MONOLITH LAW OFFICE+81-3-6262-3248Weekdays 10:00-18:00 JST



An Attorney Explains the Unscrupulous Methods of Removing Reviews on Exam and Cram School Information Sites


An Attorney Explains the Unscrupulous Methods of Removing Reviews on Exam and Cram School Information Sites

In the metropolitan area, the number of junior high school examinees in the 2019 fiscal year (2019) was approximately 47,200 for national and private schools, and approximately 16,700 for public junior and senior high schools, totaling about 63,000.

Given that the number of elementary school graduates in the metropolitan area in the 2019 fiscal year was approximately 294,200, the examination rate is about 16% for national and private schools, and about 21% including public schools. This means that one in five students takes the junior high school entrance exam.

The examination situation has changed significantly from the parent generation, with former boys’ and girls’ schools becoming popular due to coeducation, and the emergence of public junior and senior high schools.

Many people decide to purchase products or services based on articles and reviews on the Internet. This is no exception when choosing schools or cram schools. It seems that old information is not very useful.

As such, many people rely on articles and reviews on the Internet. However, on the other hand, the current situation is that there are many malicious reviews, such as defamation.

In this article, we will explain how to remove malicious reviews about schools and cram schools.

The Importance of Reviews

When choosing a school for your child to attend, as a parent, you want as much detailed internal information as possible. In the case of private schools, there are school information sessions and open houses, but these do not necessarily provide a full understanding of the school’s reality.

Even if you know someone who has sent their child to the school in question, there are personal relationships to consider, and after all, it’s just one person’s opinion. Therefore, it’s not always certain whether the information can be trusted.

That’s where exam and cram school information websites come in. They have emerged as an effective way to obtain detailed internal information, and have become a valuable platform for checking reviews.

What is an Exam and Learning Cram School Information Site?

For instance, ‘[ja]‘, one of the exam and learning cram school information sites, is a platform where many people exchange information mainly about entrance exams, ranging from kindergarten to university and cram schools.

Exam Information Site [ja]

Not only kindergartens, elementary, junior high, and high schools, universities, and cram schools nationwide, but also bulletin boards about distance learning are available, and active discussions are held in each thread.

The posters are mainly current students, cram school students, graduates, and their parents, and people who are struggling to choose a school or cram school use it for comparison and consideration.

Such exam and learning cram school information sites have the potential to provide real information that is difficult to know from the outside, which can be a significant advantage for users.

However, similar to job change sites, there are many cases where former teachers or employees who have retired or been forced to retire, students who could not keep up with school studies or failed the exam, parents of such students, and people who graduated but could not go on to their desired school, vent their frustrations by writing malicious comments, and there may be cases of defamation.

The Importance of Reputational Damage Control

Examples of slanderous posts often seen on exam and study cram school information sites include:

  • Teachers physically punishing students
  • Severe classroom breakdowns, rendering classes ineffective
  • Incidents of bullying within the school being covered up
  • Teachers having affairs with parents
  • Backdoor or nepotistic admissions taking place
  • Poor quality of teachers and teaching materials at the cram school, leading to no improvement in grades
  • Instances of sexual harassment by cram school teachers

Such slanderous posts can potentially lead to various negative impacts.

Decrease in Prospective Students

While historical or well-established schools may not be significantly affected, there are cases where the problem can escalate severely. Particularly for junior high schools that have just implemented coeducation, or high schools that are trying to strengthen university collaborations or establish new courses, prospective students can be sensitive to reputation. This can potentially lead to a significant decrease in applicants.

Even in the case of cram schools, while large-scale cram schools may be able to weather the storm with the understanding that “there may be some dissatisfied people,” small-scale cram schools could potentially face business deterioration.

Improving the reputation of an educational institution is a challenging and time-consuming task. However, a bad reputation can be established and spread in an instant.

Complaints from Parents and Media Coverage

If slander about a school or cram school spreads, parents may become anxious and potentially contact the school or cram school for inquiries. It is difficult to prove that something did not happen, such as “the school is covering up a bullying incident,” which is known as “proving a negative.”

