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Something I don't get about people who refuse to use the Japanese names

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by , 17th September 2010 at 07:22 PM (2043 Views)
So a common argument I hear for why people only use the English names for Pokemon is because they don't want to have to bother learning two sets of names. They already know all the names for the version they play, they argue, so why should they have to then learn 500+ Japanese names on top of that? It seems like a lot of unnecessary extra work.

Here's the thing, though. Right now, we're being flooded with the names of all the pokemon / humans / cities debuting in Black and White. Hundreds and hundreds of Japanese names. And the fans are learning them.

Yet, when the English names for all these pokemon / humans / cities get released, fans are going to learn all of those, too. They've been using the Japanese names for about half a year or so, but they're willing to throw those all away and relearn all their names.

So basically, people are going to end up learning two sets of names; Japanese, and then, six months from now, English. These are the same people, remember, who use the "I don't want to have to learn two sets of names" argument to explain why they don't call Piplup by its Japanese name.

Seems pretty hypocritical to me.

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  1. SharKing's Avatar
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    I think it's this. Those people ditch the JP names because the English names are easier for them. They think Japanese is too hard for them. As flawed as their mentality is, that's their mentality.
  2. Keldora Dragon's Avatar
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    I guess people choose how to say the names in whatever fashion they're comfortable with. With English speakers perhaps certain names are simpler and easier to say in their native language. Compare a name like Bulbasaur and then its Japanese name Fushigidane. Also when English names come out the media uses them so often that it seems to get programmed in our minds to use English names. Especially when the games come out and name changes get confusing.
  3. Luna Tiger's Avatar
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    You might be underestimating people in saying they actually learn; I don't think they do as much as you think. I spent a long while running back and forth between pages that would match the name to the face every time a new set came out, and it wasn't for lack of trying.

    It doesn't help some people can't comprehend the name relation between the Japanese name and what it looks like. Names like Shandera and Zeburaika we can get, because Shandera sounds like Chandelier and Zeburaika has Zebra. Aianto has "ant" in it.

    I'm never going to have my brain connect the dots between Chobomaki and helmet-bug. And I will be running for a page that lists them all with pictures, because I'm only going to remember the ones that we learned about gradually, and maybe a few more, if they make sense.
  4. Ivysaur's Avatar
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    We don't all memorize the Japanese names. I only take an effort to learn the English names, because those are the names I'll be seeing for the rest of the generation, those names are of my native tongue, and because I actually see them spelled out as they are, not in Japanese letters of which I don't understand and can't read. That's why I usually use nicknames, such as Smugleaf and Wotter.

    And honestly? People who use Japanese names after the English names are released annoy me. I can't help it. Of course I won't ask or tell them to stop, but when the English names are that much easier to learn and memorize to anyone who isn't fluent in Japanese or doesn't take an effort to remember Japanese names (which are a lot hard to memorize), it makes no sense to me why people would choose to use those over the English names. It's only six months, and after those six months, will only lead to confusion.
  5. Dogasu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keldora Dragon
    Also when English names come out the media uses them so often that it seems to get programmed in our minds to use English names.
    The exact same thing happens with the Japanese names, though. Everything you see on Bulbapedia for the next few months, whether it's about the TV series or the games or the TCG or whatever else, will be using the Japanese names. People will be familiar with them by the time the English versions come out.
  6. $aturn¥oshi's Avatar
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    I come up with nicknames (or use pre-existing ones) for the Pokémon I talk about before their English names are released.

