Explaining the Japanese meme mocking ISIS

#ISISクソコラグランプリ is a rising hashtag in Japan. What is it? A photoshop challenge to mock ISIS.


  1. On Jan. 19, a video was released by ISIS, demanding $200 million from Japan for the lives of two Japanese hostages, the same sum that Japan pledged in humanitarian aid for the Middle East.
  2. The hostages, freelance journalist Kenji Goto and a private security contractor, Haruna Yukawa, were shown in the video, wearing orange jumpsuits.

    The Japanese government responded, saying they wouldn't give in to terrorism.

    However, Japanese Twitter took a different, but also defiant turn.
  3. Somewhere around Jan. 20, a hashtag began appearing: #ISISクソコラグランプリ

    Translated, it means "ISIS crappy collage grand prix" or "photoshop grand prix." A similar hashtag was used last year, regarding Final Fantast XV, reports Kotaku.
  4. The posts are photoshopped images, screen-grabbed from the video, mocking ISIS.

    They look something like this:
  5. The Japan Times said the tweets mock ISIS, and the hashtag is still growing. According to Topsy, there have been more than 55,000 mentions of the hashtag in the past few days.
  6. A number of people have expressed amazement at the posts, saying posters aren't taking the threat seriously.
  7. Is parody the right response? Tomoko Aomaya, a professor at The University of Queensland, writes in this paper that parody and satire in Japanese literature has grown.

    "...Parody and pastiche have found a new home, so to speak, is the 'new literacy' of the last 20 years."
  8. Peter Payne, who owns an Internet store selling Japanese goods, describes the whole phenomenon this way on Twitter: "Basically the idea is to use humor to take the fear away from the situation."