What to Do With Your Digital Memories
On January 1, 1983, the internet was officially born, and ever since our most powerful memories and messages have been preserved in pics, vids, and a thousand different kinds of digital communication platforms. Our cameras are out at the birth of our children and the end of our lives, and the informational echo of our spirits is becoming ever more vibrant and complete for the loved ones we leave behind.
Today, people both young and old are making the preservation of digital memories an integral part of legacy planning. Pictures with a beloved grandmother are becoming priceless keepsakes with as much value as any tangible object. But as we all know, years of your digital life can be wiped away by one dropped phone or drink spilled on a laptop.
How, where, and when we store our data is critical to ensuring it’s protected and preserved for the future. It’s a lot to think about—and so much information to store!—but we’re going to make it easy for you. Here’s how to ensure your digital memories last a lifetime and beyond, so you can rest easy knowing they’re safe and secure.
Wait, How Much Data Do I have?
A lot. Just by reading this online, you’re creating 1.7 MB of data on average every second, and that goes for every one of the 5 billion-plus internet users in the world today. In the minute it took you to read this far, there were half a million new tweets, nearly 50,000 new pics uploaded to Instagram, and over 15 million texts that all represent a tiny thread in the fabric of someone’s life and legacy.
Do a little math, and that means each one of us is going to produce over 4 million GB of data before it’s all said and done, and a great deal of that represents memories that will be cherished for generations to come.
Preserving Your Gigabytes
Collecting and preserving your digital memories can feel like a big project, but if you approach it methodically you’ll be well on your way to protecting your digital legacy. And remember: it’s important to think about what’s meaningful for you, but take the time to consider what the people you’re preserving might like to have as well. After all, they’re the ones who will be enjoying it!
Gather Your Information
The first step is figuring out exactly what you have, and it’s definitely going to be more than you think. Obviously, you’re going to need to find all your picture and video storage devices, from phones to flash drives to cloud storage. Make a list, and include any relevant site names, logins, and passwords.
You’re also going to want to consolidate all your email logins and passwords as well. Believe it or not, you don’t just inherit account access when a loved one passes on. Google’s official policy is that they will carefully review any requests for information from a deceased person’s account, but they absolutely do not give out account information under any circumstances. So don’t forget to make a note!
Finally, add all your social media accounts, including Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, Twitter, and anywhere else you hang out and post. We keep some of our most beloved memories and interactions on their servers, and you will definitely want to preserve it.
Back it Up!
Most people don’t remember to regularly back up their digital information, and that’s why so many operating systems have built-in passive backup systems. Take our advice: if you haven’t backed anything up lately, go do it the second you finish here. Accidents are by definition unpredictable, and all it takes is one curious cat or a set of sticky fingers to rob you of a lifetime of digital memories.
Using physical backups like flash drives and dedicated storage is always a good option, but online storage is actually an extremely reliable and secure option today. Data storage is big business, and by 2025 there will be 175 zettabytes of data being professionally stored. Don’t know what a zettabyte is? Have a look at this:
That’s a zetta-worth of bytes, and it’s enough to give every insect on earth a name as long as this sentence.
The cloud storage industry is reshaping the world, and online servers are reliable, secure, and can provide extremely affordable storage of all your most important memories and messages.
Make a Plan
Once you’ve collected your digital memories and backed it all up, you’ll be ready to decide how you want to store and transmit it to your beneficiaries. You could keep a bunch of solid-state storage devices in a shoebox in your closet, but there’s just one problem: technology ages. Badly.
You’ve probably got a TV from 1999 sitting in your garage, and the only thing that’s not an antique is the plug. Your data’s no good if nobody can access it!
Ideally, your memories and messages should be stored in a digital vault that will be professionally protected and maintained. You’ll be able to store all the GB you need in perpetuity, and you’ll never have to worry about changing times.
Also, if you want to deliver a birthday message to your granddaughter when she turns 18, it doesn’t have to be kept on VHS in a dusty box in the garage. You can record, store, and schedule delivery online without ever having to think about it again.
Preserve Your Digital Memories With The Postage
The Postage is a digital legacy preparation and preservation service that makes storing your most important messages and memories easy and secure. We offer a range of options, including will creation, legacy planning, a digital vault, and digital memories and messages delivery.
Life planning doesn’t have to be hard. Begin your journey to a more organized life today.