Why do japanese people take so many photos when they are on holiday?

I've been on several tours with japanese people and I find it truly baffling the amount of photos they take of really mundane things: like taking a photo of their food in a restaurant, taking a photo outside a public loo door and similarly trivial things like that etc...Can anyone shed some light why it seems to be a very " japanesy" thing to spend all their time taking endless photos of mundane things instead of soaking in the experience?Do they have a really short memories and feel the need to photograph everything in case they forget something truly not worth remembering? Or is this some cultural thing with some kind of meaning that only the Japanese are privy to?

Update:

I would welcome Japanese people answering this question, or someone who knows about Japanese culture. And in answer to someone who answered implying that I am picking on the Japanese:no I am not picking on Japanese people, as I am very found of them and their culture: I am just curious why they do something that most people commonly don't.

13 Answers

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  • 9 years ago
    Favourite answer

    Because not many japanese people are on TV or in magazines usually, so maybe they take a lot of pictures themselves to make up for it?

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  • Linda
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    You know, I've never really thought about the child issue... I mean, I've lived in Japan for a while, but I never had to worry about children. I would suggest you have a flick through 'Lonely Planet Japan', it's packed with that kind of information. I'm sure that Tokyo has child related stuff, I think I remember things like a whole building devoted to Charlie Brown, that could be fun, of course there's Tokyo Disneyland, if that wouldn't feel too much like selling out to you... As for Kyoto, it's hard to remember... possibly less kid's stuff there at a guess, but then I wasn't on the look out for that... you'd want to make sure it was open when you went- plus, I'd advise using the bus there, I walked for miles and hardly saw anything. Trains can be packed, it depends on the train, but Tokyo subway trains at rush hour are vicious. Consider using them at off peak times. Depends on the line too, I think. Cross country trains- like the Shinkansen- aren't so bad because you'll each have your own seats- or you could fly, depends which is the most competitive. On the subject of restaurants, I do seem to recall that many will serve a children's menu, but it may be hard to get your kids to 'eat native'. I think the only way to tell would be to try when you get there... at the very least though, you can fall back on 'Maku Donarudo', or one of its Japanese equivalents ;) Sorry I can't be more helpful... do try the Lonely Planet guide, they're really good, and will help you to make your choice. Also, think about asking the consulate if you could take part in a home stay for a couple of days- it's a great experience.

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  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    I outright asked my Japanese student why he took photos of absolutely everything, including every meal I gave him. He told me, life is Japan is very structured and routine, so when they are out of their normal element and feeling happy, they will take a photo to forever capture that moment. It allows them to go back to that one moment to feel the same feeling of enjoyment when they are back in their structured stressful routined lives. For us, a meal is a meal, to the Japanese, a meal is family, it is togetherness, it is oneness, it is a moment of happy sharing time together... if the food is good, then that moment is all the more sweeter. The same goes for what we may consider to be mundane objects like door handles or wall signs. It shows that we are not that far different to them, everything we do, is seen through their life experience and felt deeply... if they see something so beyond their comprehension, they will actually hesitate before photographing it, this is because they need their world to make sense. They do not like unanswered questions, or areas of their world left in the dark so to speak... its the Japanese way

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  • Amy
    Lv 4
    9 years ago

    Japan is very different to any other country and they want to takes photos of everything and anything to show family and friends at home.

    Edit When my daughter stayed with a Japanese family they sent me several thousand photos of my daughter in various situations, many of them were very interesting as that particular part of Japan is very traditional, life in some ways is like it was several hundreds of years ago. For example, they still have deliveryman bringing bean curd to the house and this was yet another reason for about 20 photos. Not many foreigners visit that part of Japan and the Japanese host father was well travelled and wanted to record everything on camera for me. In return I did the same for their daughter when she visited Australia.

    Source(s): My daughter was in Japan and have hosted several Japanese students. They are also the most respectful people
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  • Everyone does when they go on holiday. There are some people who don't like to take pics, and some who do. Japanese are no different because we see many tourists taking pictures of Trees and signs and everything, its not just us.

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  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    I wish I'd taken more photos. With a photo, it's like you can go back to that exact moment. I mean, I can remember stuff but it's kind of vague but with a photo, well, it's just easier to put myself back in the moment. Then again, I'm not Japanese.

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  • walker
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    1

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  • 9 years ago

    I guess its because its such a change in culture, with the food, if they eat sushi or whatever, then have fish and chips, they want to preserve the moment by taking a picture.

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