Latest posts by Chris Salzberg from March, 2008
Japan: Why does Mario move from left to right?
Blogger lastline has drawn over 400 bookmarks on the Japanese bookmarking service Hatena for a detailed investigation of the question: Why does the video game character Mario run across the screen from left to right, and not right to left [ja]? The blogger explains that video tends to prioritize movement...
Japan: Richard Gear ditched by Nissan?
A news report [ja] (summary in English) that Nissan has decided to back out of a contract for a TV commercial with Richard Gear due to the actor's support of the Dalai Lama has triggered hundreds of comments in posting forums [ja] and responses from bloggers. While some wonder whether...
Japan: Ikeda Nobuo's Spectrum Japan Blog
Blogger and economics professor Ikeda Nobuo has started [ja] an English-language blog entitled “Spectrum Japan” focused on spectrum policy in Japan. In the first post, he explains that the Japanese government is planning to stop analogue broadcasting by 2011, and writes about closed meetings held to allocate the spectrum, a...
Japan: The New Era of Video
Last Friday, Japan's national broadcaster aired a special on the "New Era of Video" predicting changes in the industry of broadcast television that will shake the foundation of mass media. But why would a broadcaster as big as NHK air a TV special about the end of TV? Wouldn't that be against its own interests? Blogger Kobayashi Akihito asked if there wasn't more to the NHK special than meets the eye.
Japan: Eyes on Tibet
Essa at the Uncategorizable Blog proposes (in Japanese and also in English) a simple way for bloggers to focus attention on Tibet, by adding a Tibet-related link to their everyday posts. He emphasizes that: “This movement focuses on decentralized weak concerns. It suggests your readers just to see it. Not...
Japan: Rokkasho nuclear reprocessing plant fuels debate
The village of Rokkasho, situated Aomori prefecture in the north of Japan's main island Honshū, hosts a nuclear facility for reprocessing spent nuclear fuel, the first of its kind in Japan. While the scale of this reprocessing plant dwarfs standard nuclear plants, most Japanese citizens have up to recently known little to nothing of its existence. This has started to change recently with demonstrations held in various parts of the country by citizen groups. Bloggers have also picked up this debate, offering varying perspectives on the costs and benefits of the latest development of Japan's nuclear industry.
Japan: Crackdown on File Sharing?
Danny Choo writes about an announcement that Japanese ISPs are going to forcibly cut off users who share files over the Internet, pointing out differences between English-language and Japanese-language coverage of the story.
Japan: Tibet Tibet
Blogger and artist Takami Toshio writes about the Japanese film Tibet Tibet [ja] at his blog Radical Imagination. He points out the similarity in perspectives between the director, who is Zainichi Korean, and the people of Tibet, both of whom do not have a country of their own.
Japan: Support for Tibet
As fires rage on in the streets of Lhasa, bloggers in another part of the world have been anxiously following developments in Tibet with open eyes and open ears. Over the weekend, as mainstream media in Japan presented what many criticized as toned-down coverage of ongoing events in Lhasa, the word "Tibet" climbed to number one on Japanese blog search engines with thousands of entries largely in support of the uprising.
Geospatial Technology and Human Rights
Varena at PingMag interviews Lars Bromley, director of the Geospatial Technologies and Human Rights Project of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), who talks about how his group uses geospatial technology to digitally capture atrocities against civilians in Darfur, Zimbabwe, North Korea, the Gaza Strip and Burma.
Japan: Editorial or fiction?
Bones at Bones’ world dissects a blog post by well-known activist Arudou Debito about the treatment of a non-Japanese crime suspect in a case of hit-and-run, arguing based on Japanese-language sources that the post is “pure fiction”.
Japan: Supreme Court declares registration system constitutional
Economist and blogger Ikeda Nobuo comments on a Supreme Court decision [ja] declaring that Japan's Net registry system (Juki Net) is constitutional. He argues that a decision against the registration system would have constituted a control on freedom of expression. He also points out that Japan's four major newspapers were...
Japan: Reflections on a life in Silicon Valley
Well-known Japanese web visionary Umeda Mochio, blogging at My Life Between Silicon Valley and Japan, reflects on his life over the past 20 years [ja] since the time in 1988 when he first joined the world of IT consulting. In the past few years, his most recent books such as...
Japan: Justice served in contaminated blood scandal
Martin at Kurashi reports on news that the Japanese supreme court upheld a suspended prison sentence for a former health official, Akihito Matsumura, for having failed to prevent the use of HIV-contaminated blood products in the mid-1990s. Martin finishes his post with the question: “When will this debate start for...
Japan: The decline of pachinko
A staple of the modern Japanese cityscape, pachinko parlors employ a third of a million people in Japan, draw in an estimated 30 trillion yen per year, and entice roughly one quarter of the country's entire population to play at least occasionally, 17 million of them on a regular basis. With plans underway to legalize and regulate casinos in Japan, the status of such pachinko parlors has been put into question, sparking a re-assessment, in comments and blog posts, of the place of gambling in modern Japanese society.
Japan: Mixi to claim rights over user content