If various inquiries are not handled well, rumors may leak to the media, potentially causing a major uproar. In the internet society, smoke often rises where there is no fire. Moreover, the more you deny it when you are caught in an internet firestorm, the more the firestorm can escalate, potentially becoming uncontrollable.[ja]

Decrease in Motivation of Current Students

If current students learn that their school or cram school is being slandered or caught in an internet firestorm, they may not be able to focus on their studies. They may also be slandered by students from other schools or cram schools.

In the case of cram schools, if the number of students leaving the school gradually increases, the business may become unsustainable. Even without clear facts, rumors can multiply and suspicions can increase.

Increase in Resignations, Decrease in Job Applicants, and Lowering of Standards

If a teacher is rumored to be “having an affair with a parent” or “committing sexual harassment,” even if the rumors are baseless, the person in question may have no choice but to resign, especially if a specific teacher is named. This could potentially lead to a series of resignations among other teachers. If no teacher’s name is specified, rumors can circulate among teachers and students, potentially causing a slump throughout the school.

If resignations occur in succession, even if new recruitment is conducted, there may be fewer applicants, and the level of teachers may decline.

Removal of Malicious Reviews

The impact of being defamed on exam and cram school information sites can be significant, so it is necessary to respond promptly to malicious reviews.

Typically, there are three ways to request the removal of an article:

  • Requesting removal from the site operator or server operator
  • Requesting transmission prevention measures from the site operator or server operator
  • Requesting removal through the courts

These are the three methods.

Request for Removal from Exam and Cram School Information Sites

For example, to request the removal of a post on, you would do so from the “Bulletin Board Removal Application”. While other exam and cram school information sites are generally the same, on, the following types of posts are subject to removal:

  • Posts about illegal activities
  • Posts about violence, defamation, self-harm
  • Posts about encounters
  • Posts about impersonating others
  • Posts with obscene or indecent content
  • Posts for commercial purposes
  • Posts directing to other sites
  • Posts about personal or group information (names, affiliations, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses)
  • Critical posts about individuals or groups

If these apply, fill in the necessary information on the “Bulletin Board Removal Application Form[ja]“, clearly state the reason for removal, and send it.

Request for Transmission Prevention Measures from Exam and Cram School Information Sites

As detailed in another article on our site, a “Request for Transmission Prevention Measures” is a method of requesting article removal based on the “Japanese Act on the Limitation of Liability for Damages of Specified Telecommunications Service Providers and the Disclosure of Sender Information”, commonly known as the “Provider Liability Limitation Act”.

Normally, you would mail a “Request for Transmission Prevention Measures” to the operator, but if there are any errors, they may not accept it, and you may have to rewrite it multiple times, potentially wasting time. Therefore, we recommend consulting with an experienced attorney.[ja]

Request for Removal through the Courts

If the above methods do not result in the removal of the malicious review, it may be necessary to take legal action.

The last of the three methods mentioned above, requesting removal through the courts, is not a “lawsuit” but a “provisional disposition”, a procedure that can secure a state similar to winning a lawsuit before the formal trial and can be completed in a shorter period of time.

This is a swift procedure that says, “Whether the article is illegal or not will be decided in the main lawsuit, but it would be troublesome if the damage expanded during the lawsuit, so for now, we judge the article to be illegal and remove it.”

If the provisional disposition is granted, the relevant article will be removed.

After this, it is necessary to proceed with the main lawsuit, and if you lose the lawsuit and it is determined that “the article was not illegal”, or if you do not file a lawsuit, you cannot complain even if the article is revived. However, articles judged to be “illegal” in the provisional disposition are likely to be judged “illegal” in the lawsuit as well, so the party receiving the order usually removes the article at the point when it is deemed illegal in the provisional disposition and does not revive it even if a lawsuit is not filed later, so there is no particular need to use the lawsuit as a means.[ja]


Originally, examination and study cram school information sites are useful and healthy platforms where experienced individuals provide information and advice to new parents who lack information.

If damage occurs due to the disruption caused by some malicious posters, consult with an experienced attorney and respond promptly.

Managing Attorney: Toki Kawase

The Editor in Chief: Managing Attorney: Toki Kawase

An expert in IT-related legal affairs in Japan who established MONOLITH LAW OFFICE and serves as its managing attorney. Formerly an IT engineer, he has been involved in the management of IT companies. Served as legal counsel to more than 100 companies, ranging from top-tier organizations to seed-stage Startups.

Return to Top