an Italian newspaper asked foreigners who moved to Italy what was the biggest culture shock they experienced and there was an American father who said that he’s happy to have access to medical care whenever he wants and delighted that his children don’t need to go through metal detectors or do field exercises to be prepared in the event of a mass shooting at school
In her recent Radio program, Koike Minami from Keyakizaka46 mentioned a paper adressed to all members, officially banning any relationship during their idol activity. It is also known as the Renai Kinshi Jourei, the love ban rule. To allow or forbid this rule have teared apart the fandom for many years, and the ambiguous stand of Akimoto Yasushi (stating there wasn’t such thing as love ban rule) doesn’t help to clear things up. But the issue regarding this rule goes beyond it’s own existence. This is an eternal debate between those who argue we can’t own idols as they are humans with feelings, against those who think it is necessary to preserve their image. To sum things up, what we debate for is our conception of an idol. Through this write up, i will attempt to list all legit arguments from both side so you can make your own opinion on that matter.
“Sasshi scandal was the most talked topic at the time, even more than Acchan graduation”
First, a little bit of history. The love ban rule is much more older than AKB itself. In 1997, Nakazawa Yuko, leader of Morning musume at the time, stated that in their contract, they were forbid to have boyfriend or marry. Ten years later, Kashiwagi Yuki expressed the same statement, that they had to sign a paper in which they pledge to not be in a relationship. What is the purpose of the love ban rule? Simply speaking, it helps the idea of an idol “pure and innocent”, completely devoted to the fans. Management is afraid that the fan significantly decrease his dedication to buy goods and ticket to see his favourite member if she’s in a relationship.
But Let’s take an example of other pop culture. Justin Bieber is a singer, with 99.9% of female fanbase. He works a lot on his image, yet he dated many other celebrities like Selena Gomez. He’s directly concerned with appearance, but his staff allow him to date. In the super strict Kpop industry, even though entertainment companies are very discrete about it, they often acknowledge a relationship when they are revealed, and not opposing them (Exo Kai and F(x) Crystal for example). The question is, why is it allowed in Occidental and Oriental countries like USA and Korea and not in japan? Especially the case of idols.
1st hypothesis, It’s about culture. USA have build their civilization on freedom, and it’s quite hard to “forbid” someone to love, especially someone as popular as Justin bieber. Management strategy to keep hardcore fans would backfire at them, being blamed for pressuring the artist. In Kpop It might depend of the age and experience of the artist. When management knows the artist fanbase is mature enough to accept, they lift the ban. But if the trainee has just debuted with the group, it’s better to not create unnecessary waves that would be an hindrance to the group promotion. Japan has a huge history of hierarchy between genre, family often assimilated with a father who work, and a mother who stay at home to raise the children. Sexism is still rooted in society as it is largely accepted to have gravure photoshoot of idols (often very young), but also promote the girls as cute and innocent. Unconsciously, Japan paradoxal society still allow to reduce a woman basic right in order to preserve a certain idea of what an idol should be.
2st hypothesis, we can say it’s the fan fault for being unrealistic about the concept of an idol. Before being an idol, she is an human being. You can’t mix up reasoning with feelings, as one is led by the brain, the other by the heart. Also, if the idol you support is being happy with someone else, shouldn’t you be happy for her own happiness? It’s not like you’re being her fan in order to date her in the future. You can also be a fan of someone without being physically attracted to her. Like many hardcore metal teenagers adoring metallica. A fan’s love, is different. Something more personal, but loving someone as a 17 years is different from loving at 26, and 40, etc. A teenager should live to the fullest.
“Minegishi scandal blow out to international proportion, wrongly the symbol of Japanese excess”
Not long ago, a company sued a girl for “breach of contract” blaming her for her idol group failure in the market, because she was dating one of her fans. The young girl retorted that i was never mentioned she couldn’t date anyone, even though it was “professionaly” obvious to avoid this situation. The result of the court was that indeed the girl was wrong for not taking into account that it would hurt the group image, but since she dated her boyfriend without the intent to harm the company, she was exempt to pay fee for the prejudice caused.
