Not gonna lie I have been guilty of doing that
Yea, it's not the same as talking behind someones back.
We do not speak ill of the dead because it's a social crime. Deaders are sacred and people will avoid you if you say anything bad, even if they all know it's true.
My Grandma was a real bitch. Got kicked out out of two nursing homes for punching out her roommates. Pretty sure she was pretty proud of being as mean as she was. If I didn’t speak Ill of her, and made up some BS excuse for her being as bad as she was, she would have called me a namby pamby woosie boy and laughed at my half hearted attempt to justify her meanness. So nope, I will hold her glory up high as one of the most unpleasant people I’ve ever met in my life.
Though now really thinking about it... Hitler’s Dead. Stalin is Dead. Mao is Dead. Dracula’s dead.. yes I know.. Most of Isis are dead... The Cottonmouth snake I shot in my pond.. yup dead. So nope.
I'd say that is only true about casual acquaintances and one time friends. Really bad people like Jeffrey Dahmer, Pol Pot, Hitler, etc are trashed on a regular basis with no issues.
It seems to be code of behavior that is quickly disappearing.