Please can we stop removing Kanji meanings?

If Wanikani decides to change the meaning of a Kanji, that’s fine but for the love of god can you just add it to the list of acceptable answers instead of stripping the original meaning? We all understand that kanji have meanings that extend beyond a single English word. So a Kanji like 込 can mean crowded, into, mixture etc. So just add those to the acceptable answers. It’s simple. Recently someone had the brilliant idea to remove crowded as an acceptable answer and give you a ridiculous message about it being changed. I don’t care. At some point I stop seeing this Kanji and thinking of it as an English word, I see it as the Kanji it is. I know it has a broad range of meaning. I understand you may think ‘into’ is an easier way to sum it up, but why on earth is crowded now not accepted as an answer?

You may be thinking ‘dude just add it as a synonym and get over it’ but WK could literally just give me a little pop up after giving my CORRECT ANSWER of crowded saying ‘we have expanded the meaning to include new words, check it out’ instead of ‘WRONG, we changed the meaning recently, check it out’. Because on my phone it’s a huge pain in the backside to check it out. Instead I took a wrong answer just so I could add crowded back as a synonym, which I’m sure you’re all doing too. Once you’ve learned the Kanji and begun to learn it’s words, having a single word sum up the Kanji is no longer useful. If you understand it and know the kinds of words it’s in, it’s all good! No need to remove any meanings…

In short. Add a new message after accepting it as a correct answer not removing a meaning and forcing us to jump through hoops just to find out what the correct answer now is. Especially when the kanji literally held the meaning you’ve now removed as a correct answer. I’ll tell you what, between this idiocy and the inclusion of kana words that I can’t say ‘my god I live in Japan, work for a Japanese company and am past level 2, I don’t need to learn これ’ to I’m getting real sick of WK.


Same applies to 懐 – I think, at some point, it used to also have meaning “pocket”, which seems to be now removed and I’m not sure why.

懐炉 – is not a “nostalgic heater” – it’s pocket heater!
懐中時計 – is not a “watch in the middle of nostalgia” – it’s pocket watch!


I hear you! I don’t particularly care that nostalgia is the word they chose to represent this kanji as that is a common association. Because after some time, you come to understand the kanji outside of the English language. But what I do care about is stripping a correct answer like pocket and making me have to go to the effort of interrupting my review to add a synonym when it literally serves no purpose. I can’t understand why they’re dedicating their manpower to shuffling meanings instead of adding new Kanji. It’s crazy to think that they’re coming up with new mnemonics and adding these stupid messages “we changed this for no reason, please stop studying and check out the fact we now only consider half of the kanji’s meanings as correct answers so you’re forced to add your own!” instead of just adding Nostalgia as an alternative answer.

and yes, pocket is now a synonym. Thanks for nothing WK


Is it annoying? Yes
Will anything happen if we complain about it? Probably not. So best to do is finish this and move on as fast or best we can. I am level 53 i love wanikani and appreciate it alot especially the community. But surely can’t wait to be done with it :sweat_smile:


Sadly you’re probably right. My main concern is that they’ll keep adding stupid stuff that slow down that finishing. Who knows how many useless kana words they’ll dump on me in the next 25 levels. In your case, you’re close to that finish line so I wish you the best in being done with it before it becomes any worse :slight_smile:


Every time I’ve reached out to WK for synonym content suggestions, they’ve implemented them or responded with their reasoning why they aren’t. I see no reason to think that it would be hopeless in this scenario.


I have had the same experience. Every time I have emailed a question/suggestion/comment I have gotten a pretty quick response either thanking me for suggesting something useful or explaining why the choices made were made.


Thought I was going insane when it popped up in my reviews today and gave me that message so glad it’s not only me. As a suggestion in the update page instead of just showing what you change maybe give a reason as to why the change was made or if you don’t want to bloat the change list, just make a thread on the forum to explain things and just link it at the bottom of the change list because surely there has to be a reason to change things other than to mess with us, at least I hope so.


will you start another srs tool to keep increasing your kanji/vocab?

I intend to use kitsun so far after I hit lvl 60 here.


