lifestyle

Almost half of Japanese people hide when doorbell rings: survey

103 Comments
By Evie Lund, RocketNews24

In a comparatively safe country like Japan, it’s easy to become complacent about personal safety. Here, it’s very normal to use expensive belongings such as bags or even laptop computers to “mark” one’s seat at a cafe or restaurant before going to the counter to order, and in general, people aren’t as hyper-vigilant about their surroundings as in some other countries.

But things have gradually been changing on that front, and home security is becoming a bigger concern. In rural areas especially, the “genkan” or inside entranceway to a house was considered open to the public, and often neighbours and salespeople alike would blithely enter this space and call out to the residents within. These days, however, people are more likely to lock their front doors and totally ignore any and all visitors.

According to a recent survey by Qzoo, which polled 1,365 people between the ages of 20 and 70, 46.4% of people in Japan actively ignore knocks on their door or their doorbell when it rings, staying inside until the person goes away.

The surveyees gave a range of rationalisations for this behaviour: “Because I live alone and am scared” was the most common answer with women, however a number of men also responded that they avoided answering their doors in case it was some sort of swindler or con-man. The second most common answer was that it’s simply too much of a hassle to open the door multiple times a day to salespeople, who are often pushy, and other callers who have little to offer and everything to ask of residents. Religious groups and the notorious NHK man were cited as some of the most troublesome guests to get rid of should one accidentally open the door to them. Some respondents claimed that they “screened” callers, by either peeping through the door’s peephole, or using a video intercom system.

To be honest, none of the above is too surprising to this writer. I’ve actually had salespeople cheerfully walk into my apartment before I learned to keep the door permanently locked, and I’m regularly hounded by Jehovah’s Witnesses who cheerfully bang on my door for minutes at a time before helpfully stuffing English-language pamphlets through my letter box at least four to five times a month. People can be pushy here in Japan too, and nobody is more feared than the NHK man who is not above resorting to downright bullying tactics in an attempt to make people sign up for a completely non-legally-required TV license.

It looks like the days of neighbours dropping in on each other are well and truly on their way out, with Japanese people becoming increasingly private and suspicious of the intentions of others, though perhaps with good reason.

Source: News Post Seven H/T: Hachima Kikou

Read more stories from RocketNews24. -- Japan’s public broadcaster goes thug-style, tags the house of man who refuses to pay fees -- 4 Japanese beauty fads that Westerners just don’t understand -- We try eating insects — they don’t taste like chicken

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103 Comments
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They probably think it is the NHK man. Has anybody ever paid this TV fee? Hehe.

18 ( +20 / -2 )

I find that cleaning one's rifle on the front porch does wonders to discourage unwanted visitors (or even wanted visitors), and surely it would fit within the new guidelines for the constitution. Preemptive genkan management classes begin soon... sure to be popular.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

Mary, my first thought was NHK man too!! haha

12 ( +12 / -0 )

salespeople, jehovah witness i dont answer. if thats the mailman trying to deliver you a big package better open the door you dont want it left outside lol.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

I hide when the telephone rings too.

28 ( +30 / -2 )

One again a Tokyo-centric survey extrapolated to include the entire country. Better to title it that almost half the people in Tokyo run and hide.

Down here if you dont answer your doorbell guests will often try the handle and come in anyway. No way to run and hide!

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Moonraker: I also hide when the telephone rings!!! hahaha..so funny!! On the serious side now, it's true that avoiding getting into the door has always been my doing as far as I can remember. For one, if it were a visitor, they will never come unannounced. So it's mostly religious groups that you can tell just by the way they dress and walk when you see them approaching

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I have found a solution, being male and grossly over weight I answer the door naked, seems to deter all but the NHK man.

31 ( +29 / -0 )

the “genkan” or inside entranceway to a house was considered open to the public, and often neighbours and salespeople alike would blithely enter this space and call out to the residents within.

