stuff anime fanboys like #4: nico nico douga

Only consumes 1/9th the bandwidth of Japan. That is hardly enough.

(Newest Tissue Hime: Triangular! Nico Nico Douga / YouTube.)

Stuff Anime Fanboys Like: #4 Nico Nico Douga

Nico Nico Douga (nico^2) is the Japanese answer to YouTube and a godsend for anime fanboys. Like YouTube, nico^2 a web 2.0 user video site where people can upload clips of whatever nature. And whatever is the operative word. nico^2 features videos about cooking to musical performances to magazine reviews. But for anime fanboys, nico^2 is a treasure trove of fanboy-generated, chaotic video goodness.


However, beating YouTube to the punch, nico^2 adds three intriguing layers to the user uploaded video experience. I’ll use this harmless Hidamari Haruhi video to demonstrate the power that nico^2 holds over anime fanboys.

The first and most visible is that nico^2 allows users to comment in “real time” over a video. As a video is played, user comments are streamed across, over, under, and sideways through the video. While for some very popular videos it can be distracting, most all hilarious or timely fanboy-generated comments. nico^2 does have a system that pushes down older comments, so people usually keep posting comments to keep theirs on top. For some popular videos, tens of thousands of comments is fairly common. Another aspect of the video commenting system is that a few creative souls create, well, video from the comments in the form of ASCII art. The current streaming comment list is directly right of the video player. Above the video player is a list of tags. More popular tags are promoted up and eventually become “official” tags (red). YouTube only recently allowed a similar feature (“video annotation”) and it is not quite the same as nico^2’s.


The second layer is that nico^2 allows high quality video uploads (h.264 with AAC audio) such as this Hidamari Haruhi video from premium subscribers. YouTube has followed suit but still has a 10 minute limit. nico^2 allows much longer time limits, but nico^2 videos cannot be embedded like YouTube ones. Hence, a lot of nico^2 content makes it onto YouTube.

The third is that nico^2 is the home to many mad geniuses who feed the hungry anime fanboy horde with their creations. Nothing is too weird or abnormal for these people as they mix, remix, and celebrate anime culture. There’s parodies, there’s MADs (somewhat like the English AMV), there’s gar, and there’s brokenness. Most of the time, there’ll all intertwined. Of course, there’s also YouTube staples like carmelldansen (a future topic for this running item) and slutty camwhores.

Trivia: Nico Nico is the Japanese onomatopoeia or text sound effect for smile. Not particularly a huge teethful smile but a smile nonetheless.

nico^2 is available worldwide, but it requires registration to view the videos. English translation of the forms and instructions can be found here. Another useful too is a Greasemonkey script that adds a download button. However, videos cannot be downloaded with their comments intact.

With all the resources (both material, man, and love) that nico^2 consumes, one must wonder if there is an addictive quantity to nico^2 like tobacco, crack, and World of Warcraft. Now, excuse me, I have some further research on this matter to attend to.

Now what was that URL… smile1548142

(If you don’t want to sign up for nico^2, you can find most of these videos on Derailed by Darry’s YouTube playlist.)

16 Responses to “stuff anime fanboys like #4: nico nico douga”

  1. I’ve never really used nico^2 because I can’t read Japanese. So I just use youtube. But since you’ve linked to those instructions I might try it.

  2. NicoNico Douga is my secret for lightning-fast lyrics on the day of TV broadcast. Very good times.

  3. That TTGL AMV under "gar" is epic to the MAX.

  4. Decided to sign up after all. But that tutorial is a little bit out of date, I had to use google translate to understand some of it. Google translator is actually really awesome now, people should use it more often.

  5. Just for the record the Caramelldansen or "ウッーウッーウマウマ" (Ooh, ooh, umauma) as Its know to the Japanese, has been around on Nico^2 long before youtube. It was there ever since the days of Popotan when the meme first started by taking the dancing animation from Popotan’s theme song and looping it to Swiss bubblepop, AKA the Carameldansen song.

  6. No love for the Craving Explorer?
    Only thing missing is support for Wine on Nico^2

  7. First of all, Woot for you adding Gravatar to the site. Anyway….

    I am going to have to surf your DbD YouTube Playlists from now on…. Those Higurashi / Nakanai Kimi to Nageki no Sekai ones were GREAT!

    Also loved the Kyonko Caramelldansen.

  8. Yeah, that really wasn’t what I was expecting from the term "Slutty Camwhores." I guess the fact I clicked on it is my own fault. You win this round.

  9. Jason, you bastardized bastard covered in bastard sauce, you rick-rolled me…you sneaky enabler. Oh well. You enable me to break myself on a daily basis, so it’s all good.

  10. Wasn’t this site made by the guy who made 2chan? I was reading an article about this in Wired a few days ago…

  11. I’m surprised by how many people fell for that after the Darry pic last time.

    I can’t stop this feeling, deep inside of me,
    Girl, you just don’t realize what you do to me.
    When you hold me, in your arms so tight,
    You let me know everything’s alright, ohhhahhh…

    I’m hooked on a feeeeeling……..

  12. I can definitely see Kyon as the Hidamari Principle.

  13. That rickroll was the best I’ve ever fallen for, if only for the english *chan comments.

  14. No, the best part of that Rickroll, was the Japanese comments demonstrating how utterly confused and helpless they were against our foreign invasion.

  15. HEY! You forgot to mention that the word “douga” 動画 【どうが】
    (in the title Nico Nico Douga” means “moving pictures.”

    In other words, moving pictures (that make you) smile. And they do. ^_^

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