Japanese tourist injured in Tunisian terrorist attack also attacked by Japanese media in hospital

On March 18, three terrorists attacked and took hostage patrons at the Bardo National Museum in Tunisia, killing 21 people and injuring about 50 others. Among those injured was Noriko Yuki, a Japanese tourist visiting Tunisia with her mother.

Ms. Yuki sustained a gunshot wound in the attack and was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment. There, shortly after her surgery, she was immediately bombarded by Japanese media looking to interview her, with some members of the press apparently going so far as to tell the Japanese ambassador watching over her that he did “not have the authority to stop us from interviewing her.”

Read More

Author Naoki Hyakuta’s tweets of politics, perverts, and pleasuring himself spark controversy

Naoki Hyakuta is the writer of hit books such as Monsuta (Monster) and Eien No Zero (Forever Zero) both of which were adapted into films, the latter of which grossed 8.76 billion yen (US$72.5M) at the box office. In 2013 he was appointed to Japan’s public broadcaster NHK’s management committee.

However, after a slightly tumultuous engagement with the high-profile company, Hyakuta stepped down in February this year. Since then he appears to be enjoying his freedom to speak more freely again on Twitter, and as a result he has already irked an impressive number of people in only a few weeks.

Read More

Don’t want to pay your NHK TV licence fee? Beat Takeshi doesn’t think you should have to

In Japan, it’s mandatory to pay for a TV licence if you own a television set or device that can receive a broadcast signal. The money goes to NHK, Japan’s national broadcasting service. It’s much the same deal as in the UK, where your television licence funds the BBC.

But what if you don’t even watch any BBC or NHK channels? Should you still have to pay? Actor, director and outspoken comedian Beat Takeshi doesn’t think so – in fact, he’s calling for the option to “opt-out” of accessing Japan’s NHK’s programming for people who don’t want to pay the licence fee.

Read More

NHK offices are too boring for broadcast after earthquake, “borrows” from tweets

This week’s large earthquake that struck Nagano, Japan was unfortunately quite damaging. The magnitude 6.7 quake brought down over 140 houses in the area, injuring at least 40 people. When an event like this occurs, everyone switches on their TVs to see how bad things were and where it struck. In Japan, people will often turn to NHK, their nationally funded broadcasting service. Normally a trusted news source, NHK decided to expose the conditions of an otaku’s room where his unique collection was scattered across the floor.

How did they get such an in-depth look at the damage done to a local resident? Was there a connection with someone within the TV station? Did they rush to his home to capture the footage first hand? Nope, they simply pulled the photos “From Twitter” without asking for permission. Can NHK actually do that?

Read More

NHK’s US election banner has netizens wondering if it’s the new Street Fighter

Last week’s US midterm elections drew the attention of the whole world, including Japan. NHK covered the whole spectacle in detail, but the usually serious broadcaster went with a bizarrely cartoonish, over-dramatic banner that showed America’s most senior politicians looking like characters in a beat-‘em-up game a la Street Fighter.

Read More

Tokyo court rules that hotels must pay NHK fees according to the number of rooms with TVs

Last year, we brought you news of a court ruling in Yokohama which stipulated that anyone who owns a device capable of receiving a TV signal, regardless of whether they’ve entered into a contract with NHK (Japan’s public broadcasting station) or not, is legally obligated to pay the NHK licensing fee. An important point to note is that the fees are only paid once per household, and not according to the number of TV sets or devices capable of receiving a signal in the house.

However, a recent court decision seems to be taking the issue of NHK licensing fees in a whole new direction. On October 9, Tokyo District Court ruled in a first-of-its-kind lawsuit that the management company behind three Tokyo hotels must first enter into a contract with the public broadcaster. Furthermore, the hotels, all three of which had refused to enter into contracts despite repeated requests from NHK, must also pay their overdue licensing fees in proportion to the number of hotel rooms with TVs.

Just wait til you read how much money that all comes out to be…

Read More

Tokyo University and NHK on the verge of touch-o-vision: Television you can truly feel a part of

On 23 May, NHK announced that it has been working with Tokyo University to create a way to not only transmit images over long distances but to also send the sense of touch. Using this, viewers would also become able to actually feel whatever appeared on screen with their own hands.

This system makes use of Tokyo University’s newly developed device which can measure the dimensions and hardness of an object in three dimensions simultaneously. On the other end, NHK has been hard at work on a Touch/Force Display which would allow viewers to get tactile feedback from the images presented on screen.

Read More

NHK has been reporting the wrong weather in Kōchi Prefecture for… four years?!

It was announced on April 13 that the Kōchi NHK station’s weekday evening news has been showing the wrong icons for weather conditions in the corner of the screen for four years. Where the following day’s weather forecast for the eastern region of the prefecture should have appeared, the broadcaster had consistently been displaying the forecast for the western region.

Read More

Japan’s public broadcaster goes thug-style, tags the house of man who refuses to pay fees

We’ve talked before about the oddities of how Japan’s public broadcaster, NHK, goes about collecting its fees from ordinary citizens. Rather than sending you an official bill in the mail, collectors will come to your door and ask you for a stack of cash to cover the 13,600 yen (US$133) Japanese residents are technically supposed to pay.

