Emma Sadleir


Emma Sadleir is a media law consultant and speaker based in Johannesburg. Her areas of expertise include all aspects of print and electronic media law, with a particular focus on social media law.

She has a BA LLB (with distinction) from the University of Witwatersrand and an LLM in Information Technology, Media Communications Law (with distinction) from the London School of Economics, having been awarded a scholarship from the Oppenheimer Memorial Trust to study abroad.

Much of her work involves creating social media strategies and policies for corporates and schools, drafting social media agency agreements and providing training and workshops on social media law.

She also teaches media law to journalists, and students of law and journalism.

Emma Sadleir does a lot of work with schools and universities, educating parents and pupils on the responsible use of social media, as well as working with teachers tackling issues such as cyberbullying and pornography in schools. Having been invited to speak at various conferences and events, including the Annual General Meeting of the Law Society in 2012, the Investec CNBC Captains of Industry Dinner in 2013, 27 Dinners.

Currently Emma Sadleir sits on the eLaw sub-committee of the Law Society of South Africa and lectures personal and brand reputation management on the Gordon Institute of Business Science MBA.

Further she consults to national sports teams on the effective and responsible use of social media.

Emma Sadleir is a frequent guest on radio and television and has been interviewed as a social media law expert many times on on Carte Blanche (watch an interview on the Carte Blanche website), CNBC Africa, ENCA News, 702, Cape Talk, Jacaranda, Kaya FM, Power FM and Goodhope FM.

She has been quoted in the Mail & Guardian, Sunday Times, Saturday Star, the Sowetan, City Press, The Star, Pretoria News, Cape Argus, Drum Magazine, Saturday Argus, Beeld, Pretoria News Weekend, Sunday Argus, Engineering News and ITWeb.

Written papers on Tweeting from court, the regulation of alcohol advertising and liability for user generated content online.

Emma Sadleir is an admitted attorney and worked in the media litigation department of Webber Wentzel for five years before going on her own in April 2013.


The Legal, Disciplinary and Reputational Risks of Social Media

Emma’s keynote can include the following:

    • The social media landscape in South Africa.

    • The legal considerations of using social media, including defamation, privacy, hate speech and intellectual property.

    • Business confidentiality in a world of over sharing.

    • Managing brand reputation on social media.

    • Confidentiality and insider trading risks / offences.

    • Straddling the personal / professional divide on social media.

    • Employment law issues.

    • Personal reputation management on social media; and

    • Twitter disclaimers (“tweets are not endorsements”, ‘I tweet in my personal capacity” etc.)

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