· December, 2007

Below are posts about citizen media in Japanese. Don't miss Global Voices 日本語, where Global Voices posts are translated into Japanese! Read about our Lingua project to learn more about how Global Voices content is being translated into other languages.

Stories about Japanese from December, 2007

Japan: Web visionary Umeda Mochio

  30 December 2007

While famous in Japan as a web visionary, Silicon Valley resident Umeda Mochio, president of Muse Associates, co-founder of Pacifica Fund and board member of the Japanese bookmarking and diary service Hatena, is little-known overseas. His recent book "Web Shinkaron" ("Theory of Web Evolution") sold 370,000 copies and become a national besteller in Japan. Umeda was recently interviewed by the Japanese magazine Central Review (Chuo koron), portions of which are introduced and translated in this post.

Japan: Learning from the failure of Second Life

  27 December 2007

Second Life in Japan is virtually dead. While three-dimensional environments such as "meet me" and Hatena World have seen their popularity rise, the most famous virtual environment in the world has seen its virtual space depopulate in Japan. What lessons can be learned from the burst of the Second Life bubble? One blogger offers his thoughts.

Japan: Economics of the “Illegal” Download

  23 December 2007

Following on recent moves by the government to regulate the Internet, plans for regulation in other areas of online communication have been moving ahead apace in Japan. Among these is the plan to revise article 30 of Japan's Copyright Law to make it illegal for individuals to download copyrighted material for personal use, something which up until now had been considered legal. Blogger and economist Ikeda Nobuo delves into the economics of the "illegal download", strongly criticizing the proposed revision.

Japan: The battle of HCV victims

  20 December 2007

Stories about tainted blood products are nothing new in Japan. In the 1980s, patients with hemophilia contracted HIV from tainted blood products, the result negligence on the part of the government and pharmaceutical companies about an earlier FDA decision to withdraw its approval of the products.

Japan: Final Report on Internet Regulation

  16 December 2007

The idea that a country boasting one of the world's most active net cultures would attempt to regulate online content within its borders may appear to some as infeasible. But plans unveiled earlier this year by the Japanese government aim to do exactly this, targeting a broad range of content that includes blogs and personal homepages.

Japan: English-language Blog about Japan IT, Asiajin

  14 December 2007

Akimoto at Akky Blog writes about his new English-language blog [ja] entitled Asiajin. While there are many great online services in Japan, he explains that almost none of them make it abroad due to barriers of language and community. Asiajin will try to remedy this situation by reporting about IT...

Japan: Alpha Blogger Awards 2007

  13 December 2007

Three years after its establishment in 2004, organizers of the Alpha Blogger Awards, established to showcase influential bloggers in the Japanese blogosphere, have changed their approach. In contrast to previous years, the group of nominees in the 2007 awards were largely unknown even to the presenters themselves. Include in this post is a summary of the event and an interview with one of the winners.

Japan: Welcome, we'll collect your fingerprints and mugshot

  11 December 2007

tokyodo-2005[jp] has reposted a cartoon by Hashimoto Masaru. “People are not concerned even when the government violates human rights. This probably means that people who live in Japan in fact are very unhappy. Because they are unhappy, when other people's human rights are violated, they don't consider these to be...

Japan: Three inmates executed

  11 December 2007

Tomumaru[jp] quotes recent BBC coverage of the Japanese executions of three death row inmates on December 7. The glogger condemns the secrecy of Japanese executions and discusses in detail the national debate on the issue of the death penalty in the country.

Japan: Flaming and the secrets we hide

  11 December 2007

The phenomenon of flaming (enjo) is widespread in Japan, particularly on anonymous posting forums such as 2-channel. One Japanese blogger picked up the topic of flaming last week and asked: are the things that people are attacked for so viciously online really so out-of-the-ordinary?

Japan: In the shadows of influence

  7 December 2007

A scandal that had been brewing for months came to a head last week when former Vice Defense Minster Moriya Takemasa and his wife Sachiko were arrested by authorities in Tokyo, suspected of having received millions of yen in bribes from former defense equipment trader Miyazaki Motonobu of Yamada Corporation. Many bloggers were surprised, and some dug deeper into the problem of behind-the-scenes maneuvering in Japanese politics.

Japan: The Terabutadon Incident

  6 December 2007

Blogger Kikko writes about the Terabutadon (テラ豚丼) incident in which two employees of Yoshinoya, Japan's largest beef bowl restaurant chain, shot a video of themselves piling pork over a rice bowl to create a giant “butadon”. The video became a sensation and the two employees were fired (for reasons not...

Japan: Michelin Guide Hits Tokyo

  5 December 2007

On November 22, the much-talked-about Michelin Guide Tokyo went on sale. With a combination of French connections and something of gastronomical interest, you can never go wrong in Japan. Sure enough, for days leading up to and after its release, the Japanese media flocked to cover the event and the Guide itself, the most recognized restaurant and hotel guide book published by French tire manufacturer Michelin.

Japan: 16 suicide cases in Self Defence Forces

  5 December 2007

tokyodo-2005 [ja] quotes a November 14 newspaper article which reports 16 cases of suicide among Self-Defence Forces personnel deployed in the Indian Ocean and Iraq this year (up to October). The blogger speculates that the number may actually be larger since some cases might be misclassified as “natural causes” and...

Japan: Anti-fingerprinting protest leaflet

  5 December 2007

Re-entry Japan is a collaborative blog site which offers information and discussion on the newly introduced fingerprinting of non-Japanese nationals in Japan. The site has a protest leaflet which people can put in their passport when they go through customs.

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