All Stories by SoraNews24

Video shows Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe heckled by angry Okinawans at ceremony

June 23 marks the 70th anniversary of the end of the Battle of Okinawa, a bloody, 82-day battle which left thousands of people dead. In commemoration of this gruesome chapter of Japanese history, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe appeared in Okinawa at the Cornerstone of Peace, a memorial to those who died in the battle, to deliver a speech.

However, it turned out that not everyone was happy to see the leader, who faced heckling by some attendees.

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Announcing the winners of our Anime Encyclopedia 3rd Revised Edition giveaway!

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, it’s finally time to announce the winners of our Anime Encyclopedia 3rd Revised Edition giveaway!

Click the link below to find out if you’re one of the four lucky people who won a copy of this gargantuan guide to all things anime!

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Super Mega Important Debate: Do you shower before work or before bed? 【Poll closed】

In Japan, the majority of people bathe at night before going to bed. Even if they don’t stick to the traditional routine of rinsing off before soaking in a hot bath, most Japanese find the idea of climbing into bed without having at least hopped in the shower first supremely icky – almost as icky as walking around your home while wearing your outdoor shoes.

In the west, however, many of us prefer to shower before leaving the house in the morning. No matter how well you slept the night before, the thought of not washing prior to putting on work clothes and heading out for the day seems pretty gross to most of us.

So for this week’s Super Mega Important Debate, we’re asking you to answer this one simple question: Do you bathe before bed or before work each morning?

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No more earphones while cycling in Japan? Well, how about nipplephones?

As you probably know, bicycles are an incredibly common method of transportation in Japan. They’ve also been a source of many accidents in the country, and police have taken an increasingly strict approach to dealing with law-breaking cyclists. New rules have recently been implemented to keep the country’s streets from turning into a crazy, Mad Max-esque bicycle dystopia, and one that’s really got people’s attention is a prohibition on earphones/headphones while cycling.

The exact rule and punishment seems to vary from location to location, but wearing earphones in both ears is sure to get you at least a warning, and in some places, Tokyo included, even just one ear is now against the law. But, one of our intrepid RocketNews24 Japan writers thought, what about earphones on your nipples?

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Executives arrested from scam dating sites that had 2.7 million users and only one female member

Dating is never easy, is it? Going out and meeting strangers and talking to them can be painful, awkward, and downright terrifying. Fortunately, Internet dating sites have helped us cut through the trial-and-error process to find people we have deep, personal connections with — or, at least, who swiped right.

Unfortunately, online dating is also ripe for abuse, exploitation, and scams. If ever you needed a cautionary tale for being careful about who you give your money to, this group of dating site executives who ran multiple scam sites should suffice. Of the 2.7 millions users on the site, only one was a woman. The rest of the “women” the male members were chatting with online were all paid fakes!

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Airline pilot flies with broken door handle, tells crew member to hold it in place during flight

As much as we love travelling the world and seeing all the awesome that is out there, we have to admit that the price of plane tickets can end up being an insurmountable obstacle to globetrotting adventures. Fortunately, the rise of low-cost carriers (LCC) has helped alleviate some of burden of flight.

Of course, you may wonder if such airlines offer the standards and safety that we expect when being hurled through the sky in a giant metal cylinder. Well, if you’re afraid of flying and you want to see the world on a budget, you probably won’t want to read this story about a pilot who knowingly flew a plane with a faulty door handle…TWICE!

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Announcing the winner of the RocketNews24 Japan Wish competition!

We know you’ve kept you waiting, but it’s finally time to announce the winner of the RocketNews24 competition!

Join us after the jump to find out who we’ll be flying over to Japan to fulfil their Japan dream experience!

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It’s huge!! Win a copy of The Anime Encyclopedia 3rd Revised Edition! 【Contest closed】

Calling all anime enthusiasts and obsessive collectors! Today we have a very special announcement that will put a big smile on your face and have you doing flappy hands like a sugar-rushing toddler in a toy shop. Thanks to the good people at Stone Bridge Press, we have one hardback and three electronic copies of the incredible The Anime Encyclopedia 3rd Revised Edition to give away!

Join us after the jump to find out how to make this book your own.

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Put the razor down! Survey reveals 2 out of 3 Japanese women prefer their men with hairy armpits

Personal tastes are just that: Personal. What gets one person going is likely to leave someone else bored — and there’s nothing wrong with that of course. I’d be awfully sad if everyone liked strawberry ice cream as much as I do because then there’d be none left for me.

And nothing shows this quite as much as men and their body hair. More specifically, how Japanese women feel about body hair on certain parts of the male anatomy. We are, of course, talking about shins and armpits! (Why? What were you thinking?)

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Super Mega Important Debate – Japanese squat toilets: Great or gross? 【Poll closed】

Picture the scene: you’re waiting for your number to be called at City Hall or some other municipal building in rural Japan, when suddenly your stomach starts growling and your gut begins to twitch and spasm as that super-greasy kimchi ramen you had for lunch is pushed at top speed through your digestive tract. If you don’t go now – right now – things could get messy fast, so you make a beeline for the restroom and hope that there’s a stall free. Inside the restroom, you charge towards the half-open door on the end, a layer of sweat forming on your brow as your body starts counting down, T-minus 10 seconds to total evacuation.

