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The fuel for Japan’s pedophiles

158 Comments

Amazon Japan, Yahoo! Shopping and Rakuten, Japan's top Internet shopping networks, are exploiting children. That’s right. Young children.

I am a mother of three kids, ages 6 and under. On October 6, with my kids next to me, I typed the keyword “candy” into the Amazon Japan website, trying to find some cool Halloween loot. (The candy at the international supermarkets is WAY overpriced). However, no actual candy made it in the top 20 hits.

Instead, I saw a little girl, about the age of my first grade daughter, in panties, legs splayed in a sexual position. For sale: a pornographic photo book and DVD. This must be a glitch that Amazon has overlooked, I thought. Knowing that the right thing to do would be to report such content, I clicked on the link so I could report the seller to Amazon. And guess what happened next? Suggested content of EVEN MORE, WORSE images came up. I lost my appetite and began to shake out of shock and anger.

I posted my experience on my blog and I was flooded with people saying that they had similar experiences. Some news networks conducted the same search and came up with the same results, documenting this with screenshots.

After filing an IMMEDIATE complaint with Amazon Japan, these products from Candy Doll Collection, a child pornographic series with a cult following, were removed from their site.

It took a week, a very angry blog entry, and a threat of mass media. A WEEK.

However, they only removed the specific publisher I complained about, not similar content. There is appalling content still on their site. If you don’t believe me, try typing in keywords such as Idol Farm, Candy Doll Collection, U12 アイドル, ジュニアアイドル

But it is not just Amazon. The same content comes up on Yahoo Shopping and Rakuten, two other major shopping networks here in Japan. All publicly traded companies.

If they won’t do the right thing for legal reasons, perhaps they will listen to their customers and shareholders.

Amazon, Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping. Please remove this content. Not in a week. Now. Next, report what you are doing to prosecute the sellers, publishers, modeling agencies involved, parents allowing their children to do this - they are all criminals. Next, tell the public what you will do to prevent this from happening again. And if you want to take it a step further, give the police a list of the perverts who buy this crap. Because they all are pedophiles.

In light of the kidnapping, rape and murder of the 6-year-old girl in Kobe, we need to think about what fuels these type of pedophiles. And, sadly, I believe that Japan’s top shopping networks add fuel to the fire.

I am updating my blog with updates on how the networks are responding and have started a petition to remove this content. Your voices are welcome and I am forwarding tips I get from readers now to appropriate authorities.

Editor's note: The writer's opinions do not necessarily reflect the views of Japan Today.

© Japan Today

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.


158 Comments
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I share your sentiment being a father of two girls, but this is the free market. Will follow your blog, keep it up.

-6 ( +10 / -16 )

link where I can buy plz

-38 ( +12 / -49 )

I hope that the writer's opinions reflect the views of Japan Today. They certainly reflect mine.

21 ( +31 / -10 )

Just face it, Japan's got a wholly different culture compared to everyone else. They're not as reserved and as conservative as other nations out there, so stop forcing your "it's immoral and wrong" opinion down everyone's throat. You can't just point out that the girls you see in thumbnails are "underage" just because they look underage, though I won't deny that some of them are.

What I don't even understand is who the hell buys "candy" on Amazon. I mean Japan's got a crapton of specialty shops and convenience stores, and I'm pretty damn sure Google is a much more viable search option for locating good places to buy "candy". If the author's just trying to poke at the industry Japan's got, then might as well poke the whole country for not being catered to her desired taste.

-22 ( +20 / -41 )

Wasn't child pornography made a crime in Japan recently?

12 ( +15 / -4 )

While i agree with the distaste for child porn, i must say i find the faux outrage and surprise on the blog a bit much for someone who has lived here for 15 years and runs a nail bar (and so is likely to see how young girls in Japan are encouraged to make themselves sexually attractive). And i agree going to amazon Japan to buy candy is just weird.

11 ( +24 / -13 )

Shame on everyone from the webmaster to the VP of marketing. Disgusting... Not one person at Amazon.co.jp raised a flag? Asked a question? shame shame shame... Child abuse isn't 'cultural' its not a different experience if you are from a different country. So what if there are smelly secret specialty stores in Japan that sell children's souls.. Amazon is an international corporation profiting off of child porn.

6 ( +13 / -7 )

Wasn't child pornography made a crime in Japan recently?

In June, the Diet had criminalized possession of child porn (with real kids in it) while anime, manga and games (with 2D kids in it) were exempt.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

ghostwiththetoast,

Since when is having a wholly different culture an excuse for paedophilia?

12 ( +23 / -11 )

As suspected, the cultural relativists have complained. "How dare you foist your Western morals on Japan?" This is not an "it's OK, it's Japan, it's a different culture" issue. Japan signed the 2005 Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography http://bit.ly/1xU3Nyz. That means that Japanese companies are breaking international law. The children in the products are clearly not consenting adults. Amazon removed SOME but not all of this illegal merchandise. Rakuten removed them from the English version of their web site, but not from the Japanese version. Faux anger? Hardly. This is not a laughing matter, and it is not a cultural issue. It is an ethical, moral, and legal issue. Amazon, Rakuten, and other online stores have a legal obligation to conduct the authorities, who have the legal obligation to investigate.

24 ( +30 / -6 )

Yes, it is now illegal to possess or produce child pornography in Japan, which raises the question: Are the products the author of this article is referring to actual pornography? The answer is probably not.

I guarantee it is not my cup of tea, or most peoples cup of tea, but if the children have consent from their parents and are not engaged in any sexual acts, then really there is not much the law can do about it.

6 ( +13 / -7 )

Mrs. Sims should have typed "Halloween candy" or confectionery" instead.

Child porn is evil, but we can't just force our morals on other nations' throats because we despise their customs. That's how wars get started!

-14 ( +8 / -22 )

Technically, that isn't hold pornography. It's child erotica at worst...and let's get real: If pedophiles didn't have this garbage, you and I both know that they'd likely seek children around them to satisfy their desires. If Japan's child sexual a use rate goes up over the next few years, it'll be over the silly law prohibiting the simple POSESSION of CP. Sending people to prison for having images and videoes that they didn't make sounds kind of silly, doesn't it?

-2 ( +13 / -15 )

In June, the Diet had criminalized possession of child porn (with real kids in it) while anime, manga and games (with 2D kids in it) were exempt.

As it should be, to be clear. Drawn characters aren't real. Nobody is being abused in it. The reason why child porn is immoral is because it constitutes abuse of a minor (who can't give consent). In order to ban drawings, you'd need to do it under obscenity laws, which I don't agree with. In my opinion, nothing drawn/written should be illegal, with the exception of specific threats/harassment/damage to an individual (e.g. libel, death threats).

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Michael CraigOCT. 16, 2014 - 11:04AM JST Wasn't child pornography made a crime in Japan recently?

In June, the Diet had criminalized possession of child porn (with real kids in it) while anime, manga and games (with 2D kids in it) were exempt.

That would mean, selling it would be ok? :O

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Technically, it should be clear .Child porn is evil. paedophilia caused so many crimes!!!

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Thank you for writing this Janica — it just might make a difference. As a father living in Japan, this soft porn featuring children has long infuriated and worried me, because of the hell that these young girls are forced to endure, and because it sends a message to all of Japanese society that an adult man fetishistizing and even pursuing young girls is acceptable behavior.

What shocks me even more is the stage mothers in Japan who actively push their daughters into this line of work striking 'barely legal' suggestive poses for vicarious fame and cash.

To your list that includes Amazon and Rakuten, you can add convenience stores in Japan such as Seven Eleven who sell (used to sell?) soft kiddie porn magazines like Moecco (モエッコ). Here is a link showing Moecco covers from a google image search of the magazine: http://goo.gl/J8ZEZT

(I haven't looked to see if they still sell these magazines, but I did spot them on the shelves some year ago.)

Thank you for fighting the good fight, Janica.

8 ( +14 / -7 )

To be fair to the writer, the child in the photo looks like a real child, not a doll (?) with dyed hair, and not a drawing or anime. Distasteful as it is, though, the parent(s) for whatever reason, (money) probably did consent to or even actively encourage the photography/filming.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It's not a cultural differences issue. Its about the exploitation of children.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

Akemi Mokoto

Are you seriously defending the right to possess child porn?

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Legal arguments do my head in.

All I know is that this kind of material is fr1kking sick and wrong and should be banned.

Your campaign has my full support. Thank you for doing this.

10 ( +15 / -5 )

I think the crazed American culture of making little girls dress in sexy provocative clothing for contests is much worse than Candy on Amazon.

If America is your country, then go back and fix that first. Leave Japan alone. There is much more pent up sexual frustration in American society than in Japanese caused by bible thumping religious nut cases. At least there are outlets in japan from Girly Bars, Kaiseki Ryori special places, Fashion Massage places etc. Sex is considered natural and not a hang up.

Go home if you do not like it here.

-14 ( +15 / -27 )

One thing is culture, another thing too different is kid pornography. How can be erotic the body of a kid that can die having sex or a baby?. http://www.snopes.com/politics/religion/yemengirl.asp Never forget, a Kid is not a sexual object!!! A kid need be playing and have a healthy childhood

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Shame on Amazon-Japan and other companies supporting child soft porn. How can they sleep at night knowing this is happening. Good job Janica Sims standing up for little kids that don't have a voice in this matter. It is people like you that can make change happen by being proactive and getting the word out. Thank you Janica for your good example of doing the right thing.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Its Japan. Period. They have their own rules and laws. Every country is different. We western people have no rights to intervene. especially those onces who doesnt even understand this society. If you dont like it here than leave it.

-11 ( +12 / -23 )

i wouldnt be surprised if this article will be taken down soon. If you accuse big companies to sell child porn than the poster have to back this up. i guess the lawyers would be very happy to fight this and asked for damages. You cannot just accuse and use words without having the knowledge of the law. This women doesnt have a clue how law system works here. This women can be in a lot of trouble, if there is a law suit and she is losing they can even deport her. Very naive and stupid to fight japanese male society.... Hope she has a good lawyer.

-8 ( +6 / -14 )

western people has right to intervene, when I have a friend with the daugther sexual abuse and used to make porno video and photos. Police is doing nothing in the case, because she need to find the videos and material to can demand. But the 13 years old girl is destroy.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Lots of posters portraying the sexualization of little girls as a part of Japanese culture! Seriously? And, if true, that means non-Japanese have no right to judge? Again, seriously?

