FRONT PAGE NEWS

4 August 2015
The Japan Coast Guard found a body on Monday inside a ferry that caught fire Friday and is still burning off Tomakomai, Hokkaido. (Jiji Press)
One of Japan's largest summer festivals has started in the northern city of Aomori. (NHK)
A key piece of debris was successfully removed Sunday from a damaged reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, clearing the way for the removal of over 500 spent fuel rods sitting inside the unit's cooling pool more than four years after the 2011 crisis. (Kyodo)
Japanese police say the CEO of a failed Bitcoin exchange may have misappropriated customers' money to pay the rent on a luxury condominium in Tokyo. (NHK)
With this year marking the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, the Imperial Household Agency made public on Saturday Emperor Showa's voice from the master recording used to announce the end of the war. (The Japan News)

Aug 04
A 68-year-old man who was arrested for killing his 65-year-old brother, received a two-year jail sentence, suspended for four years, on Monday. (Japan Today)
Aug 04
Two women and a man under arrest for murdering a 45-year-old woman exchanged messages and planned their attack on Line in the days leading up to the incident, police said Sunday. (Japan Today)
Aug 03
A 69-year-old woman was stabbed to death in her home in Saitama City's Kita Ward, police said Sunday. (Japan Today)
Aug 03
Police in Osaka are looking for a man who attacked a 17-year-old high school girl as she walked home. (Japan Today)
Aug 01
A fire occurred on an MOL Ferry Co. ferry about 55 kilometers off Tomakomai, Hokkaido, northern Japan, on Friday evening, leaving a crew member missing, according to the Japan Coast Guard and the operator. (Jiji Press)
[more society news...]           [society blogs...]

Aug 03
Japanese police say the CEO of a failed Bitcoin exchange may have misappropriated customers' money to pay the rent on a luxury condominium in Tokyo. (NHK)
Aug 01
NTT Docomo has entered into individual collaborations with five additional world-leading vendors - Intel Corporation, Keysight Technologies Inc, Panasonic Corporation, Qualcomm Technologies Inc and Rohde & Schwarz GmbH & Co KG - with respect to trials and technological development of 5G mobile communications. (Japan Today)
Aug 01
Having secured a financial lifeline from lenders, a new-and-improved Sharp was supposed to make a pivotal comeback this fiscal year. Yet its fifth straight first-quarter loss, announced Friday, ended up highlighting the daunting challenges ahead. (Nikkei)
Aug 01
A Japanese judicial committee has decided that three former utility executives should face criminal charges and stand trial for their alleged negligence in the Fukushima nuclear disaster. (Japan Today)
Jul 31
Japan's second-largest oil wholesaler Idemitsu Kosan is to buy about a 33 percent stake in 5th-ranked Showa Shell Sekiyu and merge with it. (NHK)
[more business news...]           [business blogs...]
Aug 01
Japan's core consumer price index in June rose 0.1 pct from a year before, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said Friday. (Jiji Press)
Jul 30
The United States is considering expanding its low-tariff import quota for Japanese beef and eventually remove its tariffs on imports within the quota, sources familiar with discussions between Tokyo and Washington said Wednesday. (Jiji Press)
Jul 30
A subcommittee of a labor ministry panel agreed Wednesday to recommend that the country's minimum hourly wage be raised by ¥18 on average for fiscal 2015, which started in April. (The Japan News)
Jul 30
The Finance Ministry on Wednesday upgraded its overall assessment of Japan's regional economies for the three months through late July, saying they are "recovering moderately" on solid private consumption and employment conditions. (Kyodo)
Jul 29
The government plans to abolish tariffs for imported wine, chicken and some other items in stages over several years under the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade framework, it has been learned. (The Japan News)
[more economy news...]
Aug 04
South Korean President Park Geun Hye said Monday the war anniversary statement that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe issues this month should adhere to the 1995 statement, which offered an apology and described Japanese action during World War II as "aggression," according to a Japanese opposition party leader who met Park. (Kyodo)
Aug 04
An aide to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was grilled at an Upper House Committee meeting on Monday over comments he made about Japan's hotly debated national security legislation. (NHK)
Aug 02
The head of the Organising Committee for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, Yoshiro Mori, has apologized to members of the International Olympic Committee for the decision to change the plan for a new national stadium. (NHK)
Aug 01
With this year marking the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, the Imperial Household Agency made public on Saturday Emperor Showa's voice from the master recording used to announce the end of the war. (The Japan News)
Jul 31
Authorities in Tokyo's Setagaya Ward will begin to issue official documents to same-sex couples in November, following a similar move in the Japanese capital's Shibuya Ward, it was learned Wednesday. (The Japan News)
[more politics news...]
Jul 31
The number of students in Japan pressured by companies to end their job-hunting activities this year in exchange for informal job offers stood at 232 as of July 1, a survey by the education ministry showed Thursday. (Jiji Press)
Jul 30
Kanji written on clay tiles discovered in Nara Prefecture, some of the oldest writing ever found in Japan, is currently on display to the public. (Asahi)
Jul 30
A Tokyo office used by General Douglas MacArthur is being shown to the public. MacArthur was supreme commander of the allied forces in Japan after World War Two. (NHK)
Jul 29
School personnel working at primary or middle schools spend 10 to 13 hours at school per day on average, with an extra two hours of work at home, an education ministry survey revealed Monday. (The Japan News)
Jul 28
An investigation report from a middle school in Iwate Prefecture acknowledged on Sunday that bullying is considered to have partly contributed to the suicide of a 13-year-old male student at the school earlier this month. (The Japan News)
[more education news...]           [education blogs...]
Aug 03
A key piece of debris was successfully removed Sunday from a damaged reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, clearing the way for the removal of over 500 spent fuel rods sitting inside the unit's cooling pool more than four years after the 2011 crisis. (Kyodo)
Jul 28
The operator of the disaster-hit Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant began Tuesday dismantling the cover shrouding the No. 1 reactor building, installed in the wake of the 2011 disaster to keep radioactive materials from dispersing. (Kyodo)
Jul 23
Japanese astronaut Kimiya Yui and two other crew members from the United States and Russia have begun their mission on the International Space Station. (NHK)
Jul 18
A survey team of experts under the Nuclear Regulation Authority said in a draft report Friday that the possibility cannot be ruled out that a fault running under important facilities for the No. 1 reactor at the Shika nuclear power plant in central Japan is active. (The Japan News)
Jul 18
Yoichiro Nambu, a winner of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physics, died of acute cardiac infarction on July 5, it was learned Friday. He was 94. (The Japan News)
[more sci-tech news...]           [sci-tech blogs...]
Aug 01
A lawyer for a Belgium-based graphic designer says his client will ask the International Olympic Committee and the Organising Committee of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics not to use the Games' current logo. (NHK)
Jul 27
As yokozuna Hakuho rode triumphantly in the motorcade celebrating his latest sumo triumph here on July 26, much of the cheers were directed at the popular older wrestler holding his flag. (Asahi)
Jul 27
Yokozuna Hakuho added to his legendary status on Sunday, showing the steadiness and power that has carried him to a record number of tournament championships. (The Japan News)
Jul 25
Japanese organizers on Friday revealed the emblems for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games. (Jiji Press)
Jul 24
A 1,000-kilometer relay race has started in the northern Japanese city of Aomori, headed for Tokyo. Friday marks exactly five years before the opening of the Tokyo Summer Olympics in 2020. (NHK)
[more sports news...]
Aug 03
One of Japan's largest summer festivals has started in the northern city of Aomori. (NHK)
Aug 03
Qantas launched double daily services between Australia and Tokyo on the weekend. The new flights are Qantas flight QF25 from Sydney to Tokyo's Haneda Airport and QF61 from Brisbane to Narita Airport. (Japan Today)
Aug 03
The Gion Festival, or Gion Matsuri, has been celebrated consistently for over a thousand years and is one of the most famous festivals in Japan. (rocketnews24.com)
Aug 01
Foreign visitors in Japan spent more than 880 billion yen, or seven billion dollars, in the April-June period. (NHK)
Jul 29
A Japan Airlines aircraft nearly tried to take off from a taxiway at Singapore's Changi Airport on July 12 as pilots mistakenly thought the Boeing 767 jet was on a runway, an act that could have led to a crash with other planes, JAL said Tuesday. (Japan Times)
[more travel news...]           [travel blogs...]
Aug 4
kamon

