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音の帯〜Phonon Belt

Hirasawa Susumu (Unofficial) Lyrics & Other Sundry Translations

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Twitter in Translation: Has Twitter Outlived its Purpose? Edition
Hirasawa - Red
Today, Mr. Hirasawa brought up the idea of making his Twitter account private, so that only people he allows to will be able to read it. It sounds like he's investigating whether he can make his account private or whether he'd have to make a new account altogether, and what a "locked" account entails.

In response to the general cry of despair and questions about what prompted this desire for privacy, he wrote:

No, no, there's no problem. It's just that I feel like the number 50,000 may not suit me.

I can totally understand that knowing you have 50,000 official followers on Twitter can make you a bit uncomfortable. And he gets spammed with replies and weird comments every time he posts, so locking it all down is not a bad idea, even if it would make the fans sad.

He later wrote:
I want to know that I can 'do it at anytime.' That's what this is. I'm grateful for the tech support you've given me regarding private accounts.

This is what I mean. I'm the kind of man who looks up when everybody else is looking down. Regardless of what I see while looking upwards, if you understand that Hirasawa is that kind of man, you can take position of "Hey, this is interesting, let's watch him!"

But I am not trying to prove anything by looking upwards; I am simply saying "But you haven't looked up here yet!" In other words, I'm constantly trying to supplement your view of the world.

However, people don't look at that context. They take that part entirely out of context and use it as the subject of some unproductive discussion without having any actual interest in a debate about a general negation like "Everyone knows there's nothing above us." To be frank, I get tired of it.

50,000 is not the kind of number where all that will end with someone saying only "Hirasawa's gone crazy again, it's funny, leave him to it."

I welcome direct comments that correct my mistakes, but there are times when my words are the subject of discussion in some unknown place. In those cases, the fundamental context is already missing.

So that's why lately I'm feeling that Hirasawa is lacking suppleness.

So the other day, for an assignment I received, I wrote something in a manuscript that would not have been suited for Twitter. It was hard, but I felt a Hirasawa who was at ease doing this. If I had done it on Twitter, I think all sorts of things would've swarmed all over it. But enough complaining--work now.


I am not sure what he's referring to. Was there some particular incident that brought all this up? Is he simply tired of people making fun of him or taking him out of context on NicoNico or Youtube or Twitter or 2ch or Pixiv or blogs? He's a public persona and does get talked about a lot.

These statements also made me wonder whether I should keep translating Mr. Hirasawa's tweets here. I am going back through years of old tweets and selecting the ones I think are worth translating because they are interesting or funny or insightful or moving. I often group them by topic, since I think that makes reading them more interesting. Or I leave them in chronological order, but leave out off-hand, unrelated comments that would interrupt the flow of the main tweets. (In fact, I did so for the series of tweets above--I left out some tweets where he's correcting his spelling in a previous tweet or responding to general advice about private accounts.)

So I am not only a translator, I am also an editor who selects the tweets I want and cuts out the rest of the material. (I simply CAN'T translate ALL his tweets in chronological order, because I simply do not have time to do that, and not all of his day-to-day comments are necessarily interesting now, years later, to a non-Japanese audience.)

But I try to set the context as best as I can. I always include a link to his account and the text of the original tweet so that people who do read Japanese can compare it to my translation and (1) form their own opinion and (2) correct my errors. But the context is admittedly different, and we do engage in silly discussions sometimes because Mr. Hirasawa IS interesting and funny sometimes. But my motivation in translating these is (partially) that I want to PROVIDE THE CONTEXT for some of the jokes and quotes and thoughts circulating around the internet.

If he does make his account private, I will not publicly translate his tweets anymore.

I think I will try to translate more of his older tweets, but take more care to make sure that the risk of something being taken out of context is minimized. Perhaps friends-locking those translations would be one step I could take.

If you have any thoughts on the matter, I would really appreciate your input.

This entry was originally posted at http://phonon-belt.dreamwidth.org/16735.html.

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Hmm. I'm not really sure what he means. Maybe there are discussions in Japanese forums that he's referring to? I think the internet is a very weird place in general though, for everyone, not just famous people. So I guess finding yourself talked about so much must make you feel uncomfortable at times. Particularly if you're alternative in any way, as not everybody is open to this.

But if you're worried, perhaps you should try to contact him to ask if he's ok with what you're doing? For what it's worth, I think your blog's great! It's really fascinating to read the lyric translations. :)

Haha, I've been debating reaching out to his company or whatever, but I'd rather not draw more attention to the blog. I suspect that they can easily turn a blind eye to me now, but if confronted directly, they would have to say no for legal reasons or something. ^^;

But thank you for reading. I really should post more lyrics translations again!

Not to sound rude, but if Mr. Hirasawa (or anyone else for that matter), doesn't want people to read, and possibly discuss, his thoughts that he publicly posted on twitter then he shouldn't use the service.

Nah, I thought the same thing. ;)

Which makes me wonder if there was a particular incident that prompted this (other than just going from 49,999 followers to 50,000, which really should not prompt a big change of heart). There was at least one time when his blog posts on his website caused such a stir that he deleted them and banned all discussion of those topics on his forums, so maybe he's just very sensitive to having his words misinterpreted? (Not unusual for an artist, I'd say.)

Who knows, though. :/

At the very least, at least you are working hard to provide as much context as possible so Hirasawa's tweets and posts make sense to English-speaking fans. It's easy for things to be taken out of context when one doesn't know the language, too.

By the way, there was a Hirasawa impersonator on Youtube a couple of weeks ago, and a friend of mine reported this person to Chaos Union and the account got shut down. I can see that bothering Hirasawa for sure.

So it's likely it's probably not us he means, although some of his words up there on that topic are a bit disconcerting. If you have to friends lock the journal, you would have no objections from me as a fan of your translations.

Hey, so a Twitter member whose account is set to private...correct me if I am mistaken, but for someone to see the tweets of an account set to private, the person set to private would have to follow the one who wants to read their tweets, right? If that's the case, so much for even the other members of P-MODEL who have followed Hirasawa wanting to read his tweets. But if Hirasawa wants to close public access to his tweets, well, obviously it's in his right. How many of us have closed accounts on the web before because we weren't comfortable there any longer - at least we don't have to deal with 50,000 potentially pissed fans.

Supplementing our view of the world, he says. That's a lovely way to describe what he does, don't you think?

(By the way, don't want to look tacky here, but I'm planning to switch accounts here on LJ for reasons of my own. Not sure when I'll complete that but forewarning for those who read my posts?)

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