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From the Front Lines: Publishers Liability

With the rise of the internet, independent agent Peter Green felt a duty to help all businesses with their media liability exposures—not just traditional publishers.
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Peter Green FTFL

Peter Green

Peter Green Insurance Agency LLC
Costa Mesa, California

How did you get started at your agency?

I started my agency out of a bedroom in my home. I had only one client, which was my wife’s employer. Each year we have had tremendous growth.

Why publishers liability?

I have always had an interest in errors & omissions insurance. With the proliferation of media across the internet, I felt there was a need to help all businesses with this type of coverage—not just traditional media and publishing businesses. Educating businesses across industries about their exposure when it comes to the media and content they publish on their websites has really been a passion of mine.  

Biggest publishers liability changes?

Social media has been a game-changer. Content can spread like wildfire once it is produced. It’s very difficult for risk managers to contain. It is critical that businesses purchase polices that include coverage for intellectual property rights infringement and defamation that does not exclude social media.

What do you say to a first-time publishers liability client?

Educating the client is key. Many times, when I’m talking to a client in the media or publishing industry, they misunderstand what their commercial general liability policy covers. In most cases, personal and advertising injury liability coverage excludes coverage for businesses in the media and internet industry. Usually, this is not clear to the client just by looking at a declarations page. Pointing out the exclusions helps the client understand the need for a separate media liability policy.

Publishers liability advice for a fellow agent?

The need for this coverage is wider than you think. Don’t just limit your message to traditional media and publishing businesses. Talk to all your clients about media liability.

Favorite publishers liability success story?

One of my clients, a social media and advertising firm, would only buy CGL for years because his lease required it, and workers compensation because the state required it. Each year I kept after him to purchase the media liability coverage. Finally, he decided to purchase a policy, and sure enough, he had a claim. He thanked me profusely for staying on him to purchase the policy and cited the policy for saving his business.

Future of publishers liability?

It would be great to see more options available for clients to add this coverage on to their package policies—especially on business owner policies. Just about all businesses have an exposure to media liability and need to have some coverage in place. Being able to add the coverage to a package for a reasonable price would engage a lot more clients to start thinking about their risk.

Jordan Reabold is IA assistant editor.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020
Publishers Liability