As for whether the material in question is actually child porn, the portrayal of minors in sexually suggestive poses is considered child porn in most countries, and I assume Japan as well due to their recent signing of the international treaty.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

we... I just made a quick search (only in Amazon Japan)... but to none of those words Candy Idoll, U12, Candy) showed me anything that could be said as "child pornographic"... may be they deleted all those items already?

As for the katakana words (アイドル、ジュニアアイドル), those did gave me some hits of that kind. A couple of them were clearly a girl (at least it look like a child) is in a pink colored swim suit...but it was a couple out of 80 items I revised.

This child pornographic thing in Japan has to be eliminated... the problem is that some "girls" are some times full grown up women that look like a child.. that leads people to think that is "child pornography" ... it is complicated but it needs to be eradicated.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I don't know what I find more disturbing, Amazon's reluctance to more carefully control access to adult materials or some of the comments attempting to "understand" i.e. tacitly approve of these practices. To me, this is no different from someone commenting "yeah, the Taliban shot Malala, but they have their own customs, so its all good." It's beyond not cool. It's not good. And you know it's not good.

Yes, parents should be more protective of their daughters. But it takes everyone, and any attempts to ameliorate or apologize for it unfortunately fail at the "well if she had only just dressed more conservatively" level.

Guys -- and I'm going to go out on a limb here and assume the "free market/we have to accept it" comments are from folks I share a y chromosome with -- we can and should do better. It's 2014. If you're just trolling, shame on you, but it's the internet, so I get it. However, if you're serious . . .

Let's see. Does it pass the role reversal test? I'm certain material sexualizing young males would be slapped down in a heartbeat. So no free market or "cultural acceptance" there. If our free market for boy porn is on the socially unacceptable list, why don't we have a similar one for girls? It's because not enough of us are making this a losing proposition for all involved. "Well they have to get it from somewhere" is not helping.

The Oliver Wendell Holmes test is also a good one. We can't define it, but we bloody well know it when we see it. So no excuses.

Finally, for the "for someone who runs a nail-bar" -- and let me translate for you, "woman"-- arguer, you are not only not helping, you are actively contributing to an environment of disrespect towards women everywhere. I'm not writing this because I think Janica specifically or women in general need to be "ridden to the rescue" for. I'm writing this because I'm just tired of it. And because I don't want my daughter or nieces to grow up in an environment where this treatment is acceptable.

10 ( +16 / -6 )

It's disgusting, free market or not, regardless of legality in Japan. These retailers need to take responsibility, or at least show some morality in their business models. I won't be buying anything on either of those 3 sites until this is resolved. And, even then, I'll have to have a very good reason to continue shopping there. The damage is done.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

""under japanese law this is not considered child porn and this is also not considered child porn in any other western country.period!

what is child porn next ? all those kids beauty contests or those child talent shows where kids dancing? yes it is kinda borderline but japanese society is build on this, just look at the billion yen manga business. would you consider every japanese male a pedo who reads this porn manga cos the characters in it look a little to young? A western women in japanese society want to fight to multi billion yen manga/teen business? AKB soon banned cos its kinda simular.... pls look up the term child porn and than you will see that no western country would ban this cos its not child porn by law. is it wrong? yes but some many things are wrong here. its starts with all the manga kids are reading.... and i mean the sex mangas... would you also considered all those teen bands child porn? they dancing in sexy clothes too... where to draw the line? parents need to spend more time with their kids and school has to stop to make them lifeless servants with no smiles than nobody would need this manga stuff in the first place. and this is where the problems starts.""

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

whatever the rights and wrongs (and I think exploiting children in any way is wrong) i think the title of the article and its general tone are hysterical and self serving. i am sure amazon sleep quite well at night despite some soft porn material being available to those looking for it on their site. and i very much doubt that any committed kiddy fiddler would go to amazon to find pictures or DVD's to satisfy his deviancy - pretty vile stuff is freely available in most sizeable Japanese towns.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

First, I strongly oppose actions, legal or illegal that physically, psychologically or emotionally harm children.

Second, I neither consume nor endorse the types of products mentioned in the article.

Third, I have two children under the age of seven myself.

However, I do believe that Ms Southwick Sims' taking up of this issue is high on outrage and low on consideration for a well thought out position.

She identifies as a "gaijin". She has already marginalised herself linguistically and socially. Even as a PR, this type of self-identification sends a clear signal - "I am shouting at you". Japanese, while agreeable, don't appreciate being shouted at.

While petitions and complaints to sales departmnets are useful for racheting up the outrage levels and feel-good-factor of "doing good", Ms Southwick Sims would not stop at "not knowing Japanese law" and take the issue into her own hands. If she were truly bothered by the issue, she could start doing the useful research on the companies and angencies responsible for making these products. She could become better informed of Japanese law. Finally, while "offensive" it is quite a stretch to say that this material is pornography. Ms Southwick Sims' blog even calls it such in Japanese. But it is not. It is something else. It exists in a morally fraught grey zone between erotica nd idol worship, but it is hardly porn.
7 ( +11 / -4 )

I will forward her blog and youtube channel to the law department of yahoo, rakuten etc. I wanna see what they will do. This all just creates more trouble for us foreigners here. You wanna live here than know the law and the society and dont compare everything with western stuff.

-12 ( +3 / -15 )

I will forward her blog and youtube channel to the law department of yahoo, rakuten etc. I wanna see what they will do. This all just creates more trouble for us foreigners here. You wanna live here than know the law and the society and dont compare everything with western stuff.

Anybody care for a game of Spot The Pedo?

Japan has a swathe of issues, I'm afraid to tell you yakimo. As others have said, this kind of material perpetuates the idea amongst the populace that it's OK to have desires like this for children, and leads to ever-decreasing age at which girls are being over-sexualised in the mainstream media.

-2 ( +7 / -10 )

Some people have very "flexible" definition of child pornography, by which everything he does not like falls into that category.

Matthew AppleOct. 16, 2014 - 11:11AM JST

Japan signed the 2005 Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography That means that Japanese companies are breaking international law.

Before making that allegation, why do not you check the definition of child pornography. http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/OPSCCRC.aspx

Article 2

(c) Child pornography means any representation, by whatever means, of a child engaged in real or simulated explicit sexual activities or any representation of the sexual parts of a child for primarily sexual purposes.

Now, let us see.

Instead, I saw a little girl, about the age of my first grade daughter, in panties, legs splayed in a sexual position.

Is she engaged in real or simulated explicit sexual activities? No, she is not.

Does the picture contain representation of her sexual parts for primarily sexual purposes? No, it does not. Her sexual parts are hidden.

So, by the treaty definition, the book is not a child pornography.

1 ( +12 / -11 )

If there is any legitimate media outlet that believes that child pornography is justifiable they should be shut down post-haste.

No one in their right mind should see any "benefit" from crap like this, even if it isn't their own opinion.

1 ( +3 / -3 )

Is this crap pornography? Perhaps, perhaps not. It certainly does skate very close to the line, though.

What really gripes my cookies, though, is thinking about the parents of these 'models'. WTF are they thinking? Who ever told them it was a good idea to have their prepubescent daughters pose in such magazines? I guess they are simply either greedy or stupid. To me, this is akin to child abuse or exploitation. As a father, I couldn't sleep at night knowing that my 10 year old daughter was wank bait for thousands of greasy cretins across the country.

6 ( +9 / -4 )

Interesting to read all the comments. Morality is surely a subjective term. Some claim to leave Japan to its own moral standard. Some find nothing wrong with the whole issue here. Some wants to walk away and pretend not seeing it. Some try to defend that there is nothing wrong. I am just saddened by the depravity of human nature, extending it to big corporate companies...

3 ( +7 / -4 )

It's probably not actually pornography and Janica needs to breathe deeply and realize not everyone believes in child sainthood.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

The sexualisation of children is just plain wrong, and it is not a cultural thing in Japan. This occurs every day, in every country... and there are many people and organisations fighting this globally. Japanese parents are just as outraged and offended by the images as other parents, and those who travel and read the news know that sexualisation of women and children is a huge issue, and is not accepted in any culture. I feel global corporations should be leaders and made held accountable - we were always taught at our global firm to take "the stricter of the global and local rules". Seeing this article has made me feel sick and not want to purchase from these retailers. It makes me doubt their code of conduct - if they allow this, what else do they allow?

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Since I hadn't seen the offending photo and don't actively go looking for them, I can't make any judgments. However, I can imagine a range of photos that generically has a youngster splaying their legs, and at least some of them would look more "cute" than "sexy" to me.

Indeed, the photo that was provided looked more cute than sexy to me. And that may be the problem. Parents understandably don't have objections to their children being taken in "cute" postures.

This women may have just seen what she "wanted" (in a sense) to see.

-7 ( +7 / -13 )

Seriously. The photo provided shows a young girl with her leg raised and panties showing. This is not intending to be cute. It is intending to provoke. Since I have a little familiarity with school guidance on this issue, I can assure you this young lady would be wearing bloomers (short shorts designed to insure that panties are never seen beneath the uniform dress) if the picture was taken of a young lady adhering to normal school dress practice in Japan. Minnie Mouse bloomers would be cute. This goes beyond cute.

8 ( +12 / -5 )

Only in Japan! What's worse is apologists and people embarrassed about it ask critics to leaveifthey don't like it. My sister saw something about this andwithtwo young kids naturally became concerned and brought it upon her blog, with links to sites like Amazon.jp and proof. Some mutual Japanese friends sent me messages furious at my sister and asking me to please have hertakedownthe blog (they love her blog about the 'three Japanese' Nobel winners, though!). Amazing... They'd rather ask everyone who complains about sexual exploitation leave the nation than actually address the problem.

9 ( +16 / -8 )

Thank you Janica for having the courage and taking the time to stand up for such an important issue. I am disturbed by this story but even more disturbed by the commentary...I was unaware of the number of people (western and non western)who think child exploitation is a grey area and who are justifying these acts with the "cultural difference" card. My experience in this wonderful country has been so positive until now. Major retailers like these involved set the precedence for other businesses, mom n pop shops etc. and it's time they take some moral responsibility.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Some mutual Japanese friends sent me messages furious at my sister and asking me to please have hertakedownthe blog (they love her blog about the 'three Japanese' Nobel winners, though!). Amazing... They'd rather ask everyone who complains about sexual exploitation leave the nation than actually address the problem.

