Buttons for buttocks: Bidet toilet manufacturers agree to standardized symbols

men with symbols
© Japan Sanitary Equipment Industry Association

In what must be the biggest international news story of the week, the Japan Sanitary Equipment Industry Association has announced new standardized iconography for fancy Japanese bidet toilets so that the many tourists coming for the 2020 Olympics know what buttons to push when. Apparently all Japanese toilets will have the new standard symbols as of this year, and the hope is that they will be accepted internationally.

bidet symbols© Japan Sanitary Equipment Industry Association

Apparently the buttons stand for (starting top left) large flush, small flush, toilet lid up/down, toilet seat up/down, stop, rear spray, bidet, and of course hot air. Some think these are self-explanatory; I am not so sure, and find the rear spray and bidet symbols confusing.

washlet controlsLloyd Alter/ Toto Washlet controls/CC BY 2.0

I have a fancy bidet toilet (and you should too) with people in profile for both spray symbols, which makes a lot more sense than the rear bum view for one and a side view for another. But no matter, at least there is now a standard, so that anyone anywhere will know what buttons to push, even in America.

controlsSatis/Promo image

No word on whether they have also agreed on a standard format for the ubiquitous apps, like this one from Lixil that documents your droppings.

Tags: Japan | Toilets

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