I do remember this happening to me in Japan a few times many years ago. Truly unnerving. The "visitor" would slightly open the door and scream "gomen kudasai." Where I live in Japan (middle/upper class neighborhood of career professionals) I think this is almost unheard of nowadays. I am sure my wife (Japanese) would have a conniption fit if someone did this.

I have to laugh, though, because this brings back memories. The first time it ever happened to me I was having a late morning tryst with my then girlfriend (also non-Japanese). A Japanese person who we had recently met came to the door and knocked, and then took it upon himself to open the unlocked door and started yelling out my name. We thought he was going to march right into our room.

It felt like a home intrusion (which it was of sorts). My girlfriend and I just looked at one another, hearts pounding, jaws to the floor. It is funny as hell now, but it wasn't at the time.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Unlike my home country, family and friends rarely turn up unannounced in Japan especially after the invention of the telephone/mobile. So I got into the habit of ignoring people at the door and for the most part it meant I avoided the NHK man, Godsquad and the rest, but now with Amazon and deliveries I am having to retrain myself to answer the door.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

"nobody is more feared than the NHK man who is not above resorting to downright bullying tactics in an attempt to make people sign up for a completely non-legally-required TV license."

I thought Abe was going to do something about this...

Moonraker / wildwest - Har!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Simple solution is to install inexpensive outdoor security camera if you live in a house or peep door viewer if you live in a apartment. You can see who is outside anytime. You want to have control of your security.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I'm surprised they don't put signs out to beware of the NHK man.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

More poor interpretation of research by the media:

According to a recent survey by Qzoo, which polled 1,365 people between the ages of 20 and 70, 46.4% of people in Japan actively ignore knocks on their door or their doorbell when it rings, staying inside until the person goes away.

That should read, "46.4% of the 1,365 (NOT 'people in Japan'!) actively ignore knocks on their door or their doorbell when it rings, staying inside until the person goes away."

There are 126,000,000 people in Japan so you cannot use such a small sample to make such claims. Factual journalism please.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Rnq1NpHdmw

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

That's why "Ding Dong Door Ditch" never works in Japan....

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Not too long ago a woman who lived only like 2 blocks away from us was murdered in her home by some guy who then (if I remember correctly) stole her bank card, took a ton of cash and went to Disney with it. Since then I've been a bit uneasy. I admit, if I'm not expecting a package or someone specifically I don't open the door. I've honestly never once had a worthwhile experience doing so. It's almost always a religious solicitor (once they find out you're a foreigner, they never let up) or those damn Co-op people who won't take no for an answer. I know when my Amazon Prime packages are coming and we're the only people in our entire building that pay our NHK fees, so everyone else can just leave their damn pamphlets and scoot.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

NHK man, Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, Kuro Neko, JP-post, and Sagawa are the only people to have ever rung our door bell. Its safe to say I have honed my hearing to pick out the various sounds of the JP-post motorcycle and the opening/closing of the Kuro Neko and Sagawa truck doors.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

That should read, "46.4% of the 1,365 (NOT 'people in Japan'!) actively ignore knocks on their door or their doorbell when it rings, staying inside until the person goes away."

There are 126,000,000 people in Japan so you cannot use such a small sample to make such claims. Factual journalism please.

Actually this sample size can be used, but a proper study will give a range of error. It all comes down to the methodology used in the study. I haven't looked into this one to check if it's a valid study though.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Unless it's someone you know or a delivery, why open the door? My house is mine, as is my free time. I don't have to waste any of it dealing with people who want to try and sell me something I don't want, annoy me with some silly introduction to their idiot religion or try and bill me for something I don't want or use. It's mainly NHK, newspaper sales, internet packages, JWs or con-men. We owe it to everyone to not answer our doors and let them waste their time. We also owe it to everyone to be extremely rude and aggressive on the phone with all cold-callers. The next person who tries to sell me a grave on a Sunday evening is going to get the full English.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

@hampton

What if it's your neighbor who has emergency? Don't open the door?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Speaking English to the NHK people has so far worked for me. Acting like a moron, pretending not to understand, also works wonders, I feel. Otherwise I agree with most of you - if you're not expecting visitors or the takkyubin, it's not worthwhile opening the door at all.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

they also never EVER answer the cell phone when it's from an unknown number...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

they also never EVER answer the cell phone when it's from an unknown number...