Why is this so common in the Japanese mentality? You so much as attempt to bring up issues as part of a rational discussion, and they get extremely defensive and think you're trying to attack Japan or something. It really does them no favors, interpersonally or at large on the world stage.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Pretty disgusting reading the posts that don't think this is child porn or is ok, WTF!!

Japan is awash in pedo stuff, child porn AINT CULTURE folks, its depravity, its criminal, at best the people into this are sick(if which case I hope they get help!), the rest as SICKO's & if they are into this I hope they get arrested & prosecuted.

This crap AINT culture & enough of trying to sugar coat child porn by giving different names, IT STILL STINKS!!

I hope these companies do whats right instead of only giving a %$#@ about $$$!

1 ( +6 / -5 )

The gaijin women (primarily from US) not understanding the Japanese preference for such an activity, and complaining very loudly, is a very common pattern. But while at it, why don't you start with the American junior beauty pageants? Exactly as disgusting, and not less pornographic than the Japanese idol movement.

-6 ( +8 / -14 )

The sexualisation of kids in ANY culture should be outlawed. That includes everything from kiddy beauty pageants to risque photos and beyond. I also include manga and anime in that... they may be only drawings, but the intent and the ideas are still there.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

It seems that on this issue, those taking a "anti-Japan" stance is decisively more popular :-)

@lationz

You so much as attempt to bring up issues as part of a rational discussion

I won't go as far as to include all scenarios, but for this specific question, it is the Westerners that are disadvantaged in holding a "rational discussion". The fact they have already considered such a thing as "ick" hinders their ability to objectively consider other viewpoints or even accurately assessing the pros and cons of their views on a utilitarian basis.

While I think you can get most Japanese to agree, for example, that a video showing straight-out sex with a minor is a horror, for something like this things are different. I call it cute and you call it a sex object. How can I convince you or you convince me? Art is subjective! The only thing to do at this point is to agree to disagree, and that's what the Japanese are effectively telling you to do.

However, even if we accept there is a degree of sex objectification involved, look at this set of statistics. Tell me whether the Japanese might just have a better balance or not: http://www.nationmaster.com/country-info/stats/Crime/Rape-rate

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

Porn..Softporn..Erotica... it's just a label. The crux of the matter is that it is Child Exploitation no matter what else you call it. Condone it and you label yourself in the eyes of any thinking person as in need of a reality check (and probably in need of some therapy)

1 ( +7 / -6 )

I am a Japanese mom in Japan.

I totally agree with Janica! I hate amazon and rakuten, yahoo shopping and Tsutaya selling kids porn photobooks and DVD and spreading them so easily. kids porn is NO with any reason !!!!

I dont want the sad news about poor little girls with nakid dead body anymore.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

@Stewie Thank you for providing a fine example of a Westerner statement that leaves Japanese (who are different from your Western choir) unable to respond except to say maybe you can leave if you don't like it.

You have chosen to employ the loaded word "Child Exploitation". However, when you are not preaching to the choir, it doesn't work very well b/c the lines of what constitutes "Child Exploitation" vary. If, for example, you say that any money-making out of minors should be considered child exploitation, that's an objective, easy to understand standard. I may disagree but at least it is well defined.

However, such a policy would lead to the end of all minor beauty pageants and even child actors. Since most Westerners see nothing wrong with these things, they won't go that far. Instead, they try and argue some definition of child exploitation that somehow allows a child actor to prance around for hours on stage, but not to lift her leg in a cute, appealing angle. That has a much weaker objective base and is difficult to defend against someone that's not part of your choir.

Unfortunately, Westerners do not see the weak theoretical base of their position, and as we can see here, get rather aggressive. To a Japanese (stereotypically trained for nonconfrontation), the only way out is to agree to disagree. Yet the world doesn't even allow that.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

I call it cute and you call it a sex object.

@Kazuaki

The acid test as to whether these magazines/videos are soft 'barely legal' porn or if they are merely cute non-pornographic photos is to look at who is buying it (and there is a huge and lucrative market for this in Japan).

If the demographic is overwhelmingly housewives and young teenage peers, it is probably not porn. However, it's another story if the demographic is overwhelmingly adult men (who I always see buying this sort of material). Also, you would have to explain why these are sold in the porn section of bookstores, and offered in the porn section of video rental stores.

The only thing to do at this point is to agree to disagree, and that's what the Japanese are effectively telling you to do.

You seem to assume that all Japanese people think alike. I think not. You should speak for yourself, since I doubt that your views represent the entire population of Japan. I would imagine there is a diversity of views among Japanese citizens.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

While these books, mags and DVD's are offensive to many, especially parents with young girl children but is it any worse or offensive American child beauty pageants which turn very young girls into sexual objects.

The recent murder of a very girl in Kobe didn't reveal if she was sexual assaulted, probably because the cops haven't found all her body parts but I also remember back in 1996 a ting America pageant girl, JonBenét Patricia Ramsey was murdered in her home.

Yes this kind of material should not be available but I have the same feelings about the child pageants.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Interesting, Sensato. In essence, you've just said that if the various postures, gestures ... etc taken by a child / teenage actor / model appeal to women, it is A-OK but god if it appeals to adult males, it is a sex object and not. Hmm, no wonder some males feel we need an anti-feminist movement, our particular tastes are so unobjectively denigrated :-)

Certainly, there is a segment that the average Japanese agree is porn. However, to the best of my understanding, even those that are in the "common" spaces are often sufficient to cause a Westerner offense :-)

If you are complaining at the "Japanese" bit, you are not catching the real drive of my argument. My real drive is that on this issue the average "attacker" (who often is a Westerner) objective reasoning for his attack is weak. Unfortunately, he doesn't realize his argument is weak, and he confuses the defender's (who in this case will often be a Japanese) diplomatic approach as a sign of the defender's weakness rather than the lack of striking power in his own attack.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Thumpers: Check out the whole Ramsey Syndrome in America, and when you fix it, come back to fix Japan.

Please fix your own public and private gardens before stomping through gardens you do not understand.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

is it any worse or offensive American child beauty pageants which turn very young girls into sexual objects.

@zichi I would guess that most of the people posting against these books, mags and DVDs also feel the American child beauty pageants are horribly exploitative and inappropriate. I certainly do, and have been vocal about it in the past.

However, to your question as to is this practice in Japan "any worse or more offensive," I would say considerably more so.

First, you don't find child beauty pageant videos or magazines in the porn section of video stores or bookstores in the U.S. Here in Japan it is ubiquitous. Also, any adult male who exhibited a fetish involving this sort of material would very likely face public outrage or much worse repercussions.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

While I agree with the author that these materials are disgusting, unfortunately they are not illegal under Japanese law, and the people that she decries as criminals in fact are not. So asking what Amazon and Yahoo etc are doing to have the publishers prosecuted makes no sense, as there is nothing to prosecute them for.

The author's anger needs to be targeted at the laws that allow for the creation of these materials. The people creating and selling them are doing so within the bounds allowed by law.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Sensato

First, you don't find child beauty pageant videos or magazines in the porn section of video stores or bookstores in the U.S.

But any Google search reveals many thousands of images available online?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

For those who have brought it up ,many Americans do not support beauty pageants of any kind, and that goes double for children's ones. Just as there are plenty of Japanese people who do not want these things available in their country.

And I don't think anyone is 'blaming' the county of Japan. From what I read on the comments most of them are concerned parents who are raising their children here so they have every right to voice their feelings.

Playing with the definition of what is 'pornography' is not the important point. I don't think the author called for any legal action. Perhaps it is not illegal, but it is offensive and as a consumer I have the right to take my money else where if I don't like the way a company conducts business.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Yes, she did.

Next, report what you are doing to prosecute the sellers, publishers, modeling agencies involved, parents allowing their children to do this - they are all criminals

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Sending people to prison for having images and videoes that they didn't make sounds kind of silly, doesn't it?

Not when they prop up the industry that do make such images and videos.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@Kazuaki - Ah, I really should have scrolled back up, but I did say 'I don't think, so I am sure you will forgive my laziness?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

When are junior idols in the same pool as child porn? They don't get nude, they don't do anything sexual, etc. Its not even close to porn even idols that aren't junior idols do the same. There full grown women doing the same thing yet their dvds aren't called porn. Where is the line being drawn here?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I can't tell what's worse. The way the article was written or some of the comments.

Whether or not this is officially classed as child porn, it is still disgusting and little girls are clearly being violated. This example photo (Again another place using an example photo. Why do these images need to be shared!?) is tame compared to what came up on amazon. One of the images I saw was of a young girl (definitely under 10) with a distinct camel toe with her legs propped up for the potential buyer of the DVD to see. That is wrong. It was very sexual and her genitals were definitely enhanced to look as though they were bulging.

What is also wrong is sharing these images for a kind of shock value for articles and giving the search terms and names of the DVDs. By all means fight for child porn to be abolished... Just don't assume that because search results no longer show the DVDs that they still aren't being made and sold and that now you are free to shop for candy without seeing. If you're going to make a fuss, do it properly.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Look, perverts are born worldwide and the production, selling, and consuming of erotic material of kids is a global problem.

My thing is Japan is the only country that I've spent a significant amount of time in that has these kinds of DVDs/Magazines out in front on the racks in stores and on mainstream e-commerce websites.

Japan doesn't seem to distance itself from young girls in crotch-shot DVDs like every other country. And everyone I've asked in Japan, male or female, if they have an issue with this usually just says the girls are cute. My informal survey tells me most Japanese people have accepted this as part of their culture.

It disgusts me for sure, but the population of Japan is like 98% Japanese and I'd say the vast majority of the country never thinks about this issue and foreigners can't change their minds. In fact, an outsider trying to change them will most likely cause them to find a way to defend this crap.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I'm sorry but that is a pretty weak argument. While I do think child pageants are pretty gross. It pales in comparison to some of these idol books. The worst offense would be the girl's in bathing suits, walking down the catwalk like a model. That's the worst it gets

In the idol books the girls are sitting rear-end up in the air in a sexual pose. Some of them have girls soapy and taking baths. Let me repeat that. Naked 8~10 year old girls only covered in soap taking a bath. Honestly you think that is just cute and not creepy? Why would a grown man need to watch a child that is not his take a bath?

Kazuaki / Yoshiro: You are saying that you would be perfectly comfortable buying one of these books and enjoying it? What do you think a woman's reaction would be if she found a stack of these in your apartment / house?

