7% of Japanese Have No Friends

ritsu-emerges-from-screen

There is some surprise at the results of a survey which suggest as many as 6.7% of Japanese questioned have no friends at all…

The survey, with over 13,000 participants, found 6.7% of respondents had no friends at all, whilst 22.2% had 3-4, 20.6% had 5-6, and 23.8% had over 11.

Friends were mostly made at high school (55.4%) and at work (52.4%), as well as at university (38.1%) and middle and elementary school (34.1%/24.3%), with hobby related connections trailing at 25.1%. 8% came from online acquaintances.

Curiously, 17.1% of respondents stated they found such relationships “troublesome”…

Similar figures for other countries are not hard to come by – 2003 Gallup polls of Americans asked “Not counting your relatives, about how many close friends would you say you have?” yielded an average of 8.6 friends:

0 – 2%

1 – 6%

2 – 8%

3 – 11%

4 – 11%

5 – 17%

6-9 – 18%

10+ – 27%

Whether a “close friend” equates to a “tomodachi” in Japanese culture is open to question (as is whether Japanese actually agree on what a “friend” is), but it certainly seems the social circles of some Japanese are shrinking… Just how many of these are actual hikikomori and otaku is not known.

Leave a Comment

167 Comments