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After scandal at Shiga shocked the nation, a survey of over a million Japanese has revealed the unshocking truth of bullying in Japan – that most Japanese have been bullied, some 40% have got in on the action themselves, and that massive numbers have considered killing themselves as a result of the torment inflicted.

The survey, conducted online by NicoNico Douga, probably ranks as one of the largest ever taken of Japanese, with 1,072,014 participants.

Asking whether respondents had ever been bullied at school or college, they found 57.2% of those asked had, with women slightly more frequently victimised at 60.5% to men’s 54.1%.

Unsurprisingly for an all but universal social phenomenon, there was little difference between the areas with the highest reported incidence (Kanto and Kyoto with nearly 60% having been bullied) and those with the lowest (various backwater prefectures with only 50%).

Also unsurprisingly given the Japanese love of preserving “harmonious” relations, most bullying manifested itself indirectly – 32% experienced malign gossip and ostracism, 19.3% experienced insults and “verbal violence,” 15.6% had their possessions hidden or destroyed, and 12.6% were outright assaulted.

Gossip and exclusion were far more prevalent against women (38.3%) than men (25.%), with men instead finding themselves beaten up twice as much (17.6% vs 9.9%).

Most tragically given recent events and the noted preference of young Japanese for killing themselves rather than anyone else in response to such abuse, fully 27.4% of bullying victims had considered suicide, and a further 8.6% “couldn’t remember” whether they had done so.

54.3% of victims found they had nobody to turn to, with the rest favouring family (26.5%) or even teachers (10%).

Most unsurprisingly of all given the preference of Japanese schools for covering up any and all untoward events, over half of all those who did seek help failed to see an end to the bullying – 21.5% saw it continue unabated, 2.6% saw it worsen, 24.4% saw it lighten, and only 36.8% saw it abate completely. 14.7% reported an “other” outcome.

Few Japanese seemed to think the victim could do anything about their own situation, let alone best the bullies – in spite of all the evidence to the contrary, 26.9% thought teachers were the best way of ending bullying and 22.6% hoped a vanishingly rare police intercession would be the best way of tackling it.

9.7% believed a school counsellor might actually be of some use, 9.4% thought rules against bullying were the answer (perhaps overlooking the fact most schools already have them for whatever good they do), 4.9% saw inter-parental negotiations as best,  and a charmingly optimistic 12.7% thought the key was the victim talking things out with their tormentor.

As to the bullies, nearly half of respondents were prepared to admit to bullying – 15.9% “had experience of bullying,” and 26.7% had committed acts “which might in reflection have been considered bullying by the victim.” However, 68.9% of these bullies had been bullied themselves as well.

Finally, of the nearly two thirds of Japanese who had witnessed bullying, 54% pretended to see nothing, 12.3% tried to help, 10.1% tattled, 5.6% asked friends and 2.4% actually joined in.


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    Avatar of cats2
    Comment by cats2
    19:35 22/08/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    If you're feeling down and out with what your life's all about, lift your head up high and...

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:30 22/08/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    kick the chair out from bellow?

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:28 22/08/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    jump from a window?

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:12 23/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    What are you guys all from 4chan or something?

    Avatar of cats2
    Comment by cats2
    12:51 23/08/2012 # ! Quality (+0.8)

    I was really expecting SOMEONE to have heard the song, not this, lol..

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:10 23/08/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Don't worry, I got you.
    BLOW YOUR BRAINS OUT!

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:22 25/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Don't be silly, nobody in Japan has a gun.

    Avatar of koko
    Comment by koko
    12:56 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yes '_' and your point is

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:29 22/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    place a plastic bag over it?

    Avatar of Erranty
    Comment by Erranty
    06:16 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Reach for the Noose.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:33 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    and side kick someone in the face. Worked for me and its so much fun. Oh the sound of a foot hitting someone side temple has such a nice ring to it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:24 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    ALWAYS LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE OF LIFE.

    God damn, are you all culturally stunted?

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:12 25/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Flip the table in an organized-fashioned anger?

    (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Anonymous
    08:19 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    And loudly proclaim that you are going to pierce the heavens with your drill!

    Comment by Anonymous

    leave japan for america... FUCK YEAH!!!

    Avatar of jr2nd
    Comment by jr2nd
    09:34 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    and be racially abused or bullied in the US?

    hmmm...

    decisions...

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:44 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    "except america is a bigger melting pot and more acceptable to other ethnicity."

    You must be living in California or something; racism still exists in America. Then again, you did say "more acceptable".