Again, the pageants are gross but nothing compared to books that show girls spreading their legs to show their panties.

If any man in any western country was caught buying a child pageant photo book his wife would divorce him, he get fired from his job, and get shunned by his peers, community, you name it.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

In her most recent blog entry, the author of this article now writes, "In the past 48 hours, I have been shocked and amazed at all of the support, but also with the amount of persecution and harassment I have received."

In the last several hours, her name has been removed from this article (now just the initials, J.S.), and her video seems to have been removed. She also seems to have taken down some controversial content from her blog.

Whether you agree with her opinion or not, she sparked some constructive and worthwhile discussion. This is a sad moment for freedom of expression. She has obviously faced some sort of intimidation that was possibly legal from a corporate law department, possibly in the form of net uyoku harassment, possibly threats to her or her husband's workplace (which has happened to other activists in the recent past).

We might not ever know what caused her to quell her dissent, but I imagine that story is an even more intriguing than what she posted for us here today. Thank you J.S.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Not surprized at all. Been here too long for surprize. And the usual suspects post their usual drivel. I suppose they'd think different if their daughter or little sister were the subject in the pictures and videos though. That is the point - treat others with the same level of respect you expect. If you would not let your daughter or little sister pose like that then it is WRONG in ALL cases.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Too many issues here:

First: There are videos and collection photographs of Children, specifically girls where these "models" have very suggestive poses, I saw the one that the poster refers to, and a couple of other similar photos, is it porn? I'm not sure, it is not technically porn by definition, but by perception of many, the poses are so suggestive that it can be considered as "soft porn", some of these are really disturbing, you cannot take away that they are probably children, there might be some adults here that look that young, but i guess not all of them.

Two: Is it illegal? in Japan and many countries child porn is illegal, but does this "product" fall into the category of porn? again, it can get away with it with a technicality, even of 90% of a jury might perceive it as child porn. To say that Amazon and Rakuten and Yahoo! are selling illegal products it is a bit of stretch, I still consider the actions of the poster right in report them, but to accuse them is a law thing.

Three: are these "children" abused? If they had consenting parents, does it make it "right"?, true, you cannot interfere with another parent's way of upbringing, but, in situations like these, where you say to your child "pose like this" or "pose like that" and the child is not comfortable with it it is abuse of a child, but not form the magazine that prints the pictures o release a video, but it is abuse from the parents.

Four: even though all of the above were to be "explained" (They are not children, it is not soft porn, it is legal, there is no abuse) the title of the article it is right on the spot, these "products" are a fuel for pedophiles, morals are different for different countries, but in Japan it seems that this stuff is acceptable, thus increasing the probability of pedophile being perceived as "normal"

Five: Seriously, who goes to a store like Amazon, Rakuten or Yahoo to buy candy?, if a conbini doesn't suit you, there are stores where you can make an order and have it delivered to your home, although I doubt it that it would be cheaper than going to a supermarket or a conbini.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

It seems that on this issue, those taking a "anti-Japan" stance is decisively more popular :-)

This has nothing to do with being anit-Japan - 99% of the time I am PRO Japan. This has to do with the availability of material depicting the sexualisation of kids... it was even on TV in the UK: a show where little kids dressed up as pop stars and sang risque pop songs... it was banned!

I don't care if it was Amazon Japan, Amazon UK or Amazon North Pole... what's wrong is wrong wherever you are.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

If you would not let your daughter or little sister pose like that then it is WRONG in ALL cases.

YES!

If any man in any western country was caught buying a child pageant photo book his wife would divorce him, he get fired from his job, and get shunned by his peers, community, you name it.

YES again!

This article has been very distressing for me to read. I'd heard and read many stories about the so-called kiddie porn paradise of Japan, but never been willing to believe them (and never bothered doing any research of my own, obviously). Now they are right in my face. Japan is not a poor country, where parents need to sell their own daughters in order to feed the rest of the family. How on earth can anyone justify this as "cultural differences?"

One thing's for sure, I'd never want to raise a daughter in this country.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Simply because it worried me and because it was hard to believe that such ages would be exploited, I looked each one of them up. It seems that, on Amazon Japan, at least, they've cleaned up their act for the most part (except the listing you wrote in Japanese- that one I just sat there and blinked at, trying to understand why someone would put a child in such a situation and how anyone could find a child sexually appealing- I was trying hard not to throw up when imagining the people who do). Beyond the two pictures, though, it looks like Amazon did some very quick damage control, hopefully stopping revenue for the sickos selling this stuff.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Amazon, Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping. Please remove this content. Not in a week. Now. Next, report what you are doing to prosecute the sellers, publishers, modeling agencies involved, parents allowing their children to do this - they are all criminals.

This article is quite simply slander. While I sympathise with the author's sentiments she clearly does not understand the laws of Japan, and as such has accused these websites, sellers, publishers and modeling agencies with a criminal act where there is none within Japanese law.

At minimum I would suggest that the article be amended to remove any reference to the legality of these publications. Stating one's moral position is quite defensible, but this author (who I note has chosen to remain anonymous) could quite easily get JT into deep, deep legal hot water.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

Same old arguments:

1) Its "cultural" 2) Well in YOUR country... 3) If you dont like it go home. 4) Look at the stats - see! See how "safe" Japan is! (what proportion of sexual assaults are never reported in this culture that ridicules women and sees sexual interest in minors as "just boys being boys", portrays rape in porn movies as "oh she wants it really and once I get going she will love it".

As many have pointed out - ifyou are happy with your 6 year old daughter / sister / niece being used as "wank-bait" excellnt expression because thats exactly what this is) then go for it. However, in almost all developed countries other than Japan possession of this stuff would get you divorced, fired and ostracized from society. So why not in Japan? Oh, thats right, culture.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Frungy, just because such publications are legal in Japan it doesn't make it right. Japan needs to outlaw ANY material like this. Nothing to do with western morals or peeing on Japanese culture... it's to do with protecting kids from being exploited by slavering perverts.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

While I agree with the title, this article is very misleading. The companies that produce material such as this is NOT pornography. It is media showing young children in suggestive poses and outfits. There are no laws broken in selling material such as this.

Amazon Japan, Yahoo! Shopping and Rakuten, Japan’s top Internet shopping networks, are exploiting children.

The parents and producers are the ones doing the exploitation.

There are many people who immediately jump on the pedophile-hate train the moment a hint of it pops up. I don't disagree with their opinions but most of them are too dramatic.

Material such as this may add fuel to the fire but on the other hand, it may actually be preventing a lot of actual crimes from happening. We don't know for sure.

What I'm more concerned about are the guardians of the child. People that resort to selling their children to earn money must be pretty desperate. I'm sure that most of the reasons stem from the lack of money. On the other hand, some may actually be selling their children for the sake of hoping that one day, they'll become an idol or something (which eventually means more money as well). Hell, maybe the child actually wants to do it. Who knows.

I think the crazed American culture of making little girls dress in sexy provocative clothing for contests is much worse than Candy on Amazon. -shonanbb

As an American, I'd have to agree with most of what this person is saying. I have always been baffled by the child pageants that Americans have in various parts of the country. Having seen how the children are dressed and trained by their mothers and "professionals," I have grown to despise it. While I wouldn't say that it's worse than Japan, I'd say that they're equivalent in indecent morality.

If America is your country, then go back and fix that first. Leave Japan alone. There is much more pent up sexual frustration in American society than in Japanese caused by bible thumping religious nut cases. At least there are outlets in japan from Girly Bars, Kaiseki Ryori special places, Fashion Massage places etc. Sex is considered natural and not a hang up. Go home if you do not like it here. -shonanbb

This is quite amusing. Why? Because it's true. "Westerners" have a right to voice their opinion but trying to change it is a pretty futile effort. I understand that some of you don't care much about changing things in America because you are currently living in Japan. But you need to understand this: If you didn't care about changing things as bad as provocative child media in America, why do you feel empowered to do it in Japan? Japan is a country that doesn't like to change. Even if they try, they do it wrong most of the time.

This has been getting pretty long.

Finally, I'd like to know why the author tried to buy candy from the internet. According to another commenter, she's lived in Japan for 15 years. Go to Costco. They exist in Japan.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Thunderbird2Oct. 16, 2014 - 11:39PM JST Frungy, just because such publications are legal in Japan it doesn't make it right.

You seem to be confused.

I agree with the author's moral position. I stated this most clearly. Unfortunately your sense of outrage seems to have clouded your ability to read.

I was pointing out that if the author and Japan Today wished to avoid being sued for making slanderous statements then they should remove a paragraph from the article. This is a legal point that has to do with the Japanese legal definition of child pornography.

There is often a difference between what is moral and what is legal. I would be morally justified in giving you a swift slap upside the head for implying that, simply because I clarified a point of law, I condoned pedophilia, but legally I could be arrested for assault.

Does that help to clarify your thinking?

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

I hope the person that wrote that article dont calles herself/himself a journalist... this is embarassing for Japantoday. With just a bit of research its easy to see that this is not even close to pornography, maybe the author should look the word up on wikipedia.

Videos of young girls posing with CLOTH on can't be illegal and calling it pornography just shows how uninformed the author is, it makes me really angry knowing a person like this works in the business of writing articles on the web.

If she really lived 15 years in japan, then its even more surprising how she acts, this is serious business in japan, you didnt even see one Jr. Idol in 15 years in japan? Did you ever watch japanese tv?? looks more like she lived in japan watching US television, otherwise i cant explain how someone living for so long in japan not even once encountered this.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

I just read this article and really appreciate that someone is taking a stance and moving against this appalling situation that is allowed in Japan and with these companies. There is absolutely no excuse for allowing this. And Japan is a modern nation and fully aware that this type of thing is very wrong and can no longer hide behind any excuse such as culture etc. There are international norms and understood common sense as to the rights of people and what is acceptable. And this clearly is NOT right! The victims here are innocent and very young children. A strong message needs to be sent to these companies and maybe some strong examples be set by not only boycotting them but possible criminal actions taken where possible. I encourage anyone who reads this article or the comments here to also write support of this authors position and actions.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Well, I checked out ジュニアアイドル. That was unpleasant. 14, 11, 9 year olds in bikinis and cos play, sucking lolly pops.

ジュニアアイドル is straight up child porn and should be banned.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

candy doll is a label with "European" models, so maybe the author saw for the last 15 years just Japanese jr.idols and then it was ok, but as soon as they are not Asian its pornography? its just ridiculous...

