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Old 2006-09-06, 08:59   Link #1
Scribble
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Question Is the "Otaku Lifestyle" appealing to you?

The lifestyles represented in Genshiken, Comic Party and even Welcome to NHK and Otaku no Video seem really appealing. Having a group of friends with the same interests and enthusiasm as you, meeting up in a clubroom or a house to talk about anime or do "geekish things" like making homebrew games or comics, attending huge events such as comiket and having so many different anime related goods at your disposal. While I still can, this seems like a fun life to live.

I've gotten the impression from quite a few anime fans that this is the life that they want to avoid. It's something that I would like to pursue in my spare time. I have the sort of life which someone refers to when they tell someone else to "GET A LIFE", but I find it really boring at the moment. Lol.

I'm aware that the situations and characters in these anime are idealistic, but when I went to Akihabara, (cannot find words to express what happened when I went to Akihabara, but it's to do with anime and it reinforces the point I'm making).

Maybe I mean "this aspect" of the otaku lifestyle, since there's more to it.

I'm sure you understand what I'm trying to say.

So, does it appeal to you? Do you already live that sort of life? Discuss!
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Old 2006-09-06, 09:05   Link #2
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Hmm... parts of it certainly, and those are the parts that I indulge in already (anime, buying OST's and occasionally other things related to anime, chatting with people on message boards and so on), but there are other aspects that don't appeal (the 'Dirty Otaku' absolute loathing aspect mostly, but I also don't feel inclined to queue for 5 hours just to get into an event).

To put it simply though: I'm 27, I have a life outside of anime, and a life within anime. Simple as that. I'm not always that good at balancing between the two however heh
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Old 2006-09-06, 09:09   Link #3
felix
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Strange I manage to do most of everything else and still watch anime, read manga and most of the other things. And I like to consider myself an otaku

I don't think otaku=hikimori or NEET for that matter.
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Old 2006-09-06, 09:13   Link #4
Radiosity
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackCatXIII
I don't think otaku=hikimori or NEET for that matter.
Neither do I, but society as a whole does. We know better because we're a part of the 'Otaku' community, but 'society' and 'the general community' are like dumb brainless animals with no real clue what the hell they're talking about most of the time, hence Otaku's get labelled as a bad thing thanks to the actions of a single idiot (kj1980 made a long and informative post regarding this, a search would likely bring it up, assuming it didn't get wiped in that hacking incident last year).
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Old 2006-09-06, 09:25   Link #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radiosity
(kj1980 made a long and informative post regarding this, a search would likely bring it up, assuming it didn't get wiped in that hacking incident last year).
It is right under our noses.
http://forums.animesuki.com/showpost...10&postcount=7

The article was from 2004 not 2005, the year of the Forum Great Crash.
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Old 2006-09-06, 10:08   Link #6
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Yup, that's the post I meant, thanks Guido
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Old 2006-09-06, 10:13   Link #7
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Being an Otaku (and i'm referring to the "purest" form of otakuness) is something that can be seen as a bliss and a curse at the same time. Not everyone have the capability of loving something so "ethereal" as a fictional world and a fictional set of characters: that's why otaku are despised by those who can't even understand them. But, at the same time, this capability is very dangerous, because even otaku (who are, sadly, still humans) need something that goes beyond their passion. Densha Otoko is a typical example.

Well, time to answer your questions. Yes, i live (almost) that kind of life, and i have to say i'm quite proud of it. However, as I said i'm still human, and sometimes i just feel that i need something else. Well, it's a small price to pay. At least i'm not an ignorant fool like those who label me o_O
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Old 2006-09-06, 10:23   Link #8
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I was in consumer otaku mode for a while. Its good to keep your mind off things. But its not ideal.

Better be a producer otaku. Start a doujinshi circle, write a manga, create an online comic, a visual novel, fanfic, or heck, even animation. Start a podcast, cosplay, anything. You'll definitely feel more fulfilled. And that's what anime culture is all about, peer-to-peer transfer, unlike top-down transfer like in mainstream media.
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Old 2006-09-06, 10:32   Link #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaFool
Better be a producer otaku. Start a doujinshi circle, write a manga, create an online comic, a visual novel, fanfic, or heck, even animation. Start a podcast, cosplay, anything. You'll definitely feel more fulfilled. And that's what anime culture is all about, peer-to-peer transfer, unlike top-down transfer like in mainstream media.
Yeah, that's the sort of thing I'm talking about. Except none of my friends are interested in anime.

