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Japan revises law to speed identification of anonymous cyberbullies

Japan enforced Saturday a revised law that simplifies legal procedures to identify cyberbullies, accelerating efforts to relieve victims on social media and online forums more swiftly.

In many previous cases, such victims needed to primarily sue two parties — the operator of social media and the internet provider — in separate court procedures to reveal the names and addresses of offenders, which was seen as erecting a hurdle for those who pursued compensation.

The revised law is aimed at shortening the process by combining the two procedures.

Hana Kimura looks on during the press conference Bushiroad and Stardom on October 17, 2019 in Tokyo, Japan. (Getty/Kyodo)

It is hoped the revision will “support victims of insults and human rights violations,” Ayano Kunimitsu, parliamentary vice minister for internal affairs and communications, told a press conference Friday.

Moves to amend the law gained traction after it was alleged that the suicide in 2020 of Hana Kimura, a 22-year-old professional wrestler and cast member on the popular Netflix reality show “Terrace House,” was linked to hateful messages she received on social media.

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