There’s a big difference between european and asian culture. The first is a lot about freedom (artist love life is his privacy) but asian point of view is about responsability. Japanese are often serious in their work (sometimes they die from it). Even though you have the freedom to come with T-shirt and jeans, you have the responsability to look decent for an interview, which means wearing a suit. Otherwise we don’t take you seriously. In entertainment, you shouldn’t behave in a way that would be a threat to your company or group image. But this rule can’t be applied to everyone because each person has a different situation.
Let’s take the example of Watanabe Mayu. She became very popular, very fast, in a young age. Not only we can assume she didn’t have a lot of free time, but having a relationship exposed would have create an uproar on tabloid. She was very serious about her image because she was aware an incident would break her momemtum. On the other hand, when you’re unknown, like a KKS, it hasn’t the same impact at all, and you have much more free time than a popular member. (and probably the reason why Sasshi’s scandal was exposed only when she became popular).
The problem with micchan scandal, is that not only she was a popular member, but also the captain of a team. What foreigners don’t know, is that in japanese culture, people often shave their head after admitting being in the wrong. Micchan obviously shaved her head on her own will. But foreign newspaper, with little care of details, implied it was a sanction done by management (the video was published on AKB official youtube channel after all). The malicious gossip spread and it was a huge blow to idol entertainment. It doesn’t matter what was the real reason, and the damage was done.
“Shunkan bunshun is often involved in many scandals related to idols”
In fact, it isn’t really about the fan behavior toward her idol that define the existence of the love ban rule. In the case of Kashiwagi Yuki scandal with NEWS’s Tegoshi, it was up to her fanbase to decide if they keep following her or not. In the case of Matsumura Sayuri scandal (above), it turned out more bitter because Nogizaka has a strong image of elegant, calm idols compared to the 48group. Image is not only related to fan, as big companies (a potential source of revenue for popular idol group), won’t choose girls who are involved in a negative image to endorse their products. It doesn’t matter if it’s true or not, it’s how those scandal divert from the expected result. Do you remember when Kouhaku utagassen chose HKT instead of Nogizaka in 2014? We will never know, but it’s possible that Nogi appearance was cancelled because of this negative coverage.
Why is management not willing to make a decision, always being ambiguous about it? Because both choice have a negative impact. If you make the love ban rule official, you are seen as a bad company who suppress a girl basic right, and if you officially allow the girls to date, there’s no turning back, and fan’s reaction is unsure. The best alternative is “not to get caught” or “adapt to the situation” rule. In Yukirin’s case, management decided to let it through, because she was too important to the group. Same with Sasshi. We can’t say the same for Murashige Anna, who got almost perma-ban from HKT senbatsu, or Owada Nana and Nishino Miki who soon graduated after being seen at 2AM in a game court with some ex Johnny’s (again).
The love ban rule can be seen as something not coming from fans to their idol, but a rule of self discipline (coming from within), like how you are committed to your work. When you date someone perfectly aware of a bad coverage, you’re taking a risk. This self discipline increase as you became popular. When someone try to get best of both worlds, it can be seen as recklessness toward your job. After all, Kikuchi Ayaka or Komori Mika graduated AKB to get married. When someone get outside of the idol field, fans are much more keen to be happy for their idol happiness. Because they are past their idol phase. Jurina once said “i will date after being an idol. But for the moment, i want to focus on my work”.
“Yukirin votes dropped up to 70 000 votes for the 8th Sousenkyo. Note that 7th Sousenkyo was her fanbase last push to put her 1th, with a 60k increase too ”
To the question if the love ban rule is something fair or unfair, it’s hard to decide because feelings are involved with it. I personally hadn’t my oshimen being involved in a scandal, so i don’t know how i would react. However, what i believe is, for japanese, that the renai kinshi jourei is a self inflicted rule. It just depends on how serious you are toward the job of idol. If you don’t accept to have your love life put on hold, just don’t be an idol. It’s even more true that an idol not only care for her image, but is also responsible for the group image. When people quote Sasshi’s case that scandal doesn’t influence the popularity of a member, keep in mind that it happened when she was a KKS, barely being an extra in Everyday Kachuusa MV. Taking such a risk to date someone when she’s 4th in sousenkyo, her answer would have been completely different.
My humble opinion : If my oshimen was caught in a scandal, i would probably be disappointed. Not because i thought of her as pure and innocent (let’s be real, women also have libido, and love is something wonderful), but because she’s taking a risk to damage her or the group reputation. She’s aware of the damage, and she took it anyway. To be responsible, is a form of respect.
