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Could someone else’s defamatory Facebook Comments land you in hot water?

“Surely not” we hear you say. “I am not the publisher of that comment so how could I possibly have any responsibility for comments made on my Facebook page” we hear you say.

Well we are here to tell you that according to the High Court, a news organisation who found themselves in those circumstances, was in fact found to be a publisher.

While the High Court decision was only addressing that narrow issue of who could be a publisher it did clearly widen that door meaning that you could be roped into allegations inadvertently as a result of comments on your Facebook page.

Defamation laws are in a state of flux and numerous reviews are ongoing which might ultimately affect this decision. In the meantime, we recommend that you:

  1. Consider whether any posts on your Facebook page (and other socials) need to be approved before they “go live” on social media;
  2. Regularly review content and posts on your pages.

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Joanne Parisi Director MacDonnells Law

Joanne Parisi

Director

Benjamin Meredith

Senior Associate

Ralph Peters Lawyer

Ralph Peters

Lawyer

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