I don't either. If it's important enough, they'll leave me a message.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

More Tokyo behavior being described as ubiquitous. Where I live most people don't even have doorbells, you just open the door and call out. Moreover, people come around on village business on what feels like a daily basis.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

There are 126,000,000 people in Japan so you cannot use such a small sample to make such claims. Factual journalism please.

What would be a valid sample size? Please show your math.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

That's why "Ding Dong Door Ditch" never works in Japan....

its here, its called the 'Pin Pon Dash'. Kids in my old Mansion loved that game......

1 ( +1 / -0 )

My cat hides too.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I usually answer the doorbell in my boxers. That gets whoever is at the door leaving REAL fast

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Just invite the NHK guy in and show him you don't own a working TV..I love to debate the religious ( i got a superior catholic education,haha!) Truly, it beats the monotony of life over here...actually i love to challenge the NHK guy- especially if he looks or sounds tough. i just let all my pent up stress and frustration out on his head ( verbally ) Man those guys really hate us outsiders for sure. all for his own benefit...get a better job, man. The jehovah's are priceless! ( once he came with his sweet college daughter)

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Wonder why NHK guy is troublesome. If we are watching NHK, aren't we entitled to pay for it.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

to make people sign up for a completely non-legally-required TV license."

Not true.

The Broadcast Law of Japan requires anyone who has TV receiving equipment to conclude a receiving contract with NHK. Viewers are not asked to pay to access specific programs, but to support NHK’s operations as a whole.

Why do you think they're so persistent?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

That's why "Ding Dong Door Ditch" never works in Japan....its here, its called the 'Pin Pon Dash'. Kids in my old Mansion loved that game......

When I was a kid we called it, nicki nicki 9 door, no idea why LOL!!!

I get hit with the jehova's as well here in the sticks, they always drag out some poor foreigner with them & if I am home I just say for the millionth time I am NOT religious, not interested!!

I am thinking of adding, do you need a blood donation, maybe that will scare'em away for good!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Wonder why NHK guy is troublesome.

I started paying the fee after an awful old man came around one morning, banged repeatedly on my door and yelled out loud "why won't you pay?" It gave me a terrible fright.

On the advice of a Japanese friend, I applied for an exemption. It was a really easy process - just filled out a form stating that I didn't own a TV, and sent it in. A rep did show up later to confirm that I didn't have a TV, but he didn't insist on coming into my apartment, or even my genkan. I haven't paid a yen to NHK for several years.

The first time it ever happened to me I was having a late morning tryst with my then girlfriend (also non-Japanese).

Have a click!

6 ( +6 / -0 )

sfjp330, to answer your question, my neighbour falls into the category of people I know and answer the door to! The local newspaper salesman does not.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Is this really that hard? To religious paphleteers and sales people I just say, "I'm not interested." To the NHK guy I say I don't have a TV, usually because I can't remember how to say, "I refuse to pay for your nationalist propaganda," on the spot. They rarely come back.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Mary Hinge:

" They probably think it is the NHK man. Has anybody ever paid this TV fee? Hehe. "

I don´t hide from the NHK guy, I just tell him I am not interested.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

That's why delivery staff always loudly yells "Takyuubiin deesu!" so that you know it's not dubious peddlers or national TV henchmen. So you all can indulge your consumerism without disturbances! I told the NHK man that I don't own a TV now and he keeps coming back. These days everybody wants to exploit you so it's no wonder people become increasingly suspicious. Jehova Witness are comparatively friendly here.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Just received an unexpected Parcel via Takyubin, another reason they shout do that you can prepare the Hanko,etc.

NHK man hasn't bothered me for Years, got an exemption for paying.

