· April, 2008

Stories about Japan from April, 2008

Japan: Nagano red for Olympic torch relay

  28 April 2008

The Japanese leg of the Olympic torch relay came to an end on Saturday without serious incident, but many Japanese bloggers who attended the event were left with lasting -- and often bitter -- impressions. With all the red flags, many bloggers pointed out how Nagano, for one day, seemed to transform into China.

Japan: Suicide Phenomenon

  25 April 2008

Asiajin blogs a new suicide phenomenon by creating lethal hydrogen sulfide gas in Japan. The method is widely spread in the Internet.

Japan: Twitter in Japanese, with ads

  24 April 2008

The new localized version of Twitter in Japanese has been launched, as reported by Joi Ito, Asiajin, and the Polar Bear Blog. The Japanese version, unlike the current English one, includes advertisements, and there is a plan to eventually export these ads back to the English version.

Japan: Where has all the butter gone?

  23 April 2008

Where is the butter? — cry Japanese consumers who have been hunting everywhere for the dairy product. The drastic reduction in raw milk production, complicated by hikes in the price of grain as well as changes in the global patterns of dairy product consumption, have caused a serious butter shortage...

Japan: Love and Hate Story of the Mascot Character, “Sento-kun”

  22 April 2008

Creepy?! Ugly?! Sacrilegious?! Not many people are happy about the mascot character for the Commemorative Events of the 1300th Anniversary of the Nara-Heijyoko Capital to be held in 2010. The character was designed by a sculptor and professor at Tokyo University of the Arts, Satoshi Yabuuchi, who is one of...

Japan: Comfort Women Video Calls Attention to a Still Unresolved Issue.

  21 April 2008

More than 60 years have passed since the World War II, but women who claim to have been abducted under Japanese Military's orders to serve as sexual slaves on military “Comfort Stations” are still waiting for the government's public apologies and material compensation even as the government still denies the...

Japan: About40, and what next?

  20 April 2008

Changing times in Japan are opening the door for a new style of television. "About40", aired for the first time on April 11th, has done something novel for a Japanese TV drama: aim at the age bracket of 35 to 45 year old women, and hit it big. The new drama targets the late-thirties demographic of single women who entered the work force during the 80s bubble, captured in the newly-coined term "arafo". Bloggers give their initial thoughts on the show, and provide their perspectives on being "arafo" in modern Japan.

Japan: Why can't I be an anarchist?

  20 April 2008

Japanese university student Hasan at hasanhujairi[dot]com describes a class in which his professor, outlining the progression of the study of Economic History in Japanese academia, ends by telling his students: “Just don’t be Anarchists; we can’t have rebellious Anarchists running amok on campus.”

Japan: Thoughts on the Tachikawa flier case

  16 April 2008

Japanese blogger Dr-Seton describes an urban legend [ja] about children in public housing who were kept inside, only allowed out to play in a small park. When one day the children were let free outside, rather than run around, they stuck to a very small space. He uses this story...

Japan: Footage of Tibet and East Turkestan

  16 April 2008

Japanese podcaster Morley Robertson at i-morley makes an appeal to the global press to take up video footage from Tibet and East Turkestan. Part of the footage is of the home of the Dalai Lama, shot in 2007, a building which he explains was destroyed during the Cultural Revolution (later...

About our Japan coverage

Nevin Thompson is our Japan editor. Email him story ideas or volunteer to write.


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