Matrixsynth and Music thing have continued their coverage of Japan’s hated new PSE law, set to go in effect April 1, which would ban sales and purchase of used equipment that fails strict electrical certification — read, all that vintage game and music gear you love so much. Trying to follow this story is more than a little tricky, between changing information from Japanese bureaucrats and translation issues. Thankfully, Jun and Aaron have been trying to help us out over in Music thing’s comments, including this lovely haiku from Aaron:

Electronics spring,
New law restricts used good sales,
Kirn’s question answered?

In short, the reason none of us knows what’s going on is no one in Japan, the lawmakers included, seem to know what’s going on. First, Japanese lawmakers passed a law which must have seemed sensible to them, tightening restrictions on purchasing and selling electrical devices based on certification — thinking nothing of how this law would affect Japan’s sizable number of used electronics resellers. Protests from customers and sellers alike pressured the government to create an exemption for certified vintage gear. Great, we’re done! Nope: apparently that new certification (certifying that the gear doesn’t need the other certification) doesn’t cover the very gear it was supposed to protect, because it wasn’t certified via the older certification. And as for the free testing equipment and testing procedures . . . oh, I don’t know.

In the meantime, let’s just enjoy the photos of the mass protest in Tokyo (courtesy Asobitsuchiya) that featured people marching with vintage recorders and synths (really), and even playing Nintendo Famicom (that’s NES to the rest of us) in the streets. Now that would have made protest marches I’ve been in so much more fun. (But, yipes, you won’t even be able to buy old Famicoms?)

Anyone in Japan want to set us straight on what’s going on?