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Cyworld launches ‘digital inheritance’ service

Promotional image for Cyworld’s digital inheritance service (Cyworld)
Promotional image for Cyworld’s digital inheritance service (Cyworld)

South Korean social media platform Cyworld on Sunday launched a new service called “digital inheritance,” which allows the family of a deceased user to inherit digital data.

Family members will gain access to published photos, videos and even the diary of the deceased, while other private materials open to friends or the account owner may not be disclosed due to privacy issues.

The company added the “inheritance” will be made only if the user agrees to the terms before death.

Cyworld has sent emails to users to inform them of the new service since last week, and more than 1,400 people had agreed to the data transfer as of Friday, the company said.

Industry watchers say the new service is likely to spur fresh debate here over the property rights of digital data and inheritance rights. Currently, there is no related law.

Naver, the nation’s largest internet company, offers a data backup service for published blog posts written by the deceased if requested.

Cyworld is a pioneering social media platform that started offering 2D avatar features in the early 2000s. After years of operational fluctuations, the platform was relaunched early this year.

By Byun Hye-jin (hyejin2@heraldcorp.com)
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