entertainment

AKB48 to donate another Y585 mil to disaster-stricken Tohoku

40 Comments

Popular all-girl idol group AKB48 will donate another 585,259,888 yen to disaster-stricken areas in the Tohoku area. Members of the group held a special meet-and-greet event for fans at Seibu Dome in Saitama Prefecture last Saturday night. They also performed their new single, “GIVE ME FIVE!”

AKB48 has already donated 668,916,085 yen to disaster relief. The donations come from their “Dareka no Tame ni” project. Also, the group has donated a part of their CD sales since last September. The funds will be delivered to the disaster areas through the Red Cross, Sports Nippon reported.

In addition to financial support, the girls have visited the disaster-hit areas since May 2011, holding mini-concerts, greeting fans and other seasonal events such as Christmas parties.

At the Saitama "handshake" event, AKB48 member Mariko Shinoda, 27, said that "We are limited in what we can do, but I believe that we can raise people’s awareness that Tohoku people still need support. We haven't forgotten them and we are going to continue our support."

AKB48 will donate 10 transportation vehicles each to Iwate, Fukushima, and Miyagi for new students. The group will also hold a charity performance on March 11 to mark the first anniversary of the Tohoku disaster. On that day, AKB's sister units -- SKE48 will perform in Nagoya, NMB48 in Osaka, and HKT48 in Fukuoka.

© Japan Today

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40 Comments
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Already loved these girls before - and love them even more now.

3 ( +9 / -7 )

This is all well and good but let s make this clear it is all marketing. The girls are donating no monies but are giving time as ordered by management. They are paid a salary, not paid by units as most western artists. Any donations are made and funded by management. The amount of good press for the donations will impress the gullible and lead to more income.

-6 ( +11 / -17 )

Hats off to them, speaking with actions rather than words!!!!! Very generous...

4 ( +10 / -7 )

Great job by them. I guess that can make up for the millions the Government pulled out of the fund for their other pet project.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

This is a very humble act. QUESTION... where is all the money donated so far going to? Who is spending it and on what? I see taxes going up, gas prices going but no one affected in the disaster has seen anything besides government funded homes which come from G, money not donations. WHERE IS ALL THE DONATED MONEY GOING TO?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I think management should come out and thank the fans for the support and therefore, by the management, the company will donate 585,259,888 yen ....but why not just ¥585,000,000 ? Where did they get this number?

-13 ( +1 / -14 )

It has to do with a percentage of the sale of each CD.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yea, I'm quite sure these girls wanted to do this (biting lip). It is an investment right back to the public hypnotized by them. Technically thats a few yen a person in Japan to bear their grip on the culture. I will not give into them, lol. They must do a billion USD in ad deals alone. Tax free this and line a few pockets as well on charity.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

well if this is from CD sales it AINT from the members but as others correctly said from the mgmt, now if said mgmt wud be so kind as to let us know their total take on said CD(s) THEN & ONLY THEN can we see if there is any REAL donation or if the mgmt is profiteering off Tohoku like smap & others

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

<3 AKB48 ;)

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I don't the actual girl members receive that much money, especially since they must give over total control of their lives to the production company and follow very strict rules, like not having a boyfriend.

Still, it's a worthwhile donation for whatever reason it's made.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

All of their financials are 100 percent controlled by their agency. So, well done to their agency for the percentage donation to the charity - and well done to the performers for coming up and cheering up the young kids. This is approximately US $16 Million - more than some entire nations were able to contribute to the disaster. That's an indication of how big this girl group is...

3 ( +5 / -2 )

If it's a percentage of CD sales they're donating, then I want to know what that percentage is. Otherwise reporting this story is merely another promotion for AKB48. Donations are both tax deductible and effective PR/advertising tools.

