We just don't have any way of knowing whether the recently deceased can revel in the despair and misery they have left in their wake. Can they see their family members, friends, neighbors or Sheila from accounting sobbing uncontrollably in their ill-fitting black clothing? (Or, in Sheila's case, navy blue. That wench.) Can the dead taste the sweet saltiness of all those tears running down unshaven cheeks? Especially Sheila's?
They probably can't. So why not make it about YOU? You're here, aren't you? You're alive and kicking and have been quietly cultivating a way to smile -- serenely, beatifically -- as a single tear rolls down your cheek. Here are some ways you should definitely act online when someone dies:
Facebook: Attention should be garnered in such a way that it is dispensed slowly and over as long a time as possible. Write something like, say, "sad :( ." Eventually, someone will write "Why?" Respond by noting that you "don't wanna talk about it :( ." Wait for at least five Likes. Then add a cryptic song lyric about loss, perhaps from Fall Out Boy. Wait for more Likes. Wait, a little longer, for someone to ask "What's wrong??" It's the double question marks that indicate it's time for more. Drop the bomb -- someone you were once sort of aware of is dead and you're taking it hard. Everyone will think you are a good person with real emotions. It'll be great.
Pinterest: Doesn't that crop top remind you of how short life is? Doesn't that perfectly-executed fishtail braid call to mind how we are all intertwined? Doesn't that cupcake remind you of how sweet you were to Dead Whatshisface? It's like EVERYTHING these days reminds you of how much someone you didn't really know all that well is dead! Sigh.
Instagram: Take a sadsie -- a sad selfie. If you're the makeup-wearing sort, make sure your mascara is visibly running. Pull the corners of your mouth down to convey sadness, but not so much that you lose lusciousness in your perfect pout. And make sure you angle the camera high enough to look slender. Like a corpse. A hot corpse.
Twitter: Use hashtags to better organize and promote your empty, self-serving dribble. Why not throw out a #sad or #rip? It'll make you seem caring. And sad.
Tumblr: Share a story about the deceased -- whether famous or renowned or the girl who used to sit behind you, silently consuming the contents of her nose throughout all of second grade -- that is mostly about you. Remember that time that dead person complimented you? Now everyone else does, too.
YouTube: Vlog about your despair in the form a funeral-themed makeup tutorial.
Vimeo: Cry while holding a French bulldog.