The Cyber-Safety Act was the first law passed in Canada aimed at protecting victims of online harassment. The Nova Scotia government introduced it two years ago under intense public pressure after Parsons, a 17-year-old girl, was bullied, attempted suicide and subsequently died.

Parsons's family alleged she was sexually assaulted in November 2011, when she was 15, and bullied for months after a digital photo of the incident was passed around her school. She was taken off life-support after attempting suicide in 2013.

Supreme Court Justice Glen McDougall released his decision on Friday , ruling the anti-cyberbullying law must be eliminated right away unlike other court decisions that have struck down legislation but offered politicians a one-year grace period to rewrite the laws.

"The act must be struck down in its entirety. The attorney general has not persuaded me that a temporary suspension is warranted," McDougall wrote.

"To temporarily suspend the declaration of validity would be to condone further infringements of charter-protected rights and freedoms."

McDougall said his job was to figure out whether the Cyber-Safety Act unnecessarily includes material that has little or nothing to do with preventing cyberbullying.

"In this regard, the Cyber-Safety Act, and the definition of cyberbullying in particular, is a colossal failure," he wrote.

Nova Scotia was the first jurisdiction in Canada to try to regulate cyberbullying. Several other provincial governments were waiting for the law to be tested against a constitutional challenge.

The legislation authorized courts in the province to grant protection orders that limit what alleged cyberbullies can post online.

Critics called the law too broad and far-reaching.


Court strikes down anti-cyberbullying law created after Rehtaeh Parsons's death - Nova Scotia - CBC News