The victim of old tv channel

 B&W Television, originally uploaded by forester401.


*The photo I picked up via seach in flickr with keywords “old tv.”

I grew up in Kumamoto city, the southern part of Japan in my childhood, where they had only two tv channels (channel 11 for RKK, channel 6 for TKU) except for two NHK channels (which make four channels in total). Even folks in Tokyo had only four or five tv channels back then and, still even today, we have only channels 4,6,8,10, and 12 national tv networks here in Tokyo.


Over time, our minds (mine for one, obviously) have been tamed and we tend to think the tv channels must be about the selection from a few.  Even more so for my parents’ generation.  But the notion would sound totally irrelevant to the generations of my daughter who have never used the old tv set but instead are getting accustomed to keyboard and touch panel.

I think it is the matter of timing until the younger generations will start wondering why there are only 12 buttons available in todays’ tv controller.


The tv section of print newspaper is already full and to me it seems they are ready to boast. 

tv section

The way toward my mixi request (a.k.a., maimiku request)

In mixi, people get to know each other gradually. Like any other SNS, in MIXI too, somehow it is important to express the self by uploading photo, decorating profiles, and joining communities, and exchanging messages with the new friends.

Ashiato (the foot print left on your page with a time stamp by a visitor) also makes it easy for you to initiate the discussion conversation with a visitor; also note quite a few Japanese welcome messages in their ashiato notebook when you visit their page and don’ t like it when you leave their page without saying anything.

ぺったん (pettan) is an imitative word for foot print.


By the time you’ve done all of these things at mixi, maybe it’s time for you to request for my mixi (a.k.a. maimiku request.) When she or he approves your request, the two of you are identified as maimiku (the orkut equivalent of add me as a friend) and each face will appear other’s facebook.

YouTube contents are image-centric

Japan’s online research company NetRatings reports (via CNET Japan) that YouTube penetration in Japan is 5.2% which is almost close to that of US at 5.4% and that usage frequencies of 3.2 times and average viewing time of 32 min are both higher than those of the US.

If these statistics are correct (unbiased, I mean), it’s amazing! It’s amazing because most (many) Japanese I know still have a problem with English navigation and, once they know it is in English, they’d almost always stop navigating whatsoever and currently YouTube provides navigation only in English.

Why so ?

One explanation is that the videos in YouTube such as this might be quite image-centric and non verbo-centric and travel well across different languages and cultures. Nonetheless, YouTube has a very good navigation basically it’s only pressing the button, nothing verbal.

Another explanation is YouTube contains a lot of Japanese contents, which would become otherwise illegal/paid elsewhere. The Japanese viewers might think it worth breaking the language barriers.

NetRatings also notes a large number of traffic from mixi to YouTube and the introduction well given in Japanese before the viewer actually view the YouTube contents.

Anyway, I am really surprised at the statistics.

For your info, now at mixi, YouTube community has 6,363 members and Google Video has 139 members.

Update: Here is an HTML version of the original report in Japanese.

Update2: Interesting, below is the 45-day growth statistics of YouTube community vis-a-vis Google Video inside MIXI:

                 4/29                   6/15            %Growth

  YouTube    6,363               26,704          +320%

     GoogleVideo 139               141            +1.4%

The long tail for the quiet storm listenners (or time zone segmentation)

I like Quiet Storm (QS) at WBLS very much. It is played 7:00pm NY, that means 8 am in Tokyo, but I am not really in the QS mood in the morning. When I am in the QS mode at night in Tokyo, they feature Steve Harvey which is fine but not so suitable to listen at night. Then I’ve found the WBLS sister station, KBLX of San Francisco, that plays QS all the time. It can, in effect, capture QS listeners online of any time zones across the globe. That is nice. That leads me to think the long tail curve for the quiet storm listeners something like:

At this point, I’d bet there are very few people listening online and their revenue depends purely on local advertising and no business model is yet established for online streaming program.  However, as more and more listeners will shift from offline radio to online and the competition will intensified, I hope the new form or style of online radio programs will emerge.

How google image helps learn English

I was reading an article about RSS to help me understand what it is. As usual, I have encountered the word, for which I don’t know the meaning. In addition to dictionaries ( and answers), google image (or yahoo image) helps. Especially, I liked it so metaphorical when I google-imaged the word “fetch” in the context of “fetch the feed.”

Broadcast as video

If “broadcast as video” is the new direction the ad agency-TV industry will pursue as Jeff Jarvis notes in the comment section of a vc’s post “Umair, Jarvis, Disney, and Me“, of Japan is probably more or less in the same spirits yet coming from another direction. Originally sprang from USEN (wikipedia in Japanese), one of Japan’s media contents players but obviously not in the TV networks industry, proclaims that it now has registered viewers of more than 8 million (the size equivalent of 80% of Japan’s largest Yomiuri newspaper subscription). The program is offered all free of charge.

Not sure if they have originally come up with the video with non-skippable ad format, which is reportedly the method Disney will deploy the next month, or stolen it from somewhere else. Yesterday, I first tried and found the program quite impressive. Especially “Kume Hiroshi’s car touch,” the car review program by Japan’s long-time TV journalist, Hiroshi Kume (wikipedia only in Japanese), who acknowledged in the campain video that he likes more freedom in editting than he can with traditional network TV.

