The Design Aesthetics of Japlish

ppoetry4.jpgEveryone by now is aware of Chinglish or Japlish – if not by Internet meme, then by traumatic childhood (I was seven years old when my mother made me wear a sweatshirt that said, in giant capital letters, “MY NANA LOVES ME.”) Tokyo-based design magazine PingMag, however, has a nice article about Japlish (being given the more politically-correct term “Japanese Product Poetry,” in this case) along with its impact with product branding and design aesthetics.

Asking any Japanese person about this product poetry, this quickly reveals that it is just for creating a mood (since nobody really reads it…). The alphabet functions as a kind of decoration to make the products look more western…

Long story short, wacky English phrases in Asia aren’t grammatically correct, not because they are trying to be correct, but because English writing looks cool and you’re not supposed to be reading it anyway, you dirty American. You know, kind of like a particular t-shirt I own.

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About Ernie

I'm the creator of 8 Asians and one of the editors. While I'm a regular blogger to the site as well, think of my role as Barbara Walters on "The View," except without the weird white hair. During the day, I'm a Developer for a major Internet company and live in the San Francisco Bay Area. I've also been writing in my blog,, for seven years.
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