ジュニアアイドル is straight up child porn and should be banned.

you call that child porn?

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

otku

Have you seen it? It has children. Kids, Not 16 year olds. 14, 11, 9.

And it aims to sexually arouse.

That's child porn.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

@JTDanMan

Well said. It's just sick material for sick-minded adult males.

I don't understand all the Japanese and non-Japanese people on here saying things like "It's Japanese culture...If you don't like it, get out of Japan" or "Go and fix your own country first" etc etc.

Sometimes it's good to be told things by someone from the outside.

It's not exactly the same but...I'm a Brit and several times, for example, I have been told by Japanese people about how poor service is in British shops, restaurants etc., based on their own experiences.

I am interested to hear their views and also their ideas on how that situation could be fixed.

I don't get mad and shout at them "Well don't bloody go to England again!!!" partly because I think it would be childish and partly because I think it's good to get various perspectives about any issue.

I think with this sick and twisted "Junior Idol" material, Japan has got itself into a kind of Galapagos syndrome, and the pushers of such material are very happy to have made it into some kind of cultural norm in Japan... they can make a lot of money from it!

In some ways, Japan always wants to seem to be part of the international community... permanent seat on the UN Security Council, hosting global sporting events, hosting global conferences (ISPCAN Global Conference on Child Protection, Nagoya, Japan!!!), etc...

So I think it might be good for Japan to at least listen to outside voices about this kind of material...

IMHO It's not good in any way to have little girls posing in sexually provocative poses in skimpy swimwear for the pleasure of perverted adults.

It's sick and wrong.

5 ( +11 / -6 )

Sex industry has led technologies and stimulated the markets upwards, for sure. Prostitution is legal in several countries. BUT, no, no excuse for child porn or any way children get involved. it's impossible for them biologically understand what could happen to them, they have not gained the ability to judge for this kind of matter. Anything which could encourage underage sex shall not be exhibited in public while we cannot stop personal sexuality and fantasy which would be excersized in their own brain only if the exposure off those ads is prohibited in the public. It has taken a long time to ban the ads of cigarettes and they have destroyed human health. We should learn from the history and stop the ads which could trigger crimes .

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Child pornography is awful and should be removed. It doesn't matter if a country is different, children having sex is wrong and so is them being filmed. And no America is not worse. You don't see child pornography online or anywhere here in America. Some of your comments are sick and wrong, many of you are making child pornography okay when it's clearly not. -__-

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Shonanbb, since we foreigners, or anyone even a teensy bit concerned or angry, are so "off", why don't you explain a little more why this is so okay. Tell us why in this "garden", taking pictures of real children in real poses meant to lure and stir desire, is so okay. Tell us why as a culture, Japan ought to find the whole practice and business of child porn, however "soft", perfectly fine and normal. Tell us, please, why children as a whole ought to be involved in helping the culture be so natural in their views and practices of sex. Tell us, please, because maybe we should use all of your logic to go fight our own battles back home. Because really we all should put a culture's sexual desires above what may look like legal, moral, or social issues. Then, maybe then, we will all be wonderful visitors in any land. We will know how to shut up, smile, and look away.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I commend the authors resolve and actions. It is however reactive and not proactive. A proactive approach could combine warnings about children interactions with strangers with images of those strangers looking at child pornography. Shame is a powerful force for change esp in Japan.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Videos of young girls posing with CLOTH on can't be illegal and calling it pornography just shows how uninformed the author is

Would you be pleased to see your own 9-year-old daughter do ballet poses with a camera aiming at her crotch? Let her star in DVDs they describe thus-'Creamy white skin, golden blond hair, not-yet-budded breasts, a tiny bottom, an angel come down from heaven'? On no, not encouraging pedophilia at all, is it?

5 ( +8 / -3 )

And while we are at it can we also ban all girl bands with flight number sounding titles?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

choiwaruoyajiOct. 17, 2014 - 01:02AM JST

I don't understand all the Japanese and non-Japanese people on here saying things like "It's Japanese culture

I did a little search on this comment section for the word "culture". I could not find any comment defending child porn as Japanese culture.

Would you point out who said so, if you can? Who are the "Japanese and non-Japanese people on here saying things like this"?

You are just insulting all the people here.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

The definitions of paedophilia and also of child pornography are very grey areas to some. Thoughts can be considered offensive, but if a man has a sexual fantasy involving a young girl, it remains a thought. It's untouchable. If a man acts on it, it's a crime--that is very clear.

As for child pornography, I take it to mean depictions of sexual acts involving or deliberately erotic nudity depicting minors--but then the latter is rather fuzzy when one takes into account just how a person defines erotic. In days of old, before the advent and open availability of pornographic images and film, which later moved into the realm of video, people had to fuel their visual fantasies with images of underwear-clad women in department store catalogues--if they needed actual imagery at all, or had any access to it; otherwise, fantasy was their only recourse. In any case, to some, the image of an underwear model was erotic enough, and it took Hollywood many years (although bear in mind things were different before the Censorship Board was established) to even show women in bikinis, and then finally nudity.

Several years ago, Japanese photographer Kishin Shinoyama, whose iconic image if John Lennon and Yoko Ono kissing adorns cover of the couple's Double Fantasy album from 1980, encountered some trouble over a photo book featuring a very young Chiaki Kuriyama--at the time around 13 or 14, and in some cases depicted nude, although apart from the odd view of her breasts and side angles of her nude body, many would consider the images harmless--and most would argue they were part of his art. Shinoyama is primarily known for his erotic and nude photography, and has encountered other problems with his in-public shots of nude adult women, but that has not, nor has the Chiaki book, affected his career (in fact, Mr Kuriyama is doing very well for herself these days, as both a model and actress). For the most part, the photo book--which was withdrawn, remained pretty much a non-issue to Japanese people.

As for the so-called junior idol market, remember that it is both thriving and a springboard for many careers of young women in Japan. A couple of perfect examples of how young models move into other areas of entertainment--and it may mean from junior idol or it may not--are the talents Ai Shinozaki, whose modelling began from when she was around 14; her appeal has a great deal to do with her large breasts, that is certain, which she appeared to be endowed with from a very young age. Another is top model Kana Hashimoto, who has appeared on fashion magazine covers and is a frequent guest on TV variety programmes--all at 15 years old! She has also come out of the so-called U-15 genre of models (girls under 15). Finally, Saaya, another shapely young woman of about 19 or 20 now, still models and does TV spots on a regular basis--she began working at around 11 years old. There are even beauty pageant winners in Japan who are in their low teens--and that is far different from the the distinctly creepy American child pageants that nobody remarks about; on the contrary, they are 'okay', but a 13 year old Japanese model is not. Hypocrisy at its most glaring.

I know my knowledge of all of this will earn me plenty of snide remarks, but I have done my research and I regularly watch Japanese TV. Just to add to the discussion food for thought: if the writer and plenty of her supporters had their way, AKB48 or other similar idol groups would also disappear, because many members of these groups are as young as 12 or 13, and one can't deny a certain element of 'sexualizing' of the participants, with their costumes and stage dances at time being somewhat provocative.

Be that as it may, if we push for censoring the way this writer does, say goodbye to Nabokov's Lolita (which was in fact banned in many places not soon after it first appeared in print), in which not only is sex with a minor clearly described and in graphic detail, but also Nabaokov goes to great lengths to 'show' the reader what Lolita's nude body looks like. Let's take things a step further and ban Franco Zeffirelli's 1968 film adaptation of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet--in which partial nudity involving a very young Olivia Hussey passed the censors--in 1968.

My point might best be summed up, then, as 'much ado about nothing'. This woman's complaints will continue to receive much support, but I can't say I side with her views much. I also think that foreigners messing with Japan's morals are occasionally entitled to comment, but they likely won't change the views of most Japanese--who are quite comfortable with a youth-centric pop culture, and it's not going to go away soon, nor should it necessarily. If non-nude material featuring girls of very young ages is a hot commodity, and fuels erotic fantasies of the men who buy it, so long as they are not rabid rapists and child molesters as a result (take a good look at the adult porn here in Japan, first, and make your correlations between it and public behaviour; to date, rare example anywhere in the world of images spawning anti-social bahaviour have been clearly and validly documented), what is the problem?

5 ( +7 / -2 )

@CH3CHO

I guess you missed it. Have another look. Culture has been mentioned.

BTW Your previous post gave the impression that you believe Junior Idol books and DVDs not to be pornography and you seem satisfied to have them on sale in Japan.

Is that true?

Personally I think they are sick and the thought of adult males looking at and jerking off over such material makes me want to throw up.

You should state your position clearly. If you want to defend your right to access such material, just say so.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

choiwaruoyajiOct. 17, 2014 - 11:12AM JST

I guess you missed it. Have another look. Culture has been mentioned.

What did I miss? Why do not you specify what I miss?

BTW Your previous post gave the impression that you believe Junior Idol books and DVDs not to be pornography and you seem satisfied to have them on sale in Japan.

Is that true?

Oh, my. Cannot you make it civil and stop putting your words into my mouth. http://www.japantoday.com/category/opinions/view/the-fuel-for-japans-pedophiles#comment_1864065

I do not know what "Junior Idol books and DVDs" are and I do not know if they are child pornography or not. But as I commented before, the book mentioned in the article is not a child pornograpy as defined in the international tearty.

Am I satisfied they are sold in Japan? If they are not child pornography, people have the right to sell them and people have the right not to buy them. People have different tastes and I do not interfere with what others do in their liberty.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

This is not the first time. Amazon removed similar picture books a few years ago, after a group tagged content meeting Japan's legal definition of child pornography.

http://www.blog.polarisproject.org/2009/07/07/amazon-japan-stops-selling-child-pornography/

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I call it cute and you call it a sex object. How can I convince you or you convince me?

Because, for example with this particular item, the child is showing her panties - which is sexual and private - and this is the main drawcard for people purchasing it.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Not to condone anything, but it's two poles, one a culture that has the concept of skinship, etc., the other a culture rooted in Victorian-era morality, don't know why people are shocked at the gulf.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Guillaume VaresOct. 17, 2014 - 01:20PM JST

Just like so many activist pages in the world, the page you linked has too many errors.

In 1999, after INTERPOL estimated that 80 percent of websites with child pornography originated in Japan, the Japanese government made the distribution of child pornography illegal. The production of child pornography only became illegal in 2004!

