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Buying and Selling by Smartphone: Mercari App Shakes Up Japan’s Consumer SpendingNishida Munechika

Peer-to-peer marketplace app Mercari has enjoyed a meteoric rise since its 2013 launch, reaching a total of 75 million downloads. The company’s valuation has soared to over $1 billion to make it a rare Japanese “unicorn.” The app’s ease of use has been a factor in its success, but has also led to problems with low-quality or shady transactions.

Seeking the True State of Online OpinionKimura Tadamasa

Online discourse is often disproportionately represented by a repetitive stream of extremist comments. To determine what online opinion really is, it is necessary to take a closer look.

The Internet, Media, and Public Opinion in JapanKimura Tadamasa

A Japanese perspective on media in the Internet age, considering how public opinion is formed today.

Global Cyberattack Hits Japan, Including Hitachi, JR East (News)

Tokyo, May 15 (Jiji Press)—Japanese companies, municipalities, and citizens have fallen prey to cyberattacks that began hitting targets worldwide late last week, it was learned Monday. Japanese electronics giant Hitachi Ltd.'s in-house computer system has been destabilized, with some email messages and attachments being blocked, company officials said the same day. Although the scale and cau…

What Japanese Search For: The Top Internet Keywords of 2016

Major search engines Google and Yahoo! Japan released their top Japanese search terms for 2016. The rankings provide insight into topics that most interested Japanese net users.

Spotify Aims to Revitalize Japan’s CD-Dominated Music MarketYamaguchi Norikazu

Music-streaming giant Spotify has launched its Japanese service. What impact is it likely to have on the distinctive local market, where CDs remain popular and can be rented from stores?

The Roots and Realities of Japan’s Cyber-NationalismFuruya Tsunehira

The prevalence of anti-Korean and anti-Chinese hate speech on Japanese websites has raised concerns about the spread of a virulent strain of right-wing cyber-nationalism in Japan. Furuya Tsunehira traces the rise of Japan’s “Internet right-wingers” and dispels some myths about their identity and potential impact.

The Polarization of the Japanese Media and the Need for Middle GroundSatō Takumi

Japanese newspapers are said to have become polarized in their coverage of controversial issues like the recent national security legislation. How does their current approach compare with their stance in 1960, when renewal of the Japan-US security treaty split the nation? And what is their role in the age of the Internet, where people are unlikely to seek content that conflicts with their own opinions?

The Birth and Evolution of the Internet in JapanMurai Jun

A leading figure of computer science, often called the father of Japan’s Internet, elucidates the development and spread of the Internet in Japan and discusses what the future might hold.

Artificial Intelligence: Comeback Chance for Japanese ManufacturingMatsuo Yutaka

The cutting-edge field of artificial intelligence is attracting great attention and massive funding in Western countries and China. Japan now lags behind these leaders, but it is in a good position to use AI as a tool for revival of the manufacturing sector.

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