Stories about Japan from 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.
Government moves in Japan to regulate web content, filter mobile phone access for users under the age of 18, and revise file transfer-related copyright legislation are outlined in a report posted at gyaku.
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 Observer has a roundup on Japan's politics in 2007.
James blogs his collection of Christmas Cards in Japan Probe.
Morgan Pitelka picks his top ten Japan News in the Japan History Group Blog.
Ampontan blogs a survey on how Japanese spend their Christmas.
James from Japan Probe blogs a video about giant snails from South America's invasion.
Adamu witnessed a gang fight near his home.
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.
At Asiajin, shunichi arai writes about Mixi, Japan's largest and most popular social networking service.
James from Japan Probe picks up an interesting local news: a top government official believes that the existence of UFO is definitely real.
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.
Adamu translates a local news report on the depopulation of the Japanese version of Second Life.
James from Japan Probe analyzes how the news about the decrease in average height of Japanese male was reported in Japan by comparing the situation with U.S.
A Japanese passport usually enjoys hassle free entry to most countries in the world but now it has become more difficult for a Japanese citizen to visit Myanmar.
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.
This time the roundup from Bahrain covers three weeks. We have frustration on every front, unfortunately: frustration with being surrounded by apathy and ignorance, with being a teenager, and with a ludicrous criminal charge. One blogger is considering leaving the Gulf for a better life back in India, another admits he rarely reads, and a number of others are debating the merits of secularism.
James from Japan probe blogs about the Kanji (Chinese origin character) of the year, and the winner is the word “fake”.
Yesterday (December 13) was the 70 year memorial of Nanjing Massacre. The Chinese government is trying to downplay the historical issue by stressing that they don't want to stir up hatred. Zoula points out (zh) that we should know more about the details of Nanjing Massacre, even though some of...
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...