Unless you're talking about meeting people online.
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Old 2006-09-06, 11:34   Link #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guido
It is right under our noses.
http://forums.animesuki.com/showpost...10&postcount=7

The article was from 2004 not 2005, the year of the Forum Great Crash.
Wow there was so much hate and bitterness in that post.

As for the Otaku lifestyle, I really enjoy chatting with fellow Anime fans on irc and AnimeSuki. Takes alot of time, and as Radiosity says, I dont think I balance between life-stuff and my hobby, Anime, too well. But well worth it.
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Old 2006-09-06, 11:36   Link #11
horsdhaleine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scribble
The lifestyles represented in Genshiken, Comic Party and even Welcome to NHK and Otaku no Video seem really appealing. Having a group of friends with the same interests and enthusiasm as you, meeting up in a clubroom or a house to talk about anime or do "geekish things" like making homebrew games or comics, attending huge events such as comiket and having so many different anime related goods at your disposal. While I still can, this seems like a fun life to live.

I've gotten the impression from quite a few anime fans that this is the life that they want to avoid. It's something that I would like to pursue in my spare time. I have the sort of life which someone refers to when they tell someone else to "GET A LIFE", but I find it really boring at the moment. Lol.

I'm aware that the situations and characters in these anime are idealistic, but when I went to Akihabara, (cannot find words to express what happened when I went to Akihabara, but it's to do with anime and it reinforces the point I'm making).

Maybe I mean "this aspect" of the otaku lifestyle, since there's more to it.

I'm sure you understand what I'm trying to say.

So, does it appeal to you? Do you already live that sort of life? Discuss!
does it appeal to me? well, not really. i don't feel the need to have a meeting just to discuss anime because
1) there are lots of good online anime discussion boards
2) anime & manga are so commonplace (at least in my home country) that i don't feel compelled to attend meetings. me and friends can talk about our fave shows on the train, while eating, while walking, sometimes we don't talk about it at all. it depends on the mood. heck! i can even talk to my family members if i want to talk about certain anime...

personally, i don't think watching anime or reading manga automatically makes a person a geek. some people i know who do these are actually quite cool. but me? i'm a geek ever since, but it's not because of anime... i'm just odd in my own way since childhood. hehe

@scribble: why would someone tell you to get a life? if you are busy w/ conventions and making comics etc, then u have a life. im sure you are doing these stuff with other people not alone, deshoo? as long as you're not doing anything dangerous to yourself and other people it should be fine.

(dangerous=picking up a cute little girl on the street and dressing her up in a loli fashion. another example = http://forums.animesuki.com/showpost...10&postcount=7)

oh well, it's nice to be in asia. just a question, is it that bad to like anime in a western society? well among my friends it's considered a bit childish but it's not something that would make you feel ostracized, marginalized or such. a bit childish but still normal you know?
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Old 2006-09-06, 12:22   Link #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horsdhaleine
does it appeal to me?....
Which country do you live in, if you don't mind answering?

What I meant by that "Get a life" comment is that I'm not living a "lifeless life". Here's an example.

Person: My life is like "this."
Other Person: Wow, your life is like "this"? You need to get a life!