Sorry to be cynical, and I'm sure any donation is much needed by the victims of the disaster, but I feel the real reason for publicizing this act of charity is self-serving on the part of management. The most noble acts of goodness are done quietly.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

We all note that music is all about marketing which equates to how to make money. Out selfishness, greed or whatever, the point is, this is what it takes to raise big donations that makes a difference to the people that need the money. Don't understand all the satire and cynicysm. It is not like their pimping AKB48 for money, geeezzzz!!! Thank you AKB48 for the contributions!! Keep it up!! Tohoko loves you!!!

3 ( +6 / -3 )

girls are so rich..

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

So all you cynics in here, what is the percentage of your salaries you have donated to the cause?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Bravo!

"GIVE ME FIVE!"

I give them TEN!

0 ( +6 / -6 )

A thumbs down for my "Bravo!" and "I give them TEN" eh? Ha ha!

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Whatever to the detractors. I say good on them. Victims need help from everyone.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Folks, what I worry about is if they say they will donate proceeds to Tohoku but the percentage of gross profit is low like smap did, if they scream they will donate to Tohoku sell a CD for Y1000, Y800 of which is gross profit & of that they "donate" Y100 while pocketing Y700(mgt that is), THEN they are profiteering on others misery, plain & simple, we saw smap do it.

I wud just like to know if this is genuine or not, thats all, because those buying the CDs are thinking ALL or MOST of the profit is going to Tohoku, well is it, I seriously have my doubts!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@GW

believe me, i don't think their fans bought the CD mainly on the pretense of helping tohoku. their fans don't need any encouragement to buy AKBs CDs.

but i agree with you regarding how "genuine" this act is. it would be fine if they actually donated their own money (and i'm sure some of them may have done) but to donate a % of sales isn't altruistic at all. it just cheapens the whole act of giving. why not give in private and say something later?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

$1.25 Trillion donated to a great cause. I am sure that the people who are getting the help will be truly thankful.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Wow. Can't believe all the crap being slung around by the JT posters here. AKB48 consists of MORE than just the girls who front the organization, so all the sniping about how the girls aren't actually paying out of their wallets seems to be sour grapes to me. It's also a presumption on the part of some people here. Who's to say the management group isn't taking the money out of the percentage the girls would have received for CD sales (therefore directly out of their paychecks)? All management would have to do is itemize it as a charitable deduction from their regular salary. Who's to say the girls didn't ASK for the percentage to be taken out? As for it being marketing, of COURSE it is, but I didn't hear a peep from you guys about "marketing" when some of Japan's large companies held press conferences to announce how much they were giving towards the relief. Can you say, "I post via a set of double-standards"? I KNEW you could!

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Fadamor, here is a little help for you regarding the subject. The girls recieve a salary which is not based on sales (units). The salary is low so the management do not risk losing money if the band loses its appeal with children.

What we have here is a donation made by the management who are shrewd business men. The donation is made public so that thise who brlieve the hype like the 'band' more and will purchase more products. The donations will be seen by them as an investment which will increase their profits.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Are they donating more than SMAP in order to push a new album? Will they dedicate it as such?

Anyone who thinks this is a move from the bottom of the girls' hearts and not just Johnny's advertising needs to rethink things. I have no doubt they thought the idea when presented to them was good, but there's no way they came up with it themselves.

Moderator: Johnny's has nothing to do with this story.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Fadamor: "so all the sniping about how the girls aren't actually paying out of their wallets seems to be sour grapes to me"

I think you need to check the definition of 'sour grapes' if that's what you think.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

So you're trying to tell me a management group will take money out of THEIR OWN POCKETS and donate it, then hold a press conference saying someone ELSE donated the money? Here in the U.S. that would be considered grounds for insanity as the management group would be missing out on a charitable tax deduction. I don't know if Japan has a similar tax credit.

If this management group ONLY handles AKB48, then they actually are PART of "AKB48, the corporation" and the donation as "AKB48" makes more sense. If, however, they handle other acts as well, then it would have been in their better interest to make the donation in their own name - drawing awareness to the philanthropy the group exhibits and attracting more acts to their fold. As you've pointed out, musical acts are literally "shooting stars" - burning brightly before fading out as their popularity wanes. A management group who only has one such act is also going to fade just as quickly.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I think you need to check the definition of 'sour grapes' if that's what you think.

