The Internet and Japanese Conception of Privacy

Masahiko Mizutani, James Dorsey, James Moor

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    45 Citations (Scopus)


    It is sometimes suggested that there is no conception of privacy in Japan or that, if there is, it is completely different from Western conceptions of privacy. If this were so, finding common ground between Japan and the West on which to establish privacy policies for the internet would be extremely difficult if not impossible. In this paper we delineate some of the distinctive differences in privacy practices in Japan, but we maintain that these differences do not prevent the establishment of sound, shared, ethical information privacy policies. We distinguish between a minimal conception of privacy that we believe is shared by Japan and other societies and richer conceptions of privacy that often reflect patterns of behavior distinctive of particular cultures. Although Japan and other societies share at least a minimal sense of privacy, a base on which to build, robust privacy protection will not exist on the internet until an internationally accepted rich sense of privacy is developed.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)121-128
    Number of pages8
    JournalEthics and Information Technology
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2004


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