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:05 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    except america is a bigger melting pot and more acceptable to other ethnicity.

    Avatar of Pyrus
    Comment by Pyrus
    18:38 22/08/2012 # ! Quality (+0.8)

    These attitudes the Japanese seem to have toward bullying & how to handle it seem to be similar to the attitudes many Blacks seemed to have in America prior to the civil rights movement when White people beat, jailed, raped, or killed them: Take the abuse, cry to yourself or God out of sight of man, hope nothing else happens too soon, try to go about your business like nothing ever happened, and pray someone else somewhere else comes along to actually do something about it.

    Avatar of HouseLife
    Comment by HouseLife
    06:14 23/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.4)

    @Pryus

    That's a very solid point, actually. I wonder what similarities exist in recent history that would lead to such similar outcomes. Since I'm not very versed in Japanese culture, I don't know what it could be, but I can't help but shake the thought that old-style Samurai mentality still lurks in the backs of everyone's minds. That the modern world doesn't actually work with those ideals and methodologies in the same way anymore, and yet they seem to cling to it out of genetics and their ties to the importance of dynastic thought processes.

    In many ways, there is so little honor left in the world that I can understand why they would do their best to cling to family honor. It is a reputation for being a strong-willed person, but it gets easily bastardized when honor gets redefined into being better than others rather than actually BEING honorable. It's like they've taken it from a state of being into a state of stature, which is of course exactly how an ideal becomes bastardized.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:12 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    personally, I always thought that much of Japan's social structure felt like bullying. The kind of "respect" that seems to be demanded from a kouhai to a sempai with no actual merits required seems to beg for a false sense of superiority and moral myopia.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:10 25/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    @21:16

    The thing that has changed is "purpose". Nowadays it's only "work for moneys sake" or "work for works sake". Back then, people still had the drive to built up a devastated economy and their lives anew.

    Nowadays they are struggling to maintain a status quo that no longer exists. The entertainment industry is the perfect example of how the Japanese are either unwilling or incapable of adapting to modern global trends. They would rather cling to their old business models to the very end. The same is true for their society. They are unwilling to change and move forward, in fact, if given the chance they will opt to enforce draconian laws over reason.

    The notion that age is representative for wisdom and experience has never been more false than today. The geriatric COs and figureheads of Japan regularly thwart any attempt for improvement. The younger generations are stuck in a hierarchical death lock that they can't break out of. Demonstrations are largely unheard of. Even after what happened at Fukushima there's hardly any change. It almost feels like utter resignation. Not to mention that Fukushima is still their worst problem and not just theirs.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:16 24/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Interesting food for thought.

    The hierarchical structure no doubt served very well for a time. The organized structure, rigid segmentation, all served to propel Japan into the modern era at a much more rapid pace than most any other nation did or thought possible at the time. There were other factors, of course...

    A seniority-based system at its heart is one that emphasizes age and experience. The assumption is that the more time someone has spent at a job, the more competent he is, and those who are less experienced should defer to those with more.

    This was completely true in earlier times. The longer you survive on a battlefield, survive in making a living on the farm, the better you got. Age and wile over youthful vigor and all that. It also rewarded loyalty and persistence at a task.

    However, perhaps the world has moved beyond that? As you say, just having spent time at a job no longer guarantees you're better.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:36 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Very good question why do people cling to useless old ways when they don't work or are detrimental to society as a whole. It could be we are just naked monkeys in the end with most of our brain been no better than that chimp throwing feces at others.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Come now.

    If you were an uppity nigger during slavery, you got killed. Doesn't matter if the state allowed it at-whim or if your owner had to come up with a reason -- if you got uppity, you got killed. Can't let him get around makin' the other niggers uppity also, see.

    Therefore the surviving descendants of black slaves in the U.S. have had "shut up and look down, hope someone else fixes it so I don't sway in the wind" fucking baked into their culture. Unless you're going to allege a historical lack of respect for human life at an equal scale in Japan, I'd rather you took your white bag and zipped it.

    Avatar of Pyrus
    Comment by Pyrus
    15:05 23/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.4)

    All I did was notice a similarity of attitudes. Not a similarity of social factors that caused the attitudes & it wasn't my intent to do so.

    However if you want to go there...

    Many cultures with a top-down social hierarchy throughout history have had periods when those members sufficiently near the top have had little regard or respect for the lives of those sufficiently near the bottom. During such times, the best the socially lowly could hope for was to be ignored, as those who are under the law are forever at the whim of those who are the law, make the law, or who just have the law's ear. And some of those "upper crusts" were real brutes to those considered "beneath them."

