NHK NEWS Easy Discussion?

Hi all!

Would anybody be interested in regularly reading articles from the NHK easy news website (NEWS WEB EASY) and discussing them (either in English or Japanese, or some combination thereof?)


Maybe. At least, I think I would like it if there were an ongoing discussion thread that I could pop into from time to time.

How were you thinking of having it organized?


I wouldnโ€™t participate, but it sounds like a good idea


That sounds pretty cool. Thereโ€™s a couple ways you could run the forum topic, either pick an article of the day and have everyone discuss that, or just have it an open thing people link to whatever theyโ€™ve read so that others can pick which ones to talk about. The first one might be easier for some people to engage with since they donโ€™t have to make decisions and new activity will happen consistently, with the drawbacks being that not everyone may be interested in the chosen article of the day or otherwise would have rather discussed another.


Not really an answer to your question but you might find this subreddit useful


I like the idea! Iโ€™ve been needing to force myself to participate in reading practice so this would be a great opportunity.

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Hi veewren,

I have appeared out of the mists of time to revive your thread.

Iโ€™ve made a habit of reading at least two articles from NHKNE every day (usually on the trainโ€ฆ ้›ป่ปŠใง่ชž, hey), and - as Iโ€™m translating them anyway - I would be happy to post here and discuss the grammar and word usage with other people.

I think people might be surprised at how easy the articles are to read, particularly with the colour-coding and furigana turned on. I am in the early stages of writing something that uses mecab to isolate words from text input to generate vocabulary lists - this thread might make a good testing range for that as well.



English language version (considerably more detailed.)

Vocabulary list (in descending order of frequency):

่ปŠ โ€” ๅคฉ็š‡้™›ไธ‹ โ€” ไบบ โ€” ๅณไฝ โ€” ใŠ็ฅใ„ โ€” ๅˆๅพŒ โ€” ้€šใ‚Š โ€” ่ฆ‹ใ‚‹ โ€” ๆฅใ‚‹ โ€” ๆŒฏใ‚‹ โ€” ๆ—ฅ โ€” ๆฑไบฌ โ€” ๆ™‚ โ€” ็š‡ๅŽ โ€” ไน—ใ›ใ‚‹ โ€” ็š‡ๅฑ… โ€” ๅ‡บ็™บ โ€” ๅผŸ โ€” ็ง‹็ฏ ๅฎฎ โ€” ่ญฆๅฏŸ โ€” ๅฐ โ€” ไธ€็ท’ โ€” ้€ฒใ‚€ โ€” ไธ‡ โ€” ้€šใ‚‹ โ€” ่จ€ใ† โ€” ๆ—ฅๆœฌ โ€” ๆ—— โ€” ไบŒ โ€” ็ฌ‘้ก” โ€” ๆ‰‹ โ€” ๆ™‚ๅŠ โ€” ่ตคๅ‚ โ€” ๅพกๆ‰€ โ€” ็€ใ โ€” ็ต‚ใ‚ใ‚‹ โ€” ้™ๅฒก โ€” ็œŒ โ€” ๅฅณๆ€ง โ€” ๅคฉๆฐ— โ€” ่ฉฑใ™.

My attempted reading of the article:

Parade to celebrate the accession of his Majesty the Emperor

On [November] 10th, a parade was held in Tokyo to celebrate the accession of his Highness the Emperor.

At around three oโ€™clock P.M., the car bearing the Emperor and Empress departed the Imperial Palace. It drove slowly down the street, accompanied by the car of the Emperorโ€™s younger brother, Crown Prince Akishino, and 46 vehicles, such as police motorcycles.

Along the roadside were 119,000 people who had come to see the parade. As the [Emperorโ€™s] car passed by, they said โ€œCongratulations!โ€, waved Japanese flags, and so forth. The honored pair smiled and waved to everybody.

After 3:30 P.M., the [Emperorโ€™s] car arrived at the Imperial Residence in Akasaka, finishing the parade.

A woman who had come from Shizuoka Prefecture said, โ€œI was glad to see [the parade]. And the weather was nice, too!โ€

Note: Does ้€ฒใ‚€ imply that the Emperorโ€™s car was preceded by the Crown Prince and the police motorcade? It seems to have both meanings.

