While presenting at the ICCFA 2008 Annual Convention in San Diego, my Blackberry went off and it was a freelance reporter, Marty Graham. She had been monitoring the schedule of the San Diego Convention Center and saw that there was a Funeral Convention taking place in her town.
Wired is the first word on technology. Every month in the magazine and every day on the website, WIRED explores how ideas fueled by innovation change the world. – Wired.com
I made arrangements for Marty to receive a Press Pass and she attended my “Web 2.0 – The New Internet for Funeral Directors” presentation. After my session we had a great interview, and a couple of follow-up phone conversations. Also, she was able to get in touch with pal, John Heald at Tributes.com.
Tributes.com is part of the Eons.com, founded by Monster.com’s Jeff Taylor. In the Tech World, the founder of Monster has a little more appeal than the Funeral Futurist, so Taylor and his efforts are the stars of the article. Marty penned a great story, you should go check it out at Wired: Monster.com Founder Starts Social Networking Site for the Dead.
“People who spend the winter in Florida log on to faraway websites during the winter to check to see who died back home,” the Vancouver-based funeral director and consultant says. “Most funeral homes have websites now, and those that don’t are looking at setting up.”
Word of caution in the comments – there was some whining going on by the folks at Legacy.com that they didn’t get the props that they thought they deserved in the article. It appears that Legacy has some agreement with various newspapers throughout the U.S. It has been reported to me that these in papers, funeral homes are not allowed to include a reference to their website for friends to leave condolences for the family because the paper has this ability via Legacy. This seems more like collusion and less like serving families – what do you think?
For all of the funeral directors reading this, please let me know if you are forbidden to include your website’s URL in your local newspaper’s obituaries – I would love to know!