Changes to Listings: In light of recent concerns, we have decided to no longer publish the word-for-word obituaries posted by funeral homes and other sources we follow. We are now rewriting obituaries from non-sponsoring funeral homes to include only factual details, such as name, age, date of death, location of residence, spouse, parents, survivors, military history, employment/business ownership, service info and donations. Personal details, such as hobbies, past times, memberships, etc. will not be included. All references to funeral homes will be removed.
We are taking this stance for two reasons. First, some families and funeral homes have requested we remove their listings sighting permission and privacy issues. While there is no legal precedent regarding redistributing content publicly available online even when a website link to reference the source material is included, we are too small of an organization to handle any legal actions that might be taken against us.
Secondly, we believe our service is important to our Berks County and surrounding communities. We feel the local funeral homes should support our efforts to promote them as well as the families they serve by becoming sponsors of BerksObits.com. Sponsored listings benefit from our growing audience and distribution channels and directly link to the obituaries on our sponsors’ websites. This allows the community to partake in the features offered through these sites, such as flower and gift ordering, condolences and service information. And it benefits the funeral homes by reaching a larger audience than their own efforts could alone.
Currently we have only one sponsoring funeral home, John P. Feeney Funeral Home.
We encourage you to recommend Berks Obits to your funeral home in lieu of or in addition to a newspaper obituary. Most people get their news online, and Berks County Obituaries is the only site focused on local obituaries delivering the obituaries to you…via email, facebook, and twitter. Other obituary sites require you to perform a search, which means you have to already know someone has passed, or you are limited to receiving notices based on one city, versus specifying a county or radius.
We’ve only been in operation for a little more than a month. We have nearly 2,000 facebook followers and nearly 300 email subscribers. Thank you to all who see value in our services.
We welcome your thoughts and ideas.