S. Korean court upholds jail terms for cyber-bullies

Oct 10, 2012
An Internet cafe in Seoul in 2003. A Seoul court on Wednesday upheld jail terms handed down to seven South Koreans for leading an online smear campaign against a hip-hop musician that claimed his US academic degrees were fake.

A Seoul court on Wednesday upheld jail terms handed down to seven South Koreans for leading an online smear campaign against a hip-hop musician that claimed his US academic degrees were fake.

Eight people had appealed after their July conviction for defamation saw three of them sentenced to 10 months imprisonment, while the other five received suspended jail terms.

The court found they had spread false rumours that the rapper Tablo, a 32-year-old Korean-Canadian, had lied about having bachelor's and master's degrees from Stanford University.

Tablo, whose real name is Daniel Seon Woong Lee, sued in 2010 and a subsequent police investigation confirmed his degrees were authentic.

On Wednesday, the appeals court upheld sentences against seven of the defendants, but reduced and suspended one of the jail terms on medical grounds.

"The defendants had such a malicious motive (to defame Tablo)... We need harsh punishment to prevent such an incident from happening again," the said in a ruling.

Educational credentials are a sensitive issue in education-obsessed , where diplomas from prestigious colleges are considered vital to job and even marriage prospects.

Some South Korean celebrities have been caught or confessed to lying about their to boost their public image.

The dispute over Tablo also highlighted the issue of cyber bullying of celebrities in the South—one of the world's most wired societies.

Police in 2008 announced a crackdown on malicious Internet rumour-mongers, who they blamed for the suicide of top actress Choi Jin-Sil.

Explore further: LinkedIn membership hits 300 million

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Russia firm fined in S. Korea over car copying

Feb 23, 2011

A South Korean court Wednesday fined a Russian carmaker almost $9,000 after one of its employees was jailed for stealing technology secrets from the local unit of General Motors.

S. Korean held for selling N. Korean malware

Jun 04, 2012

A South Korean has been arrested and accused of distributing illegal computer game programmes infected with malignant codes developed by North Korea, police said Monday.

N. Korea blasts South over game site hacking claims

Aug 14, 2011

North Korea on Sunday lashed out at South Korea for accusing Pyongyang of hacking Seoul online game sites and stealing prize money, rejecting the allegations as an "unacceptable provocation."

Recommended for you

LinkedIn membership hits 300 million

Apr 18, 2014

The career-focused social network LinkedIn announced Friday it has 300 million members, with more than half the total outside the United States.

Researchers uncover likely creator of Bitcoin

Apr 18, 2014

The primary author of the celebrated Bitcoin paper, and therefore probable creator of Bitcoin, is most likely Nick Szabo, a blogger and former George Washington University law professor, according to students ...

White House updating online privacy policy

Apr 18, 2014

A new Obama administration privacy policy out Friday explains how the government will gather the user data of online visitors to WhiteHouse.gov, mobile apps and social media sites. It also clarifies that ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Ex-Apple chief plans mobile phone for India

Former Apple chief executive John Sculley, whose marketing skills helped bring the personal computer to desktops worldwide, says he plans to launch a mobile phone in India to exploit its still largely untapped ...

Airbnb rental site raises $450 mn

Online lodging listings website Airbnb inked a $450 million funding deal with investors led by TPG, a source close to the matter said Friday.

Health care site flagged in Heartbleed review

People with accounts on the enrollment website for President Barack Obama's signature health care law are being told to change their passwords following an administration-wide review of the government's vulnerability to the ...

A homemade solar lamp for developing countries

(Phys.org) —The solar lamp developed by the start-up LEDsafari is a more effective, safer, and less expensive form of illumination than the traditional oil lamp currently used by more than one billion people ...

NASA's space station Robonaut finally getting legs

Robonaut, the first out-of-this-world humanoid, is finally getting its space legs. For three years, Robonaut has had to manage from the waist up. This new pair of legs means the experimental robot—now stuck ...

Filipino tests negative for Middle East virus

A Filipino nurse who tested positive for the Middle East virus has been found free of infection in a subsequent examination after he returned home, Philippine health officials said Saturday.

Egypt archaeologists find ancient writer's tomb

Egypt's minister of antiquities says a team of Spanish archaeologists has discovered two tombs in the southern part of the country, one of them belonging to a writer and containing a trove of artifacts including reed pens ...