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Where is the Orient?
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Different parts of the world use the word "Oriental" differently.

Since this site is read all around the world, let me define Oriental to avoid confusion.

The Orient is the eastern part of Asia.

The Orient includes countries and regions like Japan, China, Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Asia is a much larger continent which includes places like India, Pakistan, Cambodia, Tibet, Nepal and most of Russia.

Since much Oriental photo gear now comes from several Oriental countries, it's far more precise to say Oriental rather than trying to delineate Japanese or Chinese.

For instance, Nikon, a mostly Japanese company, used to make it's 50mm lenses in Japan, and now makes them in China. It's not properly Asian, which could also imply most of Russia, Tibet or India, and it's not purely Chinese or Japanese either. Oriental is the most accurate description, even if it is more difficult to say than Asian.

Since I need to write this website to make sense all over the world, and since what I write today needs to remain correct for as long as possible even if manufacturers shift production to various countries, I'll use the word Oriental to be the most correct for the longest time. I can't possibly go back and re-edit everything every time Nikon, Canon, Casio or whoever moves production from Japan to Taiwan, then China, then to Singapore, back to Japan, and then back to China again. It's not right to define these as purely Chinese or Japanese products each time.

 

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Mr. & Mrs. Ken Rockwell, Ryan and Katie.

 

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February 2009