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Dentsu chief admits illegal labor practice in trial over employee's suicide


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Prosecutors demanded Dentsu be fined 500,000 yen

Is this some sort of a sick joke? Just 500k yen in fines? Is that the price being put on the life of a single worker at Dentsu?

16 ( +17 / -1 )

Sad part is that this too will pass with a slap on the wrists!

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Blatant violations of the Labour Laws, resulting in death....and prosecutors demand a ¥500,000 fine, for the biggest advertising firm in the land. Now that sends a clear message. Don't work for a big company or do so at your own peril.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Five hundred thousand yen... no wonder companies keep doing it.

Look at it this way, they 'saved' more than that in just the forced (and most likely) unpaid overtime compared to hiring enough workers!

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Back in 2003 Dentsu was our ad agency for a luxury UK brand.

It was not uncommon for the Dentsu reps to turn up for morning meetings having not slept.

They could not concentrate and the presentations were awful.

We stopped using them when on another occasion one of them turned and had severe flu.

2 of us caught it and so bad it was, we ended up in hospital on intravenous drips.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

And the punishment will be.... a "sincere" apology and vow to work towards stopping such practices, and a small fine!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

This issue is already off the radar, Japan inc has already been given the green lite to carry on as in the past, till the next news worthy death.....rinse & repeat!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Like others have said, 500k is an insult. It's pocket change to dentsu. 50 million would have been more appropriate. As for the family, I don't get why they would settle. The company needs to be prosecuted and sentenced and shamed.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

These pesky overtime limitations will soon be a thing of the past thanks to Abe's reforms, and the worker drones will vote him back in without a second thought.

5 ( +5 / -0 )


I like how so many commenters on here appear surprised at the 500k. For crying out loud, wake up!!

This is how Japan Inc. rolls!! The power they wield is immense. This whole story would have gone under the rug as usual. Only reason it was highlighted was the suicide that received some global noise.

So basically, absolutely nothing is going to change. This is how Japan works!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

A 5 grand fine? Bwahahaha! They'll pull that out the petty cash draw without needing a receipt. What a flipping joke! TIJ! The only reason this incident came to light was because the young lady killed herself. If she had not done so and if her parents had not protested, these practices would be continuing unabated and totally unscrutinised.

This limit of 100 hours overtime per month is also utterly ridiculous. It breaks down to a worker doing an extra 3.5 weeks of work per month @8 hours per day. Are you frigging serious?!!? Yeah, yeah, yeah, Japan has the world's third largest economy, as they continually like to tout. It's very easy to build a large economy when your workforce is enslaved to work so many hours they work themselves to death. And then, they create a word for it, 'karoshi'. Is this something to be proud of Japan? It may very well be the third largest economy (for now), but it's also the most fickle and relies solely on its workforce being enslaved. If Japan limited its overtime to 40 hours per month, like other 'developed' countries, Japan's economy would sink into the Pacific within a week!

This practice starts in high school. High school students are doing well in excess of a 100 hours overtime per month. They have sports clubs, Saturday schooling, Juku and stupid amounts of homework. They spend more than double the amount of time in schooling than other 'modern' countries like, the US, Australia, England, etc. These kids should be flipping geniuses for the amount of time they spend at school! But, they are just empty shelled 'yes-men' by the time they graduate.

We all are aware of the 'smoke and mirrors' political structure of Japan's so-called 'democracy'. However, if you do clear the smoke, Japan is a country in crisis. The economy is fickle and could fail any day, the suicide rate is extremely high, especially for under 18's, the workforce is enslaved to their companies, the pension system has totally failed to the point where they are willing to gamble the funds on the international stockmarket. The crime figures are fudged to make them look like there is a very low crime rate. However, this is due to a common practice of out-of-court settlements resulting in no convictions, thus keeping the statistics low. My step-daughter had her handbag lifted out of her bicycle basket by a thief on a scooter a few weeks ago. He was arrested and is responsible for up to 30 other similar thefts. His lawyer contacted her and begged her to accept ¥30,000 (a measly 300 bucks) as an out-of-court settlement so he would not be charged. Of course I told her to tell them to stick their 300 bucks where the sun doesn't shine and send this twat to prison. Negotiations are still pending. This practice is common for even more severe crimes including rape and even murder. I have no doubt it is also used in cases of labor law breaches. Money can't buy love, but in Japan, it can buy freedom!


8 ( +9 / -1 )

Dentsu - possibly the most powerful body in Japan, even above LDP in what it can swat like a fly.

Bananas for All.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Inducement to suicide or manslaughter. Why is there not the corporate death penalty (dissolution of company with assets going to families of victims)?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Nothing less than a ten year prison sentence for the CEO would have sufficed. That would have sent a clear warning to all other companies that this aspect of Japanese corporate culture will not be tolerated.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I wish there were some way to boycott Dentsu; their clients are usually other large companies (belonging to of Japan Inc.)

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Have to agree, 500K Yen is nothing for a Corporation, and that amount really just shows how much Life is legally valued in Japan. A more appropriate amount, would perhaps be 500 Million Yen, to be paid to the victim's family, but even then what price can be put upon a loved one ?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

So according to Dentsu and the judges the young lady's life was only work 500,000 Yen. Nice.

The CEO should be forced to resign.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Black, isn't a bad enough word to describe the many exploitative companies in Japan, of which Dentsu is a prime example.

However, in this case, a supposedly intelligent young woman, with no dependents and a family she could have gone back to live with, chose death over quitting her first full-time job.

I say the problem is with Japanese society, rather than Dentsu.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

That is a crazy small amount of money to demand from the company... It wouldn't even cover the woman's monthly salary.

A more appropriate amount, would perhaps be 500 Million Yen, to be paid to the victim's family, but even then what price can be put upon a loved one ?

Agreed. They need a serious fine to make sure it doesn't happen again.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Few will boycott...business as usual...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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