Book Chapter

Researching Death Online

L van Ryn, T KOHN, B Nansen, M Arnold, M Gibbs, L Hjorth, H Horst, A Galloway, G Bell

The Routledge Companion to Digital Ethnography | Routledge | Published : 2017

Abstract

Death now knocks in a digital age. When the time is nigh, whether from natural causes at a ripe age, or from accidents or illness when young, the word goes out through a range of technologies and then various communities gather offline and online. Digital ethnography in this “death” sphere has been growing in form and possibility over the past two decades as various platforms are designed and become occupied with the desires of the living and dying. Online funerals and commemorative activities are now often arranged alongside the perhaps more somber rites of burial or cremation (Boellstorff 2008, 128). Services such as LivesOn promise that we shall be able to “tweet” beyond the grave; member..

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