AKBnomics: AKB48 CDs “Selling At Less Than 1 Yen Each”

ak48-big-spender (2)

The bizarre otaku-driven economics of Japan’s best-selling “music” group AKB48 are again turning heads, with a vast torrent of unwanted CDs flooding the second-hand market at landfill prices even as the voting tickets they accompanied command top-dollar.

Sayonara Crawl sold 1.763 million copies in its first week, but just to how many buyers is not known – though the indications are that it was far fewer than 1.7 million, and that they were not much interested in the group’s amazing musical talent.

For those not simply dumping their unwanted CDs in the trash, so many CDs are being dumped on the second-hand market that prices have collapsed to absurdly low levels, with reports of discs going unsold at 1 yen each and successful auctions of 65 copies for 1 yen (or “0.015385 yen per disc”).


Yahoo! Auctions is indeed still flooded with offers of CDs (minus “specials”) at rock bottom prices, as well as many more significantly more expensive offers of the “specials” in ready-to-use condition minus the worthless CDs.

Even Amazon Marketplace sees prices bottoming out at 47 yen per CD (stripped of extras) – far less than the cost of shipping them anywhere but the local tip:


Intact new discs still command 1,298 yen prices on Amazon.

A secondary job market also seems to be springing up around the menial labour of processing the vast numbers of voting tickets – one ad for data entry work posted on 2ch offers “5 yen per voting ticket serial number entered,” and apparently enjoyed a deluge of applicants:


The non-AKB buying majority looks to be taking a dim view of their brilliant marketing shenanigans, typically condemned as “wasteful” and “wilfully distorting Japan’s music charts.”

Many wonder why they still refuse to just sell the votes directly online – although as this would not only rob them of their free use of Japan’s music charts as a promotional tool and might also reveal some uncomfortable truths about the actual extent of their popularity, it seems an unlikely eventuality.

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  • Anonymous says:

    Interesting. It’s not like if people buy the CDs for the music anyway, they do it to support the groups or for the bonuses, so no surprise that the second hand market collapses.

    • Anonymous says:

      “It’s not like if people buy the CDs for the music anyway, they do it to support the groups”

      What?! Bands make nearly NOTHING from album sales. The average band only makes 50 cents from each CD sold. Fifty f**king cents. And yes, that figure IS accurate.

      Your CD sale only pads the pockets of corporate executives. You want to support the band? Buy a tshirt or watch them live. Stupid kids.

  • Anonymous says:

    money is power.
    if some creepy idol otaku has the money to buy 5000 copies than dump them for 1yen each? more power to them.

    I’m sure you (and I) all do things that is not approved by everyone and is viewed as waste of time by some. Example, Anime.

    Although to our eyes, they have been brainwashed beyond hope, if this is what helps keeping the Japanese economy flowing, there is nothing more to say.

    It certainly is better than most of us freeloaders that tries to justifices pirating and don’t contribute a single bit to the entertainment being delivered to them.

    those are the type the industry don’t give a single bit about, that’s why akb48 continues to dominate everywhere, because fool’s money is paying for it.

    • Anonymous says:

      “It certainly is better than most of us freeloaders that tries to justifices pirating and don’t contribute a single bit to the entertainment being delivered to them.”

      If you hold such negative views about yourself, you should probably change something.

  • Nope. Every creepy AKB48 fan story, with the shots of the piles of the CDs – still reminds of the AOL.

    (There was a downhill path through patch of forest, separating office district (where I worked) from the shipping district (where we had lunch). When AOL has started closing its European subsidiaries, somebody dumped countless disks on the path. After couple of rains the paper sleeves melted, exposing the disks. Disk were shattered by passers, making the path glitter. Since then, the road was known as a “mirror path” or “AOL path.”)

  • Anonymous says:

    They should be ashamed for all this landfill these idiots are creating. Release their albums on digital download only and include printable codes for these events already! Wasteful assholes.

    • Anonymous says:

      Fuck you, poorfag. I don’t see you working this brilliant scam for millions of dollars.

