Thursday, February 14, 2008

4 Ds of Information loss – Divorce

There are 2 types of divorce in this world, amicable and complete shafting. This is a quote from Ellybabes' BarCamp presentation on Death and Divorce in the Digital World.

In the case of a divorce, data is just property. As such data has a legal standing. Data also has the "advantage" in that it can be copied. That is also its disadvantage. While you can claim that you should own the only copy of those saucy pictures from that dirty weekend or Valentine's Day, there is not guarantee that your partner hasn't already taken a copy. Or deleted it in spite so neither has a copy.

Every problem which Ellybabes raised in the initial presentation still applies.

However there is an additional wrinkle. There are legal presidents for a divorce. But what if the couple isn't married by choice, or because they legally can't marry yet. If one partner of an unmarried couple dies, then any children, or blood relatives of the deceased partner often has a stronger legal right to the property (physical or data); if an unmarried partner leaves, he or she may not have a legal claim to any property for which the other partner claims ownership.

Is there a solution? Other than ensuring you have a copy of all your data and share neither accounts nor passwords, no.

Unless you love and trust them of course. Which is how this topic began...

Sorry that it's so short, but there isn't really a solution other than not sharing in the first place.

take care,
William Knott

With kind thanks to John Looney of Google (for the tech and social angles) and Simon McGarr of (for the legal questions and answers) and for all the people quoted above for providing their perspectives.

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Blogger Ann Marie said...

You are absolutely right. The legal ligistics seem to be quite unceremonious and complicated if you ask me. I honestly had no idea how complicated the process really is, one would think the decision to divorce would be one of the more complicated steps. I work for, it is an online community for women navigating through the various stages of divorce and life thereafter. These legal questions and issues are of so much inquiry and important that we have themed the entire month of March "Legal Eagle" issues month. It is quite surprising, at least to me, all that is entailed legally.
Just me two cents.
Ann Marie

P.s.- Directing a nod toward our Cork-Host, my family's from Londary and Donegal. Hello from one Irishman to another.

7:59 p.m., February 15, 2008  

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