After the last article about Japanese family name, I was requested to talk about Nakamura (中村). Nakamura is the 8th most common family name in Japan and there are about 1.094 million people have this family name. The Kamon (家紋/hera...
Aug 4
toyoi-yuta-animated-gifs-everyday-life-japan (3)

The swatting of futons being aired out on the balcony. The gentle pitter-patter of rain that falls onto ceramic tile roofs. The chiming crossing gates that holds traffic as trains pass by. If you've spent time in Japan these are simply, to borro...

Aug 3
StudyingRegimenJET-1280

When you first arrive in Japan, it feels as if you've got all the time in the world to study. But 1-5 years can fly by fast (especially the 1). Unless you're planning to live in Japan long term, there will eventually come a time when the total imm...

Aug 3
All Purpose Aisatsu

Almost every day, learners hear a lot of really useful Japanese being used in introductions and greetings. After living in Japan for a while, it is easy to become so accustomed to listening to these phrases that we don't even think about their con...

Aug 2
 Students and scholars stage a demonstration march to protest against controversial security bills which would expand the remit of the country's armed forces, in front of the National Diet in Tokyo on 31 July 2015. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Ben Ascione, ANU

On 16 July 2015 Japan's lower house passed a package of security related-bills in a vote that was boycotted by opposition parties as tens of thousands protested outside the Diet.

Under the Article 9 ‘peace clause' of i...

Aug 2
Tatsuo Kimura - Aiki-age

Tatsuo Kimura demonstrates Aiki-age

Stretching his right hand upward, Morihei Sensei said, “Those who practice Aiki should understand the heart of faraway America.”

I immediately thought to myself, “Please come and throw me,” expecting...

Aug 2
Festivals of Japan: Akita Kanto Matsuri

The Akita Kanto Matsuri is a visually stunning festival that is one of Japan's most spectacular summer festivals. The festival is one of Japan's most famous and is one of the ‘Three Great Festivals of the Tohoku region' of Japan, called Tohoku S...

Aug 1

Author: Arthur Stockwin, Oxford University

Japan is at a momentous turning point. On 16 July 2015 the government of Shinzo Abe used its big majority in the House of Representatives to override objections from opposition parties and pass legislati...

Aug 1
Sent to me by the sweetie from Wonderland, comes this hole-in-one, as she thought I might take a swing at a story involving Japan succumbing to the advances of solar energy, while turning its back on golf.

The image at the left is an artist's rende...
Aug 1
Comic: Working from Home VS Working in a Japanese “Open Office” As many of you know, Ryosuke quit his job in February. He now works from home (with me!) doing freelance translation work, helping with the YouTube channel, blogging (he has his own blog now, called “Gaijin Wife Gaijin Life, where he ...
[all blogs...]