    It wouldn't be too surprising to find that the Japanese are trying to slowly grope their way out of such a period in their cultural development in the same manner in which some Whites in the U.S. felt that the Blacks were asking for too much too fast during the Civil Rights Movement.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:23 23/08/2012 # ! Drivel (-1.0)

    Whose business should be more important to the bullied, their own or their oppressors?

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:11 22/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    Goddamn grow a pair of balls and fight back, if your thinking of killing yourself might as well fight the bullies and take one of them down with you.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:03 23/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Sadly that mentality is too "barbaric" for the Japanese to comprehend.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:34 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    but it's ok to kill family and innocent people.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:45 24/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    We live in a world of hypocrites. Any actions that contradicts what you're trying to achieve is obviously ok. :P

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:57 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Goalkeepers complaining the outfield players don't handle the ball.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:46 22/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Bullying isn't exclusively physical. The whole point of bullying in the first place is to assert superiority over another. As such, many of these victims were also made to believe they can't do anything about it.

    Though, Japan does need a grievous tragedy or three, particularly involving mass murders of bullies, for them to truly wake up and do something about it. Someone should go around massively poisoning bullies or stab and slash them all with a machete, just to remind the rest of the nation that once their victims snap, 'this could happen to you too'.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:58 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    There's also the fact that if you're being bullied for being bigger (and therefore friendly to start with, like a big dog), once you do snap and bring The Fear to the bully, it might still not stop.

    You'll just be known as the violent monkey. Perhaps get punished by the authorities. They'll hate you for the same attributes the bullies do, after all.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:23 24/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    So that you become a monster to fight a monster.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:35 22/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    or simply show them how fragile their lives are.
    you don't even need any tools, simply grab one's larynx and ask if he know what would happen if you tried to tear it out

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:35 22/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I prefer to extract my revenge through fucking their loved ones and publicly bragging about it after.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:15 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    don't kid yourself, the only thing you fuck is a couch with a hole in it.

    Avatar of hotstew
    Comment by hotstew
    19:26 22/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Next thing you know, they've torn out your larynx.
    Yeah, really great advice. Now let's get back to reality.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:14 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm a different anon, hotstew, but standing up to bullies ALWAYS worked for me. I'd just threaten to kill/maim them, and every single one of them would walk away awkwardly laughing with a "yeah right, faggot." None of them ever bothered me again after that, though. Most people don't want to risk a real fight with someone who's very obviously angry.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:59 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Try to write full sentences.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:23 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    he sais try not do . . .
    learn to understand...

    Comment by Anonymous

    Yeah sure, like they aren't gonna react to death menace and aren't gonna cry to their parents so that you get fucked by the PTA if you get back at them.

    If things were as simple as fighting back or scarring the shit out of people, bullying wouldn't be that much of a problem to begin with.

    Avatar of Pyrus
    Comment by Pyrus
    15:13 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Some people believe it is better to die on your feet, than to live on your knees. So their only answer is to fight back, even if it kills them socially or literally.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:24 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    But sometimes it is just that simple. Ofcourse, if it doesn't work, then it's only going toget worse. I still say try.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:10 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I doubt they can simply "fight back". They're outnumbered and unlikely to have any allies. If anything happens most people are more likely to back up the bullies then the victim.
    So fighting back might actually lead to the victim getting expelled from school for violent behavior or even being persecuted by the police for causing harm to another person.
    Because who do you think the authorities are going to believe? The one person who hurt someone else or the 20-30 people?

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:42 24/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Go for double-kill. Take the enemy down with you. You're dead so it won't matter.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:16 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    It's better they kill themselves than have school shootings like in the States.
    Japanese kill themselves because they think they are not needed in society. Americans kill everybody cuz their train of thought always starts from thinking about themselves.
    We need something in between like teaching these kids proper logical thinking and reasoning to look at the big picture.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:24 22/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.7)

    Their so called "harmony" is destroying them for good...

    Comment by Char
    01:55 23/08/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Harmony = out of sight out of mind.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:07 23/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    as long as it's not happening to me, i'm in harmony.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:01 23/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Exactly. The world is meant to be balanced. If you try to lean to one side the other will balance it out. Japanese try too hard to be "good" so the "bad" side is fighting back full force.

    Honestly you shouldn't go against nature.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:32 22/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Like most systems in this world the japanese "harmony" thing is broken >.>







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