I have no doubt they thought the idea when presented to them was good, but there's no way they came up with it themselves.

THAT'S my definition of "sour grapes". Allow me to expand.

Unless you were sitting in on the discussions, you have no idea what really happened, yet state that it was impossible for the singers to think of this on their own. You apparently think of the singers as mindless automatons incapable of generating an original thought. TRULY an aberration in homosapiens behavior. Your intimate knowledge of their thought processes amazes me. Have you conducted extensive tests and interviews with each member to come to this conclusion? Doubtful.

What's more likely is the fact that the band does amazingly well when you don't like them and this irks you to no end. Therefore, you prefer to portray them as lobotomized zombies. THAT'S "sour grapes" to a "T".

1 ( +5 / -4 )

A bunch of cynical posters. I'm sure the victims in Tohoku are hating this large donation by AKB because it could be for marketing.

I have no doubt they would rather read negative/cynical comments on JT.

1 ( +5 / -5 )

As a group there performances are supposed to give people energy and make them happy. They've held numerous performances throughout Tohoku and given presents in addition to the donations they've made already. Considering they are "national idols" it's no wonder they didn't donate anonymously, more of leading by example.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Agreed Txbullnettle

Who cares if this is genuine or marketing purposes, unless you are making similar amounts of donations, the people in Tohoku wouldn't care as long as they get the help they need.

500,000,000 is a lot of money that could be used to improve their lives, whether it's genuine or not.

2 ( +3 / -2 )

Fadomar & everyone,

Shortly I will give you details where you can send me $$$ & I promise I will make a donation to Tohoku OK, dont worry everything will be fine, I will however need to cover stuff, but hey give as much as yo can & I ME WATASHI will make the donation, are you starting to get the picture, its not nice to see people PROFIT from others misery.

We have the smap precedent where they hung the donation to TOHOKU out front in BIG LETTERS, buy our CD & we will donate & later we found out it was a percentage, something like the profit from ONE song on the CD, so sorry if some of us are a bit cynical we have seen the precedents & some are rather ugly!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

They still can't sing, but I don't make fun of people who are doing the right thing.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This is just business. While they donate what for them is their pocket money for make ups, They'll get back trillions more by promotion over the suffering for those poor families. When good people does charity, the do it in silence.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

There is something to the idea that when you do something charitable, you should do it out of the goodness of your heart. However, modern culture has long bypassed this way of thinking. Just think of all of the companies that sell products associated with a cause and state that they will donate a portion of the proceeds to charity (such as breast cancer or for the environment). This is an accepted strategy that is taught in college marketing courses.

AKB48 was/is going to make a ton of money anyway - whether there was a disaster or not. Besides, what do the cynics expect them to do? The Japanese people want to see celebrities use their influence to help those in need. In turn, celebrities are doing their part to help bring continued attention to those affected by the disaster. Of course, doing so reflects well on them. For the members of the group, it doesn't seem that their pay is affected one way or the other. You could say that due to the additional free performances that they did in the affected areas that they have done more work for no additional pay. In large part though, the money is coming out of the management companies bottom line. That is generous and is praiseworthy. At least in this case, the people that are doing the giving are not politicians that are using taxpayer money to garner praise (and re-election) for themselves.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't understand why so many people are slating AKB48 for this. Be it a decision by them, management or whoever at the end of the day none of that matters. You know why? Because that money is going to help the victims and it doesn't matter who came up with the idea. At least they are actually doing something to help the victims in Tohoku.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Ok KariH I will be waiting for your donation, see my post a ways back for more info!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I donated money and supplies when the tragedy happened.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

That's not to say I wouldn't again. However I'd only do it again through a official source.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Day by day this group is getting bigger and bigger in every aspect. Go for it, girls!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

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