The Baby Staring Problem — Or, am I supposed to punch this old lady in the mouth?

When you are a child, and you are staring at some person for being drunk or dressed funny: your mom hits you. If you are down in the pub and some bloke starts giving you the eyeball: you hit him. That’s the rules, refined over generations. However, another rule (well, more like a derivative corollary)Continue reading “The Baby Staring Problem — Or, am I supposed to punch this old lady in the mouth?”

Re: the lack of movies/tv on the Japanese iTunes Store

Is the lack of movie rentals and television shows on the Japanese iTunes Store due somehow to the powerful copyright lobby in Japan? JASRAC and JIMCAare more litigious than even the RIAA and MPAA in the US. Furthermore they are linked via Iron Triangle to MEXT. Moreover, Japan’s television industry is still mostly terrestrial, andContinue reading “Re: the lack of movies/tv on the Japanese iTunes Store”

Q&A: What’s the Japanese equivalent of [enter foreign web service here]?

Serkan Toto does a great roundup of Japanese websites analogous to popular American and European sites. There are even a few on the list that I didn’t know about. Last April I analyzed the top 100 sites accessed in Japan and tried to point out gaps in the Japanese web that could be filled byContinue reading “Q&A: What’s the Japanese equivalent of [enter foreign web service here]?”

the problem of software development in Japan

@gen Kanai reacts to Tabuchi’s NYT article by discussing how the Galapagos problem applies to software development in Japan. I love how he picks apart Takeshi Natsuno’s solution to “focus more on software and must be more aggressive in hiring foreign talent, and the country’s cellphone carriers must also set their sights overseas.” The “foreignContinue reading “the problem of software development in Japan”

Japanese cellphones may be clever, but that doesn’t make them smart

Hiroko Tabuchi’s NYT article on Why Japan’s Cellphones Haven’t Gone Global has been making the rounds. It is a good article, but she makes one unfortunate mistake: she uses that amorphous term “smartphone” to describe Japanese cellphones. Luckily, she only does it once in the whole article, but I fear the damage has been done.Continue reading “Japanese cellphones may be clever, but that doesn’t make them smart”

MFT – Data review: The “How, who, how many, and how often” of the Japanese internet

Adamu does us all a favour in putting his notes about Japanese internet usage online, a dominating theme on this blog. I would like to take my time going through his long post and will publish my thoughts later. In the meantime, join the discussion at MFT. MFT – Data review: The “How, who, howContinue reading “MFT – Data review: The “How, who, how many, and how often” of the Japanese internet”