The interesting grammar point for me in this was the ๏ฝžใŸใ‚Šโ€ฆ๏ฝžใŸใ‚Šใ™ใ‚‹ item. This is apparently JLPT4 and yet I canโ€™t remember seeing it anywhere until quite recently. (-_- ) The use of ใ™ใŽ as a suffix on time is also something I canโ€™t remember seeing before.

Iโ€™m hoping to modify the thing I wrote to generate the vocabulary list to include furigana and wanikani levels where available. It will need a bit of tinkering because of the way the parser (mecab) splits the words up.



Itโ€™s too easy


This needs to become a thing asap!

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๏ผก๏ผฉใงๆ˜”ใฎๅญ—ใ‚’ๆญฃใ—ใ่ชญใ‚€ใ‚ทใ‚นใƒ†ใƒ ใ‚’ไฝœใ‚‹ใ‚ณใƒณใƒ†ใ‚นใƒˆ

I couldnโ€™t find the English version easily, so here is the twitter of someone working in this area.

Vocabulary list (in descending order of frequency):

ๅญ—ใ˜ โ€” ่ชญใ‚€ใ‚ˆใ‚€ โ€” ๆญฃใ—ใใŸใ ใ—ใ โ€” ไฝœใ‚‹ใคใใ‚‹ โ€” ๆ˜”ใ‚€ใ‹ใ— โ€” ๆ—ฅๆœฌใซใฃใฝใ‚“ โ€” ๆ›ธใใ‹ใ โ€” ไฝฟใ†ใคใ‹ใ† โ€” ๅˆฉ็”จใ‚Šใ‚ˆใ† โ€” ไฝ•ใชใซ โ€” ไบบใฒใจ โ€” ๅœŸไบ•ใฉใ„ โ€” ่ณ‡ๆ–™ใ—ใ‚Šใ‚‡ใ† โ€” ๅฝขใ‹ใŸใก โ€” ๅดฉใ™ใใšใ™ โ€” ้›ฃใ—ใ„ใ‚€ใšใ‹ใ—ใ„ โ€” ไบบๆ–‡ใ˜ใ‚“ใถใ‚“ โ€” ๅญฆใŒใ โ€” ๅ…ฑๅŒใใ‚‡ใ†ใฉใ† โ€” ไปŠใ„ใพ โ€” ็›ดใ™ใชใŠใ™ โ€” ่กŒใ†ใŠใ“ใชใ† โ€” ๅค–ๅ›ฝใŒใ„ใ“ใ โ€” ไผš็คพใ‹ใ„ใ—ใ‚ƒ โ€” ๅ‡บใ‚‹ใงใ‚‹ โ€” ๅƒใ›ใ‚“ โ€” ๆžšใพใ„ โ€” ๅ†™็œŸใ—ใ‚ƒใ—ใ‚“ โ€” ็ซถไบ‰ใใ‚‡ใ†ใใ† โ€” ๅ„ชๅ‹ใ‚†ใ†ใ—ใ‚‡ใ† โ€” ไธญๅ›ฝใกใ‚…ใ†ใ”ใ โ€” ๆญฃใ—ใ„ใŸใ ใ—ใ„ โ€” ๆ—ฅๆœฌไบบใซใฃใฝใ‚“ใ˜ใ‚“ โ€” ็ฆๅฒกใตใใŠใ‹ โ€” ็œŒใ‘ใ‚“ โ€” ่ณขๆฒปใ‘ใ‚“ใ˜ โ€” ็•ชใฐใ‚“ โ€” ไปฅไธŠใ„ใ˜ใ‚‡ใ† โ€” ๅ„„ใŠใ โ€” ๅ†Šใ•ใค โ€” ๅคงๅˆ‡ใŸใ„ใ›ใค โ€” ๆ‰‹ไผใ†ใฆใคใ ใ† โ€” ๆ€ใ†ใŠใ‚‚ใ† โ€” ่ฉฑใ™ใฏใชใ™.

