South Korean civil activist group Sunfull Internet Peace Movement invented the "Internet Peace Prize" to promote online etiquette and fight cyberbullying.
Some 200 politicians, ambassadors to Korea and citizens gathered at a university in Seoul on Thursday to commemorate the winners.
Just as the Nobel Peace Prize honors those who fight for peace in the real world, the "Internet Peace Prize" honors those who protect human rights in the virtual space by encouraging positive comments and tackling cyber defamation.
This year's prize went to Kawasaki Network of Citizens against Hate Speech, a Japanese non-governmental organization, and Ken Ogiso from Japan, an advocate for internet etiquette.
The Kawasaki Network comprises of 165 human rights organizations. It has been fighting against hate speech by Japanese far-right activists. It also monitors discrimination on social media and gives lectures on cyberspace ethics.
The other laureate, Mr. Ogiso has given more than 2-thousand lectures on communication ethics to some 400-thousand people in Japan.
"Hate speech is hard to punish without proper regulation. We will keep working to eradicate hate speech by pushing for a human rights ordinance that would ban those words in the city of Kawasaki."
"Hate speech, especially those targeting foreigners and minorities is a serious crime that infringes upon human rights. I believe that the Internet Peace Prize which symbolizes encouragement and compliment, will contribute to the creation of a peaceful global village."
Founded in 2007, the Sunfull Foundation promotes a campaign of online peace.
More than 7-thousand schools and organizations in Korea are joining the movement along with politicians and citizens world-wide.
The Sunfull movement aims to help victims of cyberbullying overcome the psychological damage they have suffered. It also hopes this year's award can further promote human rights and mutual respect in cyberspace.
Yoon Jung-min, Arirang News.