Liability for online content mistakes

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When would a website provider be liable for mistakes in information which it provides online?  Can it avoid that liability?

The general principle is that a website provider must ensure that the content on the website is accurate and will a provider run the risk of being sued for breach of contract or negligence in the event of wrong information being provides.

In terms of South African law, nothing prevents a provider [private]to limit or avoid his liability contractually. In terms of the contract entered into between the provider and user of the website, a provider can contractually be indemnified against liability on the grounds of negligence or gross negligence.

Reproduced with permission from Law Business Research. This article was first published in Getting the Deal Through – e-Commerce 2009, (published in August 2008 – contributing editor Robert Bond). For further information please visit www.GettingtheDealThrough.com.