@Stay_coolXD Bless your heart, I feel the same way. After April I’m moving on the bigger and better things. (Unless my book group kicks off and then I’ll have to stick around until a new leader steps up lol)

@evandcs I use Kanken Smart Taisaku to expand my kanji knowledge further, I’m also using a lot of N1 reading materials to help keep my exposure to the rarer kanji up. I personally don’t plan to keep SRS going when I get to level 60 (I’ve been to 51 before so sorry if it feels like I’m talking out my butt but I’m not).

I find I learn a kanjis meaning better after reading it a lot. like 様子、ようす、I don’t think SRS could ever make me realize how necessary this word is. So for me, just lots of reading and listening. For the life of me even with my extensive reading I still get tripped up my Karakai Jyozu Takagisan. So listening processing speed is a bigger worry for me than more kanji SRS.

Edit: If I was to do any SRS I would reset wanikani and go through it slowly again one more time just because the community keeps me active on it. SRS otherwise bore me to death.


I plan to restarting kitsun as well or bunpro. Depends on whichever are worse. My grammar or vocabulary(probably both. Last i studied ,both were around N4/N3). I will think about it when i finish crossing this bridge.(probably next year)

I probably won’t start another kanji srs, most kanji i encounter that which i don’t know are obscure or not common.

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実 (み) and 係 (かかり) are other examples where the meaning taught here on WK have completely different meanings for these readings and no way extrapolate from context of ‘truth’ and ‘connection’ to ‘charge’ and ‘seed’. This happens on vocab often too, even frequent mentioned that the example sentence don’t use the meaning taught. I ended up just repeating alot of content here but with full dictionary builds just so I’m minimally faintly aware of these alternate meanings. I think their intent was to help ‘focus’ the learner and not overwhelm them but I side with that I’d rather had known the existence of the extra meaning rather than have a surprise in the wild.


Annoying right? But I very much doubt there will be an explanation as to why you would strip a kanji of an essential meaning and do so in a way that forces a wrong answer onto someone who has learned it as per taught

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It’s really annoying but as you go through intially you’ve often gotta double check everything, especially when the kanji combination forms a word you already know. Often there’s a naunce that’s being completely missed.

I don’t mind doing that before the fact. I just hate having a wrong answer sprung on me half way through for a meaning the kanji had up until yesterday and very much does hold in Japanese.

Also while I’m complaining, it’s ten times as annoying with radicals as the system works on the basis of using them to reinforce memory. But changing them absolutely messes up so many mnemonics. I’m gonna start adding “dumb” as a synonym on every new radical because I hate seeing them for reasons such as WK changing the word for god knows what reason.

Sorry for the extra rant on your reply lol


Same thing happened to me with Radicals that I was about to burn from so many levels below, it’s very annoying and I doubt they can’t just change it to get the question right AND still show the message.

I’m a lifetime subscriber and love wanikani but come on.

I think the rationale is that they considered the previous meaning to be wrong or misleading, so they decided to change it and mark it wrong, which I think is a reasonable thing to do in theory.

That being said in the particular case of 込 it’s a bit odd because “crowded” is in fact a widely accepted definition of the kanji, in fact it’s the first meaning for it on kanjidic.

I guess they decided that “into” was more useful as a meaning because that’s the more common meaning of words containing 込, which is also reasonable IMO, but I agree that marking “crowded” as wrong should be fixed because it absolutely isn’t wrong.


I just autopass radicals completely, I don’t find them all that useful (especially as you get to higher levels). Too much nonsense in there, and I’d rather focus on memorizing kanji and vocab than more or less arbitrary kanji components with more or less arbitrary names.

Also wanikani radicals often don’t line up with the very useful semantic and phonetic components of kanji, meaning that in many cases I’m better off completely ignoring the “made up” WK breakdown of a kanji and use my knowledge of other kanji instead.


To me, some radicals are missing Kanji’s, and others are practically the same as bigger Kanji’s (possibly several bigger Kanji’s can be considered synonyms).

Well, not that I particularly care about Kanji’s meaning, and I might add vocabulary meanings as a synonym (e.g. 噌). In the end, big picture of several vocabularies I have in mind while looking at a reference.

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In my experience, they usually move previous meanings to the allow list, so as long as you don’t make a typo, you can still enter them.

As mentioned previously, follow content update threads, and/or ask staff why they made a change.

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I realized this with some vocab as well

“stationed in Japan”, “frequent ocurrence” are some that appeared for me these days and I was “???”

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