Chris Salzberg · August, 2007

Latest posts by Chris Salzberg from August, 2007

Japan: Life out of a Manga Kissa

  30 August 2007

Results of a survey just released by the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare has found that thousands of people across Japan bordering on poverty live their lives out of Internet cafes or "manga kissa". Bloggers this week reflected on the significance of the results.

Japan: Peace Child 2007

  26 August 2007

Hasan at hasanhujairi[dot]com has posted an outline of his experience at the 10-day Peace Child program at a farm in Chiba, two hours from Tokyo, discussing issues such as war and peace, pollution and the environment. Hasan transcribes and reflects on a speech by a survivor of the atom bombing...

Japan: Crazy for a Bug

  26 August 2007

A catchy tune about a funny-looking bug that bites people's bums and makes them happy, featured regularly as filler between children's programming on the national broadcaster NHK, is catching on like crazy across Japan. In this post, read more about the thinking behind the song, reactions from Japanese bloggers, and a post from one of the creators of the clip.

Japan: Time-lapse Tokyo

  25 August 2007

Pink Tentacle brings together ten great time-lapse videos shot in Tokyo, including one of 35 years of construction in Shinjuku, one of the construction of Roppongi Hills, one of a trip along the Yamanote Line, and one of lighting striking in Higashiyama.

Japan: Three Death Penalty Executions on Aug. 23

  25 August 2007

Adamu at Mutant Frog Travelogue reports on the recent executions in Japan of three death row inmates: “It is really scary that the final decision of when and if these prisoners die lies solely in the hands of a political appointee […] who goes through no official vetting process, and...

Japan: The Hunt for Otaku

  18 August 2007

Matt Alt at Alt Japan reports on the latest case of “otaku gari”, the practice of hunting down otaku (nerds) and robbing them of their money and fancy toys. In this case, the hunters were a brother and sister, who after being caught explained that “otaku are weak and they’ve...

Japan: Living With the Heat

  16 August 2007

As Japan suffers through what likely will become its hottest summer on record, with temperatures topping 40 degrees in some places and humidity at all-time highs, and even as business owners happily celebrate skyrocketing sales of air conditioners, fans, and ice cream, worries of an energy crisis loom on the horizon. In the middle of the scorching heat, one blogger has responded by taking matters into his own hands and doing the unthinkable: he turned off the air conditioning.

Japan: 62 Years Later, Still Remembering

  10 August 2007

Sixty-two years have passed since the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the close of World War Two. While people with first-hand experience of the bombing are disappearing, many people are fighting to keep their stories alive. Translations featured in this post include bloggers describing stories of the bombing, first-hand accounts of victims, a comparison of the way the history of events is taught in Japan and in the U.S., and thoughts about the relevance of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the world of today.

Japan: The words that changed my life

  9 August 2007

In her article this week at Magazine 9, Amamiya Karin talks about the words that changed her life [Ja], through the experiences of poet and former hikikomori (shut-in) Tsukino Koji, writer Misawa Chiren, and activist Takato Nahoko (famous for her work on Iraq issues).

Japan: Tanabata Festival

  9 August 2007

Shari at My So-Called Japanese Life has posted an article with many photos about the Tanabata Festival which just finished in Asagaya, Tokyo.

Japan: Street Artist in Tokyo

  8 August 2007

Hasan at hasanhujairi[dot]com writes about a street artist who draws calligraphy on the sidewalk in Harajuku, Tokyo. Hasan writes: “I couldn’t help but take in the site of him with an after-taste of envy; something about being a street artist always seemed radically magical to me.”

Japan: Death Penalty Killings

  8 August 2007

The Asia Death Penalty blog has a post about an appeal from Amnesty International to stop the death penalty killings of three men in Japan scheduled for tomorrow (August 9th). As mentioned in the post, there are suspicions that the timing of the killings was scheduled to line up with...

Amid Controversy, YouTube Launches in Japan

  8 August 2007

Late last week, Google announced that it was teaming up with six Japanese firms, including SkyPerfecTV and Mixi, creator of Japan’s most popular social networking software, to link content to a new YouTube website exclusively in Japanese in order to boost the company’s presence in Japan. A blogger who was at the meeting where the announcement was made describes his thoughts on the future of YouTube in Japan.

YouTube launched in Japan

  8 August 2007

Andreas at Chosaq writes about the launch of YouTube in Japan and hostile reactions from Japanese television, music and film companies.

Japan: A Visit to Tokyo's Homeless District

  7 August 2007

Debito has posted a report about his visit to Sanya, Tokyo's day-labourer and homeless district. He writes that: “unless you have a reason to come here at all (cheap hotels during the World Cup 2002, day laboring), you could possibly spend your life in Tokyo and never know the place...

Japan: The Seikaryo Dormitory

  7 August 2007

Roy Berman at Mutant Frog Travelogue writes about Seikaryo, a Chinese student dormitory located in Tokyo constructed in 1927 by an organization belonging to the Japanese colonial Governor General in Taiwan.