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AKB48 doesn't want you to kill yourself

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Blame it on demanding jobs, societal expectations, or historical methods of atonement, but Japan has a high suicide rate. In fact, when it comes to people killing themselves, Japan ranks 7th in the world. The ruling Democratic Party of Japan tried to fix this earlier this month, introducing a slogan: "Anata mo GKB47 sengen!" which means "Proclaim yourself as part of the GKB47!" The "GK" stands for "gatekeeper," someone who notices others' depression and helps them get treatment, while "B" stands for "basic," meaning that being a gatekeeper should be everyone's basic responsibility. The "47" is a reference to Japan's 47 prefectures.

Anyone familiar with Jpop will notice that the slogan is dangerously close to the name of Japan's most popular idol group, AKB48. Many politicians are "deeply inappropriate" with the similarity, and Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda agrees, saying, "To speak plainly, I too felt uncomfortable. I'd like to see further research conducted on the matter."

Instead of completely ditching the campaign, the Democratic Party of Japan has gotten AKB48 to agree to promote the campaign, which is being slightly altered. Now the slogan is "Proclaim yourself as a gatekeeper," and AKB48 is appearing in public service announcements, supporting the message. These same girls will often promote whatever product is shoved into their hands, but this time around, their popularity might cause some positive social change.

[Via Kotaku]

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Bob Muir
Bob MuirContributor   gamer profile

Bob has been hanging around ModernMethod for years and and somehow writes almost everywhere, including Destructoid and Flixist. He was once lit on fire, but it's not as cool as you'd think. more + disclosures


 


 



Filed under... #akb48 #culture #Idols #japan #politics

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