Thursday, January 21, 2010

Wapanese and Weeaboo WTF!?

Recently I have come across a term which threw me for a loop. A post over at titled I,Weeaboo. The gentlemen writes about being more offended by being called a Weeaboo than gaijin. I am NOT going to get into the whole gaijin issue. That is best left for another post for another day. I wanna blog about this strange Weeaboo and Wapanese thing.

At first, I did not know what the person over at was referring to at all. Once I found out what the hell he was talking about, I was left thinking WTF!? In short Weeaboo(or Wapanese) is someone who has an obsession with Japanese cartoons and Japanese culture; yet takes it a step beyond. A Weeaboo thinks that Japan is better than any other nation on the planet. They hate their own culture and attempt to act as if they are Japanese; failing in this effort of course. I must say that the term Weeaboo is one of the most immature school yard bullshit I have never heard in my life!

I am sure the gentlemen who runs is far from fitting the term Weeaboo. In fact, most foreigners living in Japan, or have an interest in Japan, are not Weeaboo. The term borders on racism in the first place. Just think of such a term coming out of the mouth of someone from Japan. A lot of people already have issues with the term gaijin. If young kids in Japan started calling foreigners Weeaboo it might cause street fights.

Further more, take a look at myself. Hell, I live in Japan and you won`t see me going nuts over Japanese culture at all. For me, it is just another culture. The Japanese are not perfect by any means. They can be just as fucked-up as any other culture in the world. I do not defend Japan nor do I attack it. I just call it as I see it. Sometimes Japan can be a good place to live. There are others times when Japan can be a pretty fucked-up place to live. It all depends on the situation.

So, if someone really likes Japan and Japanese culture more power to them. If it makes them happy that is cool with me. Chill with the weeaboo and wapanese name calling. It really is a bunch of childish bullshit!


Orchid64 said...

I have heard of Wapanese, but never Weeapoo. I don't think Japanese people would ever call a foreign person such things, even if they were aware of the terms, because the notion is complimentary to Japanese culture. They aren't about to make fun of people who elevate Japanese culture over others.

That being said, there is a fairly vocal minority of people who will justify and validate anything that occurs in Japan. These people are not only apologists, but attack everything about their own culture and portray it as inferior to that in Japan.

You see this sometimes overtly and sometimes more subtly. On the overt front is a foreigner with a site which says Japan should return to the days before it was influenced by foreigners and says Japan should put the emperor back to his former status as ruler and "god". On the more subtle side are people who comment on sites like Japan Probe and will take any article or conversation which portrays Japan in a negative light and say that America is worse. It doesn't matter what they're talking about. All discussions lead back to the U.S. and Japan is above criticism.

If you haven't come across these types of people, you're probably not wasting your time reading a lot of blogs. ;-)

Katie Muffett said...

Absolutely agree that the labels need to be left in the schoolyard.

But that doesn't make Gwen Stefani any less annoying. Of course, that was the case long before she misguidedly made 'Japan' her target market. ('Japan' in her mind meaning knee-socks, mismatched plaid, and mute Japanese girls)

I hear Orchid64. The 'Japan can do no wrong' mindset has always puzzled me, as it wins no friends either in one's own country or in Japan. Would the extreme right wing in Japan really welcome one of these types into their innermost circles? Can't see it, personally.

Anonymous said...

Wholeheartedly agree with Orchid64 as my blog leans towards being not so nice to the Japanese at times I attract these people like flame attracts moths (yes I usually burn them with my retorts or cast them into the flames of deletion hehe) But it would be nice to have a Wapanese/Weeapoo Filter...hey maybe that would be a nice new app for Blogger or WP, in addition to the SPAM filters.
Good Post Ghost!

J-pop vs. Metal said...

Dude...the origin of weeaboo is from endless debates and comments about or involving the terms Wapanese and/or Japanophile. It comes from a comic called Perry Bible Fellowship.

The term originally is mocking people who need to label others as much as the weeaboos themselves. Also, therefore.

jamie said...

Never heard of that term, but really it just sounds silly. These kind of people clearly need to be labelled and ostracised, but really, let's come up with a slightly less dumb sounding word!

M' T said...

I've heard of the terms Weeaboo, Wapanese, Weeapoo whatever. I think they were invented by people who got sick of others who were being biased towards all things Japanese.

Such people or weeaboos are supposed have no ears for anything negative concerning Japan or Japanese while at the same time being wildly uneducated on issues concerning Japan and Japanese. Basing their conclusions on a few scraps of modern Japanese media like manga and anime.

Other stereotypical descriptions of weeaboos are how they are supposed to throw in a lot of Japanese into their vocab while not actually speaking the language, doing cosplay but not really getting it right. Stuff like that. Their life goal is supposed to be living in Japan which they think is like what they see in manga and anime.

I know there are many people out there who fit this bill for 90% or so. So it's not like some exaggerated fictional derogative word, but you are right about it being a word that might have been better of not being used.

Billy said...

Someone ever calls me that... I'll kick 'em in the nutts. How's that!

TheGhost said...

I am glad to see a little discussion about this topic on my blog.
I read up on the subject a bit and came to the conclusion that it is a way to belittle others for a personal interest gone a little too far.
I still think the term is silly and childish.
I live in Japan and I see good and bad points of the culture.

Kuroshirohaiiro said...

There is something you should know if you don't already! The internet is full of awesomeness and technology but where there is no law there is also the polar extreme. For every google and wikipedia out there there are sites that bash!I am calling out one site in particular. 4chan (google it) on the /b/ page of this website is where all the internet memes you could ever imagine have started. weeaboos started there and so did lol cats. Anyone who blogs or has established a presence online should know about this site simply because it is also home to some of the worst hackers of all time. I do what I can to protect my internet self from these people and i urge you to do the same. There is a nasty underground world on the internet and you cannot say you are familiar with the net until you are familiar with all of its aspects.

TheGhost said...

You bring up a good point. I am aware of 4chan. It is one of the darker places on the net. I avoid it simply because of the people who crawl around there. The hackers on 4chan can be dangerous. Yet, a person usually has to be pretty noticeable to get their attention. I have attracted them before but they usually just spam or troll my blog; which is easy enough to manage.

Billy W said...

I'm sure I'm misguided in my own way, but when I see misguidedness in others, I usually don't feel venemous enough to paste 'em with a stupid label like one of these.

Unknown said...

"[The term Weeaboo] Is the most childish schoolyard bullshit I have ever seen!"

That would be because it is used an awful lot by the Internet's version of childish schoolyard bullies, the slime (for they are not people, but an amorphous mass of idiocy) that posts on the now defunct EncyclopediaDramatica and around /b/. They troll because they think it's funny, but they don't realize they are not trolls - they are bullies. Anyone who uses a term like "Weeaboo" to describe someone interested in the culture of Japan is just looking for someone to bully. That's not to say that people who actually glorify everything Japanese without being in the country and understanding it are correct; they're wrong too. But I can suffer through hearing an extreme Japanophile blather about how much America sucks and Japan is better for far longer that I can suffer through hearing a troll spew more vitriol into a world and internet already full of hate.