      Besides, the whole point is that the MUSIC CHARTS TRACK CD SALES, not digital downloads by tree-hugging faggots like you. And the MUSIC CHARTS are what get free airplay and advertising, to convince normal people that this is actually a legitimate band and not just a stable of underage whores. It’s FUCKING BRILLIANT.

  • Anonymous says:

    Yay! I can make lots of CD shurikens now! With bonus of cute japanese girls on them!
    [I love doing shurikens out of old CDs. Then I go to the forest and throw them at the trees.]

  • Anonymous says:

    They are just doing it wrong. They pay that kind of money in hopes to raise their chances of fucking their idols. However that won’t happen if they buy those worthless discs. They’d probably be better off by giving them that money directly, together with a few bottles of booze.

  • They are nothing like the idols of the 80s and early 90s who were picked for talent. Back then the singers sang, the dancers danced,the models were models and the actresses acted. They would rarely if never cross paths with each other. But that doesn’t happen anymore. The idols of AKB48 are cheaply produced and try to be everything which doesn’t work unless you have a real protege. Not many girls can be good at every genre. Now there probably is one or two stars in AKB48 that actually has talent in a certain area; sadly that talent will never bloom under AKB48 shady marketing schemes and cheap promotional goods. I bet you some actual real talent has entered AKB48 but that talent is crushed and destroyed due to the way AKB48 operates.

    I don’t understand why these girls don’t actually quit AKB48 and go to a real talent agency.

    • Anonymous says:

      Why? Easy.

      Before contract: money, fame, failing everything in life, some delusion about a brighter future than present by being part of AKB.

      After contract: the contract terms(which they probably didn’t bother to read in full), the sugar daddies

  • Who would buy 65 copies for one yen?

    I get if a casual fan would take advantage of the opportunity to get one single practically free, but what use is 65 of them, unless you really need something to take up space?

  • Anonymous says:

    If I were interested in buying that stuff, I’d have three options:
    1. expensive retail (1,298Y), get some useless junk extra (collectable handshake tickets(?), voting ticket, bleh)
    2. second hand (65 discs for 1Y)
    3. THE INTERNET (free “disc” without extra bullshit)

    So… if I bought 65 discs for 1Y, that would be less than 1 European Cent = impossible to pay(?).
    Does that mean it’s OK to download a rip? I mean, I can’t pay for either lol
    Ironically, the legal way would net me 65 copies, whereas through the illegal way, I’d get only some virtual data… the discs I could resell, the DL not.
    Argh… thanks to AKB everything is fucked up -_- Does not compute.. . blergh

    • Anonymous says:

      The CDs are part of the packaging of the tickets. Many products come with fancy boxes that go directly to landfill, and the only legal way of obtaining the box of a computer is to buy the whole computer, no one is going to sell you only the box.

      Alternatively, it is a common sales tactic to bundle an unwanted item to a more sought after one to increase the sale of the lesser item. Some examples are toys in cereals and at McDonald.

  • Of course.

    Because these Otaku don’t fucking listen to the music. They fantasize about one woman and when they stuff tickets to greet them in the merchandise, of course they are going to buy that shit. Nothing but stalkers are going to buy these things in bulk, take the tickets, and then trash these or try to recoup their losses.

    It’s sad. I’m waiting for Western music makers to catch on.

    • Anonymous says:

      Does anyone actually listen to Justin Bieber? lol
      Well, I’d rather fantasize about NTRKB girls than over one retarded, gay Beaver…
      Hm… then again, I haven’t listened to either one’s music and I don’t know shit about either performers.
      Still prefer some pussy^^
      Yeah, and after stating my point…. back to 2D

      • Anonymous says:

        If Bieber is ugly, nobody will cares about him.. kinda like Japan too, looks first, song second.

        No wonder the cart are filled with pretty face that barely able to sing and dance.

      • Anonymous says:

        Bieber’s target –> teen and preteen girls

        AKB48’s etc. target –> wizards, creepy virgin otaku, stalkers, psychotics.

        “Yeah, and after stating my point…. back to 2D”

        Then I guess you should stick to Hatsune Miku.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am somehow ashamed to say this but i do enjoy some of Ak48’s songs. Sure, i always listen to them while watching their videos which are colorfull and lively enough to be entertaining, but still their music does not plain “sucks”. If i had the chance to buy their cds for such low prices i would do so…. only to rip them for mp3s, of course.

