Shibuya Gyaru Purge “Successful”


Shibuya has been trumpeting its success in driving out adherents of the various youth subcultures it largely spawned, with herds of gyaru, ganguro, yamanba and other undesirables now a rarity on its fair streets.

Central Shibuya’s retail promotion association had become concerned at Shibuya’s reputation as a “scary town” (an accurate characterisation by central Tokyo standards, though a massive exaggeration by those of practically anywhere else), and resolved to do something about it by driving out the young people.

From 2003 onwards, they instituted street patrols of major shopping areas near Shibuya station, with the intent of driving out the massed groups of gyaru and other fashion tribes who once milled about in these areas.

According to the brave souls who undertook the gruelling task of telling young girls to get lost if they weren’t there to shop, after some ten years of this their numbers have dwindled from dozens of gyaruzu occupying the sides of the main thoroughfares, engaged in such anti-social practices as sitting, dancing and talking, to less than 10 at typical times.

Whether their efforts had any legal force is not clear, although it is hard to imagine Japanese disobeying instructions from anyone wearing an armband and a uniform.

Some have lamented the measures as “potentially causing the decline of a vibrant source of street culture,” although as they do not own any Shibuya department stores their opinions carry no weight.

Similar efforts to reduce the numbers of central Tokyo’s highly visible and highly pungent homeless population seem to have enjoyed more limited success, and unfortunately it will likely take more than a few old men in uniforms to do anything about Shibuya’s architecture.

The valiant efforts of the patrol in action, their main and only recourse to correcting the evils of youth, smokers, and of course people leaning on railings or stood with a suitcase at their feet appearing to be bad language and shouting:

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    Avatar of Shaolan-kun
    Comment by Shaolan-kun
    06:53 28/08/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Gyarus in the first pic are not scary, just hideous (to me).
    But why pick on them? They're doing nothing wrong, just having fun. Something old geezers probably can't have anymore (if they ever had).

    Avatar of Dummy00001
    Comment by Dummy00001
    08:05 28/08/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    The "old geezers" simply can't accept that new generation is different.

    I have seen it in Europe too. Fortunately, the old geezers here are just that: old geezers.

    In Japan - and I gather other countries with age-based social hierarchies (India pops up as an example) - the old farts unfortunately bear most of the power by the virtue of being old.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:35 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.7)

    And here in canada we throw them in retirement homes, no respect for the elders.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:37 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    Hey, when the elders respect the young, then we will respect them. Unfortunately, that does not exist in America and Canada at this point.

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:44 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Man, fuck that. Elders here in Canada do not give two shits about anybody else, they can go die in their retirement homes and do the world a favor for all I care. They have no respect for anybody and think they actually have predefined authority. You know what I call that? Hypocritical, conceited cunts.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:29 15/11/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    keep in mind you guys are going to be elders someday, hopefully you don't act the same way as the current elderly do.

    Comment by Anonymous

    well, they will rot away in the same retirement homes one day.

    i wish western society still had commonsense

    Avatar of Artist Rising
    Comment by Artist Rising
    08:48 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Beauty is in the eyes of dead presidents and past leaders...if you get what I mean.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:49 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Beauty is in the eyes of dead presidents and past leaders...if you get what I mean.

    Avatar of Benoist
    Comment by Benoist
    17:14 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    geezers ? you mean, like the absurd some intolerant ero-writer that would be ruling the place ?

    Avatar of Benoist
    Comment by Benoist
    17:16 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    (-some. hey, what's with the edit feature ?)

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:13 25/09/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I Remember reading gyaru fashion perpose was to repel guys from hit on them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:03 02/09/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Some shops in my country have a sign outside, "No loitering" which is what they were doing.
    In Australia, people don't like that and if they do cause some disturbance for your business, only police can tell them to move.
    I think nothing wrong with sitting down, loitering. Doesn't really ruin the business. But if too many, then I think they are annoying as they take up the whole footpath and act like idiots. And I don't mind when I see the girl squat and spread her legs :D Always a good site :)

    Avatar of Powerpuff Loli
    Comment by Powerpuff Loli
    11:09 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    So gyarus are like skaters in the US, to a lesser degree.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:24 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    don't we have our own "gyarus" like snooki and all those guidos that use radiation tanning

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:38 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    That only happens in New Jersey and no one goes to New Jersey. On the people in New Jersey hang out in New Jersey.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:39 02/09/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Don't lump all of NJ with that guido trash.
    I almost went berserk on a college professor in Alaska for that.

    Avatar of Kiljoy616
    Comment by Kiljoy616
    22:51 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (-0.2)

    No skater are smelly guys that I could care less about. Chicks with way to much orange tan is ok by me. Old people need to die off or maybe they can just go somewhere and die off. Either way it be ok by me.

    Avatar of Canti
    Comment by Canti
    06:21 28/08/2012 # ! Quality (+0.8)

    There goes your freedom of expression and free thought

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:31 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    as far as i know the japanese don't have freedom of expression or free thought. it's do as your told or else.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:23 28/08/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Yup. You do as you're told, or else you get bullied for being different.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:40 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I remember seeing that in their constitution. Was it article 3 or 4? I can't remember. Give me a refresher.

    Avatar of Erranty
    Comment by Erranty
    06:43 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    As far as we know Gyaru don't think.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:15 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    or maybe, it was a trend that slowly died out and people grew up.

    Comment by Anonymous

    we? who "we"? your imaginary believe?

