Media technologies have operated as both a means of communicating news of a death and memorialising the deceased for a significant period of time, moving from traditional epitaphs, eulogies, wakes and inscription in stone to centuries-old obituaries printed and circulated in newspapers. So where are we now?
Digital commemoration emerged as the internet became readily accessible and an integral part of people’s communicative practices. Initially, during the 90s, it took the form of memorial websites hosted by the families and friends of the deceased.
But this earlier form of commemoration required some proficiency with HTML and content management systems. Therefore online memorials were relatively uncommon, were only authored by a limited number of people, and were fairly static, using only text and still-images