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Japan Subculture Research Center

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Police and government fighting back against junior idols?


Dec 7, 2009
A 10-year-old "junior idol" poses for a photo at a bookshop in Akihabara. Fans who buy a girl's DVD get complementary tickets to events where they can meet the idols and take their photos. Photo by Sarah Noorbakhsh
A 10-year-old "junior idol" poses at a bookshop in Akihabara. Fans who buy a girl's DVD get tickets to events where they can meet idols and take photos. Photo by Sarah Noorbakhsh

An article posted a few weeks ago but recently brought to my attention through Japan Probe:

Tokyo Metro Police create dedicated anti-child porn unit

A special Tokyo police unit to combat the spread of child pornography on the Internet will begin work Thursday.

The unit will also operate a 24-hour hotline, hoping that citizens’ reports will help expose child pornography violations. The hotline will be the first in the country dedicated to combating the banned material.

In 2008, the Metropolitan Police Department arrested 60 people on child pornography violations — about double the number of four years before — and in a joint operation with the Fukuoka Prefectural Police in January and February this year arrested a group operating a pay site for obscene images out of Hong Kong and a pornographic movie site from a server in the United States in order to avoid exposure in Japan.

Read the article in full here.

And a second more recent one:

Gov’t sets up working team on eradication of child pornography

In response to the rise in child pornography cases, the Cabinet Meeting on Anti-Crime Measures has decided to set up a working team toward the eradication of such crimes.

The government made the decision — in light of the international community’s criticism of Japan’s delayed handling of the issue — that in addition to making amendments to the Law for Punishing Acts Related to Child Prostitution and Child Pornography, related ministries and agencies must take other action toward eradication.

By mid-December, National Public Safety Commission Chairman Hiroshi Nakai is expected to propose the establishment of the working group in a Cabinet Meeting on Anti-Crime Measures. The first meeting of the group, to be composed of vice ministers and ministerial aids from related ministries and agencies, will be held in January. It will also consider fielding input from experts on Internet distribution and care for child victims.

Read the article in full here.

Neither article explains whether the people arrested last year were involved in possession of full-blown child pornography or “junior idol” materials. Despite Amazon’s crackdown in 2007, books and videos depicting scantily clad teen and pre-teen children in sexually provocative poses are still available in bookstores throughout the country, though most popular in Akihabara. Some say the industry gets by because they simply “toe the line” between artful photography and pornography, but an arrest of Shinkosha producer Jisei Arigane in October of the same year for pushing the limits too far while making a DVD in Bali would make some wonder if that line is in the wrong place.

21 thoughts on “Police and government fighting back against junior idols?”
  1. It’s good to see something is being done to combat the junior idol culture that exists in Japan. I’ve never understood why there was nothing done about this before. One of the many contradictions in Japan that baffled me, and of course everybody looked the other way. It’ll be interesting to see if anything gets done now that they have a task force on it.

  2. Sure, the right direction… if there is stuff like that, it’s because there is a demand… where does that demand go when there’s nothing left available? In the streets. That’ so not the right direction…

  3. So, Junior Idol,

    Are you saying that demand is the key factor to decide whether a state should or should not tolerate a crime, rather than.. maybe… law and order, or other more important factors????

  4. Japan Junior Idols Industry, they make us be a pedophile. International society must warn japan about that. But actually.. not junior not adult but pornography is destruction.

  5. dodo is right…pedophile porn is wrong, like showing a 14 yr old girl in a mini-skirt, ugh…is that PORN?…never mind, don;t ask too many questions…the GOVERNMENT will decide what’s Child Porn. Anyway, as Dodo says the real problem is PORN of any kind…and the government will STOP child Porn, and then they’ll decide what else is porn, and they’ll STOP that too. I am soooo happy that the Chairman will decide what I should look at and what I shouldn’t. Next up…Politics. Some political ideas are are as dangerous as a 14 yr girl in a mini-skirt!!

  6. One New Jersey man was arrested in Canada for exporting Child pornography across the US/Canadian border. Some were Junior Idols The Japan Child Porn Revision needs to include Junior Idols. Those Japanese parents are a shame and disgrace. Allowing Japanese children to be photographed naked or in other sexual matter is bad parenting. This is why all countries (except Russia) have banned this kind of child porn including the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and the EU. Japan is responsible for this and getting foreign tourists locked up for exporting child pornography (mainly Junior Idols) back to their home country

  7. I cannot understand your blasted western mentality.

    It is not okay to show preteen sexiness…


    It is okay to show the exploits of a serial killer on TV and film?!
    Complete with gore?!

    Do not lecture me about preteen sexiness serving to educate future “pedophiles”.
    Because easily-accessible media on hardcore violence can offer the same education to aspiring serial killers.

    A lying politician is more dangerous than an honest sexual deviant.

    1. But we fear and hate Honest people and make liers and corrupted people presidents. The society is autodestructive. In an ideal world we don’t permit liers to occupy a social role, see without morbid tough child idols and medicate harmless pedophiles. The other side is violators predators child molestation corrupted people and assassin’s unconsent sex etc. Those need jail and DNA edition.

