The founder and owner of the anonymous messaging board 4chan has received harsh backlash for posting a YouTube video commenting on actor Kagawa Teruyuki’s recent sexual harassment scandal.
Kagawa issued an apology on Aug. 26, 2022, after a report was released stating that the actor had groped a hostess’ breasts at a bar in 2019 before taking her bra off and passing it around to colleagues. The woman filed a civil lawsuit against the bar owner for failing to intervene; however, she retracted the case and later settled the situation outside of court with Kagawa. In response to the scandal, Nishimura Hiroyuki, the founder of 4chan and a popular YouTuber with over 310,000 subscribers, made a series of controversial comments that prompted harsh criticism.
4chan is an anonymous imageboard platform that hosts a variety of topics, including anime, video games, television, music and more. The platform has often been the subject of several controversies due to pranks and harassment by its users as well as the posting of illegal and offensive content.
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Nishimura uploaded a video to his YouTube channel on Aug. 27 where he states that hostesses tolerate sexual violence in exchange for high wages. In addition, Nishimura comments that if hostesses are unable to tolerate sexual harassment, then “they shouldn’t be working there.”
“The fact that the bar owner didn’t stop it and the bar didn’t file a criminal complaint shows that it was a place where such acts were tolerated,” Nishimura says in the video. “If they don’t want that, they shouldn’t be working there.”
Ota Keiki, a lawyer, wrote on Twitter that similar ideas and perceptions shared by individuals such as Nishimura cause secondary damage to victims.
“There are people who do things like Mr. Teruyuki Kagawa with this kind of feeling, and the people around them didn’t stop them. I don’t think you should put someone who says this kind of thing on a program because it’s an outrageous secondary harm,” Ota wrote. “There is no such thing as a job to endure sexual violence.”