In the future, we probably will see a change of mindset, with a more accepting industry toward idols. Because, there’s no proper definition of an idol.
I think the Nulogorsk that the submarine came from is from another reality/dimension where nuclear war happened.
The news report found in the submarine says that Nulogorsk was decimated by a nuclear attack in September 24, 1983.
I checked wikipedia: In September 26, 1983, nuclear war between the US and Russia was averted thanks to a duty officer name Stanislav Petrov. There was a fake report of a nuclear missile from the US hitting Russia but Stanislav Petrov judged it as a false alarm. This prevented nuclear war.
Aren’t these dates a little too close?
Also, the newspaper headlines reveal something.
The newspaper from the submarine: NV Daily Journal September 24th 1983: Sister City Nulogorsk Decimated By Nuclear Attack - No Known Survivors by LeAnn Hart the Foreign Correspondent
The newspaper Intern Svee dug out: NV Daily Journal September 24th 1983: City Council OKs Book Ownership For Randomly Selected Students by LeAnn Hart the City Beat reporter
Foreign Correspondent and City Beat reporter are two different journo jobs. LeAnn Hart couldn’t possibly play both.
Also, I think Dana might be in the alternate universe where Nulogorsk was decimated. She mentioned a light house on top of a mountain and Nulogorsk being a fishing town probably had a lighthouse since it had fishermen who might get lost in the night
How should I approach AP government (my school combines us and comp)? I'm taking it this upcoming year, but I have no clue about current events and I don't really have political opinions
Start reading up on current events. Find out the top hot-button political issues, do your research, and form some opinions. This is important not just for the class, but for life in general, so start building good habits now. Nothing screams “I’M A FAILED ADULT” like deliberate ignorance.
Here are some important sources:
The New York Times is a classic, from news to opinion to lifestyle to blogs. The print version is always gorgeous as well.
Wall Street Journal is THE newspaper for business and keeping on top of the stock market. Build that economic foundation, because it’ll come up in “adult” conversations a lot.
Boston Globe is another classic paper, with strong entertainment and lifestyle sections.
Los Angeles Times is my home newspaper, so I sort of have to love it, of course. Southern California, represent.
NPR. Goddamnit, I will forever defend the importance of public radio. It also makes you sound really cultured when you start a conversation with, “I was listening to a program on NPR and…”
The Atlantic has some high-quality long-form pieces. (Great for building SAT vocab too, by the way.) A great way to see current events through an opinionated lens.
Slate is always interesting to read. A little clickbait-y, but you’ll never be bored, so it’s a good stepping stone for beginning news readers.
Reuters, on the other hand, is as dry as it gets. Great for getting your facts straight, but not so great for keeping yourself entertained.
TIME always, always has fascinating cultural and sociological articles. The photography is on point and the print design is cleanly minimalist.
Al Jazeera is an arabic news network with strong US reporting. It’s always good to keep a few foreign newspapers on your list so that you can avoid US bias.
I is a branch of the UK’s Independent, widely regarded to be an easy-to-read yet still accurate source. Again, foreign newspapers for the win.
Salon is full of liberal opinions, so of course I dig it.
Sources to avoid:
FOX News is trash. As someone with liberal leanings, I could be biased, but even most intelligent conservatives agree that FOX News is trash.
CNN/ABC/NBC and other TV channel networks can sometimes be heavily sensationalized. This is especially true for local branches of TV networks, which report things like toast burnt in the shape of a celebrity or other insignificant shit like that. It’s great to be caught up on local news, but keep an eye on the big picture.
Don’t you think, Dear Heart, that when I return we will be … enough to settle in our house, to live together, receive our friends, establish a sweet freedom and read newspapers from foreign contries without having the curiosity to go there and see for ourselves what is happening. I enjoy building castles in France (air castles) of happiness and pleasures. You are always half of all these plans, My Dear Heart, and once we are reunited – not to be separated again – what will stop us from savoring together, one by the other, the sweetness of love, the most delicious and quiet tranquility.
Letter from the Marquis de Lafayette to his wife, Adrienne de Lafayette, while at Valley Forge. January 6, 1778
Read. Start with children’s books in order to gain understanding and to build a foundation for grammar and vocab. Children aren’t meant to have very advanced language so they’re designed for building linguistic skills.
