Monday, December 8, 2008

Sending New Year's cards to online friends and enemies

December has rolled in again, and like most people in Japan, I am busy scribbling addresses and the same boring greeting to all my colleagues, bosses, and acquaintances in Japan. Things have gotten easier over the years. You can buy custom printed cards and even use your computer to print the addresses on (if you can figure out how, which I decidedly cannot).

Mixi, the myspace of Japan, has figured out how to make things easier on you if you want to send new year greetings to your online friends- by introducing an SNS greeting card service. The apparent plus point is that you can send this but still be anonymous. If your mixi screen name is kawaii-kitty-chan-daisuki, that's the name that will be on your greetings. No fussing about with learning the real names or addresses of the people you flirt with online.

Maybe it's just me, but I find this creepy. My foyers into the Mixi world haven't been very interesting, so I might be biased. I do find that Japanese web forums, all stemming from the totally anonymous 2-ch, lack the community feeling that most English-language forums have. I'm also scared that anyone I meet on Mixi might end up inviting me to a suicide pact forum, but that's probably just irrational. Probably.

If I like someone online so much that I want to send them a new year's greeting, why wouldn't I already know their name and where they live, or at least have the balls to ask them for that information? I guess it would stop pervs from getting the addresses of 12 year old girls, but there should be something in place to stop this happening long before these pervs are getting close enough to send them cards.

Who do I want to send anonymous greetings to? Certainly not people I like. Prime Minister Asshole is on the list, as are most goverment ministers. Bullies I have worked with in the past and the nutjobs who commit crazy crimes around Japan are at the top of my list. They wouldn't be the normal greetings, which are basically just a plea for people not to hate you (thank you for everything last year, please like me next year too). It would be more along the lines of, I hope you get attacked by this:

Or, since 2009 is the Year of the Bull/Cow

I like this idea better and better.


Tokyo Cowgirl said...

"Prime Minister Asshole"

I love it! And what is his agenda, anyway? To piss off every ethnicity and religious organization and, recently, old people, before the powers that be replace him?

Let's hope they replace him soon. I can't take two more years of him.

Nate Wendt said...

That is funny, that is exactly what I called Aso the first time I heard his name and I was pretty sure I wasn't the only one. I knew he was kooky when he first proposed that plan to give everyone about 1-2万円 just so he could get re-elected next year and then raise sales tax from 5% to 12%. Duh!

jlpt-2kyu said...

"I knew he was kooky when he first proposed that plan to give everyone about 1-2万円 just so he could get re-elected next year and then raise sales tax from 5% to 12%. Duh!"

Chess players will recognise this as the 'pawn sacrifice' strategy.

I'll be happy to take the money though, I cant vote anyway!