    • Anonymous says:

      I do enjoy 2 song from AKB48, and some of the AKB48 instrumental music (no voice).

      But the song with the 48 girls singing. Sorry, not gonna to listen as they have no talent. I also avoid the AKB48 music video, with all the dancing as in my eyes, their dancing is just plain bad. The costume included.

      • I cannot focus enough attention to bash you because I cannot think over the loud sounds of suicidal thoughts after having listened to 45 seconds of two songs.

        I suppose you win this round anon.

        “i always listen to them while watching their videos which are colorfull and lively enough to be entertaining,”

        Did you know marketers intentionally fill products with specific keywords and bright colors because its attractive to children and other simple minded people?

        I don’t speak any Japanese but Im pretty sure they said “love and happiness and cute thingss, if you’re going to be my boyfriend treat me kindlyy, believe in yourselff!!” amirite? I mean what else could 1000 girls in covered in flower bikinis be singing about.

        Oh I suppose I had a little bash left in me afterall.

        • “No. Actually you haven’t shown that what’s attractive to children is also attractive to “other simple minded” people. ”

          Um…children=simple minded people.

          Also you seem to be arguing points I haven’t made about the music industry and are just overall generally upset.

          The problem with akb you and other simple minded people, is that you are unable to see things past the surface. What appears to you as cute and uplifting may be doing much more bad than good but you can’t realize it because your simple mind is hypnotized by cute faces and pretty colors. I couldn’t possibly explain to you the scale of damage akb does in so many ways especially with the poor example of superficiality in young girls which is one of the reasons why Japanese women have the reputation for being money grubbing women which could connect to the birth rate beings as low as it is. And I could go on and on.

          But you just enjoy your pretty colors and cute faces ok. ^^

        • Anonymous says:

          “Did you know marketers intentionally fill products with specific keywords and bright colors because its attractive to children and other simple minded people?”

          No. Actually you haven’t shown that what’s attractive to children is also attractive to “other simple minded” people.

          Also, SO WHAT. So what if marketers purposefully manipulate music in some way. Do you know that all the modern culture sheet you follow is same type of cr!p? How does that make you feel? It’s all manipulated crud.

          You post non sequitur BS.

          If something is cute and uplifting, there is no shame in enjoying it. At least one is not a pretentious asshole. These girls’ voices are still as real as any modern compressed day 16 bit CD audio.

  • Anonymous says:

    Those poor young girls are just AKBitches to Akimoto. Not only do most of them lack any talent at all, they get paid jackshit for all that hardwork they went through while Akimoto, the recording company and presumably the Yakuza rake in so much more.

    Bet those bitches would get much more just by working at the assembly line in a factory somewhere, via overtime and allowances. Then again, their own fault for putting so much big deal over being glamour and popular. 15 minutes of fame ain’t worth wasting your youth for, bitches.

    Then again, YOU ASKED FOR IT.

  • These girls, girls in similar groups, their girl fans, girls who want to join these groups (millions), they all know the whole thing is a scam, they know they’re being used, they all know they’re manipulating the market making japans music industry a mockery, they all know they are taking advantage of the system and of the obsessive males who obviously have psychological problems, they know most are talentless singing songs they don’t write, dancing steps they didn’t come up with. They sell handshakes for god sakes. They know this akb system just like everything else having to do with women its pretty on the outside and filth on the inside. So why do they ignore all these things and do it anyway?

    Because in the end *Women Are Opportunists*, don’t care and do whatever benefits themselves even if its at the expense and taking advantage of others and makes the whole country look bad. If it means fame and fortune, making other girls jealous and idolize them, and being pretty! nothing else matters. This is the nature of 3d women.

    Why precious 2d girls are better than 3d whores reason #5635

    The virus-like socio-complex of akb and its perfect example of useless leeching women.

    Show your unnecessary need for 3d women and their leech role models they’ve chosen as idols for their young and Switch to 2d. The Revolution is Now.

