Sunday, December 01, 2019

Of Letters, Lies, And Legacies

Among the movies showing free this long, holiday weekend is "Can You Forgive Me?" based on the true story of an author who became a forger of dead celebrities' private letters.

Lee Israel is said to have believed that her forgeries were the best work of her life. The greatest mistake of her life (perhaps apart from misspelling "arse"), may have been in not accepting a bribe.

This is a fascinating read:

On the topic of lies, I was reminded of a song by Greenslade that I have always like very much for a particular line that I probably should not quote, because songs have so few lines that it is easy to infringe the songwriter's copyright by accident.  The line is about untruth in journalism.

I believe this link will take you to "Newsworth" and Greenslade or their estates will be inadequately compensated, but compensated somewhat.

Sequeing to estates and estate bloggers Joseph B Doll and Michael J. Kearney, writing for Cole Schotz PC, discuss what happens when a bitcoin investor dies unexpectedly, without making sure his or her or their loved ones have the cyber key and passwords to unlock his/her/their digital property.

Or, for the original:

One can also lose invaluable photographs and other intangible delights if they are locked up in Facebook or Drop Box or a proprietary "cloud".

For Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP,  Joshua Boughton discusses digital assets with a focus on the inheritance dilemmas of British persons.

Harking back to copyright and private letters, legal blogger Ken Moon, writing for AJ Park examines the case for copyright infringement when a newspaper publishes substantial portions of a living celebrity's private and personal letter.

It's all food for thought concerning the enduring value of letters, especially for authors and creators. One might also give some thought to the preservation (or not) of text messages and emails... and unpublished works.

One might also consider leaving instructions in one's Will concerning social media accounts, ancestry-related social media accounts, health and fitness logging accounts.

At least it wasn't Amazon that acquired the ability to track your heart rate and daily steps and swings of the arms via a device that you paid to purchase, not to mention the details you uploaded to the site to record your water consumption by the glass, your dietary choices, your weight and more!

All the best,

Rowena Cherry 

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