However, many people refuse to pony up the money, since there’s no official penalty for nonpayment, and many feel that NHK’s programming is sub-par and rarely watch it. However, should you make one particular NHK collector walk away empty-handed, he just might mark your house for all to see, as he apparently did to one person we talked to.

Read More

NHK TV worker woken by earthquake, gives viewers a show by accident

As you already know, the third anniversary of the 3/11 Tohoku disaster was remembered this week through a variety of activities, including a fundraiser by Yahoo! Japan which saw the company donating roughly $250,000 to charity. The anniversary was also marked by a powerful earthquake off the coast of Kyushu at around 2 am on March 12, injuring about 14 people and wrecking havoc on innocent anime figures.

It also brought grins to all of the NHK viewers and Twitter users who happened to catch the public broadcaster’s footage of a confused-looking man running around an office in his underwear!

Read More

TV staffer makes hilarious walk-on appearance during live news segment

There’s nothing quite like a good live TV slip-up, be it a weatherman sneakily playing an online video game in the background or a pair of monkeys at the zoo getting down to a little R-rated action despite the presenter’s best attempts to hide it. And this one, which took place on Japan’s national public broadcasting network, is an absolute a doozie.

Read More

NHK gets weather reports backwards, no one notices for months

We always suspected that the weatherman didn’t know what he was talking about, but this is just crazy.

It has recently come to light that the NHK Nagoya broadcasting office has been accidentally switching the weather reports for two prefectures. And you’ll never believe how long it took someone to notice.

Read More

Cuddle up with a giant squid plush toy and other inky goods from NHK

In a joint effort between NHK and the National Museum of Nature and Science in Tokyo, an international team of scientists was assembled in a quest to be the first to photograph the elusive giant squid in its natural habitat. Their search was made into an NHK special documentary titled, “World’s first photographing! Deep sea giant squid” and was broadcasted in Japan this past January. After its airing, giant squids quickly became a popular topic of conversation among viewers.

In celebration of the documentary’s success, NHK has created a line of giant squid goods. From smartphone cases to squid ink cookies to pencil pouches in the shape of giant squid, there are almost too many tentacles for sale.

Read More

Court ruling orders anyone with a TV-equipped device to pay NHK’s public broadcasting license fee

On May 27, Sagamihara District Court in Yokohama, Japan, ruled that regardless of whether or not someone has entered into a contract with NHK (Japan’s public broadcasting station), being in possession of a TV-equipped device, like a smartphone or car navigation equipment, is enough by law to be obligated to pay NHK’s licensing fees.

According to NHK News, the same district court ordered a household in Kanagawa Prefecture to pay a TV license fee that was calculated back to when they first bought their TV set many years ago. The total fee came in at a whopping 109,000 yen (US$1,100). Such a ruling is a first of its kind; up until now if you could somehow avoid signing the TV license contract, you could rid yourself of any obligations to pay.

Read More

Man sues Japan’s public broadcasting corporation for excessive use of foreign loan words

Risuku (risk), kea (care), toraburu (trouble), asuri-to (athlete); I can’t understand what the hell they’re talking about!” vented 71-year-old Gifu Prefecture resident Hoji Takahashi.

Takahashi, a former public servant and sponsor of the “Cherish the Japanese Language Group,” filed suit against Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK) in Nagoya district court on June 25 for emotional distress. Claiming he is unable to comprehend programming content due to the broadcaster’s excessive use of foreign load words, or gairaigo, Takahashi is seeking 1.41 million yen (US$14,000) for the pain and suffering he has had to endure.

Read More

Multifunctional iPhone Powered Smart Stuffed Domo-kun to be Released

Japan is to mascots what Broadway is to theatre or what France is to bicycle racing, and in Japan the Phantom of the Opera or [*name removed*] of mascots has got to be Domo-kun (simply “Domo” in other countries).

From his humble beginnings as a mascot for Japan’s national broadcaster he has achieved international notoriety and an ever expanding line of merchandise. Now, iPhone holding Domo fans may rejoice with the upcoming release of the cute and useful “iPhone Supported Smart Stuffed Toy: iDomo-kun.”

Read More

Survey to Find Japan’s 50 Favorite Western Musical Acts Now On, Interim Results A Little Surprising

On their Premium satellite channel, Japan’s national television broadcaster NHK is currently offering an online survey for people to vote for their favorite musicians from Western culture.

This is in preparation for its 50 Best Western Music Artist’s Japanese People Love program on 26 February. During the show NHK will present the results along with archive footage and interviews.

However, Oricon Style released the top five candidates according to votes counted as of 8 February, giving us an idea of how the final list will turn out. You can probably imagine a few of the musicians on the list, but a couple might surprise some and delight others.

Read More

Japanese Debate Program Wants Your Opinion on Major Issues, Participate Now on Facebook

NHK has been running a series of panel debate shows called WISDOM which covers globally relevant issues by holding a discussion among experts from around the world.  Since 2010, they have covered a range of topics from economic crises, to Arab Spring, to bullying.

However, as of this year, they are planning on making an ambitious new addition to the program: YOU, if you’re willing.

Starting from their next episode titled “What Next for the Global Economy?” they are inviting everyone in the world to submit their opinions and suggestions for a truly global perspective on matters that affect all of us.

Read More


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 18,717 other followers