    2d vs 3d Scoresheet:
    2d girls – 5635
    3d girls – 1

    • I think you’ll find their managers, who own them and get most of their money (unlike in the west, which would be unheard of), and who came up with the whole dumb handshake event thing, are all male. Make of that what you will.

      AKB has a lot of female fans in middle/elementary school, though. Kind of like Pretty Cure and My Little Pony.

      • It funny how you naturally assume the people intelligently pulling the strings behind it all are “all male”. Like its impossible for someone to come up with, manage, and control such a lucrative money making idea if they are not male. Which I think already says a a lot.

        Even if they were, shuubi, if I tell you hey shuubi, get involved in this gross, immoral, embarrassing, deceiving, cheating, underhanded, scheming, advantage taking, making the country and women look bad, promoting mental and psychological disorder shallowness and superficiality, monstrosity. But it would make you pretty and idolized and makes all the other girls jealous. Would you do it? Even if you “the special girl” say no, most women would say yes if they have the qualifications. The idea itself is ONLY attractive to women because it is reflective of their nature. These kinds of things are common for women to do, not men. In other words no one is forcing the millions of women involved in this in one way or another, to be involved. So if theres a handful of evil guys behind it all, its still millions of women allowing it because it works seemingly to their advantage. These handful of male managers who get most of the money perhaps are doing society a good deed by collecting most of the money and taking it out of the hands of the socially irresponsible.
        Small group of guys, maybe 100, which actually does include women and former members you mistakenly don’t know of I guess. And on the other side millions of girls. Let’s do the math. Think things through before you type please all I ask. All I ask.

        • Sigh, the problem with you, Taylor, is that the middle ground doesnt seem to exist for you. Everything has to be black and white. I never said the women in the equation were innocent and I never said that the men were all evil. However, you are saying that the men are innocent and the women were evil, even though you repeatedly say you dont believe in absolutes (despite parroting absolutist statements constantly).
          What I was calmly showing you is that these kind of things are a two-way street, and showing you how it is partially the fault of men, and not all the fault of women. The fault of the women is still, of course, there.

          But you are acting like these men are brainless zombies and that its the fault of the women that they act that way. You’re saying that men have no control over their actions and have minds so pathetically weak that the slightest of things can hijack them. And I have a problem with that, not just because of the obvious sexism towards women but because of the ironic sexism towards men. I dont hate men, so its pretty tiring seeing you act like all men are idiots and easily controlled. I’m actually offended on behalf of the men I’m friends with, to be honest. Men are responsible for their actions, just as women are. But when women blame their actions on a man, you get angry (and rightfully so, I agree with you.) – However, you continually blame the actions of men on the women, and dont see the hypocrisy here. Men and women, that is, PEOPLE, are not the simple dumbasses you keep painting them as. These AKB girls are not rounding up otaku, holding guns to their heads and extracting the contents of their wallets, and neither, for that matter, is any golddigger (at least, I hope not.) These men have the ability to not spend their money in their own power. They are spending their money entirely of their own free will. I will never understand why so many men complain about golddiggers and yet continue to enable them. I wouldnt let a man pull that golddigging shit on me (and it does happen, and it has quite a lot amongst friends and family), and, were I a lesbian, I wouldnt let a woman pull that shit either. If someone is going to leave you for not showering them with gifts, they are simply not worth the effort and if you continue to pursue people like this you’re just getting what you pay for really and shouldnt complain. Its like going into a fruit tree grove, picking all the easy fruit off the ground and whining about how rotten it is and how all fruit sucks because you’re too lazy to take the effort to climb the tree.
          The issue with ‘golddigging’ is different to people who sexually abuse their partner (be it men sexually abusing women,women sexually abusing men, men sexually abusing or and women sexually abusing women, you’ll notice I dont pretend only one gender does bad things to one other gender) because that kind of thing is a lot harder to resist both physically and psychologically.(Yet, I see people compare golddigging to sexual abuse time and time again) Obviously, the person who extracts money from someone else through sneaky measures is in the wrong, but unless the person being ‘robbed'(if it can be called that when the money is handed over or spent entirely by free will) is literally being threatened in some way, by any means, it is their fault as well. Not entirely their fault of couse, but they share the blame.
          -That’s- why these AKB idiots who fuel the industry by buying a million CDs are sharing the blame, not because they’re ‘evil men’. Of course, in their minds they’re not victims at all, because they’re gaining something in the form of a handshake, however retarded that gain may be. -We- can easily view them as victims and think them idiots, but they themlseves dont think so.

