Is there a trend in Japanese similar to Pig Latin or Martian Chinese?



There are of course multiple individual slang expressions where you use Latin alphabet and numbers such as ww, W, ggrks, wktk, kwsk, etc. However, is there any specific system or argot made just for excluding foreigners or outsiders?


Posted 2018-03-06T09:31:07.867

Reputation: 173



An interesting slang communication system that's been around since 2009 is Pseudo-Chinese ([偽中国語]{にせちゅうごくご}), which is basically Japanese sentences stripped of all kana (although critical kana content words may be replaced with archaic kanji spellings).

The kanji is in Japanese grammatical order but the text superficially appears like Chinese. For example, to say「あなたは明日どこに行きますか?」, you would write「貴方明日何処行?」.

Such sentences range from illegible to highly comprehensible for both Chinese and Japanese readers, and can be seen as a modern slang take on hitsudan. Rather than "excluding outsiders", however, for a while it had generated a unique community with many enthusiastic Chinese readers also participating.

Community efforts have spawned an OK dictionary and a not-really-functioning translator from Japanese to pseudo-Chinese, a subreddit that contains some NSFW content, among others.


Posted 2018-03-06T09:31:07.867

Reputation: 7 698

1Looks like this is basically a false "trend" made up by Chinese media. 偽中国語 is listed in English WP (written by someone who speaks good Chinese but little Japanese) and Chinese WP, but not in Japanese WP nor in any large online net-slang dictionaries (ニコニコ大百科, ピクシブ百科事典, 同人用語の基礎知識). From what I could google, most articles about 偽中国語 written in Japanese say "Chinese media says it's pupular in Japan". Personally I was not aware of this word, either. That said, although very localized, this scheme seems to be known among players of a certain game title. – naruto – 2018-03-07T04:11:19.083

@naruto it was likely something minor started in an obscure Japanese forum that was blown out of proportion by sensationalist Chinese media, and has slowly died down. I'm not convinced it is a fake Chinese trend because (1) Googling 偽中国語 still turns up disproportionately more Japanese results than Chinese, even after assuming that no Mainland users use Google, and (2) #偽中国語 on twitter still sees a fair amount of use, so even if the origins were fake it certainly isn't a fake trend anymore. PS, I'm not convinced that most obscure Japanese trends will be recorded on net-slang dictionaries. – dROOOze – 2018-03-07T05:18:44.120

2For (1), yes, but most of those sites written in Japanese say "偽中国語 is somehow hot in China". For (2), quite a few of them are from Chinese/Taiwanese people or Azur Lane players. --- Anyway, this scheme itself has been present for many years; a middle school students may well try this as a joke when they first saw 漢文. What I didn't know was the recent trend under the name of 偽中国語. – naruto – 2018-03-07T05:57:15.893

2@naruto it did pop up occasionally as a hot discussion topic in Chinese media, but usage was never hot itself, as in Chinese people could not use 偽中国語 "properly" (don't know Japanese grammar, can't type in Shinjitai, etc etc.) and there appears to be no resource (like the Japanese one in the answer) to help Chinese people learn 偽中国語. The resources I'm seeing say that Azur Lane contributed greater usage of NSFW Chinese vocab by Japanese users of 偽中国語, but otherwise very similar trends under different names like #映画を漢字10字だけで説明する have already been around. – dROOOze – 2018-03-07T06:13:38.607

1Ah, I mean many #偽中国語 tweets are from people who both speak CN/JP; perhaps they saw the word 偽中国語 in Chinese media and wanted to try it themselves. #漢字n文字 has been around for many years (perhaps even before 2009). So the scheme itself existed but it was not recognized under the name of 偽中国語 by most Japanese people. – naruto – 2018-03-07T06:55:18.173


The closest "system" I can think of is ギャル文字 (Wikipedia), where こんにちは can be mechanically converted to something like ⊇ωレニちレよ. You can find online converters on the net. This is to be written/read rather than spoken, of course. This scheme caught on around 2003 mainly among high school girls, hence its name.

Some argot/slang words were coined using a common pattern:


Posted 2018-03-06T09:31:07.867

Reputation: 199 900