Look at idioms and phrases because they can be very useful and are often very different.
Use a pocket dictionary for if you come across any words you don’t know.
Use a notebook to create your own vocabulary list and add to it as you learn more.
Accept that you are going to get things wrong and don’t let it get you down. Keep going. It will be worth it.
Make it fun. Any kind of studying is remembered better if you make it fun. You could look at foreign games or modify games you already know.
Mata Hari was born Margaretha Geertruida Zelle in Leeuwarden, Netherlands, on August 7, 1876.
2. After her mother’s death, Mata Hari and her three brothers were split up and sent to live with relatives.
At an early age, Mata Hari decided that sexuality was her ticket in life. In the mid-1890s, she boldly answered a newspaper ad seeking a bride for Rudolf MacLeod, a bald, mustachioed military captain based in the Dutch East Indies. She sent a striking photo of herself, raven-haired and olive-skinned, to entice him.
Mata Hari gave birth to two children, a daughter and a son. (The couple’s son died in 1899 after a household worker in the Indies poisoned him for reasons that remain a mystery.)
5. After her divorce in1900, she moved to Paris and became a mistress to a French diplomat who encouraged her to support herself as a dancer.
All things “Oriental” were the fad in the Paris of 1905. The time seemed ripe for Mata Hari’s exotic looks and the “temple dance” she created by drawing on cultural and religious symbolism and that she had picked up in the Indies. With characteristic confidence, she siezed the moment. She billed herself as a Hindu artist, draped in veils—which she artfully dropped from her body. In one memorable garden performance, Mata Hari appeared nearly naked on a white horse. Although she daringly bared her buttocks—then considered the most tittilating part of the anatomy—she was modest about her breasts, generally keeping them covered with brassiere-styled beads. Completing her dramatic transformation from military wife to siren of the East, she coined her stage name, “Mata Hari,” which means “eye of the day” in Indonesian dialect.
A reporter in Vienna described Mata Hari as “slender and tall with the flexible grace of a wild animal, and with blue-black hair.” Her face, he wrote, “makes a strange foreign impression.” Another enthralled newspaper writer called her “so feline, extremely feminine, majestically tragic, the thousand curves and movements of her body trembling in a thousand rhythms.”
Within a few years, however, Mata Hari’s cachet had faded. As younger dancers took the stage, her bookings became sporadic. She supplemented her income by seducing government and military men; sex became strictly a financial practicality for her.
9. Aged close to 40,
Mata Hari accepted a lucrative assignment to spy for France from Georges Ladoux, an army captain who assumed her courtesan contacts would be of use to French intelligence. However, the French soon suspected her of being a double agent.
A German diplomat had once paid her 20,000 francs to gather intelligence on her frequent trips to Paris. But she swore to investigators that she never actually fulfilled the bargain and always remained faithful to France. She told them she simply viewed the money as compensation for furs and luggage that had once disappeared on a departing train while German border guards hassled her. “A courtesan, I admit it. A spy, never!” she defiantly told her interrogators. “I have always lived for love and pleasure.”
Mata Hari was executed by firing squad on October 15, 1917 by the French. Dressed in a blue coat accented by a tri-corner hat, she had arrived at the Paris execution site with a minister and two nuns and, after bidding them farewell, walked briskly to the designated spot. She then turned to face the firing squad, waved away her blindfold and blew the soldiers a kiss. She was killed in an instant when their multiple gunshots exploded as one.
It’s weird to be on tumblr and read all those posts against #JeSuisCharlie when it feels unanimous around you (your friends, on tv, at college), for me it was easy to speak up during Ferguson yes maybe because i’m not American and it’s easier to notice problematic things from an outside pov, (besides, I’m black). It was interesting to learn about exterior point of views about France.
It’s weird and yet interesting because those who speak up against #JeSuisCharlie and that proclaimed “freedom of speak” (the freedom of the press, to be precise), are the same who spoke up against police brutality in the US, those are mostly american. This is why it was important for me to read their arguments. Most of them condemned France, an islamophobic country who stand up with an islamphobic newspaper, how surprising?