Japan enacted a law that prohibits production, distribution and possession for distribution of child pornography in May 1999, not 2004. "Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography" was adopted in 2000 and came in power as late as 2002. http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/OPSCCRC.aspx

Unfortunately, the possession of child pornography is still legal in Japan, making it only one of two countries (the other being Russia) in the G-8 not in compliance with international legal standards on this issue.

However, the text of the treaty is as follows.

Article 3

1 Each State Party shall ensure that, as a minimum, the following acts and activities are fully covered under its criminal or penal law, whether such offences are committed domestically or transnationally or on an individual or organized basis:

(c) Producing, distributing, disseminating, importing, exporting, offering, selling or possessing for the above purposes child pornography as defined in article 2.

What the treaty outlaws is "possessing for the above purposes", and "above purposes" means "producing, distributing, disseminating, importing, exporting, or selling." Since possession for distribution is prohibited, Japanese law satisfies international standards.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

I did an image search for "junior idol," I wish I hadn't. Did someone find 14, 11, 9 year olds in bikinis? I found a five-year old. To add to my shock, I also found a couple of kids who appeared to be so-called "haafu."

The pictures were disgusting, they were quite simply highly sexualized photos of innocent children, and could not be described as anything but whacking material (unless there really are grannies out there who enjoy collecting pics of tiny little girls wearing tiny little bikinis with their legs splayed out, and licking ice creams).

What the heck are the parents thinking? How could a five-year-old consent to having her photos taken and used in that manner? How is she going to feel in the future knowing that her parents sold her body, and the photos will probably be circulating forever?

And for those of you who are attempting to defend, justify or normalize the practice: shame on you. You'd never get away with it in your own land, and you know it.

So disappointed right now.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

grjkzz: "There are many people who immediately jump on the pedophile-hate train the moment a hint of it pops up"

So we should jump on the 'pedophile-love' train? or perhaps quietly sit by and just let the pedophiles and the fuel, and that's what it is, for it be? Please! Saying there's no pedophilia here and that it's not a societal sickness is like saying there is no gambling here and that Japan doesn't have such problems (or when you point out that it does are told, "that's Western thinking!"). Try and spin it how you like or call it what you will, it is a serious and sick problem here -- and just as bad or worse are those who defend it, or even take PRIDE in it as 'part of the culture'.

-5 ( +7 / -12 )

"...say goodbye to Nabokov's Lolita (which was in fact banned in many places not soon after it first appeared in print)"

Ah, the old slippery slope fallacy.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

There is tons upon tons of posts here when really this should be very straight forward.

1) Underwear of a certain variety (lingerie) or underwear displayed in a certain way (sexually, "enticing posture", fetish) is, by nature, sexual. We're not talking a clothing magazine or art here 2) Children, legally speaking, includes anyone under 20 in Japan 3) It is illegal to sell child pornography

So, is it, or isn't it illegal to sexualize children? Is non nude legally pornographic? Are the Japanese public too apathetic to actually care?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@timbo

My point might best be summed up, then, as 'much ado about nothing'. This woman's complaints will continue to receive much support, but I can't say I side with her views much. [...] If non-nude material featuring girls of very young ages is a hot commodity, and fuels erotic fantasies of the men who buy it, so long as they are not rabid rapists and child molesters as a result (take a good look at the adult porn here in Japan, first, and make your correlations between it and public behaviour; to date, rare example anywhere in the world of images spawning anti-social bahaviour have been clearly and validly documented), what is the problem?

The problem is one of consent. I assume that if someone wanted to take a photo of you in your briefs with your legs splayed open, they would have to have your permission to do so.

Your attempt to make your pseudo-intellectual comment appear as a rational argument is laughable.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@timbo

My point might best be summed up, then, as 'much ado about nothing'. This woman's complaints will continue to receive much support, but I can't say I side with her views much. [...] If non-nude material featuring girls of very young ages is a hot commodity, and fuels erotic fantasies of the men who buy it, so long as they are not rabid rapists and child molesters as a result (take a good look at the adult porn here in Japan, first, and make your correlations between it and public behaviour; to date, rare example anywhere in the world of images spawning anti-social bahaviour have been clearly and validly documented), what is the problem?

The problem is one of consent. If someone wanted to take a photo of an adult in their underpants with their legs splayed open, they would have to have that adult's permission to do so.

Your attempt to make your pseudo-intellectual comment appear as a rational argument is laughable.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@timbo

My point might best be summed up, then, as 'much ado about nothing'. This woman's complaints will continue to receive much support, but I can't say I side with her views much. [...] If non-nude material featuring girls of very young ages is a hot commodity, and fuels erotic fantasies of the men who buy it, so long as they are not rabid rapists and child molesters as a result (take a good look at the adult porn here in Japan, first, and make your correlations between it and public behaviour; to date, rare example anywhere in the world of images spawning anti-social bahaviour have been clearly and validly documented), what is the problem?

The problem is one of consent. If someone wanted to take a photo of an adult in their underpants with their legs splayed open, they would have to have that adult's permission to do so.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

If they won’t do the right thing for legal reasons, perhaps they will listen to their customers and shareholders.

I would guess that the soft porn featuring minors sold by these companies, and their selling of it, is barely legal. It might accord with the letter of the law, but certainly not the spirit of the law.

However, in Rakuten's case, they are clearly in breach of their own documented code of ethics. This document states: 1. "We maintain the highest ethical standards." and 2. "we staunchly reject any request to engage in illegal or morally questionable activity." Here is the link to Rakuten's code of ethics: http://global.rakuten.com/corp/about/philosophy/ethic.html

Unfortunately, Amazon seems to say very little about upholding high ethical standards overall. Plus, their stated vision is to "build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online." I find that vision to be a bit shameful really. No wonder much of the global community seems to be increasingly coming to regard Amazon as an unethical corporate citizen. I hope they change their ways.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@Sensato Refusing to provide service for something that's legal (I don't care if you feel it is against the "spirit") is engaging in morally questionable activity.

@Yardley

The problem is one of consent. If someone wanted to take a photo of an adult in their underpants with their legs splayed open, they would have to have that adult's permission to do so.

I entirely agree. The problem is, do you have any proof that child did not consent? Heck, probably even the parent consented.

The problem with children is that even when they consent (as in, they say Yes), we insist it doesn't count.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Free market? Huh? There are tons of things regulated or forbidden for sale -- you sound like those stupid kids on the playground who punch each other and say "it's a free country!" "Freedom" refers to the right to compete, but always under regulations and the moral will of voters (in democracies, which Japan is).

Cultural relativists: it's also stupid to act as though

a.) because some people in Japan produce this that it's a sacred, respected, condoned part of "Japanese culture" -- go ask your Japanese neighbor or friend if they think this is cool. Do you really think anyone of them would think, "oh, these American barbarians don't understand our sacred Oriental ways?" Get a brain.

b.) "foreigners" or "Americans" have no right to contribute to the solution of a problem in Japan. A problem is a problem, and many of us live in Japan and have the right (legally and morally too) to contribute in positive ways to improving things in Japan. If I'm walking down the street in Japan and see a piece of trash on the ground, am I supposed to walk by it and say to myself, "These Japanese people should solve their own problems."

c.) related to the above, some on this forum argue that Americans have no right to contribute to the solution here, because there are problems with pedophilia-related crimes in the U.S. Huh? So even though I live in Chiba, where there were six attempted kidnaps in the last month (we got notice every single time through our kids' school), I'm supposed to shut up about pedophilia in Japan until the United States somehow magically resolves all it's problems? Again: huh? Look, a problem is a problem, and humans can work together to solve it. I'm not in favor of censorship, but I'm in favor of protecting children.

Let's get it straight: it's okay to work on local problems, even if you're on immigrant status. Pedophilia is a problem here, as it is most places. It's not a part of Japanese culture - it's illegal and not condoned by the vast, vast majority of people here. America and all countries have problems, but that's not an excuse for inaction.

d.) those of you who doubt the age -- okay, maybe a girl who looks 16 could be over 18 (or 20, the age of adulthood in Japan), but this article is talking about girls who appear to be in elementary school. That stuff exists, and there is no way a girl under 10 can have any clue what she's getting into when she's posing for pics like those.

I applaud the spirit of this article, and commend this mother of three for taking action.

Censorship and trade restrictions will not solve the problem alone -- counseling and education may help, in addition to law enforcement. But ask anyone who works first-hand in professional settings (psychology or law enforcement) with these issues -- they'll tell you that the child porn culture feeds the fantasies and is an abuse in itself.

Let adults have as much fun and enjoy as much sex in as creative ways as they want -- I'm not a conservative, but kids need freedom to explore their own sexuality as they grow into it.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

As some Japanese posters have suggested, there is a difference in Japanese thinking about "cute" and "sexual" and what is acceptable. Japan is a shame-based culture (right and wrong taught through the judgement of others) not a guilt-based culture (right and wrong taught by the judgement of one's own conscience). So what adults do/think in private, out of reach of the public shame which regulates behavior, is kind of morally neutral territory, just "being human" if it doesn't directly harm anyone.

That said, because no humans are perfect and there are evil twisted people in every society, every culture has instituted things that are wrong. Culture explains but it should not excuse. "It's culture!" Doesn't mean it's always some unequivocal good thing. All cultures have both good and bad, kind and cruel practices. One truth I hope all cultures can agree on is that kids are not autonomous and depend on adults for their daily life, guidance, and protection. As adults we have a responsibility to help and protect children who cannot yet fend for themselves. I can say that the purchase and production of these and similar products is denying that responsibility.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Just face it, Japan's got a wholly different culture compared to everyone else. They're not as reserved and as conservative as other nations out there, so stop forcing your "it's immoral and wrong" opinion down everyone's throat. >

Well, there's being sexually open and um.. 'liberated' and there's sexually exploiting underage children.

Also, I'd like to know what type of parent consent to having their child photographed in such a demeaning manner.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I can understand people speaking about double standards. Let's face it, the West isn't better than Japan about exploiting teenagers sexually in a "soft way".

US: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-u5WLJ9Yk4

France: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5nIfV8mRcg

Italy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlJ5oRbWC3I

Russia (it's not exactly a western country, oh well...these girls were very popular in the West): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mGBaXPlri8

Sexualization of little girls is shameful, everywhere, and it's a global problem.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

This woman, and a lot of people in these comments are missing a very simple fact:

This "junior idol" genre is not kiddie-porn and is not illegal because none of them are naked. Obviously the makers of this genre know exactly what they're doing and are pushing the limits. We might find this morally problematic, but it is legally very difficult to define this and do anything about it if they are not naked.

