of the departing and the sorrow that day filled our hearts with than the memories of happier times spent with them. What would they have wished for us to do? Would I leave my usernames and passwords with my next of kin, in case I find out my death is imminent? Would I want them to delete my social media presence or be another ghost profile? I got an answer of "who cares what happens when we are dead?" but then when we really think about it then why do we lead the lives we do if we do not care so much about the future? If social media is only as important as a frivolous time pass then why do we care so much about our public personas on it? Or is it a brief snapshot of a life "seemingly" well lived?