My attempted reading of the article:

A contest to make AI powered systems for correctly reading old [fashioned] characters

In ancient Japan, characters called โ€œKuzushijiโ€ were often used. With kuzushiji, the shapes are written in cursive, so they are difficult characters to read correctly.[1]

At the Center for Open Data in the Humanities, AI has been used to build a system to convert kuzushiji into modern characters. Now, using that system, they have taken part in a contest for systems that make kuzushiji easier to read. About 300 teams from companies and so on entered, from Japan and overseas. The competition was for the most accurate readings of thousands of photographs featuring kuzushiji.

The winners were a team from China, who achieved a 95% correct reading. Amongst the Japanese entrants, a system written by one person, Fukuoka Prefectureโ€™s Kenji Doi, was third. Mr Doiโ€™s system was able to read correctly more than 94% [of the time].

A representative of the Center said, โ€œJapan has hundreds of millions of volumes of historical primary sources written in kuzushiji. I think AI will help us in reading these important records.โ€

A subject dear to all of our hearts: reading cursive. Do all NHK News Easy articles end with a quote?

[1] Should ๅฝขใ‚’ๅดฉใ—ใฆๆ›ธใใฎ be instead best understood as โ€œthe shapes are made wobbly as they are writtenโ€, or can the set phrase (ใใšใ—ใŒใ) โ€œcursive style of writingโ€ be, itself, inflected as I have interpreted it here (losing its rendaku in the process?)



English: Japanese animation event opens in Saudi Arabia.

Vocabulary list (in descending order of frequency):

ๆ—ฅๆœฌใซใปใ‚“ โ€” ๅˆใฏใ˜ใ‚ใฆ โ€” ไผšใ‹ใ„ๅ ดใ˜ใ‚‡ใ† โ€” ้›†ใ‚ใคใ‚ใ‚‹ โ€” ใ‚คใ‚นใƒฉใƒ ๆ•™ใใ‚‡ใ† โ€” ๅ›ฝใใซ โ€” ไบบใ˜ใ‚“ โ€” ้–‹ใฒใ‚‰ใ โ€” ๆฅฝใŸใฎใ—ใ‚€ โ€” ๅฅณใ˜ใ‚‡ๆ€งใ›ใ„ โ€” ็€ใใ‚‹ โ€” ๆœใตใ โ€” ่ฉฑใฏใชใ™ โ€” ่ฆ‹ใฟใ‚‹ โ€” ้•ทใชใŒใ„ โ€” ้–“ใ‚ใ„ใ  โ€” ๆ˜ ใˆใ„็”ปใŒ โ€” ็ฆใใ‚“ๆญขใ— โ€” ๆœ€ใ•ใ„่ฟ‘ใใ‚“ โ€” ็Ÿณใ›ใๆฒนใ‚† โ€” ไปฅใ„ๅค–ใŒใ„ โ€” ็”ฃใ•ใ‚“ๆฅญใŽใ‚‡ใ† โ€” ็››ใ•ใ‹ใ‚“ โ€” ๅค–ใŒใ„ๅ›ฝใ“ใ โ€” ๅ‡บใงใ‚‹ โ€” ้ฆ–ใ—ใ‚…้ƒฝใจ โ€” ๆ—ฅใฒ โ€” ้€ฒใ—ใ‚“ๆ’ƒใ’ใ โ€” ๅทจใใ‚‡ไบบใ˜ใ‚“ โ€” ไธญใกใ‚…ใ†ๆฑใจใ† โ€” ไบบใซใ‚“ๆฐ—ใ โ€” ้ป’ใใ‚ใ„ โ€” ๅคšใŠใŠใ„ โ€” ๅ•†ใ—ใ‚‡ใ†ๅ“ใฒใ‚“ โ€” ่ฒทใ‹ใ† โ€” ้ซ˜ใ“ใ†ๆ กใ“ใ†็”Ÿใ›ใ„ โ€” ๅค–ใใจ โ€” ๆ™‚ใ˜้–“ใ‹ใ‚“ โ€” ๅพ…ใพใค โ€” ๆฉŸใไผšใ‹ใ„ โ€” ๅคงใ ใ„ๅญฆใŒใ็”Ÿใ›ใ„.

