The only way to find out is to ask a random sampling of travelers on the streets!
Some of the best ways to get some honest opinions is to ask a random stranger what they think. YouTube channel Ask Japanese has asked strangers on the street some pretty interesting questions like what they thought about Japanese men, and they just released a new video asking foreigners if they think Japanese people are shy or not.
It’s a little hard to get a definitive answer to the question given how little interaction some of the people seem to have had with Japanese people during their stay. But their responses may be a result of the way the question is asked leading to people answering in a certain way.
A lot of people point to the perceived language barrier as one possibility for why Japanese people have the stereotype of being shy. However, a lot of the people interviewed don’t feel that the stereotype is warranted. They believe it’s a by-product of the kindness and politeness that some Japanese people show.
While not mentioned in the video, perhaps one possibility is that the politeness is hiding the shyness of a lot of people. While a some may not feel confident when interacting with strangers or foreigners, the simple fact that it would be rude to ignore someone forces them to overcome their shy feelings.
Whether or not foreigners feel that the shy stereotype is warranted, each individual Japanese person should be judged on their own. Like any group of people, every person is going to bring their own personal flavor. What about your experiences? Would you consider the Japanese people you have talked to or met to be shy? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to check out more interesting videos from Ask Japanese on their YouTube page.
Source & images: YouTube/Ask Japanese