    Not because I don't necessarily want to learn the Japanese names, it's just that I don't know the language enough to understand the puns behind most names so I could put the name with the face.
  7. Dogasu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Life Alert
    We don't all memorize the Japanese names.
    Which is why so many people are typing out Mijumaru this and Hiyappu that? You're saying every single person is having to look up those names, every single time?

    doesn't take an effort to remember Japanese names
    You're illustrating the point I was making in this blog entry beautifully. There's this idea that going from English to Japanese is too difficult and requires all this extra effort, yet going from Japanese to English is seen as the easiest thing ever. That's incredibly hypocritical.

    it makes no sense to me why people would choose to use those over the English names.
    Because those are their names. Mijumaru is Mijumaru, not whatever the hell NoA decides to change it to.
  8. Ivysaur's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogasu
    Which is why so many people are typing out Mijumaru this and Hiyappu that? You're saying every single person is having to look up those names, every single time?
    I said "we don't all" memorize the name. I never said neither no one nor everyone memorized them.

    You're illustrating the point I was making in this blog entry beautifully. There's this idea that going from English to Japanese is too difficult and requires all this extra effort, yet going from Japanese to English is seen as the easiest thing ever. That's incredibly hypocritical.
    Neither is incredibly difficult, but it's obviously easier to memorize the names of your native language than names of a language you don't know anything about. I don't see what's hypocritical about that.

    Because those are their names. Mijumaru is Mijumaru, not whatever the hell NoA decides to change it to.
    But when you're on an English speaking forum where nearly every user plays the English games, and only a small minority even play the Japanese games - and even then, you don't see "Tsutaja" - you see Japanese letters of which the majority of us do not know. A six month gap is not huge enough where English speakers will needlessly spend their time memorizing all the Japanese names when they can't even read it anyway.
  9. Ryuutakeshi's Avatar
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    I actually never bothered to learn them because I always spelled them wrong and could never remember them. I just say, "The zebra" or "the city with the musical hall."
  10. Luna Tiger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogasu
    The exact same thing happens with the Japanese names, though. Everything you see on Bulbapedia for the next few months, whether it's about the TV series or the games or the TCG or whatever else, will be using the Japanese names. People will be familiar with them by the time the English versions come out.
    No, they won't be. Not 100% familiar, at least. You're not addressing that people /don't/ learn the names, which is what we're saying, and that they are probably in the majority. But during the time that there are no English names, it's not like there's an alternate except for the fannames, meaning they can't complain about what names are being used, because there's only one set.

    A lot of forum goers, no matter which board they be on, will be c/p'ing a lot of the names right up until the English names come out.

    Everyone knows the majority of the gradually-revealed pogeys, because they were few and far between compared to the name dump we just got. Because we don't understand them.
  11. Nelly's Avatar
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    I don't to use Japanese names (unless I have to) because I'm not Japanese. I don't play the Japanese games. I didn't watch the Japanese show. I play the English language games. I watched the English language show.

    The Japanese names are what I will use (but not memorize) for 6 months. I suck at the pronunciation of the names, and I hate having to use them. The English names are what I will use (and memorize) for years, if not the rest of my life. I'm pretty damn good at this whole English language thing, as it is what I use.

    I don't get why people take which names are used so seriously.
    Updated 17th September 2010 at 09:32 PM by Nelly
  12. Sublime's Avatar
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    I never take time to learn the Japanese names except a few that I hear a lot. Right now I know about 5 and that's it. Each time someone mentions a Japanese name I have to look it up in Google :<
  13. Dr. GM's Avatar
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    I honestly wait for the English names, and just memorize the Pokemon by appearance in the meantime.
  14. Dogasu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Life Alert
    Neither is incredibly difficult, but it's obviously easier to memorize the names of your native language than names of a language you don't know anything about. I don't see what's hypocritical about that.
    It's not the "learning English names" part that's hypocritical. It's the "I don't want to have to learn two sets of names. Now, excuse me while I go and study this second set of names" part that's ridiculous.

    And I'm not talking about learning 100% of the names, by the way. Some of you think I am, for some reason.