And that’s really makes me wonder, is France wrong? Is this “freedom of speech” an another white privilege standard? Then I wondered, did the authors of those posts ever read Charlie Hebdo? Do they understand the social situation during those publications? Do they know about the politics stakes at the time of those publications? Do they know that Charlie Hebdo always and will always fight for left parties ideas and is strongly against extreme right parties ideas? Do they know that a satire is supposed to make fun of human foolishness? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not thinking that people are fools.
On the morning on the attack in Paris, my friend was near, she called me, she told me that people were running away, that she wouldn’t leave the house today. Then I listened to the radio “terrorist attack… act of barbary… we all stand together”, then I went on twitter “#CharlieHebdo…#JeSuisCharlie…#IslamNonCoupable Islam is not guilty”, then I watched the TV “A period of mourning will be held… we will fight theses terrorists”, then all I saw was “NOT AFRAID” and thousands of people in the streets of Paris, Lyon, Nantes, Reims, standing together.
Then I went on tumblr and it was a weird experience. Posts were saying that France has a colonist history, that Muslims were oppressed. You are right, this is all true. Everybody knows that, that is why #IslamNonCoupable was trending on twitter right away, this is why BFMTV let Drancy’s most important Muslim figure speak in front of thousands of French people (x), I quote him “Their barbary has nothing to do with Islam”. It was important to remind stupid people (yes) that Muslims have nothing, at all, to do with these events. None of my friends and newspapers disagreed. (I’m not talking about extreme right parties newspapers, I count them as stupid people and these are not even mainstream).
During the Ferguson events (I’m keep using that example because it had a huge impact on the whole community of tumblr), one of my main source of information was tumblr, yes I read the NY Daily News or watched the CNN (not a good idea btw) but Twitter and Tumblr had faster informations, and we all knew that some informations were not developed enough or deformed on mainstream newspapers. I truly understood the issue thanks to this website. This isn’t the case for French news on tumblr, we don’t have a huge influence on this website. Foreign newspapers will treat the news from their pov, influenced by their country’s histories and their relation with religion affairs, not every foreign journalists is an expect on french social issues and that’s normal, but I saw the impact it had on tumblr (which can be a problematic since some of theses posts have thousands of reblogs). So unless you can understand French tweets, interviews, politics or experts, your vision could be biased.
France has a colonist history, and a few isles coming from slavery, this is its history, well known from French people but stereotyped by non-French people. Its colonial past provoked immigrations, children of immigration (where I come from) and new sociological challenges. One of those challenges is islamophobia. Therefore protecting Muslims from islamophobia was one of the priorities for French media. This strong claiming of “freedom of speech” wasn’t directly, or even indirectly, an act of islamophobia, but it is a result of a long history of the press being bawl out, journalists fought for this right (see “affaire Dreyfus” if you want start researches). This is an important value in France. You need to understand this social climat and the history of the country to set your judgment.
The international Muslim community may have not understand that, may have be hurt. And trust me, I understand that, from the tumblr pov, without the French sources, this can be confusing. I would be angry too because #KillAllMuslims was a worldwide trending, but absolutely not in France; because several Muslim French citizens suffered from islamophobia right away as cult sites were attacked since this morning (no victims), theses people will be punished (contrary to what I read here, please, do some researches). I learned those agressions thought TV and Twitter when I woke up, it was all over the media, no one hide it, no one diminished it and everyone condemned it. The Ministre de l'Intérieur (the political chef of the police) said it during an official interview, no violence against French citizens who are Muslim will be accepted, he stressed.
Then, this is where you may have to be careful with those “France is islamophobic and then is surprised when the oppressed react”. Stop. If you link France’s islamophobia with this terrorist attack, you link Muslims with this, thus with the terrorists. You can disagree with theses caricatures, hell a LOT of French people didn’t like theses, trust me. But you can’t link Muslims to this violent reaction because this isn’t about them. This violente act can’t be explained, can’t be excused. This isn’t an act of religion, as the Drancy’s Imam said this has nothing to do with Islam.
