Get insurance against your child saying dumb things on Facebook

Insurance companies have started offering protection against losses you could suffer from social media posts, a product called social media liability cover.

The Sunday Times reported that the cover was launched in South Africa this week.

Social media law expert Emma Sadleir has warned that the insurance is not a cure for potential defamation suits one could face over social media posts, though.

According to the report, the insurance policy won’t cover racial, cultural, or religious slurs.

Sadleir said there is “so much craziness that’s going on with social media” that people have started turning to the law for help.

She said that taking out the insurance with the hope of protecting yourself if your child made defamatory comments on social media was not the way to go.

“Raise your children better,” she said, but added that litigation is expensive.

“The damages relating to defamation are relatively low in South Africa, but where the costs come in are the legal fees.”

Your chickens stink

The report highlighted a recent case where a Centurion businessman sued his neighbour for R1.3 million in the High Court in Pretoria for defaming him on Facebook.

His neighbour called him perverse on Facebook after he complained about her “chickens and hordes of rabbits in a dirty and smelly cage next to his wall”.

She was ordered to apologise, but the case for the R1.3 million in damages continues.

In South Africa, children have civil capacity from the age of 13 – allowing them to be sued for defamation.

SHA Specialist Underwriters was the company listed as offering the social media cover.

The full report is available in the Sunday Times of 30 October 2016.

Now read: WhatsApp should not share users’ data with Facebook – EU

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Get insurance against your child saying dumb things on Facebook