    Quote Originally Posted by Roronoa Zorua
    A lot of forum goers, no matter which board they be on, will be c/p'ing a lot of the names right up until the English names come out.
    I don't doubt that there are a lot of people who do that. But you can't honestly sit there and tell me that a majority of fans are copying/pasting the names from some master list somewhere. It's way faster to just learn a name like "Cheren" and type it out than it is to copy/paste it every time you want to talk about your bespectacled rival.
  15. System Error's Avatar
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    I just give them nicknames that describe them. Smugleaf/Swagleaf/Smuglord, Wotter, Manboarpig, Lantern Guy, etc. Not that the actual Japanese names are any use of me - even if I import or pirate (since I don't understand the symbols).

    Though my problem isn't with not using the Japanese names. Rather, it's with those who refuse to use anything but the Japanese names.
  16. Dogasu's Avatar
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    At least in my case, I'm not familiar with the English names. I still have to look up a lot of pokemon's names on Bulbapedia to figure out what anybody's talking about.
  17. System Error's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogasu
    At least in my case, I'm not familiar with the English names. I still have to look up a lot of pokemon's names on Bulbapedia to figure out what anybody's talking about.
    Fair enough, but doesn't that make you a hypocrite as well? You're in the exact same boat as the people who can't/won't learn the Japanese names, only for the English names. And although it is apparently an inconvenience for you, here you are complaining about those who are vocal about said inconvenience when it comes to the Japanese names.
  18. The Outrage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SharKing319
    I think it's this. Those people ditch the JP names because the English names are easier for them. They think Japanese is too hard for them. As flawed as their mentality is, that's their mentality.
    Or because those are the names used in our games so they just gradually replaced themselves, but no, it has to be about mental capacity doesn't it?

    I had a transition phase between JP and EN where everything was interchangeable.

    There are new fans who never knew the Japanese names. Whenever people use Japanese names for DP Pokemon, I understand them quite easily.

    It's not so much "studying" a new set of names as it is just naturally acquiring them by playing the games. Can you fault newer fans, or those that stay out of the forums during the JP release for not knowing what Pokemon you are referring to? I understand the use of the Japanese names in the episode threads, I don't understand why some people get so anal about using it to the point that it seems condescending in normal conversation when they clearly knew what the English names were. I've seen some people type the Japanese names and then the English names in brackets so we all know what they're talking about. That's just useless baggage, its fine if you don't know and use the JP names. When you do know, and act like that, you're just saying "I'm better than you"
    Updated 18th September 2010 at 12:14 AM by The Outrage
  19. Dogasu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by System Error
    Fair enough, but doesn't that make you a hypocrite as well? You're in the exact same boat as the people who can't/won't learn the Japanese names, only for the English names. And although it is apparently an inconvenience for you, here you are complaining about those who are vocal about said inconvenience when it comes to the Japanese names.
    I think I worded things a little badly. I'm not familiar with the English names, but I do know them, if that makes any sense. If I'm reading a person's post and come across an English name, I usually know what they're talking about. But when it comes time for me to make a post of my own, I sometimes have to look up a name or two to remind myself what those names are.

    But anyway, I think my situation is a little different because I'm not treating the English names as disposable placeholders until I can learn the "real" (Japanese) names. I'm also not going around and acting like it's too hard to learn two sets of names when that's exactly what I've been doing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Outrage
    I don't understand why some people get so anal about using it to the point that it seems condescending in normal conversation when they clearly knew what the English names were. I've seen some people type the Japanese names and then the English names in brackets so we all know what they're talking about. That's just useless baggage, its fine if you don't know and use the JP names. When you do know, and act like that, you're just saying "I'm better than you"
    Are you being serious? People are using the Japanese names because those are the names they're familiar with. They're not doing so to talk down to you or trying to make themselves sound smarter or whatever other paranoid nonsense you're imagining.
  20. Ranger Jack Walker's Avatar
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    After playing the english language games, watching the english language show, the english names are the ones I'll end up being more familiar with the english names. I still have difficulty remembering the Japanese names but after continuously playing the English language games, seeing the name and sprite in front, those names will be more easily remembered.
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