          If you actually read my posts you might have noticed that I never once said women were innocent and men were evil, you arrive to those conclusions via your own projections because your stance always seems to be women are evil and men are innocent, and so consider any challenge to that claim to be the opposite in meaning because, like I said, there is no middle-ground with you. My stance has always been the middle-ground.

          (Lastly, and I think this needs repeating: I also object to AKB being used as representatives of women because the word ‘woman’ implies an adult and I consider anything under the age of 18 a kid. They wont even be able to be idols anymore once they’re adults. At least use them as a representative of ‘girls’.)

        • 1) I was going by what I know of AkB. Maybe they have some female managers to but I remember seeing posts before they referred to them as men. You can’t deny that the majority of their managers are men, I’m just saying.
          2) Of course I’d say no. The ony people who say yes are barely pubescent teenagers for a -reason-. Most of them don’t look at the opportunity as ‘hey let’s scam a bunch of otaku for money we’re not gonna get!” They’re kids, and kids are idiots but also very idealistic. Being an idol is seen as something glamorous to them, like a Disney princess. Most kids want to be stars. The idol package is sold to them as something sugary sweet and innocent (Have you seen Aikatsu? It’s a little girls anime about idols that makes it look like a rainbow dream wonderland)
          3) male idols exist. Do you know Arashi? They’re basically the male AKB and appear in a lot of advertising too. The difference is their fans, while annoying, usually aren’t delusional older men with mental impairment who think they own the girls virginities (they tend to be highschool girls, sometimes older women but not often) The ones fueling this creepy idol groups are men. There would be no supply without demand. I hate the supply too, like you, but it’s a two way street and I think idol groups are a better example of the greed of humans in general rather than just women. (Plus, I’ll say again, they’re not women. They’re girls, barely children. I can only imagine half of them will regret their youths in later years, which makes me feel sorry for them but then I remember how much I hate the whole system of it and think ‘well you agreed to it’.
          Personally, I’m waiting for the day one quits in the most spectacular fashion whilst denouncing everyone involved and giving a giant fuck you to the industry. Preferably on stage.

        • omg I can’t pay attention to your arguments anymore. Halfs truths, misinformation, turning mountains into molehills in favor of women and turning molehills into mountains against men. Yes yes the woman is always innocent in its the evil mans fault. You made you position clear so feel free to ignore my posts from now on ty.

    • Anonymous says:

      While I do agree that any girls who go to AKB auditions are likely attention whores or just whores in general, they do not represent all women in the music industry.

      I’ll be damned if YUI or Tsukiko Amano or Hyousei gets called opportunists. Especially Tsukiko Amano.

      • Anonymous says:

        Does that comments about AKB being nothing but a bunch of whores not apply to all of your favored idol groups too? And think about it for a minute. Do the males idol groups get a freebee off the “whore” thing? Pretty much you’re saying all of Japan’s top artists are nothing but whores. And what about Momusu who was able to sell a million twice before AKB’s marketing strategy came into play. Do they get a freebee I mean they’re using the AKB strategy now and they miraculously jumped from 34k total to 110k total. If the product was truly worthless Momusu wouldn’t see 110k total and then start falling again while AKB sees gradual increases like River (375k), Sakura no Shiori (521k) Beginner (1.40 Million) Everyday Kachuusha and Flying Get (over 1.620 Milion each) and then Manatsu no Sounds Good’s 1.8 million and this single’s 1.9 to 2 full million. The fact that after the elections people are still willing to pick up AKB’s summer singles at all is proof they are selling on some level because of their music. And since they average 160k additional sales after the elections for those singles you can assume there’s plenty of interest left for the music itself.

      • I’ve said this before but I see it bears repeating, a phrase like women are opportunists is called a generalization. Generalizations do not include every single person in existence. Never did I say or have I said “all” or “every”. That’s being an absolutist which is as bad as being one who doesn’t critically think and read thoroughly through statements before they respond emotionally and incorrectly.