In some regards, I am living my life how "Other Person" is living their life, which is considered the "normal" way of living. Which is boring IMO (More recently, however, the anime side is more dominant, so my life is more like "Person")

XD

Quote:
Originally Posted by horsdhaleine
oh well, it's nice to be in asia. just a question, is it that bad to like anime in a western society? well among my friends it's considered a bit childish but it's not something that would make you feel ostracized, marginalized or such. a bit childish but still normal you know?
I live in UK, and I don't feel bad for saying I like anime. The most I get is a lighthearted "you like japanese porn? hahahahaha" or "you like pokemon? hahahahaha" from whoever. It's no big issue, unlike Japan. However, if you make it obvious that you revolve your life around it, i.e. collecting figures and acting like anime characters, you'll probably be called a freak. Apparently, everyone my age is supposed to be clubbing in their free time, not "watching cartoons".
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Old 2006-09-06, 13:01   Link #13
horsdhaleine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scribble
Which country do you live in, if you don't mind answering?
hehe... i go around in somewhere in east asia and somewhere in southeast asia. but right now i'm stuck in my room in tokyo, i don't have the money to travel hehehe. but i will go somewhere soon and that will be no internet and anime for a while.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scribble
I live in UK, and I don't feel bad for saying I like anime. The most I get is a lighthearted "you like japanese porn? hahahahaha" or "you like pokemon? hahahahaha" from whoever. It's no big issue, unlike Japan. However, if you make it obvious that you revolve your life around it, i.e. collecting figures and acting like anime characters, you'll probably be called a freak. Apparently, everyone my age is supposed to be clubbing in their free time, not "watching cartoons".
man, that can be quite rude! i met a few british guys here and they're actually quite nice (and hawt!)... i guess the people who said that to you are a bit childish (or worse, narrow-minded). but they probably have their own issues with fitting in. i cannot really blame them; uk is very far from japan, so anime and manga enthusiasm can be a bit peculiar, i guess. maybe brit teens need a broader definition of life.
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Old 2006-09-06, 15:12   Link #14
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I'm happy enjoying anime. I don't think I want to be the sort of hardcore otaku that is described in kj1980's posts....BUt it would be nice to meet up with people with the same interests.
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Last edited by Theowne; 2006-09-06 at 16:36.
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Old 2006-09-06, 15:43   Link #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guido
It is right under our noses.
http://forums.animesuki.com/showpost...10&postcount=7

The article was from 2004 not 2005, the year of the Forum Great Crash.
from that post it does show how screw ball humans can really be...but IMO that is the really extreme cases
it is not right to generalise the whole "otaku" community with the foolishness of certain fcked up ppl...
it could be true that being otaku could have resulted in those extreme crime because the certain individuals have a psycological problem in the first place...(i mainly suspect society's doing...exclusion and being picked on/bullied because otaku's are different perhaps?) being labled as a certain group can have the same affect/result a racism...ie theres always someone who are against that certain group...these could have push a few overboard too much...

IMO being obsessed with something (most of the time) isnt wrong...its just how you can control you actions and wht consiquences can follow...
to be honest i wouldnt go to the extremes of an otaku (cause im not that hardcore) but still i would not mind friends that have similar interests as mine in anime (sadly i dnt know anyone here -.-) kinda lonely imo
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Old 2006-09-06, 16:41   Link #16
Vexx
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To anyone "aspiring" to be otaku ... just.. please.. for god's sake.. .take regular baths and take an interest in hygiene and your health. I've lost count of the number of people who skip out on those bits of etiquette at comic/anime/gaming conventions -- who think their hobby is what drives people away when its their own persona instead.

Also.... practice talking in a pleasant voice instead of a loud monotonic drone (more a problem with gamers than with anime).

Stereotypes..... but experienced often enough I find it difficult to get my family excited about going to a convention.

There's nothing wrong with having an intense interest in these hobbies.... but being happy to be called an "otaku" is either a misuse of the word or an attempt to reform the word somewhat like "geek" got recategorized in the slang dictionary. I guess I'd be more comfortable if we could come up with another term for anime hobbyist, otaku technically means "home" and is slang for "stay-at-home anti-social withdrawn person with hobbies found strange by most"

I'm an anime hobbyist ... and since I know a fair bit of japanese, to me "otaku" is a label that inspires the kind of response that Southern Baptists still give someone who plays D&D with their kids (I play D&D with my kids).