Jehova's do tend to come around, I just tell them I am Soka and they leave, think they gave up on my place now.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

And 100 percent hide when their wives call them, at least to get their breath settled.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Tessa:

I started paying the fee after an awful old man came around one morning

I assume that you had a television set at that time.

I used to have several of those NHK men coming over, and on the third time, I finally opened the door because I was sick and tired of it all. Before I could even say anything, he entered something into his small hand-held machine and started writing out a contract or bill. I said, hang on, I don't have a TV (which is true). Desperate to squeeze money out of me, he then asked me whether my computer could receive TV signals or whether I had a mobile that could. I said no and no and he went. I was really angry that he couldn't even be bothered to ask whether there was a TV beforehand. I stuck a sign on the intercom, saying I had no intention of watching TV and I haven't had an NHK visitor ever since.

I sold off my analogue TV years ago because I was moving apartment and couldn't be bothered to bring it with me. Plus, I was so bored of Japanese TV. You know the saying - I didn't watch Japanese TV when I first came because I didn't understand the language, and I still don't watch it because I do understand the language now.

BTW, I do actually have an old mobile which receives 1seg, but I can't receive anything inside, unless I stand outside on the balcony, and I'll be damned if I'm going to watch TV on a small gara-kei which I only charge once in a blue moon.

Yes, Jehovah's witnesses are far less annoying than the NHK visitors, but as an atheist, I just don't want to know. So yeah, I'm one of those who can't be half-arsed to answer the door unless I'm expecting a delivery. And it won't be a neighbour - no-one says a word round here. In fact, the guy living next to me is a hikikomori (I once said hello three times to test him and there was no response), and the woman opposite me couldn't close her door quick enough when she heard me coming up the stairs. Suits me fine. But I do miss my old neighbours back in my own country - real genuine people.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I don't answer the door unless I'm expecting a visitor or package. Anyone else is surely just a nuisance. There's nothing I would want to buy from a door-to-door salesman, I don't like neighbors or friends dropping by unannounced, I don't plan on becoming religious, and I don't feel the need to argue with the NHK man.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

RealityofFake MAY. 14, 2016 - 03:24PM JST I don't answer the door unless I'm expecting a visitor or package.

How do you know when the package is arriving? Would you answer if it was utility person (gas,electric or water) knocking at your door unannounced? It might be a water, electric, or gas problem that you didn't know of? Or if it was fire next door?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I assume that you had a television set at that time.

Yes, I did, but it wasn't hooked up! I only used it for gaming and watching DVDs.

I didn't watch Japanese TV when I first came because I didn't understand the language, and I still don't watch it because I do understand the language now.

Yep, that pretty much describes me. Paradoxically, I sometimes watch NHK documentaries, and take NHK Japanese lessons on my PC. All free.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

There are 126,000,000 people in Japan so you cannot use such a small sample to make such claims.

I think the sample size of 1365 is fine. It would give less than a 3% margin of error with a 95% confidence level. (i.e. you can be 95% sure that between 43.4% and 49.4% of people don't answer when the doorbell rings.)

More important is how the sample was selected. If not random, and there was some kind of bias such as only asking people at the local supermarket on a weekday afternoon, increasing the sample size would only reinforce the bias.) In this case, we can presume it wasn't a door-to-door survey. :-)

You can do the calcs here: http://www.surveysystem.com/sscalc.htm

5 ( +4 / -0 )

@katsu78

Is this really that hard? To religious paphleteers and sales people I just say, "I'm not interested." To the NHK guy I say I don't have a TV, usually because I can't remember how to say, "I refuse to pay for your nationalist propaganda," on the spot. They rarely come back.

Yes it really is. I don't owe some religious or sales pest a trip to the door, especially if I'm upstairs, which I generally am. These people are abusing our time. NHK should find a different way to collect fees, sort of like the way other people we pay collect their fees. We should whittle down the categories of people who feel entitled to ring our doorbells, stuff crap into our letterboxes, or call us on the phone. For commercial and religious purposes, that should be practically no one. Then we could return to a situation where we actually answer the door again.

