facebook
Facebook Wants to Help Your Heirs Better Manage Your Page When You Die

When you die in real life, your social media accounts remain—often as a digital mourning space for friends and family. Facebook is a particularly prominent example of that, and now the company is rolling out a new Tributes feature that lets users leave messages in a dedicated section of a memorialised account (that is, one created by a dead person) separate from the profile’s Timeline. Read More >>

death
The Funeral Directors Deployed to America’s Deadliest Disasters

Last November, as wildfires ravaged the town of Paradise, California, Robert Vigil received an urgent call from the Department of Health and Human services (HHS). Local officials were racing to identify the remains of fire victims, and Vigil, who has spent 26 years as a funeral director in Yuma County, Arizona, was needed on the scene. Read More >>

guns
US Gun Deaths Reached a Record High in 2017

The number of Americans who were killed by firearms in 2017 reached a record high, according to a recent CNN analysis of data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There were almost 40,000 gun-related deaths last year. The majority of these deaths were suicides. Read More >>

archaeology
Elaborate Burials Uncovered at Fifth-Century Anglo-Saxon Cemetery

Archaeologists working in eastern England have discovered a previously unknown Anglo-Saxon cemetery dating back some 1,600 years. At least 20 graves have been uncovered, including many lavish burials belonging to women. Read More >>

death
The Best and Worst Afterlives in Sci-Fi and Fantasy

The concept of a great beyond, whether heavenly or hellish, exists across so many fictional universes—be they part of belief systems or, more often than not in the realms of sci-fi and fantasy, actual planes of existence. We've gather up a few our of favourite afterlives. Read More >>

science
How the Universe Ends

Somewhere between a second and a millennium from now, you will die. Your body and all of its parts will cease functioning and rejoin the Earth as regular, lifeless stuff. The Earth, too, will die, engulfed by an expanding, ageing Sun. The Sun will burn off all of its fuel and end up a white dwarf, then burn out and die. The Milky Way will collide with nearby Andromeda, and form a large, elliptical galaxy, which will die by losing all of its stars to intergalactic space. The corpses of those remaining stars will die, decaying into their constituent parts. The universe will age onward, until all matter is either stored in black holes or floating as free elementary particles. Those black holes will evaporate, and then universe will die. All that was will be an icy cold nothing, forever. Read More >>

science
American Lifespans Won’t Get Much Longer by 2040, Report Finds

In case you were, for some inexplicable reason, feeling optimistic for future generations, an extensive new report is here to bring you down a notch. It predicts that, despite numerous medical advances, the average person born in the US in 2040 will only barely live longer than an American born in 2016. Meanwhile, people growing up in countries such as Japan, China, and Spain will both see greater gains in life expectancy and live longer than their American counterparts. Read More >>

drugs
The Psychedelic Drug DMT Can Simulate a Near-Death Experience, Study Suggests

Not everyone who is close to death—or thinks they are, at least—has a “near-death experience.” But those who do often hallucinate that they leave their bodies, meet otherworldly beings, see bright flashes and tunnels of light, and more. Those who take the psychedelic drug dimethyltryptamine, or DMT— a compound found in the hallucinogenic Amazonian brew known as ayahuasca—experience many of the same things. Read More >>

ads
Even Funeral Ads Have to be Edgy and Loaded With Viral Potential Now

Oh dear, this has happened. A company that specialises in cremating away the inconvenient earthly vessels of the recently deceased has decided the funeral industry needs shaking up a bit, hence this. A series of funny adverts for being cremated, including one showing happy surfers with coffin lids for boards, beaming about being dead soon and on fire. Read More >>

science
Controversial Study Suggests There’s No Limit to Human Ageing

The older we get, the greater our likelihood of dying. Or at least that’s what we thought. New research suggests mortality rates level off after we turn 105, and that no upper limit exists for the human lifespan. It’s an extraordinary conclusion — one that’s not going over very well with other ageing researchers. Read More >>

health
Gastric Balloons May Have Killed 12 People Since 2016 

Since 2016, at least 12 people have died worldwide soon after receiving a intragastric balloon, a new noninvasive procedure meant to help people lose weight, according to an alert released Monday by the US Food and Drug Administration (the FDA). Seven of the patients were in the US. In response, the FDA has approved new warning labels for two balloon products implicated in the deaths. Read More >>

giz asks
Can You Vape to Death?

I never thought I’d see the day, but vaping—the bejewelled fedora of nicotine delivery methods—is starting to seem a lot less ridiculous. Or, at least, somewhat less ridiculous. Juuling teens are still reliably funny. But at the same time, there are real, credentialed doctors out there making a case for vaping as a viable alternative to conventional smoking. One doctor, speaking to the New Yorker, claimed that if 10 per cent of the cigarette smoking population switched over to e-cigs, 6.6 million lives would be saved. Of course, we’re still unclear on what the long-term risks might be—some studies have suggested that e-cig vapour can be carcinogenic, and contain arsenic and lead. So if we’re all going to switch over to vaping, it might be useful at least to know, in the short-term, if it could possibly kill you. Read More >>

death
Super-Budget Funerals With No Religious Pomp Are Coming to the Mainstream

That old David Bowie was innovating even after he'd died, as the star's choosing of a no-frills "direct cremation" after he'd passed away – in which your physical form is disposed of without a traditional funeral service – is fast becoming the norm. Read More >>

giz asks
Which Animal Kills the Most Humans?

Animals fatally maul, sting, trample, and chew about a million humans per year. Pretty nice of them, given the numbers on our side—the average of 950 million birds we kill in the UK every year for our consumption, for instance. In an ideal world, no one would ever get mauled by a bear, or contract rabies from a feral squirrel. But for this week’s Giz Asks, we’re asking which creatures are most desperate for our blood (or, in fairness to the animal kingdom, which are most likely to kill us by accident). Read More >>