Stories about East Asia from February, 2015
Renowned Chinese Human Rights Lawyer Still Detained After 10 Months
A human rights lawyer who has defended clients ranging from Ai Weiwei to communist party officials, Pu Zhiqiang is now facing criminal charges over his postings on Weibo.
Whoever Said Japanese Students’ Indoor Shoes Had to Be Boring?
Parents and children alike are personalizing students' "uwabaki", or indoor shoes. Students, teachers, and visitors are all required to remove their street shoes before entering the school.
How Did Palm Oil Become Such a Problem—and What Can We Do About It?
Production of palm oil is devastating for the environment. Solutions are complex, but they exist.
Your Social Media Photos Could Help Protect Whale Sharks and Other Species
Open source software solutions like Wildbook allow scientists to tag and photo-identify individual animals through photos and videos posted on platforms like Facebook, Flickr, YouTube and Vimeo.
Lunar New Year Envelopes Get a Rainbow Twist for Gay Acceptance in Hong Kong
One activist group handed out the traditional envelopes, but instead of money they contained real-life stories of the challenges that gay and lesbian people face during the holiday.
South Korea's Young Workers Earn ‘Passion Wages’, Meaning Hardly Anything at All
The buzzword "passion wage" reflects harsh conditions young South Korean people face nowadays in the workforce -- low or no pay to pursue their passion.
Read First-Hand Accounts of Hiroshima and Nagasaki Bombings, Translated to English
August 2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Arrival of Yellow Dust Marks Start of Spring Headaches for Japan
Fukuoka in Japan is experiencing its first "yellow dust" day of the season, three months early.
The Translation Detail Everyone Missed in the China Internet’s Incredibly Surreal Anthem
Below is an edited version of “The Translation Detail Everyone Missed in the China Internet's Incredibly Surreal Anthem“ by Jason Li, originally published on the blog 88 Bar and republished here as part of a content-sharing agreement. In case you missed it, the New York Times, ProPublica, the Guardian and the Atlantic all wrote about...
Can #Panzagar ‘Flower Speech’ Facebook Stickers End Hate Speech in Myanmar?
Facebook has added new stickers called 'Speak Panzagar' in support of the 'Flower Speech' movement to combat hate speech in Myanmar.
Abused Indonesian Maid Urges Fellow Migrant Workers in Hong Kong Not To Suffer in Silence
The former employer of Erwiana Sulistyaningsih was found guilty on February 8 of horrifically abusing her. Before the trial, Sulistyaningsih spoke about her experience as a foreign domestic worker.
Video Project Documents the Life and Struggles of West Papuans
"They are the stories behind the conflict: the struggles for education, the environment, equality, and dignity."
Take a Stroll Through the Backstreets of Japan
One Japanese YouTube user, satobo3104, has joined the Slow TV movement and uploaded hundreds of videos documenting walks through old neighbourhoods all over Japan.
Japan Seizes Syria-Bound Photographer's Passport Amid ISIS Fears
This follows the brutal murder of two Japanese nationals by ISIS in January. There is now a vague sense in Japan that some places that are not acceptable for travel.
No More Selling or Drinking Alcohol in Public After 10:30PM in Singapore
The government said the measure is necessary after receiving numerous complaints related to drunken behavior. But many described the new regulation as excessive and even discriminatory against foreign workers.
Were Taiwanese Media Too Quick to Deem Doomed TransAsia Pilots Heroes?
Some netizens thought Taiwanese media coverage of the TransAsia plane crash, which killed at least 40 people, was too sensational.
Japan Needs Apartheid, Says Influential Conservative Author
Noted Japanese author and conservative political activist Ayako Sono advocated in a newspaper column that immigrants to Japan be separated by race and forced to live in special zones.
Argentinian President Goes to China, Mocks Chinese Accents on Twitter
"Ignorant, stupid and racist, a jewel, come on. And she is the representative of a country, poor Argentinians."
Hungry for a Meme? Try Japan's ‘English French Toast’
This isn't exactly high-end fusion food. The somewhat contradictory nature of the local Japanese treat's name has become a minor Internet meme.
Goofy ‘Go Shopping Every Day’ Video Makes Serious Social Commentary About Hong Kong
The video captures the public's resentment towards police's excessive use of force. Production team Mocking Jer believes humor can help people understand what's happening in Hong Kong.
One Simple Infographic to Understand Political Repression in Thailand
Prachatai's infographic lists some of the ordinary activities the authorities have suppressed over the past nine months. The junta's paranoia runs deep.