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WhatsApp administrators could be held liable for posts

Publish date: 14 June 2017
Issue Number: 1687
Diary: Legalbrief eLaw
Category: General

With the rise in online racism and hate speech‚ it's only a matter of time before WhatsApp group administrators could be held liable for members' offensive posts. The issue has been highlighted by a recent case in India where the administrator faced arrest after a defamatory Photoshopped image of Prime Minister Narendra Modi was shared. A TimesLIVE report notes that Norton Rose Fulbright attorneys Megan Claassens and Sinal Govender warn that WhatsApp administrators in SA should brace themselves. 'We previously wrote about the South African high court extending liability for defamation to people who have simply been tagged in posts on Facebook. It seems that administrators of social media groups should brace themselves to shoulder similar extended liability for what is posted on a group‚' they said, adding that SA is yet to test the liability of a group administrator with regard to what is shared on their group.

Full TimesLIVE report