Earlier today at around 2pm Japan time an 8.8 magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Japan, causing a tsunami which hit along the northeast shore of Japan.

There’s plenty of news reports on this already so I’ll just place a few good links here.

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Global-News/2011/0311/Japan-earthquake-Eyewitness-accounts-capture-Japan-s-tsunami-after-earthquake
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_Sendai_earthquake_and_tsunami

The damage seems to be worst around the areas struck by tsunamis, with not much damage suffered by Tokyo and few casualties there. Public transportation has been stopped for the time being, with bus/train services expected to resume in a day or two. North Japan has been hit the hardest by the tsunamis, with massive damage and a death toll that keeps rising.

Apart from all this there’s been some effect on Touhou-related events. Reitaisai 8 was originally scheduled to be held on 13/14 March, but has since been postponed indefinitely. More news update will arrive via Reitaisai’s twitter, which will be linked below shortly. All broadcasts on the public TV stations (TBS, BHK) have been replaced with public service announcements and news reports, so any shows you were hoping to catch has likely been delayed. Most anime broadcasts may or may not be affected – this should probably be checked with your fansub group and will vary from show to show.

If you’re worried about anyone in Japan I’d recommend checking their twitters, that’s the best source of information about this at the moment.

Other news links:
http://boards.4chan.org/jp/res/7076010 (4chan link, will probably be NSFW, but has good information on the overall status)
http://twitter.com/#!/reitaisai_sp (Has news in Japanese about the status of Reitaisai)
http://www.ustwrap.info/multi/foxtokimekitonight::tbstv::yokosonews (Live stream of english translation of TBS News, will probably not be online for much longer)

The Tokyo Tower has also suffered some minor damage, with the antenna at the top being bent sideways.