If you want to outlaw it, it would technically mean you cannot take a photograph of your own daughter in bathing suit.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

"Non è la Rai"...terrible old Italian show. Many girls, probably most of them, were underage, also 12/13 years old.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2z2QyfKI1MU

And Italy is a Catholic country, but exploitation of young girls in tv has always been a huge trouble. When we speak about social problems that are actually global, it's very important to be honest, or it will be obvious that some people will speak of Japan bashing.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

If you want to outlaw it, it would technically mean you cannot take a photograph of your own daughter in bathing suit.

Oh God! THIS is where it just feels like youre banging your head against a wall!

Let me try and put this as simply as I can:

Take pic of own child for family album = OK. Take pic of child and put it on DVD to sell to creepy men to whack off to = bad.

Kapiche? Can you see the subtle difference there?

2 ( +4 / -3 )

Looks like Amazon JP is reading cause none of those search queries brings up child porn. Well done! But who is monitoring this content on Amazon JP to stop it getting trough in the first place?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

No, there at Amazon JP couldn't care less about this woman's whining. She tried to use english in a japanese site and got different results because the word's different meaning. I highly doubt Amazon has ever sold any sort of child porn whatsoever. End of story. 90% of the comments are about how child porn is bad but that doesn't exist only in Japan.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@NathalieB

If you want to outlaw it, it would technically mean you cannot take a photograph of your own daughter in bathing suit. Oh God! THIS is where it just feels like youre banging your head against a wall! Let me try and put this as simply as I can: Take pic of own child for family album = OK. Take pic of child and put it on DVD to sell to creepy men to whack off to = bad. Kapiche? Can you see the subtle difference there?

Yes, of course. But my point is how are you doing to define this in legal terms? Would it be allowed to put a photo of your daughter in bathing suit on a blog? If answer is yes, then you would in legal terms have to allow other websites to put similar photos online. Can you share your pictures with friends who maybe also have kids? If yes, then how do you prosecute someone who is sharing photos of his/her daughter in bathing suit online, or via DVD's to his/her friends?

To give a different example of how absurd things can get in the law: In the US (where everybody is hypersensitive about everything) there have been cases of girls taking naked selfies and sharing it, then finding themselves prosecuted for distribution of child porn.

So my point is simple: OK and Bad might be easy to understand, but how to put that into law is a different thing, and way more complicated.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I highly doubt Amazon has ever sold any sort of child porn whatsoever.

From wikipedia "junior idol"

Despite inherent difficulties in effectively enforcing a ban on such materials, on August 25, 2007 the Japanese branch of Amazon.com removed over 600 junior idol titles on grounds the likelihood these were produced in violation of the Japanese anti-child prostitution and pornography law was high.[8] This incident was then followed by the arrest—on October 16—of 34-year-old Jisei Arigane (有金慈青?) chief producer of Shinkosha (心交社?) (a company specialized in idol and pornographic materials

And the word "candy" in Japan is also used by children meaning - funnily enough - candy. Confectionery. Sweets. It is NOT only used in an erotic sense.

And clearly Amazon DOES care about this womans "whining" - theyve already removed the product she was specifically refering to and several others too.

Child porn does not only exist in Japan. But this site is Japan Today - not Rest of the World Today.

Your next argument?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@NathalieB If you can read the Japanese Wiki version of the incident:

2007年10月16日、ジュニアアイドルの写真集・DVD業界大手の心交社のチーフプロデューサーら4人が、東京警視庁より当時17歳の女性が出ていたDVDが児童買春・児童ポルノ禁止法違反に当たるとの疑いで逮捕されたが、東京地検は「他作品に比べ猥褻とはいえない」として不起訴とし、[8]ヌードのない作品に対しての同法の適用が検討された例を作った[9]。

He was arrested, but the prosecutor didn't even choose to indict, creating an effective precedent for handling cases where nudity did not occur.

There were also several other arrests listed below, but please note the absence of mention of any conviction or even indictment.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@Ishiwara

I hate your way of thinking.

This "junior idol" genre is not kiddie-porn and is not illegal because none of them are naked.

For you, it seems the rights of the producers of this material are most important.

You think nothing of the rights of children.

For me, a sexualized image of a child is ABSOLUTELY WRONG. It doesn't matter if they are naked or not. Connecting children with sex is just wrong.

Junior idol material has children in poses which are sexual... deliberately sexual.

It's just wrong.

But for you it is fine.

Do you like this kind of material? Do you purchase such material.

You have to make your position clear.

1 ( +4 / -4 )

In the intervening days since the original post, even John Grisham has managed to step in it on this global issue. Wet your finger, put it in the air, and detect which way the wind is blowing. The issue being discussed in this specific post is a Japan, today, issue with many Japanese and a handful of guests against, and only a handful of Japanese, and even fewer guests, in favor of.

No one, man, lady or child, should be exposed to the materials referred to above when entering the words candy or キャンディ in the search bar of mainstream (and weep if you wish, but these are all mainstream now) sites. Criminal or criminal, indicted or unindicted, it doesn't matter. Underage splayed crotch nonsense is exactly what it looks like and any defense of it is beyond the pale.

It shouldn't take much more effort to shame Mikitani, Son and Bezos into doing the right thing. One starts by making an impact on these organizations' financials, with increasing amounts of shame and societal exclusion if it continues to fail to be addressed. Won't take a single lawyer. As John Grisham unfortunately demonstrated, it doesn't matter how famous or powerful you are, or even if you are an attorney -- the wrong side of this issue is the wrong side.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It's not as easy as that though. As the images are not illegal under Japanese law, if these companies give them reduced treatment, they could potentially be opening themselves up to a lawsuit based on discriminatory business practices.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

neither would any child pornography association, were they to attempt to assert such presumed rights on any store that choses to exclude them on policy grounds.

I agree, a child pornography association would not win. However, this child model smut is not considered child pornography under Japanese law, so your comment is a straw man that does not address the actual situation being discussed.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

More defense of the indefensible: "It ain't porno, cause theyz not nekked!"

Now, I'll type real slow, so y'all can get this:

Picture the following image:

A POV shot of a nine-year old girl in a bikini, on her knees in front of a man. The girl has a banana in her mouth, and some wiped cream on her lips and face.

No one is naked. And its porn. With a child.

If you understand that, then your argument that just 'cause no girl is naked on the junior idol site, that means it ain't porno, you are fool, or a liar, or scumbag.

-2 ( +2 / -5 )

@j3daggett

I see. So whom might be advancing the pornographers argument. Yourself perhaps? We are not talking law here, we are speaking of societal agreement. The smoking comparison is no straw man. You fail to see it in action around you? Go to Starbucks and try to light up.. I can appreciate you don't want the future, but it is here.

How about someone objective that can see the veiled assault on free expression?

Societal agreement has spoken in Japan - the stuff that offends you so may not be the height of Japanese culture, but few are interested in banning it, much less sending people to prison for it. If societal agreement is key, why can't you accept that result?

@JTDanMan

A POV shot of a nine-year old girl in a bikini, on her knees in front of a man. The girl has a banana in her mouth, and some wiped cream on her lips and face.

I must admit. I let myself picture that scene, and did not get any sexual arousal. It is a wierd scene, and I cannot personally imagine why anybody wants to buy such a picture but we all have our tastes.

I'd also say I'm not that interested in whether it is "porn", though I think people should avoid expanding the definition of words marked as illegal just to get something they dislike banned as well.

What I am interested is in whether this nine-year old was objectively harmed by any of this. Is she bleeding? Will her life expectancy be reduced? Given some substantive objective harms I can be convinced to agree to a ban even if it isn't porn. And vice versa.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

@Kazuaki: whether or not the man was indicted or not is irrelevant - that quote was a direct response to the comment "I highly doubt Amazon has ever sold porn". And as we all know, whether some of us are prepared to admit it or not, a lack of indictment in Japan doesnt provve a lack of guilt, just proves prosecutors are not confident in a conviction - can clearly see why with some of the sick comments on here.

Two those who think this this is not illegal:

The Japanese Anti-child prostitution and pornography law enacted in November 1999—and revised in 2004 to criminalize distribution of child pornography over the Internet—defines child pornography as the depiction "in a way that can be recognized visually, such a pose of a child relating to sexual intercourse or an act similar to sexual intercourse with or by the child", of "a pose of a child relating to the act of touching genital organs, etc." or the depiction of "a pose of a child who is naked totally or partially in order to arouse or stimulate the viewer's sexual desire."[6]

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Halloween is coming up and I went online to find costumes for the kids (yeah, I'm late this year). My son's costume? No problemo, he's going as an ewok, covered head to toe in furry brown fluff.

... my daughter? Holy cow! Have you seen the costumes they're selling for little girls?? And do you know where these costumes are from? The U.S.A. (made in China of course!).

So all of you trying to pretend that this is just a Japanese problem and that the US (with its stricter laws and draconian punishments) has all the answers... think again. The US objectifies children on a much wider scale... just look at the Halloween costumes.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

NathalieBOct. 20, 2014 - 02:00AM JST

the depiction of "a pose of a child who is naked totally or partially in order to arouse or stimulate the viewer's sexual desire."

The legal definition of "partially naked" is rather contested, but majority opinion is that it means the state of a person where some of the clothes are removed from normal wearing style. So, if a sock is removed from right foot but another is worn on the left foot, she is partially naked, and we must do the arousal test to see if the picture is a child pornography. On the other hand, if a girl is wearing a swimsuit such as bikini, and if no cloths are removed from the suit, she is not partially naked. Likewise, if a girl wears a whole set of clothes but some of the underwear is peeking, she is not partially naked.

But the definition of child pornography in the international treaty is much more restricted. By the treaty definition, if "sexual parts" are hidden, it is no child pornography.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

No one is naked. And its porn. With a child.

If you understand that, then your argument that just 'cause no girl is naked on the junior idol site, that means it ain't porno, you are fool, or a liar, or scumbag.

The law can be foolish. But this is by necessity, as the law needs to be precise, or it gets overturned in legal challenges. The fact is, the junior idol industry is not pornography under Japanese law. That's not a judgement on whether it should or should not be - I'd love to see the junior idol industry made illegal myself - but it's simply a statement of fact on how the law lies.

