| May 24, 2014

Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is defined as "the practice of soliciting financial contributions from a large number of people, especially from the online community."

| Mar 15, 2014

Zero-hour contract

A zero-hour contract is an employment contract used in the U.K. containing provisions that create an "on-call" arrangement between an employer and employee.

| Mar 8, 2014

Aruki-sumaho

Aruki-sumaho or, literally, "smartphone walking" refers to a pedestrian who uses a mobile phone while walking.

| Feb 22, 2014

Satori no Sedai

Satori no Sedai," or "Generation Resignation," is a term used to describe those born around the time the economy started to slide two decades ago.

| Feb 8, 2014

Frost quake

A frost quake (shimo jishin, or 霜地震) is produced when soil or groundwater that has become saturated with water after a period of heavy rainfall freezes and expands after a sharp drop in air temperature. The earth subsequently cracks, creating a loud popping sound ...

| Jan 11, 2014

What the heck is that word I keep hearing?

A polar vortex (kyokūzu/極渦) is a persistent, large-scale cyclone located near either of a planet’s geographical poles. The extreme arctic blasts that wreaked havoc across the United States last week were caused by a counterclockwise-rotating pool of cold, dense air. The frigid air, piled ...

| Dec 28, 2013

Sharent: シェアレント

Sharent A sharent (シェアレント) is a parent who regularly uses social media to provide a lot of detailed information about their children. Anyone who has ever used Facebook before knows exactly who we’re talking about. These parents compulsively post photos, and blog and tweet ...

| Dec 21, 2013

Brick: ブリック

A brick, or ブリック, is a mobile device that no longer works after a software update or installation. Appearing more frequently in day-to-day conversations in the United States and Europe as an increasing number of consumers switch to mobile devices, the verb brick is ...

| Nov 23, 2013

'Selfie'

A “selfie” is defined as “a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website.” Oxford Dictionaries, publisher of the Oxford English Dictionary, last week named selfie as its 2013 word ...

| Nov 9, 2013

Ima desho!: Do it now!

今でしょ! The phrase “Ima desho!,” or “Now!,” first became popular online last year, but it has taken on a life of its own after Toshin High School literature teacher Osamu Hayashi spat it out at the end of a Toyota commercial in January (www.youtube.com/watch?v=0mKEeqzqJtc) ...

| Oct 19, 2013

Omotenashi: The spirit of selfless hospitality

おもてなし Domestic TV programs, radio shows and newspapers have jumped on the omotenashi bandwagon ever since Tokyo Olympic bid ambassador Christel Takigawa uttered the word in her speech to the International Olympic Committee early last month. Difficult to define, it can roughly be summed ...