Insurance Coverage for Social Media
What to know and what to ask
This week’s SocialFish Food was contributed by our friend Leslie White, risk management expert for non-profits and associations through her firm Croydon Consulting. Leslie blogs on risk and association stuff at http://riskychronicles.wordpress.com/ and on the SocialFish blog.
Does your association have the appropriate insurance coverages in place for you and your members interacting through social media? If you’re not sure, it’s time to have a conversation with the person responsible for your association’s insurance program. Here are some prep tips to guide that conversation.
Know your exposures.
Social media exposures are no more severe than risks stemming from other types of media–defamation and disparagement, invasion of privacy, and intellectual property issues, for example. Your existing coverages may be written in such a way as to exclude your efforts in social spaces. Now is the time to change that.
Ask about existing policies.
Your association already has insurance. Directors & Officers (D&O) insurance policiesmay include personal injury and/or publishers liability coverages. For associations with extensive media activities, Media Liability insurance policies are common. Associations with professional programs often have Errors & Omissions (E&O) insurance policies. When you meet with your insurance expert, ask about exclusions that might render the policy useless for social media. Also, make sure that coverage extends to outposts like Facebook and Twitter where your staff may be active in an official capacity.
Ask about personal coverage for you and your team.
Are you covered? Is your staff? What about your volunteers? The social media activity you and your team handle as part of your work for the association should be covered by your association’s insurance coverages. Your personal activity, on the other hand, is not covered. You can turn to your personal insurance agent for help, or consider turning to the Media Bloggers Association for their Liability Insurance Program for Bloggers. Or just be careful what you write. 🙂
This is an abridged version of the post Social Media, Liability and Insurance by Leslie White on our blog this month, where you’ll find a much more detailed explanation that you can share with your insurance expert.