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:09 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    It's Japan, there never was any.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:42 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.7)

    Japan didn't have any of that to begin with. The nail that sticks up must be hammered down.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:05 29/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Democracy is when a man with common sense and two stupid men meet and the two latter owerrule the first man by joining together.

    Avatar of Kiljoy616
    Comment by Kiljoy616
    22:51 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Japan is not know for it. Conform is the norm.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:21 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Wonder not have to hand the Ishihara this story.
    Stupid cops abusing authority, even worse old men authoritarian to talk to young people.
    The cleanup started with tattooed, people who dresses differently, tomorrow otakus enters the list!

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:51 31/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    otakus have been on the list since the 80s

    Avatar of Pyrolight
    Comment by Pyrolight

    Not always a bad thing.

    Avatar of Pyrolight
    Comment by Pyrolight
    09:47 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    *sigh* voted down.

    I didn't think it would need to be explained, thankfully anon 9:23 covered it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:20 28/08/2012 # ! Drivel (-0.8)

    ALWAYS... a bad thing.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:23 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.7)

    When a person abuses 'freedom of expression' to make hate speeches and promote violence against certain ethnic groups, well, that person needs to have his freedom withdrawn and himself hammered down.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:35 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    I have to disagree. Regulations against the so called "hate speech" can lead to prosecuting people who make perfectly objective and logical statements.
    For example, you can't publicly say that women score lower on IQ tests on average (which is true) or that black people are typically more athletic than other races (also true) without being caused a significant amount of grief by pretend-emancipation supporter supremacists and the occasional misguided white knight.

    Suppressing information because it offends certain people is a disaster waiting to happen.

    So yes, hate speech is fine. That doesn't mean that you are free of the consequences however. You can scream "Fire" in a theatre, and you won't be prosecuted for your words. However, you will be prosecuted for putting a lot of people into danger.

    Avatar of Pyrolight
    Comment by Pyrolight
    07:56 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    NOT... always a bad thing.

    Avatar of Tex_Arcana
    Comment by Tex_Arcana
    10:45 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    That's such bullshit, though.

    You'd have to functionally braindead to take such ideologies seriously. It's not like they're seriously seductive for most of us. Let the stupid ones out themselves.

    The world should be a free marketplace of ideas... and that includes bad ones. Censorship just makes hate groups feel victimized... and that's rarely a winning combination.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:09 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    The security guard in the first video sounds like Beat Takashi.

    Also watching these reminded me that Sega has not released another Jet Grind Radio title in nearly 10 fucking years.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:47 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well they're releasing a remastered version of Jet Set Radio for download on September 18, if that counts.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:35 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Not really, but the remake does look good. Hopefully they'll do JSRF next, as I'd love to play it in 16x9, without the occasional slowdown. That damned lag dragon is unbelievably frustrating.

    Avatar of Adom Jensom
    Comment by Adom Jensom
    10:11 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Nice, but make a new one!

    Avatar of T.O.M. Morrow
    Comment by T.O.M. Morrow
    06:55 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    I was in Shibuya in April and I do agree that the efforts to get to purge the gyaru subculture was indeed was as if I was in a different Tokyo from the one I had visited in my previous trip. They also opened a brand new department store called Hikari-e in order to rebrand the place as a family-friendly shopping attraction. It is quite sad.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:47 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Two years ago when I studied in Tokyo, Shibuya was my go-to place! I used to hang out there every night for hours and met some really cool people. It was the perfect place to watch the World Cup too. Shibuya was still Shibuya back then. My Japanese friend used to refuse invitations to Shibuya at night because she was so scared of the "shady" people who hang out there, and I had to settle for Shinjuku instead if I wanted to see her.

    I was just in Tokyo this past June and I have to agree that Shibuya has lost some of its charm. Hikari-e is pretty lame compared to the people who used to hang out under 109 or even by Marui.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:38 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    That's a real pity. For my short trip... two or three years ago, I think people watching in Shibuya was one of the highlights.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:51 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Now, you can watch old guys blowing whistles at people. :3

    Avatar of Kiljoy616
    Comment by Kiljoy616
    22:52 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    So where people there to buy or was it full of old men looking for some young ass.

    Avatar of stilettogirl
    Comment by stilettogirl
    07:35 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    So in your opinion is it better or worse without the Gyaru?

    Avatar of T.O.M. Morrow
    Comment by T.O.M. Morrow
    08:02 28/08/2012 # ! Good (+0.7)

    Worse, in the sense that it's a lot less interesting there now. The gyaru, in my experience were not troublemakers, they just wanted to stand out, mainly by looking and dressing differently...what's so bad about non-conformity? (Rhetorical question).

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

    >>what's so bad about non-conformity?

    ..this is JAPAN we're talking about, right?

    Avatar of T.O.M. Morrow
    Comment by T.O.M. Morrow
    08:38 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yes, indeed. I was just injecting my opinion as a gaijin. Japan is not the place to be if you stand out...however, they certainly took their time in deciding to stamp out what they deemed to be an eyesore...seems the hesitancy of authorities to act is also a trademark of Japan.

    Still, like any place in the world, all cultures have their pros and cons...

    Avatar of ExESGO
    Comment by ExESGO
    08:57 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Japan is a conformist society.

    They just try to not be one, but their culture is generally that, follow the rules and stuff.

    Avatar of fxc2
    Comment by fxc2
    10:05 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    What about on weekends? Sub-culture youths still flock around Shibuya on sundays right?

    Avatar of Artist Rising
    Comment by Artist Rising
    08:21 28/08/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Is it wrong that I gave you a +1 just for that avatar...

    Oh my childhood interferes yet again!!

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