From the Facebook blog:
"How do you deal with an interaction with someone who is no longer able to log on? When someone leaves us, they don't leave our memories or our social network."
Friends or family of the deceased can notify Facebook via this form, providing proof of death (eg an obituary or news article) and request to have the account "memorialized."
"Memorializing the account removes certain sensitive information and sets privacy so that only confirmed friends can see the profile or locate it in search. The Wall remains so that friends and family can leave posts in remembrance."
A sensitive move by the social networking site - preserving the account as a memorial, if desired, while removing actions such as friend suggestions.
Memorial accounts and groups have been around on Facebook for a while - you sometimes see messages like: "Memorial only shares certain information with everyone. If you know Memorial, add them as a friend on Facebook." However, this is the first time Facebook has offered to cater in this way for users who'd like a loved one's profile to be kept "alive."
Interesting that they're accepting web links as proof of death (although it's not stated whether a copy of the death certificate would do instead).
More evidence that nowadays, we live and die online.
Postade: by Young Vampire Luke