The Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department has decided to give prosecutors files on 18 people, who are suspected to have slandered comedian “Smiley Kikuchi[J]” by posting groundless comments on his blog alleging that he is involved in a high school girl’s murder case.
This kind of situation, in which blog readers slander a blog’s owner by posting huge numbers of comments, is usually called “blog flaming” and is a common expression in Japan. The police department emphasized that the purpose of the prosecution was to warn against further similar cases, implying that it does not run counter to freedom of expression which is guaranteed by the Constitution.
The comedian made a comment to the press that he had been slandered anonymously for a decade and had submitted a complaint report to the local police to prevent further damages.
Last year in Korea, a famous actress committed suicide as a result of the suffering she experienced due to slanderous comments on her blog. (See IHT and NYT for more details)
As blogging is getting more common as a promotion tool for celebrities, slandering is becoming a bigger social issue in the Japanese and Korean web communities.
Proofread by: Sean O’Hagan
The following two tabs change content below.