Pikachu Is Getting A New Name And People Are Not Happy

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New Releases Pikachu Pikachu Is Getting A New Name And People Are Not HappyThe Pokémon Company International

Pikachu, regarded as a major character and mascot of the Pokémon franchise, has become an icon of Japanese pop culture – and the character is about to be re-named.

Yes, re-named. Our favourite little yellow Pokémon will no longer be known as Pikachu.

The new, mandarin translation of the Japanese name, unveiled in Hong Kong (don’t worry, there are no plans so far to rename it anywhere else), will be known as, phonetically, Pei Ka Yau, the Independent reports.

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If you say it quickly, it’s Pikayao.

Nintendo and The Pokémon Company have caused a minor international disruption with the decision, which stemmed from deciding to reduce the number of languages it translates Pokémon games into – and people have taken to the streets to protest Pikachu’s new name.

【捍衛比卡超! 十萬伏特大遊行】阿昇譚仔向「皮卡丘」「寶可夢」說不

任天堂最近將「寵物小精靈」系列更名為「精靈寶可夢」,比卡超更被硬改成「皮卡丘」。

毒撚媒體、熱血公民及熱血時報今日發起遊行,由遮打花園遊行到日本駐港總領事館,希望日本政府向任天堂施壓,保留港台兩地各自的「寵物小精靈」譯名,推出真正「在地化」的中文版遊戲。

毒撚媒體副編輯及熱血時報主持譚仔於領事館門外,撕爛寫有「皮卡丘」「寶可夢」的紙張,向噁心譯名說不。

#比卡超 #皮你老母 #寶你老母 #任天堂 #熱血時報 #熱血公民 #毒撚媒體

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Posted by 毒撚媒體LonelyMedia on Sunday, May 29, 2016

A member of anti-communist political group Civic Passion, Wong Yeung-tat, told Hong Kong FP:

Of course, many think that this is only a gaming company’s decision to change a name on one of its products. But being in Hong Kong now, being part of this generation of Hongkongers, we are facing a lot of cultural whitewashing.

But more than 6,000 people signed a petition in March asking Nintendo to reverse its decision. And on Monday, dozens of people protested at the Japanese consulate, the BBC reports.

The small – but vocal – group made their voices heard.

A spokesman from their Facebook group, Petition to Keep Regional Chinese Translations of Pokemon, said the protest is mainly about Pikachu’s identity: “Our main point is that the translation ignores Hong Kong’s culture. There’s no respect for it.”

While it may seem like a trivial thing to protest, the dispute also taps into fears that Cantonese – along with local tradition and culture – is being wiped out and replaced by Madarin, according to the BBC.

It will be sad to see such an iconic name be phased out. Let’s hope Hong Kong hears its protesters.


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