        You may be playing favorites, it is very hard for any woman regardless to how much you like them to not compromise for their own advancement. Even if some do demonstrate actual talent, it is in the nature of women in one way or another to sacrifice consideration for others to make their own gains. To fight for single scraps of meat when the spoils are plenty. To selfishly compete and betray each other for no apparent reason. And to find ways to take advantage of men to get ahead instead of working hard and making their own way. I haven’t conducted enough research to confirm or deny your report on those specific individuals and unlike others Ive spoken to here I prefer not to ramble baseless opinions so I won’t prejudge the people you are talking about. However the overwhelming trend of women does not work in favor of your claim, so I will simply remind you, not everything that glitters is gold.

        • Anonymous says:

          I would jump in here and show Taylor what a drooling baboon he is, but I could never lower myself to his level of intelligence, that would be entirely beneath my vast intellect and unparalleled education. While I could swat him like a fly, the experience would be pointless and a wasted effort, since he could never grasp the wisdom I was bestowing upon him.

          Instead I watch quietly from the sidelines, allowing him to defeat himself a little more with each post, secure in the knowledge of my own indomitable superiority.

        • “@ Taylor
          “It is beneath me to have to explain…” Nothing says “I’m actually trying to make a valid point, here,” like telling the people you’re talking to that, compared to you, they’re morons.”

          Einstein’s job is to explain the theory of relativity. It is not his job to explain to less educated people what the word theory or relativity means. It is beneath him, there are other who deal with that. If someone is going to so boldly and arrogantly challenge his idea, it should probably be on his main concept and not on the technicalities of the definitions of his word selection. If they don’t know the meaning of a word they should learn it before bothering him for menial explanations on junior high school words as I’m sure he has much better things to do and a more intelligent productive audience awaiting. Unlike others apparently I can read tone and context, had his approach been different he would not have been treated as a moron. Morons do not understand valid points even when you make them. So I do not waste my time and decide only to ridicule them heightening the changes that they will think twice before embarrassing themselves and wasting everyone’s time again. This person did not expect intelligent responses that would in fact prove his moronacy* but besides myself I have those who follow me read and comment my post who are in fact educated intellectuals. So now he and others like him will second guess trying to be smart asses when responding to our posts. My approach was the most logical rather then wasting my time explaining what generalizing means (which again wasn’t even the main point and a simple google search would have answered his question) because giving him the attention would have just made him try to point out something else insignificant to a future post and begin us on an endless cycle of stupidity.

          Sort of like what you’re doing when you say:
          “Words mean what people want them to mean, not what the dictionary says,”
          Sure, when you are a mental patient this is true.
          Now should I bother answering senseless claims like this that have nothing to do with my point or the article or really make any sense at all? No because then more and more will pop up like cockroaches in a trailer park. And I live in Beverly Hills.

          This is my final word on the matter. Saying Women are opportunist and then even bothering to point out that I mean it as a generalization which I shouldn’t have to do if you are smart, is like saying teenagers are irresponsible. In the context of a casual conversation or in any context for that matter, would you assume that person means every single teenager on earth is irresponsible? Obviously not but it is a common general reality and I shouldn’t have to such a simple concept to adults who can read and write. What person has the ability to make the claim they know every single teenager on earth? Do I know every single woman on earth? You should already know this when you read the comment otherwise you are not smart enough to contribute. You’re a little kid at the dinner table butting into a conversation too advanced for you to understand and asking “what does that word mean daddy”. Just play with your legos eat your cut spaghetti and keep it moving. I find it impossible to believe that someone could posses such stupidity that they would be confused by my words and conclude my generalization would or could include every woman on the planet. I shouldn’t have to say “most” for anyone other than morons who would be confused in thinking in context I could be including every female on earth. So if you play dumb, or even if you really are that dumb, expect to be treated like you are dumb.

          And by the way, to that person who then said they are anon because “it is to much of a bother to remember a special username for SanCom for the odd time I may actually comment” and then proceeded to comment and comment, here is another revelation for you. All modern internet browsers, including the one you’re using, has an option for remembering names and passwords so you don’t have to wreck that special brain of your to remember two things for a website you clearly visit daily. There you learned two amazing things this week, you’re welcome.

