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Phrases Used in Japanese Social Media

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Social media in Japan is as vibrant and varied as anywhere else in the world, with its own unique set of phrases and slang that users often employ. Whether you’re looking to understand some of the common lingo or want to actively participate, learning these phrases can greatly enhance your online experience. Here are some of the most popular phrases you might encounter on Japanese social media.

なう (nau)
Derived from the English word “now”, this term is used to indicate what someone is doing at the current moment. It is often used as a hashtag or at the end of a sentence.
渋谷なう! (Shibuya nau! – I’m in Shibuya now!)

リア充 (ria juu)
Short for リアル充実 (riaru juujitsu), this term refers to someone who has a fulfilling real-life, outside of the internet. It’s often used to describe people who seem to have an active social life.
彼はリア充だなあ。 (Kare wa ria juu da naa. – He seems to lead a fulfilling life.)

わろた (warota)
This is a casual, slang version of 笑った (waratta), which means “I laughed”. It is similar to LOL in English internet slang.
そのミーム、わろた。(Sono mīmu, warota. – That meme, I laughed.)

乙 (otsu)
Abbreviation of お疲れ様 (otsukaresama), which is a phrase used to thank someone for their hard work. On social media, it’s particularly used to respond to someone’s accomplishments or efforts.
更新乙です! (Kōshin otsu desu! – Thanks for the update!)

課金 (kakin)
Meaning “to spend money on a game or app”, this term is often used in the context of mobile games where users may purchase in-game currency or items.
課金してしまった… (Kakin shite shimatta… – I ended up spending money…)

草 (kusa)
“Grass” is what this word literally means, but on social media, it’s used to indicate laughter or something funny. It comes from the use of 笑 (wara) which looks like grass in repeated use (www).
草生える (Kusa haeru – That’s hilarious/I’m dying of laughter.)

炎上 (enjou)
This term means “flame up” or “blaze”, but in the context of social media, it refers to a situation where a user or a topic becomes the subject of heated debate and controversy.
その発言で炎上するかもしれない。 (Sono hatsugen de enjou suru kamoshirenai. – That comment might ignite a flame war.)

ツイ消し (tsui keshi)
Short for ツイートを消す (tweet o kesu), it means “to delete a tweet”. It is often used when someone wants to retract what they’ve posted or when a controversial post is removed to prevent further spread.
あのツイート、ツイ消ししたのかな? (Ano tweet, tsui keshi shita no kana? – I wonder if that tweet was deleted?)

フォロバ (foroba)
A contraction of フォローする (follow suru) and バック (back), meaning “follow back”. If someone follows you, you may see this term used as a request to follow them in return.
フォロバしてください! (Foroba shite kudasai! – Please follow back!)

まとめブログ (matome burogu)
This refers to a type of blog or website that compiles and summarizes information or posts from various sources, often including comments and discussions from social media.
その話題、まとめブログで見たよ。 (Sono wadai, matome burogu de mita yo. – I saw that topic on a compilation blog.)

Understanding and using these phrases can be a fun and integral part of interacting on Japanese social media. It’s important to remember that language usage can vary greatly depending on the platform and the individual user, so context is key. As always, observing how native speakers use these phrases can provide the best insight into their nuances and appropriateness. Happy posting, or should we say, ポスト乙 (post otsu)!

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