Japan subculture guru Patrick Macias published an article in the Thursday, September 27th issue of the Japan Times newspaper dubbed Akihabara’s Awful Truths in which he discusses the increased commodification of the otaku experience in the district. He cites a trend toward commercial gentrification following the Densha Otoko boom, spurred on by increased traffic flow from the newly opened Tsukuba Express line, the opening of the Yodobashi Akiba megastore, and NTT’s increased corporate presence all as factors working to drive otaku from their dark corners and replace them with yuppies, tourists, and maids. We’ve covered various aspects of this phenomenon over the past few years, but Macias’s article is a great read that summarizes many of them. Highly recommended. (no more)