It requires determined persistence to disassociate the hobbyist image from that monster who tainted the hobby in Japan. Dropping the word "otaku" might be one step because of its negative connotations.
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Old 2006-09-06, 16:49   Link #17
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Not really. I'll just stick to talking about anime, watching their dvds, and letting them borrow mine.
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Old 2006-09-06, 16:51   Link #18
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EDIT: Sorry. This post made absolutely no sense. I'll re-write it later.
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Old 2006-09-06, 17:14   Link #19
arias
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaFool
Better be a producer otaku. Start a doujinshi circle, write a manga, create an online comic, a visual novel, fanfic, or heck, even animation. Start a podcast, cosplay, anything. You'll definitely feel more fulfilled. And that's what anime culture is all about, peer-to-peer transfer, unlike top-down transfer like in mainstream media.
While I think being a creator is often more satisfying than a mere consumer (not necessarily an educated consumer), I think you're trying to distinguish anime "culture" from the mainstream unfairly. Anime is just about as much as cash-reaping (and ripping) as the mainstream media is... that's why characters are designed in attractive ways, why fanservice is there, and why so many characters are templates of each other. There's alot of formula involved, and don't think the studios or their mama companies won't be wringing their brains out to milk your tits of cash till they bleed. These people don't care if you're going to suffer weeks of hunger to buy their products.

I would say doujin and amateur work circles are satisfying, of course. I did pixel art for an amateur game project for 3 years in my younger days, and it's a real fond memory looking back.. by the way, the creator of that game is now working at Insomniac games (Spyro, Ratchet & Clank). Small group communities like that working on stuff is great, and I think there's some sort of dynamic like that in scanlations and fansubbing. But not everyone is up for it.


As for the "otaku" (abuse of the word by the North Americans) lifestyle, I actually love to be in that sort of limbo mode. Going through game after game, surfing for random information, communicating with my friends online, going out sometimes etc. In fact I just drowned myself in that cycle the past two weeks.. but the costs are heavy. Alot of work piled up, and I realized I have alot to do in the next few days. So, sure, I would love living that sort of life for some period of time... if I didn't have the responsibilities that I have now.

I actually know someone, who is close to me, who is living this sort of life recklessly. Suspended from school, neck-deep into an MMORPG and refusing to acknowledge life and reality.. continually running away from it and using an all-purpose excuse to get away from it all. And very soon he'll need to find a job once he graduates.. but I don't think he knows how hard life can be. It takes alot of work to reap rewards when you're a commoner, and not someone beautiful or born with a silver spoon up your ass. He's a real coward, and has seriously hurt the people around him deeply.. the impact is like NHK's Satou on his parents, but when this has spanned for more than half a decade it becomes ridiculous. I still care for him but I got burned when I tried reaching into that abyss.. what can I do? He ain't heavy.

Having had these experiences, it's not too hard for me to steer myself away from that sort of otaku-lifestyle-cycle.. at least to some degree to which I can function well for what's important. I don't think that sort of lifestyle can be criticized fundamentally as a "lack of life" or as "hurtful", since I'm a subjectivist for the former and it depends on the circumstances (such as your family and such) for the latter. Some people can live this sort of life for their whole lives and still be reasonably happy, without negatively affecting those around them, I believe. But for others... It's funny how he can complain life being unfair to people, and not realize the unfairness and damage he's dealt around him.
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Old 2006-09-07, 03:49   Link #20
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No, it doesn't.

Not to sound snobby, but when anime fandom was a smaller circle of people (mid-90s), it was a more interesting group. I guess that's true of any subculture. Goth was more interesting before it was overrun by poseurs and commercialized. So was punk. When things get popular, they attract more people who you want to avoid. That's life.

I haven't been to an anime con in ages. Heck, I was a founding member of Fanime (waaaaaay back in 1994) and didn't go this year even though it was held a half-mile from my house. Too many slobbering fanboys. Too many Fat Yaoi Fangirls. Not enough showers.

I'll always like anime and it'll always be an interest of mine, but there's a lot of other things in life and you have to put things in perspective. Even when we have an "anime night" at home we've lately been mixing episodes of the revived Doctor Who and the sitcom Spaced (very highly recommended, BTW) into the playlist.

Besides, let me assure you that real otaku chicks are very, very rarely as cute as the ones in Comic Party. And the ones that are that cute, are nuts. Trust me on this.
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