          People I implore you to realize when you are wasting your own time on others.


        • Anonymous says:

          2:20 to Alex

          1. It’s a somewhat technical issue; my Webster’s dictionary gives it as “a proposition asserting something to be true either of all members of a certain class or of an indefinite part of that class”, but you can be as specific as you wish in the context of a given domain.
          2. The indefinite article disappears in plural, so most of the time you are still using it even when it’s not there.

          In sentences like:

          “I see wolves approaching”
          “Wolves are approaching”
          “Racoons approach my yard in the spring”
          “Bears and not kids have damaged the fence”

          the scope of the animal nouns doesn’t default to all designates (though it’s still possible), and you don’t need to quantify them in these sentences even without further context. It’s meant to be an indefinite number (or amount, because it also works for uncountables).

          There will be cases in which it’ll be convenient for the noun to refer to all (affected) designates, too. But the “indefinite part” approach covers this possibility as well.

        • Anonymous says:

          @ Taylor
          “It is beneath me to have to explain…” Nothing says “I’m actually trying to make a valid point, here,” like telling the people you’re talking to that, compared to you, they’re morons.

          And while perhaps by strict definitions generalizatoin does not apply to all, general consensus doesn’t work that way. Words mean what people want them to mean, not what the dictionary says, and can change based on culture or time (take the word ‘gay’ for example). I dare say the vast majority of people would take it that when you say “Women Are Opportunists” that you really mean “All Women Are Opportunists” until proven otherwise at the individual level. But that puts an unnecessary burden of proof on the women who are not opportunists. Adding a quantifier such as ‘some’ or ‘many’ or perhaps even ‘most’ would more accurately state what it is you are really trying to say, without including the people you don’t mean to include.

        • Anonymous says:


          1. Verbs in continuous (=progressive) tenses have an instantaneous scope, so they are a convenient generative example, showing that the clue lies not in the grammar (or an inference pattern) itself, but in the (conventional or contextual) semantical interpretation of the sentences. You want to be able to keep your descriptive accuracy when using these short phrases brimming with assumptions, and that’s what can tell you what the assumptions should be (or what you can expect).

          So in relational terms you could say you can establish an implication, but without much concern for symmetry.

          2. A plural noun can be ennumerative, descriptive, prescriptive, collective or a combination of these, and I used the word “inductive” to indicate that the (linguistic counterpart) of the set is defined by its elements, and not the other way around. In which case, when generalizing about large sets, you are applying similar amounts of care about the scope of the set, as about the validity of the inductive step (or successor case, because you might want to be able to discuss a continuum of possible concepts). So for the term to be a convenient handle for that state of extrapolation, it more often than not should be referring to just some elements where piecewise accuracy is a merit.

          As I have hinted, sometimes it is convenient for ‘dead women’ to be a subset of ‘women’, and sometimes a set disjoint from that one.

        • Anonymous says:

          Alex here.

          @anon 02:20
          I should have made this clearer.
          The discussion seams to diverge in two directions.

          1) How universal is a generalization and are there different types
          2) The relation between grammar and the implied types of generalization

          1) Only one type. A generalization of a statement applies to all members of the set on which the generalization is made.
          Therefore to me it seamed odd when Taylor said “Generalizations do not include every single person in existence.” implying “every single woman” in the context.
          2) Unless specified or understood from context a zero article plural refers to all members of that noun. To continue the example with bears, unless I actually mean “all bears” I would avoid using the zero article form “bears”.
          Otherwise I would specify if it’s: the, a/an, most, some, many, few, x, x%, etc.

          This is how I used this and how I learned it. If I am misinformed please clear up this misunderstanding.

        • Anonymous says:

          Alex here.

          @anon 02:20
          I should have made this clearer.
          The discussion seams to diverge in two directions.

          1) How universal is a generalization and are there different types
          2) The relation between grammar and the implied types of generalization

          1) A generalization of a statement applies to all members of the set on which the generalization is made.
          2) Unless specified or understood from context a plural refers to all members of that noun. To continue the example with bears, unless I actually mean “all bears” I would not use the zero article form “bears”.
          Otherwise I would specify if it’s: the, a/an, most, some, many, few, x, x%, etc.