My attempted reading of the article:

Because of its status as an Islamic country, things like movies and concerts have been prohibited in Saudi Arabia for a long time. Recently, however, there have been a lot of events and concerts featuring foreigners, held for the purpose of promoting industries besides the oil sector.

Starting on the 14th of [November], the first event for collectors of Japanese anime was held in the capital, Riyadh. At the convention hall you can enjoy things like Attack on Titan, Naruto, and other anime videos and games that are also popular in the Middle East. Many people wearing the kind of black womenโ€™s clothes seen in Islamic countries were present in the convention hall, but there were also people dressed as anime characters.

โ€œI waited outside the convention hall for two hours. This was my first time doing this kind of thing, so I was really happy,โ€ said a high school student who had bought some character merchandise. โ€œHere I was able to finally enjoy anime I had only ever seen on the internet before,โ€ said a university student.

I would love a second opinion or sentence diagram regarding ใ€Œใ‚คใ‚นใƒฉใƒ ๆ•™ใฎๅ›ฝใฎๅฅณๆ€งใŒ็€ใ‚‹้ป’ใ„ๆœใ€. Is the whole thing one giant noun, โ€œ(adj: worn by feminine persons of Islamic countries) (adj: black) (clothing)โ€?

For anyone following the thread, apologies for the missing update yesterday - I am still trying to fix the vocabulary-nator script to automatically repair the ้•ท้Ÿณ็ฌฆ that mecab introduces into the generated furigana, because it renders all readings in katakana!

Looks like it, yes. The main noun is ใ€Œๆœใ€, modified by two descriptive clauses: The single adjective ใ€Œ้ป’ใ„ใ€, and the longer relative clause ending in ใ€Œ็€ใ‚‹ใ€. Everything else is just a chain of nouns joined with ใฎ that all work as the ใŒ-marked subject of ใ€Œ็€ใ‚‹ใ€.

As usual, the ใฎ chain kind of works backwards. Women are the subject. What women?โ€”The women from some country/countries. What countries?โ€”The ones that are Islamic.

It was a bit weird when I started seeing sentences where an adjective immediately follows a verb like that, but it generally just means that both the verb and the adjective are modifying the same noun that comes afterwards.

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I would be interested! Would the discussions be based here or on a like a discord somewhere? Would these be done everyday when then release new stories? Sounds fun and interesting to discuss different translations/interpretations of stories. From what I remember the /r/nhkeasy subreddit was not very active.

Also, if you have an iPhone you should checkout the โ€œEasy Japaneseโ€ app. It used to be limited to NHK Published news articles but within the last year it as expanded to most major news sources and media outlets. Itโ€™ll sort out articles based on their difficulty and also has a built in dictionary and all that jazz; itโ€™s pretty cool (Iโ€™m not getting paid; I just really like the app).

Hey all! Sorry for making and then sort of abandoning this thread. It seems like @curiousjp has a better grip on how we would do this than I do. Any proposals for how stories could be selected or discussed are welcome.

I am reading this article today: NEWS WEB EASY|ๅทฅไบ‹ใ‚’ใ—ใฆใ„ใ‚‹ใƒ“ใƒซใ‹ใ‚‰็‰ฉใŒ่ฝใกใฆไบบใŒไบกใใชใ‚‹ไบ‹ๆ•…ใŒๅคšใ„


I havenโ€™t forgotten either! Just life getting busy at the moment.


Yes, there definitely needs to be a dedicated NHK Easy-news thread! Thank you for suggesting it @veewren, and thank you for showing us how it could be done @curiousjp!

I thought about this because Iโ€™ve just watched the latest NHK-Easy-News breakdown video by the wonderful Foxumon. My apologies for reviving an old thread, but it is such a good idea.


I, too, want this thread to prosper!

Lots of corona virus articles with similiar vocab, so it should be relatively easy to jump on in :smiley:.

Oh my god, yes! Theyยดre so repetitive i swear lol.


I would love to have an article of the day kind of thing! Often I just read the headlines and not read the full article because Iโ€™m not super excited about the topic. An article of the day would probably encourage me to actually read an article a day.