    2. Yeah child pornography he idols and serial killers anything that may negativity effect the minds of p pole especially children should be banned

    3. Yeah child pornography jr idols and serial killers anything that may negativity effect the minds of people especially children should be banned

  8. Today my daughter saw in france24 live news many wounded headless men and woman with a lot of blood spread over tthe floor. Both of us were shocked and the impact freeze us a pair of seconds. Open air tv. 2020

    I see many things wrong to expose children sexualized to adults or to other children but Im not in objection to appreciate beauty in a truly form of art expression of a great highest or superior need to capture the “problem” the difference (and real) of beauty at all ages. Who can decide in a very objective way what is sexualized and what is an intent of art form?

  9. I’ll go ahead and be the brave one here.

    Yes, Junior Idols are primarily marketed to pedophiles.
    Yes, we (and yes, I just said we. Your eyes aren’t playing tricks on you) enjoy them for all the reasons you might think we enjoy them.

    Here’s the real question:
    Why does that bother you? ACTUAL pornography featuring them is horrible. You have my 100% agreement on that. It’s abusive and sickening.
    Modeling photos are different though. They are a chance for kids to form a skillset and a portfolio, it’s an fun hobby that can improve self-esteem and just be all around enjoyable, and it doesn’t harm them in any way.

    You act like we are all monsters looking for some chance to hurt a kid. We’re not. The VAST majority (like, greater than 95%) of us are human beings, just like you, that happen to be attracted by different traits than what attract you. Instead of being attracted by big breasts, we’re attracted to flat chests. Instead of being attracted to sharp, refined features, we’re attracted to simple, rounded features. Instead of an hourglass figure, we like big eyes, and a cute button nose. Instead of a sultry look and a wink, we like a cute smile and a giggle.
    After that, nothing is different. We don’t want to see children hurt, and we don’t want to see them taken advantage of. The ones that do that kind of stuff have an entirely different issue, and would probably force themselves on ANYONE they could get away with.
    We understand that our attraction can’t ever be acted one, and when we aren’t being witched hunted, threatened with death, and having our few safe/healthy outlets taken away, we help others like us to come to that realization and we out, publicly shame, and report those that would actually hurt anyone.

    Now, all of that out of the way, we still need an outlet. We’re human beings and we need a release. We intentionally seek methods that won’t harm anyone, like fictional content, modeling photos, nudist photos, etc. If we wanted content that hurts anyone we could easily get it. It’s not like it’s hard to find, but WE DON’T WANT THAT! We want content that we know hasn’t harmed anyone and that was approved by all involved.

    And before anyone says “you just need therapy”, let me stop you right there. As someone that spent nearly $3000 on 2 years of monthly therapy, I can tell you that it did absolutely nothing, but make me feel more alone and confused at the end. We need to be able to talk to each other without people treating it like a criminal gathering, and we need to be able to open up about it publicly without losing our jobs and having our lives put at risk. And, of course, we NEED to be able to focus on and improve outlets for our attraction that doesn’t hurt anyone, including, fictional content, like drawings, paintings, animations, dolls, simulations, etc, and certainly SFW modeling photos, which not only give a safe outlet, but also fund and provide for that child’s future, not just in terms of career experience, but in terms of money too. A Junior Idol can make a lot of money, and that can all go to their education, so that they can live a much brighter future.

    1. Thank you. I couldn’t have said it better.

      The author of this article makes it sound like the Junior Idol Scene is all about pornography and nudity, yet in reality it’s nothing like that. Cuteness, singing and fun are what draws me to them. There might have been a few instances where fans say or behave inappropriately, but they quickly get banned from events. It is not tolerated and rightly so.

  10. Banning highly pleasurable and particularly addictive products and services never works as it decrease supply, increases prices and fills the coffers of organized crime which results in corruption and more crime. Classic examples of this is the prohibition (of alcohol) period in the USA and the so-called “war on drugs” and the latter’s widely recognized failure dramatically illustrate this fundamental principle.
    Do we really want “junior idol” models and their families to be in any way associated with criminals and the severe stigmatization and criminalization of the junior idol industry? Do we want them to experience all the shame, self loathing, disgust and victimization that inevitably accompanies the banning of this industry? The demand for junior idol material will always exist and surely it is far better for all concerned that it be provided in an open, honest, legal and regulated manner.
    There is no evidence within junior idol imagery of the models experiencing anything but fun pleasure and excitement as shown by much smiling, laughter, giggling and running around etc.
    As the great American sexologist Alfred Kinsey once stated “we are all sexual beings from the day we are born until the day we die” and so it is with children even from a very young age. As for trying to hide or suppress the sexuality of adolsecents that can be a futile and harmful task.
    Where is the scientific evidence that junior idols and their customers are harmed and who lobbied the Japanese government to ban this material? My guess is that they are largely foreign, white, middle-class, feminists, conservatives and sexual repressives imposing their views on another very different culture as a form of “cultural imperialism”.
    The internet clearly proves that human beings are very complex creatures with an enormous variety of tastes, preferences and lifestyles as with their sexualities. “Live and let live” and tolerance should be key principles in this matter.
    Pornography in all its forms is a powerful symbol of personal freedom in general and sexual freedom in particular and it is an opportunity for models and actresses, usually female, to show assertive, active roles and their sexuality. It generally portrays a positive sexuality rather than females as helpless, hopeless and simpering wimps as the “victim feminists” would have us believe.
    Instead of bowing to this sexually repressive, simplistic, stupid, irresponsible, unnecessary and harmful censorship which is based on ignorance, bigotry, hypocrisy and sexual repression we should stand up, use our reason and fight to overturn this legislation banning junior idol material.

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