          This is how I used this and how I learned it. If I am misinformed please clear up this misunderstanding.

        • Anonymous says:

          I’m anon 22:15/01:43 or Alex to make this easier.

          @anon 02:20
          1. So the difference is whether the verb is in a progressive tense(I think it means the same with “continuous tense” as I learned them) or not? Or am I misunderstanding something?

          I find this to be a really subtle difference.
          Is it in both British and American English?
          I’d really like to read some detailed explanation of this because it’s new to me.

          2. I encountered induction in mathematics. Are you referring to something entirely different? From what I know general law/formula/theorem/etc. proven through mathematical induction is still true on all members of the set(e.g. real numbers).

          Is this different?

        • Anonymous says:

          @anon 22:15/01:43 and Taylor:

          Don’t get dismissive, Taylor, because anon 22:15/01:43 could talk entirely in quotations and still be contributing to the discussion, focus is important. It’s good to be protective, but not possesive of the so-called intellectual commodities.

          And, unfortunately, grammar it is (or language it is), and without context, anon’s interpretation seems to be the default one (and it’s for convenience’s sake), which doesn’t mean yours is without merit (for the same reason).

          Take a nonstative verb in progressive tenses, like in “women are embracing opportunism”, “women are bearing young”, and the default is that it only refers to some of them. And it’s supposed to be vague, ambivalent or context-dependent with non-equating statements in simple tenses, such as “bears have four paws” or “kids make good snacks” or “women live longer than men”. And one uses these in rants more often than the simpler Aristotlean fodder.

          How one arrives at the plural is of substance as well. If it’s inductive, it fits Taylor’s idea of generalization, they follow similar routes. And a name can be an attribute just as a description is. Because is it true that
          “dead women are opportunists”?

        • Anonymous says:

          1. I am the same anon at 22:15 but not the same as 20:11. Also I remain anon because it is to much of a bother to remember a special username for SanCom for the odd time I may actually comment.

          2. Never knew a similar example was on wikipedia. Though it would probably be more fitting for it to be on wiktionary. I didn’t check either. I really came with that one on the spot, it’s not a difficult example to come up with.
          Assumptions are in many cases false.
          I guess the animal kingdom used as an example because it’s simple to understand because of its taxonomy. Biology is by far the science most concerned with classifying things.

          3. In your long post you never actually explained what the difference is.
          Please do so or link to an explanation.

        • I suspected this while reading your comment and so double checked…

          Obviously you looked up generalization on wikipedia and read this “For instance, animal is a generalization of bird because every bird is an animal, and there are animals which are not birds (dogs, for instance).”
          and then changed bird into bear to make it sound like your own idea and hopefully sound smart whilst not even understanding your error and ending your plagiarized statement in a passive aggressive tone as if scoring some intellectual victory meanwhile basking in a sea of your own ignorance and stupidity.

          Which makes your post possibly the most pathetic and embarrassing reply I have ever received.

          If you don’t know the inference “in general” implies and the overtone it suggests even in simple colloquialisms then please enroll in an education program somewhere before trying to pick out the insignificant to the main point portions of my statements and challenging them in the same way internet grammar losers try to thwart ideas by noting minor errors in syntax. You just end up embarrassing yourself in the process. I am beginning to understand why people want anonymous faces here.

          It is beneath me to have to explain such simple concepts, if you insist I will describe it in the same manner I would in speaking to a child to further embarrass you hopefully enough that you will learn to either steer clear of trying to counter me so foolishly wasting both of our time in the future. Or perhaps at least that you will think twice before (obviously not understanding and) plagiarizing wikipedia to make your argument.@2215

        • Anonymous says:

          “a phrase like women are opportunists is called a generalization. Generalizations do not include every single person in existence. Never did I say or have I said “all” or “every”. That’s being an absolutist”

          I disagree with that.
          If I say “bears are animals” is is a generalization and I think it implies that “All bears are animals” and that “each and every bear is an animal”. To my knowledge extending a statement over an entire population is exactly what a generalization is.
          Care to backup your argument?