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Updated Jul 10, 2012 at 10:23PM EDT by RandomMan.

Added Jul 10, 2012 at 04:23PM EDT by RandomMan.

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Ninjas, or Shinobi, are a mercenary type of warrior originating from feudal Japan who specialized in unorthodox warfare, often seen as masters of Ninjutsu.[1] On the internet, depictions of ninjas range between realistic to overly exaggerated. Ninjas are often identified by wearing a dark hood or mask and having the ability to move in a stealthy or secretive manner with ease, along with other features often associated with ninjas.


Ninjas originated from feudal Japan. During the time, they were known as covert agents or mercenaries who specialized in certain functions such as espionage, sabotage, infiltration, and assassination. Most of the current knowledge about ninjas originates from the Sengoku period in Japan, which was during the 15th to 17th century. During the time, the unrest in certain parts of the country resulted into a rise of activity of mercenaries and spies for hire.

During the 19th century, ninjas became a popular topic used in eastern folklore and legends. As a result it is often difficult to separate historical fact from myth. Common abilities given to ninjas in these myths include invisibility and control over the natural elements. Because of this, their perception in western culture in the 20th century was based more on such legend and folklore than on the historical facts.





Ninjas Cannot Be Seen

Ninjas are commonly associated as being extremely skilled in stealth, often to the point of being invisible. On the internet, this can be found back in image macros and demotivational posters where the image shows an empty rooms or scenery, commonly accompanied with a caption saying that the image in question shows a certain number of ninjas, implying they cannot actually be seen by the naked eye.


Ninja’d[2] is a term used on the internet to refer to the moment when a person submits a post on a chat or forum and afterwards finds out someone else had posted the nearly exact same thing just moments earlier. Because websites commonly not constantly update unless the page gets refreshed by the viewer, specific posts made in the time a person was already watching the webpage will not be shown until after the webpage has been refreshed. On active forums this can often lead to two or more people making a similar post in a short timeframe without knowing.

Ninjas Can’t Catch You If X

“Ninjas Can’t Catch You If X” is a catchphrase in which it’s assumed ninjas can’t catch a person if certain factors are met. This idea originated from a webcomic called The Adventures of Dr. McNinja, in which one of the characters makes the assumption that ninjas can’t catch a person if that person is on fire.

Pirates vs. Ninjas

Pirates vs. Ninjas refers to a popular topic of discussion found online in which it is discussed whether pirates or ninjas are superior to the other side and who would win in a hypothetical battle versus the other. The common recurrence of the topic has resulted in several single topic blogs, videos, and images.

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External References

[1]Wikipedia – Ninjutsu

[2]Urban Dictionary – Ninja’d

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