0 ( +2 / -1 )

The ubiquitous " shimaguni konjo" has become more personal now.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

We've got a video intercom so there's no problem but in the old low tech days I used to get rid of unwanted callers by speaking English or French or prefending to be deaf and coming up with some improvised sign language.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

almost divorced the wife when i returned from work to find she had paid the nhk guy for 4 years arrears totaling 70,000 yen out of my salary.... had she ever worked i am sure she would have never paid that ridiculous amount.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I don't hide at all -- I just usually don't answer if I'm not expecting anyone. I made my old NHK man FURIOUS because I would be home, windows open, and TV/DVD player running, but wouldn't answer the bell. I've got a much longer patience than he did, because despite thinking I would give in if he kept pushing the button like a rat on the food button, I did not, so he began screaming instead. Eventually he stopped coming... or had an embolism or something. In any case, like I said, I don't hide, but don't answer the door if not expecting anything. If it's important or a delivery or something they have my phone number (which I also don't answer if I don't know the number and am not expecting a call, though). I do know people who literally hide inside their house, though, and try not to make a peep. They don't seem to realize if you suddenly cut the volume or turn off the lights it's as noticeable as if you turned them on and answered the door.

The only people who come to the door when you are not expecting them, and who would not find other ways to contact you if you did not answer, would be NHK, Jehovahs (yes, even here), other sales people, or consensus collectors every five years (not any more unless you're still filling it in by hand).

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Wipeout "NHK should find a different way to collect fees, sort of like the way other people we pay collect their fees. "

Where have you been? Your information is seriously outdated. Door-to-door collection of NHK fees was ended ended years ago (with the special exception noted below). Currently the methods for payment are:

Credit card Automatic withdrawal from bank accounts Payment vouchers which are mailed to the household and then can be taken to post offices, convenience stores, or banks to make payment. Collection at the home for people who are seriously disabled and unable to get out to make payments. Note that a special application must be made and approval received to use this service.

This information is from the NHK online homepage.

If anyone has NHK people coming to their house nowadays, it's not fee collectors but the ones trying to get people to abide by the law and do the paperwork for a contract or arrange for the payment method. Whether you chose to hide from them or not is your choice.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Door-to-door collection of NHK fees was ended ended years ago......... anyone has NHK people coming to their house nowadays, it's not fee collectors but the ones trying to get people to abide by the law and do the paperwork for a contract.

Correct. A couple months after we moved in 2012 my mother passed away. and I forgot to do the paperwork. About a year after the move they came by and asked that I do the contract. They process it on the spot, by reading your ATM card and they aren't weirdos at all, but in uniform, present photo IDs and are quite polite. The weirdo part time grumpy stalker NHK fee collector is a thing of the past.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The last time NHK called and wanted to speak to my wife I told him that she had taken some drugs (mayaku) he didn't return.....

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Sorry for the typo, "Door-to-door collection of NHK fees was ended ended years ago..." That should have been ended EIGHT years ago. I noticed it right after posting, but as usual the JT system wouldn't allow me to post two comments in a row so I had to wait for someone to post something (thanks Himajin, also for the information you added!).

Not only does NHK NOT collect the fees door-to-door, a good many of the applications such as change of address, change of payment method, and such can be done online.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

they aren't weirdos at all, but in uniform, present photo IDs and are quite polite. The weirdo part time grumpy stalker NHK fee collector is a thing of the past.

Anyone that would walk into my backyard and circle around my house at 8 or 9pm seems like a weird grumpy stalker to me. And this happened just this year.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

It just comes down to how you feel about telling a salesperson to screw off.... I always answer the door.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

non-legally-required TV license. bingo and there you have it people, no need to fear the NHK guy just tell them straight, I never watch NHK, there is no law that requires me to pay the fees, and there is no penalties forthcoming for not paying them. for those that have already started paying then, unfortunately, that is like a confirmation that you agree to pay these fees a type of non-legally binding contract.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I never answer the door.

Nothing good ever comes from it.

