‘Ninja’ is the New ‘Nerd’

Oh hey, look, it’s the most mortifying news ever: apparently the latest techie job title of choice (a la “evangelist” or “guru”) is “ninja.”

“Ninja.” This is so, so dorky that it makes my heart hurt.

According to the Wall Street Journal:

“They’re not coming from Japan,” says Ms. Rogati, who first spotted the ascent of ninjas in 2003, but says they really took off last year. “They’re just as likely to be software engineers or people with specialized skills working in the cubicle right next to you.”

While most are computer programmers, the term has been used to describe expertise in everything from customer service to furniture movers.

And how does the ninja community feel about this development?

Jinichi Kawakami, honorary master of the Iga-ryu Ninja Museum in the city of Iga, is known as one of Japan’s last living ninjas. He says that calling efficient workers ninjas is not completely inaccurate. But he’s disappointed that the term has lost touch with its roots in the military arts. “As a Japanese person, I feel a bit of discomfort about it,” says Mr. Kawakami, 60.

‘Ninja’ is the New ‘Nerd’