Oddball

Low-Income Japanese People Live In Internet Cafe Cubicles (Video)

| by Michael Allen

Men and women, with low incomes or no incomes, are seeking shelter in tiny cubicles located in Internet cafes in Japan.

These folks, who are dubbed "Internet cafe refugees," sleep, eat and play video games in the 24-hour cafes, which come equipped with public bathrooms.

Popular Video

A judge looked this inmate straight in the eyes and said something that left the entire courtroom in tears:

Popular Video

A judge looked this inmate straight in the eyes and said something that left the entire courtroom in tears:

The high cost of housing in Japan is out of reach for these residents, notes the Daily Mail per the People's Daily Online.

This way of living began in the 1990s with young college graduates, but has gone more mainstream. Some of these high-tech homeless people are featured in a documentary entitled "Net Cafe Refugees" (video below).

According to BoingBoing.net, "The film was based on [photojournalist] Shiho Fukada's work, and created by film production and interactive design studio MediaStorm, on behalf of The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting."

The film features a security guard, 26, who couldn't afford an apartment, so he decided to move into the cafe, but admits it's noisy and he doesn't get much sleep. He hoped to save up money, but finds himself living day to day.

Another man, who used to work at a credit card company managing computer systems, recalls working and sleeping at his job where he couldn't tell if it was day or night. He quit the job because of stress and now lives in a cafe cubicle.

Sources: People's Daily Online, Daily Mail, BoingBoing.Net
Image Credit: Net Cafe Refugees Screenshot