My home is my space and I won't let anyone invade it.

If it's takyuubin they can put it in the takyuuhaibokkusu.

Other non-solicited visitors can go to hell. They can ring the bell but nobody's answering.

3 ( +4 / -0 )

@educator60

Where have you been? Your information is seriously outdated. Door-to-door collection of NHK fees was ended ended years ago (with the special exception noted below)

That's fine with me. I'm not too surprised my information's outdated, either. I don't make much of an effort to stay up to date.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I usually answer the door unless I sit in the tub.

My Nurses and Friends usually call ahead, others don't that included the lady collecting payments for my Soka publications. Never sure when she shows up said that all the delivery guys/gals are unpaid volunteers.

Some of my friends often send me study materials, food and so on unannounced so taking receipt is common.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I never answered the door when the NHK man was there. One time, I had enough of his knocking, so I answered the door holding my brown cane I used when I was hurt, plus...

sunglasses! I weaved back and forth and did my best Stevie Wonder impression.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"non-legally-required TV license. bingo and there you have it people, no need to fear the NHK guy just tell them straight, I never watch NHK, there is no law that requires me to pay the fees"

It's certainly a fact that both you and this Evie Lund geezer don't have a clue about current law in J-land.

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

http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/court-ruling-orders-anyone-with-a-tv-equipped-device-to-pay-nhks-public-broadcasting-license-fee

Do you wanna come over and try your trick with the BBC?!

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

But this is Japan, home of the loophole. Everyone with a TV-equipped device is required to pay, with the penalty for not paying being absolutely nothing.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

What would be a valid sample size? Please show your math.

It's not so much math as sample selection as others have pointed out. To justify the headline "Almost half of Japanese people" you need a survey sample that reflects the Japanese population. In other words you need to sample men and women, young and old people, rural and urban, etc. in proportion to their weight in the total population. In technical jargon, you need a "stratified random sample."

You can't just sample people in Tokyo. Kansai might be different. You shouldn't use the Internet because different age groups have different propensities to use the Internet and you cannot (usually) verify demographic data such as gender, age, etc.

It seems to me that it is increasingly common for reports on surveys to carry headlines or text that wildly overstates the generality of the results. Most articles presenting the results of surveys are little more than click bait.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Everyone with a TV-equipped device is required to pay, with the penalty for not paying being absolutely nothing.

There is a penalty. The question is whether customers are rude enough or they are interested enough in pursuing it. I always paid the fee, but since everything went digital, and I could no longer see NHK, they stopped billing me.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I was left flabbergasted when I moved to Japan and called in sick to work one day. My supervisor and her boss came around later in the day to 'check' on me, they knocked on the door but I didn't answer as I had literally just got out of the shower and was butt naked. Next thing I notice is the door handle opening, and they're just letting themselves into my house, I was like "WTF?!" It's not 1800's Meiji era-Japan anymore guys, get the hell out of here.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

When I first moved into the house I am renting now, the landlord used to come over several times a day and just open the door and walk on in. We politely told him to knock it off or we're telling the real estate agent. He apologised profusely and now uses the door bell, he also only comes over when its something important. He clearly had no idea that it was problematic to be doing that kind of thing.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Do you wanna come over and try your trick with the BBC?!

The Gaijin Card won't work back home...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

There is a penalty. The question is whether customers are rude enough or they are interested enough in pursuing it.

There isn't. Only people who have started paying and then stopped are penalized. If you never sign up in the first place, there is no penalty.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

There's a big difference with the BBC. The BBC produces a lot of good quality programmes which are also watched by millions abroad. I'll be damned if I'm going to watch a Taiga drama with Johnny Juniors or figure skaters, pretending that this is all good quality drama, or watching anything that Abe has had a hand in editing.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

If your wife sells you out -then you must pay NHK fee + the penalty. --but the worst part is being sold-out. I would pay to watch NHK free-loaders being caught and all their shenanigans -would make a great NHK comedy.

