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New York times

This site puts noisy children and noisy neighbors on the map

Noisy children skiing in the streets. Spouses are arguing over their homes. People gathered on the sidewalk, talking for hours. Some people may describe these activities as noise pollution. A new website in Japan has put the culprits on the map, sparking controversy over those who disturb the peace. The website, DQN Today, describes itself as a crowdsourcing guide to help house hunters avoid neighborhoods where “stupid parents let their kids play on the roads and parking lots”. It is populated by maps that depict Dorozoku, or “tribe of the road,” a term applied to people who block the road or wreak havoc in public places. Residents who find intolerable noise have found an outlet in the website, which collects anonymous information about neighbors and fixes every complaint on an interactive map, creating a detailed record of disturbing sounds and sights in Japan. Subscribe to the newsletter from The Morning from The New York Times. Noise complaints have increased in Tokyo, with police registering a 30% increase between March and April of last year. This is when the government closed schools and advised residents to work remotely due to the Corona virus, causing some to become fully aware of household sounds that they had not cared about before. Outside, although some play areas were cordoned off during Japan’s state of emergency, most of the parks remained open and crowded. The site’s creator initially responded to questions emailed to me Wednesday about the site but refused to give his full name. He said the map was a less subtle hint to the residents – they know who they are, although their names have never been mentioned – and to government officials, who he hoped would pay attention. The content creator, who describes himself as a freelance web developer in Yokohama, Japan, and goes through his Twitterhotaniya account, later stops responding to emails. The site started in 2016 and initially had a few hundred users. Since then, it has grown so much that it has sparked controversy, especially over what experts say appears to be society’s growing intolerance of children’s sounds at play. While many on social media have praised the site for highlighting the noise problem, some parents find its approach unsettling and fear the growing division between families with children and neighbors who cannot stand them. Among the 6,000 large-scale complaints, which cover topics such as parking violations, excessive insults or stray cats, there are several entries that designate areas that unsupervised children frequent. Saori Hiramoto, 35, an activist who successfully lobbied the Tokyo metropolitan government to allow prams on crowded trains in 2019, said the map showed a breakdown in communication and a split in a once-knit society. She said, “I really feel that it is very difficult to raise children. People say that fathers should be responsible for taking care of the children, but this is very difficult, especially for unmarried parents. We have reached our limits. I think society or society should It monitors and raises children as members of society. ”Akihiko Watanabe, a professor at the Faculty of Education at Shiga University, near Kyoto, said in an interview on Wednesday that the map has the potential to harm children and teens by revealing where they spend their time without supervision. Parents take a defensive stance on complaints about their children, making it difficult for others to deal with them anxiously. “In the past, fathers used to apologize and discipline their children.” “But fathers now deal with people who reprimand.” At least 1,500 have been recorded. New user to use the map between March and April of last year One of the complaints says: The gatherings are “terribly chatty and noisy.” I stared for a long time but they didn’t stop. Children are also left unattended and making strange noises. ”Another says,“ Three or four children congregate and play loudly during the holidays, and the high-pitched sound echoes through the neighborhood. ”Another user wrote,“ I forgot that this was a road ”by a stretch of asphalt echoing On it by pre-teen sliders. The dorozoku site is not the first digital map to spark controversy over its details. Oshimaland records “stigmatized possessions” in Japan and around the world where murders, suicides, and fires have taken place. Recently, new users of the dorozoku map have attempted to record public annoying complaints in Taiwan Portugal, Germany, and Britain, but the posts are limited to Japan for legal reasons.The mapping site does not allow comments that directly target private residences or schools, but it does allow the indication of unattended children playing on nearby roads, indicating that children are supervised at all times. It is the responsibility of parents and schools.Experts see a growing intolerance towards children while playing, as some of the country’s elderly people have become less aware of the sounds of young children. Residents in various regions are campaigning against the building of nursery schools, even as parents have called for more affordable daycare options, and economists are concerned that people in Japan, which has the largest population, are not having enough children. Kobe residents sued a kindergarten in 2016 over a stadium dispute, but the case was dismissed in 2017. Public parks were plastered with signs prohibiting all kinds of activities in response to residents’ troublesome complaints. Nishi-Ikebukuro Park in Toshima, Tokyo, attracted attention due to its ban on 45 different activities, such as skateboarding, jumping rope and soccer. A local official said the ban stemmed from 10 years of complaints. Ko Fuji, the founder and CEO of the Public Affairs Agency of Makaira and a visiting professor at the Center for Base-Making Strategies at Tama University in Tokyo, pointed to incidents in recent years in which disaffected travelers harassed mothers carrying children on public transportation. Fuji, a father of two young children, said he had affixed a poster with the slogan “We love children, it’s okay to cry” to show support for fellow parents. He said, “I think some people are so frustrated with city life that they can become cunning.” Japan has seen no shortage of noise disputes between neighbors. A 38-year-old construction worker was stabbed to death in his parents’ apartment in Tokyo in May by a 60-year-old resident of the building, telling police that he “could not stand the footsteps and the loud voices.” On Wednesday, a couple in Kyoto won a lawsuit against six neighbors who filed a lawsuit over noise disputes that concern their children. When contacted by phone, one of the plaintiffs, Chu Murayama, said he considers the map a useful resource for others. “You can avoid problems with this,” he said, adding that he noticed complaints in his neighborhood. This article originally appeared in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company


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