CAUTION: If you’d try out, make sure you use IE, but not Firefox, with which I had the problem. Not sure if it works fine with MAC.

It’s interesting to note, on the other hand, Yahoo Japan (strongly backed up by Softbank) was leading the internet video streaming free of charge still in the old format (contents only ). Worth keeping an eye on them.

ビ デオとしての放送、米国でディズニーが無料放送をインターネット配信するというニュースが流れた後、いろいろが議論が起こっている。そのなかでおもしろ かったのは、おなじみのJeff Jarvis、米国の広告代理店の動きとしては、「ビデオも放送である」という捕らえ方を模索しているらしい、そこに広告収入を求めていこうという動きが ある。日本でいえば、民放とはかなり毛色が違うが、gyaoが同じフォーマットでインターネットTV放送を開始していて、すでに800万人の登録会員がい るという。久米宏のカーウォッチという番組がおもしろそうだった。今後が楽しみな分野である。

FONの風景 (The Scene of FON)

いまひとつ見えなかったFONの風景ですが、本日の発表会 記者会見)の録音を聞いて、なんとなくですが、イメージがみえてきました。伊藤穣一さんと多分お隣の女性が通訳&解説をされています。こちらは、Gohsuke Takama さんよりMIXIのコミュでご提供いただいた写真(↓)と発表会記者会見の録音です。

関連記事 IT media news and CNET JAPAN finally today (4/26/2006)

After listening to the audio of today’s press conference, now I have a better understanding of how FON will be used and utilized in Japan (Audio in English more or less with Japanese translation accompanied by Joi Ito et al, by the courtesy of Gorsuke Takama.)

Update: Here is the press release handout in PDF in Japanese 記者会見の資料(日本語), generously provided again by Gohsuke Takama.



The photo by the courtesey of Gohsuke Takama, as well.

Update: I have spotted FON Japan blog here.

For those who would like to join FON community at MXI FONのコミュニティ. (If you are not a mixi member yet or don’t know what it is. here.)


Yesterday, I was quite inspired by this video (thanks!, via Ejovi) and told it to a friend of mine. She subsequently returned yet another CANON Rock by another player, who turned out to be the Taiwanese’s guitarist, JerryC (google video, official site ), who, I just learned, originally arranged this CANON Rock. I am not saying which one is better, but I am simply amazed how a single artist can video record his play in his room and upload it to google video or youtube and attract so much access and downloads overnight. Simply amazing.

In Japanse:  クラッシックの定番 CANONの Rockバージョンです。もともとは台湾のギターリスト少年 (?) JerryC (オフィシャルサイト )がアレンジして自分の部屋で演奏したものですが、グーグルビデオで大人気になったとか。また、こちらは別の少年、YouTubeに数日前にアップロードされた同じ曲のビデオです。部屋で一人で演奏。たった数日で、百三十万回以上の閲覧されているようです。才能さえあれば誰でも一晩で大人気になれる時代なんですね。

Check out technorati chart for JerryC for the last 90 days.
Get your own chart! Here is JerryC community at MIXI.
technorati tags: canon JerryC google+video youtube

“Original” Quiet Storm – WHUR 96.3Mhz (in jp)

WBLSのOnlineが工事中のようでここ数日聴けません。それでも何か聴きたいなと思いWHUR 96.3MhzのQuiet Stormをきいています。やや選曲が違うみたいです。実はQuiet Stormというラジオフォーマットを最初に流したのが、この、WHURで、当時ハワード大学の学生 (WHURのインターン)だったMelvin LindseyというDJだったようです。

そのせいか、番組中はには、たまに”ORIGINAL!”とナレーションがはいり、 Quiet Stormの「元祖」ということをしきりにアピールしています。

一 方、今年35周年を向かえたWBLS 107.5FMの人気DJのChampaineは、「QuietStormというフォーマットを世の中に確立のはWBLSおよび故 Frankie Crocker (彼女からすれば元ボス)である」というようなことを先日しきりにアピールしていました。

まぁまぁ、それはさておき、たまには趣の違ったQuiet Stormも悪くないです。

いまだにWHUR(DC)あるいはWBLS(NY)いずれも、FMラジオで聞いてる人がほとんどで、オンラインのstreamingという市場は小さいので しょうね。オンラインでは州の境はおろか実は国境を越えた競合にさらせれるわけで、また、一方では、pandoralast.fmのように、生身のDJ を排除、聴者各人の好みの音楽を自動再生する機能や、コミュニティ形成という別の競争軸も入れてくるわけだし、厳しいですね。でもWHUR、WBLS、共 にがんばってほしいです。

Update: けっこうJeff BrownのQuiet Storm (WHUR, Washington DC)にも、はまってきました。つまるところ、いくつかの曲を紹介する時の、DJのナレーションとBGMとのビミョーな混じり具合、そのときの静けさみたいなのが自分は好きなんだなぁと実感してます。さすがに元祖というだけあっていいですね(ラーメンじゃないけど)。もちろん、Vaughn Harper のQuiet Stormもはやくききたいです。Champaineも。 

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