Your condemnation is based on your moral belief that the junior idol industry is porn - and morally, it is. But laws and morality are separate things, and if people want to get rid of the junior idol industry, they'll need to do it at a legal level, not a moral level.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I'm not a believer of monotheistic god or universal justice, even in such relativist view, when someone can be physically or mentally hurt without any sensible reasoning, I think such situation should be changed. This is the reason why I have been not against anime loli since in hope that might avert unnecessary attention to real children. However, now, even I can be brought into child porn material by simply clicking wrong advertisements on seemingly harmless sites. This means we are in the situation where children can be exposed to child porn, too. What I've so far come across to just a single site, which I reported to police through this site (https://www.keishicho.metro.tokyo.jp/anket/child_porno.htm), but, after that, I searched the net for child porn issue.

Unfortunately, the root of this issue is probably deeper than I imagined. As some people pointed out, their parents seem to be a part of the problem. There are even events to let the fans of these "models" hug them and even take pictures. Also, once they reach the legal age, these companies can openly use them in porn videos. While searching for these depressing info, I even stumbled upon a seemingly mother is selling her daughter's used shoes at Yahoo! Japan auction site-should I be glad to see it's not underwear?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

However, now, even I can be brought into child porn material by simply clicking wrong advertisements on seemingly harmless sites.

If you've been researching for this "The fuel for Japan's pedophiles" topic the search engines have probably got a ton of sketchy banner ads queued up for you.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan has never been Christianized. People just see these girls as cute 可愛い. Why is the automatic reaction that this is pornography? I think pornography is the explicit showing of sex acts. That is not the case here.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

I cannot believe people are down voting people who are saying child porn is evil. What, do you like think it is okay or something guys? Get your head out of the gutter. Child porn is as sick as it gets.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Cortes ElijahOct. 21, 2014 - 08:00AM JST

But you have to define what child pornography is, first.

Some people seem to think that what he thinks child pornography is child pornography, and that anyone who produce or distribute "child pornography" should be put in jail. That is nothing but dictatorship. The argument "It is a child porn because I think it is," is both dangerous and childish.

As you see, I am saying this to protect the rule of law, not child pornography.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I cannot believe people are down voting people who are saying child porn is evil.

People cannot affix a reason for their up or down vote, so they may be down-voting other content in the users' posts, not the fact that they are saying child porn is evil.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Why is the automatic reaction that this is pornography?

Because close-up shots of the crotches of little girls doing ballet (the shots are of the crotch, and a few inches of inside thigh) , and shots from behind of their tushes with them on all fours, and lying down with their legs splayed. NOT the poses of your local Sears family photographer! The DVD descriptions are also gag inducing; 'Her creamy white skin, undeveloped breasts and tiny bottom will surely please you'.

Would you let your sister or daughter star in these DVDs?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Have I noticed a slight tendency for parents to be revulsed in a way that those who do not have children are not? The question arises, is it possible for those who have never had children of their own to fully empathize with the strength of feeling within a parent's breast? Conversely, is it easier for a non-parent to see children as sex-objects, and less easy for them to draw a line anywhere? How much would such a perceptive gap affect the wider debate?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

nandakandamandaOct. 21, 2014 - 12:25PM JST

Contrary to what you might believe, it is almost always the parents that make their daughter pose as a model in convicted child pornography cases, and that is for money.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It is not just Amazon etc. Have you ever watched cartoons on network TV or cable TV? It shows the same thing. I know people will say that it is only cartoons, but it is the same thing watched by young boys.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No CH3CHO, not contrary at all.

As I stated in my post at 12:04 pm JST on October 16th above, "Distasteful as it is, though, the parent(s) for whatever reason, (money) probably did consent to or even actively encouraged the photography/filming."

There are parents out there who have lost touch with their inner feelings, or for some strong external reason have succeeded in overriding them. (To the detriment of almost everyone involved.)

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Maybe the parents just think it is a starting point for getting their daughters into show business.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Worst idea ever. Unless you have controls to screen people for age verification, anyone could order anything from Amazon. Controls first then think about the new venture. lol!

dw

0 ( +0 / -0 )

As you see, I am saying this to protect the rule of law, not child pornography.

Children have no voice when it comes to the rule of law.

Adults make laws on their behalf.

You are quibbling over the definitions of "partially naked" etc.

For you it seems important to have definitions that allow people to produce images in which children are connected with sex and posed with the intent of sexual arousal for adults.

I want definitions that make it as difficult as possible for content producers to create images where children are posed with the intent of sexual arousal for adults.

You are giving the impression that you accept or even want to see children posed in sexually-suggestive positions.

Please make your opinion clear.

JTDanMan gave a very clear example of an image that may be legal according to the letter of the law.

What do you think of the image he described?

Acceptable or not?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan is a shame-based culture (right and wrong taught through the judgement of others) not a guilt-based culture (right and wrong taught by the judgement of one's own conscience).

And unless Japanese citizens start to frown upon people who "consumes" this stuff, like they start judging people who smoke, It will never go away, and even if you judge as a society as a bad thing (by general consensus) you only have put a break on this unstoppable train only.

The fact is, the junior idol industry is not pornography under Japanese law. That's not a judgement on whether it should or should not be - I'd love to see the junior idol industry made illegal myself - but it's simply a statement of fact on how the law lies.

I think the same, these books and dvds are disgusting, but they are not illegal, they are on the border of child pornography, I'm not defending it, but those that are most adamant to think it is child pornography should stop thinking just because we say it is not illegal we "like" this stuff, Morals are on a different standard, but as to me it is disgusting, to you it should be completely banned and to others it is "cute". Those set of morals are not in the same ground, if you are a parent and you see these pictures, you probably will think that you'll never allow your child doing that, however, there will be another set of parents who might think "My child is cuter than her, she could do it better".

Of course, they don't picture a 40-ish grown male loser jerking off watching pictures like these, so they cannot fathom what are these pictures "used" for, they only would see the face on the cover of a highly sold magazine or DVD...

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Another fact of life in Japan. When a mother can't accompany husband and daughter to the public bath, the father takes the little girl into the men's side, up to the age of maybe 5 or 6. Nobody pays attention. Also, whe was a kid in the 80s, children were shown naked on golden time TV shows, like taking a bath with the parents, etc. There just isn't an equivalency there. Pornography should be defined as unwilling sex (and a child cannot be "willing"). Don't dilute the meaning.

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Children have no voice when it comes to the rule of law.

I think protecting the rule of law is more important than protecting children from activities in this article. First we have to change the law if we want them to stop.

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I think protecting the rule of law is more important than protecting children from activities in this article

Many people here seem to think (or else are pretending to think) that the law is somehow written in stone.

Laws are made by humans.

They are not handed down by God.

We can change the law.

If the law is permitting sexualized images of children to be legally produced then the law is wrong IMHO

JTDanman above presented a specific description of a disturbing image that may be legal within the strict interpretation of the law but which many people will think is disturbing and plain wrong.

Personally I think it should be illegal produce the image he has described... and indeed any similar images which put children into sexualized positions for the arousal of sick adults.

I think posters here should stop quibbling and tell us straight... are you happy to have such images produced legally?

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We can change the law.

That's what I'm saying. What kind of law in this do you have in your countries?

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I think posters here should stop quibbling and tell us straight... are you happy to have such images produced legally?

You are one of the people that thinks that infers something like that! The fact that we point that these "pictures" are not illegal doesn't mean that we are "Happy" they exist, I said it before, it is disgusting, and if you don't want them, write to the congress and ask for changing the law, in my country we cannot see stuff like that and if there is, is kinda hidden, it is not that open here.

If the law is permitting sexualized images of children to be legally produced then the law is wrong IMHO JTDanman above presented a specific description of a disturbing image that may be legal within the strict interpretation of the law but which many people will think is disturbing and plain wrong.

Your opinion is valid to me also, there is something wrong with the law for allowing stuff so disturbing,

But, as a disturbing image that it is "legal", you are inferring that "Many people" think it is wrong, you don't know that, otherwise, we would see more manifestations of people against it, the same when you see protesters against discrimination or when a law offender gets off the hook...

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Legality is determined by the culture. Japanese culture accepts these pictures as legal. Legalities are up to interpretation in every culture. The pictures are disgusting. The problem is that so many people excuse this stuff under the guise of culture. Japan has a child porn problem, plain and simple...

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you do realize these are Japanese sites, intended to be searched in Japanese, right? Search in Japanese and you will get better results.

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David Franklin Delano NortonOct. 22, 2014 - 09:17AM JST

Legality is determined by the culture. Japanese culture accepts these pictures as legal.

You need to know the "international" definition of child pornography before singling out Japanese culture. http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/OPSCCRC.aspx

Article 2

(c) Child pornography means any representation, by whatever means, of a child engaged in real or simulated explicit sexual activities or any representation of the sexual parts of a child for primarily sexual purposes.

The material that some people here keep calling "child pornography" is not child pornography under international definition.

On top of this, the US made following reservation to the traety to further limit the scope of child pornography. Is it reflection of their culture???

https://treaties.un.org/Pages/ViewDetails.aspx?src=TREATY&mtdsg_no=IV-11-c&chapter=4&lang=en

(3) THE TERM "CHILD PORNOGRAPHY".-The United States understands the term "child pornography", as defined in Article 2(c) of the Protocol, to mean the visual representation of a child engaged in real or simulated sexual activities or of the genitalia of a child where the dominant characteristic is depiction for a sexual purpose.

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It is not only little girls. Go to Kinokinuya at Takashimaya in Shinjuku, on the first floor to your left there is a section of comic books on "yayoi". That is little boy on boy sex. It is popular amoung young girls. I have no idea why.

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I guess you've never watched anime. Often the objects of adoration look like they could be pre-teens. For a long time people thought maybe Japanese just have extreme levels of self-control, but now it seems it took a while for the seeds of pop-culture to bear fruit. By the way, Japanese men in Tokyo have long been paying school girls for favours. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enjo_k%C5%8Dsai

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Rakuten and Amazon are not affiliated. This article may have an excellent point but it is casting blame the wrong direction. Check your facts please.

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I donnu. I typed the word "stalker" into the search bar and this was 3rd on the list! I shop on Amazon all of the freaking time! Never ran into such nastiness! I also watched every episode of Robotech and Macross/Gundam and can't seem to recall it being about "pre-teens"!

Still, I stand with the "writer" of this article! I see some posting "where can I purchase?"! So...

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