I am Japanese, I live in Japan. I am English/Japanese bilingual and I have lived and worked in both Japan and the United States.

And do you know what really bothers me? Any time reddit talks about my country. Every so often a post about Japan will pop up in trending, like the post about the Miss Sherlock actress who committed suicide, or the recent TIL post about Japanese holidays.

And in every single thread about Japan the comments are always filled with people who have never been to or lived in Japan, who know literally nothing about Japan, making claims that aren’t even true. I don’t even know why I click on these threads anymore, I legitimately hate reading them. What makes it even worse is if you link to articles showing that their claims are incorrect they double down.

I’ll give an example. One of the many claims is about how “toxic” Japanese work culture is. These people are talking about the work culture of a country they have never lived or worked in, and are talking about thousands of companies as if they are all exactly the same. One of the common reddit claims is about how Japanese people work 18 hours a day and never get to see their families, and yet workers in Japan work less hours in a year than Americans, Canadians, Australians, New Zealanders, Koreans etc. How is everyone in Japan working 18 hours days every day when we are literally working less than those other countries and they’re not working 18 hours a day in those countries?

Another common claim is suicide. I regularly see comments claiming that Japan has the highest suicide rate in the world, and that’s not even close to true. According to the WHO Japan’s suicide rate (as of a few years ago) is 20.5 deaths per 100,000 population. Comparatively in that same year the rate in the United States was 21.1 deaths per 100,000 population and in Korea it was 29.6 per 100,000. Tell me again how do we have the highest suicide rate in the world? And our numbers are dropping btw.
Another thing I dislike is the “wacky Japan” claims. I remember like 10 years ago there was something going around online about “bagel heads”, saying that Japanese people get injections into their head that looks like a bagel. Yeah no we fucking don’t.

I hate kpop fans who go around on reddit saying that Japan is so evil because they tried to colonize Korea. That shit happened literally lifetimes ago. Japan has issued apologies to Korea on multiple occasions and paid them and yet it’s never good enough. Japan apologized in the 60s, the money that they paid was supposed to go to the victims and the Korean government instead used it on infrastructure. Apparently that doesn’t count because their government was very corrupt at that time and the victims didn’t get any money, so Japan apologized again in the 90s and set up a private fund so that they could ensure the money actually reaches the victims that time.

Still not good enough. And then Japan apologized against a few years ago and paid once more, but apparently that’s not good enough because their government was corrupt at that time. But it’s cool, it’s lots of fun to go on reddit and claim that Japan is so horrible because I like kpop and have never lived in either country and don’t knowing what I’m talking about. It’s cool to go on reddit and write claims about how all Japanese people hating Korea despite kpop and kdramas being extremely popular in Japan. That’s all cool I guess.

I see all kinds of crazy claims about my country on reddit but if I even try to explain that the claims are wrong and link to data which shows this then people argue with me and tell me that I don’t know what I’m talking about despite that they don’t knowing anything about **my** country. I hate all the false claims, I hate the “wacky Japan” narrative, I hate people who don’t know anything about my country trying to tell me about my country. I hate the narrative that treats people from my country like robots who have to act a certain way.

I hate the Korean anti-Japan narrative that kpop fans push. F**k all of that sh*t man.

2 thoughts on “I legitimately hate whenever my country(Japan) is discussed on Social Media”

  1. I’m not Japanese, I’m not from Japan, and I’ve only really visited Japan for a totaly of like three weeks, by my wife has been a JET / Eikaiwa teacher twice now, and even she gets a little irriated with how “The West” views and reports on Japan. But then again, America does that with every country. “Oh look at how they do things ‘over there’ so kawaii, omg!” Either that or they’re busy shouting at each other playing “who’s the biggest weeb”. Having been in Japan and had my wife’s friends take me to the “non-touristy” (their words) parts of Japan confirmed what I always suspected…other than a few cultural differences things are pretty much the same there as they are here – people like hanging out with friends, having a good time, and eating some good food. People go to work, they go to school, they come home…they gossip, they enjoy good beer and good wine, they complain about the government and enjoy the nightlife, worry about their kid’s futures and shop at malls. People are people.

    Then again, I hate the media in general…everything has to be sensationalized, everything has to be “wacky” or embellished or have “an angle”. From the few times I’ve been there I found Japan to be a fantastic, open, and welcoming place, full of friendly and curious people, which is a lot more than I can say for where I live in California. If “The West” would stop trying to paint Japan as some “wacky, exotic land”, maybe we could learn a thing or two.

  2. And here I am, hoping to get a chance to travel again to Japan one day, before I die, to fully enjoy the experience.

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