Under new Japanese law, online insults can go to jail

On June 13, Japanese parliament passed a bill that would allow cyberbullying to be punished in prison in response to demands for more severe punishment caused by the suicide of a female wrestler who had been bullied by cyber.

The bill, approved by the House of Councilors of the Plenary Session, amends Japan’s criminal law, with one year’s imprisonment and up to 300,000 yen (2,234), in contrast to the current 30-day imprisonment and a fine of 10,000 yen ($ 75). Includes a fine of dollars).

The revised law will come into effect later this year, local media Kyodo News report, However, it is unclear how much insults will be considered punishable under the new law.

The new law will be reviewed within three years to assess whether it violates the right to freedom of speech.

Japanese lawmakers responded to cyberbullying in January following the incident of 22-year-old Hana Kimura, who killed herself on May 23, 2020, after being flooded with negative comments on social media. I started discussing severe penalties.

Kimura Popular reality show “Terrace House” produced by Fuji Television in Japan and distributed worldwide by Netflix. At the show, six young people lived together at home.

Kimura, an Indonesian and Japanese, got a lot of attention online after blaming his housemate for ruining his wrestling outfit. She was also insulted for her appearance, with many of her posts calling her ugly.

The show was then canceled on May 27, 2020, after her death.

Two men were charged with insulting Kimura on social media and fined 9,000 yen ($ 67) each. However, many expressed concern that the penalties were too light and demanded stricter penalties.

According to data from the Japanese government, the number of reports of cyberbullying in schools has more than doubled in the last four years.

Reuters contributed to this report.

Aldograph Redley


Aldgra Fredly is a Malaysia-based freelance writer featuring the Epoch Times Asia Pacific News.