'Matching Service' for Japanese Otaku Seeking Friends
posted on by Egan Loo
Not-So-Daily Link of the Day: On April 27, the Japanese company C.S.T. Entertainment will officially launch Otakuma (Otaku Match), a "social matching service" for otaku seeking not dates, but friends of similar interests. The service is specifically aimed at hardcore fans of manga, anime, novels/books, cosplay, games, idols/character voices, live-action special-effects (tokusatsu)/hero shows, military, toys, vehicles, computers, and martial arts.
Potential users describe their interests by filling in categories and subcategories; in the example provided by the website, a hypothetical user can write that he or she likes manga in young magazines (targeted at young males), particularly Hanamaru Yōchien and the character Yamamoto-sensei. Similarly, a user can express an interest in school anime like The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya and the character Mikuru Asahina, or cosplaying manga characters from Kuroshitsuji like Ciel Phantomhive. Then the user can see listings of personal pages of other users, rated by percentage of compatible matches ("93% Match"). In addition to online interaction, the website suggests that it can be used for people who have trouble meeting others offline. The profile matching is free, although C.S.T. promises to add other features.