On days of intense struggle, it’s not always possible to focus on the bigger picture, or end point. That’s just too overwhelming. Sometimes it’s better to focus on the minutiae; like hunting down the hospital for your patient’s favorite chocolate pudding, and seeing them smile the first time that day - for it is the only thing they really want. Or maybe the non-English speaking patient would simply like a newspaper from the gift store in their language, so they don’t feel so isolated. Your day, and your world may feel like it’s crashing down around you, with all the unit chaos - but in that moment, you’ve done the most basic thing you can do for your patient, and that’s to help them retain some kind of choice in what they can have, when most of their choices are stripped away. That’s how you get through. You concentrate on the trivial things they ask for. Not everything in nursing needs to be monumental to be profound – sometimes a pudding and foreign newspaper are all that matters.
Another night like the same. Steve sat at his computer while Natasha and Sam clicked away at theirs. Looking through hacked security cameras, reading foreign newspapers, anything that might give them any hint of where Bucky was. Its been weeks and nothing so far
“I cant believe we lost him again…”
Steve rubbed his face. He blamed himself for getting too comfortable, maybe he didnt take care of Bucky enough. He was sure the accords was triggering on many levels for him. One night he just woke up and he was…gone
“We’ll find him Steve. He did it once we csn do it again”
Steve nodded but he kept his mouth shut. Thry didnt have the UN bombing to help find Bucky this time.
I wanted out. That was partly why I’d chosen Columbia. I liked how the city seethed up against the school, mocking its theoretical seclusion with hustle and noise, the din of people going and getting and making. Things that mattered at Princeton or Yale couldn’t possibly withstand this battering of raw, unironic life. You didn’t go to eating clubs at Columbia, you went to jazz clubs. You had a girlfriend — no, a lover — with psychiatric problems, and friends with foreign accents. You read newspapers on the subway and looked at tourists with a cool, anthropological gaze. You said cross town express. You said the Village. You ate weird food. No other boy in my class would be going there.
> Jun Kurosu. A highly intelligent, usually mild-mannered man with a love for flower language and astrology. Existed as a Persona User in an eliminated timeline; in the current timeline he has no Persona ability and his last name is “Kashihara”.
Ah, Christmas… What a busy time of the year.
> Keisuke Hiraga. Studying medicine because Destiny Says So.
Ah, Christmas… The perfect time to get a good book and enjoy the calming winter-atmosphere.
> Naoto Shirogane. Lives in the only mansion with a fireplace in the entire Inaba area.
Ah, Christmas! That’s when you’re ‘spossed to jump through folks’ roofs to give 'em a surprise, right?
> 5G A.S.S.W. Labrys. Slept through the past 10 Christmases of her life. Was born 10 years ago.
Ah, Christmas… The perfect time to find yourself a wonderful princess… or twenty!
> Ryoji Mochizuki. There is a timeline where he understand the meaning of “monogamy”. This is not that timeline.
Ah, Christmas… What an utterly wasteful time of the year.
> Takaya Sakaki. Designated asshole.
> Fuuka Yamagishi. Utterly overwhelmed with the size of today’s cast.
> The Fortune Arcana. Apparently the reason most of the people above just can’t have nice things.
Is it true that you all Russians are homophobes and support anti gay law?
no, it’s not. actually Russians don’t really care about others’ sexual orientations, but sometimes, yeah, Russians make jokes about gay people, but when it comes to real life, they don’t give a damn, seriously. all my pals and i have nothing against gay people and neither of us think that this law is something Russia ‘needs’. i know several gay guys, and they’re absolutely awesome, smart and they’re great people in general, so…
but you know what? what i see/read in foreigns mass media makes me sad and makes me laugh at the same time, bc they exaggerate everything, making everyone believe/think that we Russians are evil barbarians. they say, that several surveys have been held here and the results show, that “70% of Russians support the law”. no, we don’t. we’ve never even heard of those surveys, and if we had, the results would have been ‘positively’ different, i’m sure. (nobody loves Russia ): )
the law is actually called Law banning the promotion of homosexuality, and “anti gay law” is something made up by the foreign newspapers, which also say that according to this law gay people aren’t allowed to kiss/hold each other’s hands in public. it’s not true. the law prohibits promoting homosexuality in mass media and among teenagers. the whole thing started after a series of billboards in Saint Petersburg called “They Were Gay” or smth like that (billboards with photos of famous Russians, like Tschaikovskiy, Akhmatova, Nureyev and their quotes on their sexual preferences). gay people aren’t sent to prison, fined or anything like that here in Russia.
let me say that once again, so you don’t get me wrong: i’m not homophobic and i can’t really say i support the law.