Then it hits you: the stall you’re standing in is fitted not with a luxurious, bidet-equipped, warms your backside and plays music at you Washlet brand of toilet, but an old-school, upside-down urinal built into the floor Japanese squat toilet.

There’s no backing out now. The deed must be done. The question is, how traumatised will you be after using it?

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This guy claims he’s never had any cosmetic surgery done, but the internet isn’t convinced

Weibo, the Chinese microblogging site, is full of people of all walks of life, just like Facebook or Twitter, we suppose. Everyone from your average Joes to 15-year-olds with more plastic surgery than Hollywood can get together, share pictures, and argue ad nauseam. The last Weibo user we saw with a ton of work done certainly hit a nerve with Internet users across the world, though she apparently did not give a crap what we thought. And good for her! Listening to the haters is a sure way to ruin a good day.

But now, a new angular face has appeared on the scene, and it looks like he’s not bowing to the Weibo hate either. Though we’re not sure his “deny, deny, deny” tactic is going to work out quite as well as he’s hoping.

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Mimi-kaki: We let a total stranger stick things inside us at an ear-cleaning salon【Video】

Akihabara is considered by many to be a holy land of otaku culture, and with good reason. From anime to electronics to maid cafes, there’s not much you can’t find here. You can even pay someone to clean your ears! Which, to this writer, sounds absolutely horrifying. The idea of a total stranger getting inside my ear canal and scraping out all the gunk is both gross and horrifying, mainly because I can’t stop imagining the ear cleaner slipping and driving the ear-pick deep into my brain.

And that’s probably exactly why the RocketNews24 editors chose me to try it out! If you’ve ever wanted to have a young woman lay your head in her lap and then scrape the wax out of your ears, here’s your chance to see what it’s like.

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Super Mega Important Debate: Tokyo or Osaka? 【Poll Closed】

You knew it had to happen at some point. Sooner or later we were bound to ask you to choose which of Japan’s biggest and most famous cities is best. That’s right, folks, it’s Tokyo versus Osaka; Kanto versus Kansai; east versus west.

Click the link, make your choice, argue about it in the comments section. No biting, hair-pulling or bringing our mothers into it.

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Super Mega Important Debate: Soy sauce-based ramen or miso-based ramen? 【Poll closed】

Happy Saturday, everyone! We hope you got through the week with all your bits and pieces still connected and without getting fired. But before you go off and start being nice to people now that you have a day off, let’s argue about food.

This week we’re talking about soy sauce-based ramen and miso-based ramen – two firm favourites in the world of delicious, soupy noodles and each with legions of fans. But of course, as Sean Connery and Christopher Lambert told us in the 1986 film Highlander, there can be only one, so pick a side and make your click count.

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Super Mega Important Debate – Natto: is it nom or vom? 【Poll closed】

Sometimes our modern lives lack conflict. Let’s remedy that today by having a massive fight about something that doesn’t really matter.

This week, we’re talking about the fermented soybeans known as natto, and there’s one question we need you all to answer: is this dish “nom” or is it decidedly “vom”?

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What happens when a guy goes to a Japanese women’s swimsuit store and asks for their best bikini?

Japan has recently seen an increase in merchandise like “men’s bras” and “men’s panties” with designs that are practically the same as women’s versions. Which is all well and good, but it’s left us with one question: Why are we still separating men’s and women’s swimsuits?

While we suppose women probably can’t wear men’s swimsuits without Johnny Law giving them a citation or two, there’s nothing really stopping men from throwing on something like, say, a bikini. And that’s exactly what a writer from our Japanese site did! Take a trip to the beach with us and see how he liked his new swimwear!

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Super Mega Important Debate: Tuna or salmon sushi? 【Poll now closed】

It’s finally the weekend, so what better way to squander our precious time off than by arguing over things that don’t really matter?

This week we’re asking: Which is better? Salmon sushi or tuna sushi?

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Upcoming male “female cosplay” event draws attention online and our interest

Cosplay is, of course, a popular pastime of otaku, and one of the most popular types of cosplay right now is the gender-norm-breaking “otoko no ko.” As we’ve explained previously, otoko no ko are men who identify as male and like wearing women’s clothes…and who often happen to look damn good doing it too!

And it seems that otoko no ko numbers are growing too, if the Internet is any indication. Though otoko no ko cosplay events have been around for a while, a contest coming up this weekend is drawing attention online.

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Did this guy really get his girlfriend to gain 40kg before asking her to marry him?

The Internet is full of stories, some true and some false. Some tales are so bizarre that we’re not sure which end of the spectrum they lie on, such as this one, in which a man in China allegedly met a girl, fell in love, and then got her to nearly double her body weight through massive amounts of food.

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One of the hardest things about cosplaying an anime character has to be the challenge of making cartoon facial and body features look as striking, interesting and attractive in real life as they do in the animated world.

Twitter in Japan has been buzzing with just that dilemma this week after the launch of the anime adaptation of light novel series Danmachi, known in English as Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?  Why? Because one particularly well-endowed female character, Hestia, has a blue ribbon enhancing her cleavage, and Twitter users across Japan decided to try it out in real life. While some fans were disappointed, others seemed to feel they might just be on to something with this ribbon thing!

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