I guess people do not have security cameras or door security/intercoms at their homes yet.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Sometimes it's an overly aggressive salesmen or one sort or another, at other times it's the religious people who are trying to put you and the rest of the world on the path to God and at other times it's the overly friendly local police officer who invites himself into your home because he just wants to get to know you and your family a little better.

With as much trouble as the Japanese have at saying "No!", yeah, it's kind of understandable.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There may be no penalty, but regardless of whether you have signed any forms, NHK can take you to court to obtain payment of the amount in arrears, and I believe interest.

Below is the first paragraph from an article on this very site. Whether you answer the door, and whether you pay NHK are matters of choice but people should be aware that there may actually be consequences.

Court ruling orders anyone with a TV-equipped device to pay NHK’s public broadcasting license fee By Andrew Miller Jul. 01, 2013 - 06:38AM JST

TOKYO — The Sagamihara Court in Yokohama ruled on May 27 that regardless of whether or not someone has entered into a contract with NHK, 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.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@peeping tom, yes while there is a law that obligates people to pay the NHK fees there are no punishments inforced by law for not paying NHK fees in Japan, which basically makes this law useless. And judging by much of the population and many lawmakers the law wont be changing anytime soon.

The BBC fees are enforced by law with fines handed out for non compliance.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

regardless of whether you have signed any forms, NHK can take you to court to obtain payment of the amount in arrears, and I believe interest.

Court ruling orders anyone with a TV-equipped device to pay NHK’s public broadcasting license fee By Andrew Miller Jul. 01, 2013 - 06:38AM JST

TOKYO — The Sagamihara Court in Yokohama ruled on May 27 that regardless of whether or not someone has entered into a contract with NHK, 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.

This does potentially change things. However, Japanese law is not precedent based like American law, so even though the Sagamihara has ruled this way, it does not set a precedent that is required to be respected by other courts. So I guess it will be a case-by-case situation for the people they decide to sue for non-payment.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

As several others have noted, the agency that collects fees for the BBC plays rough. They will take you to court and you can receive a hefty fine. I had a battle with them extending over a number of years. I finally told them they had my permission to come in at any time of the day or night and check to see if I had a television receiver. I didn't have have anything that would receive television not even the audio channel. They finally stopped bothering me. NHK can take you to court and get damages but they seldom do.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

This means about 50% of global population can be consider Japanese as they all hide inside house when someone knocks or ring doorbell...getting goosebumps and hair stand on end until "visitor" leave maybe habit forming ....

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

this reminds me of funny story from my early eikaiwa days ... I was teaching a bunch of ditzy young housewives (the kind who go from junior college to OL to marriage without ever taking any kind of responsibility for their own finances) and telling them about an acquaintance of mine whose husband had gambled away all their savings. This particular person used to turn the lights off and hide in her bedroom whenever debt collectors came around.

The response of these young ladies was interesting, to say the least. They all blamed her for being so clueless about finances. One of them asked, "why doesn't she just go to the bank and get some money?" Another said "it's always there on the 25th of the month." None of them really understood the magical, mysterious process called work that leads to the money being there in the first place.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

"There's a big difference with the BBC. The BBC produces a lot of good quality programmes which are also watched by millions abroad. "

In that case, shouldn't the BBC enforce its stiff fines on international viewers too? After all they're contravening the Law by watching something they like and yet not paying for it, when they know very well the BBC DEMANDS payment!

Are you not paying BBC fees whilst sneaking on them from abroad? You nasty little rascal!

To begin with, your line of argument started without any mention of punishments for failure to pay; it took Strangerland et al. to say it first!

Am I to assume that your defense team would argue (at your instructions, of course!) that you don't pay because NHK does not produce that which you like???

Oh, I see!

Next time I go to a restaurant I'll eat till the cows come home; once the bill arrives I'll just refuse to pay on the grounds I didn't like the food.

Or am I totally wrong and yer gonna start paying religiously once NHK starts demanding £149.50 (you convert it) , backed up by a Law! Of course a black + white TV will only cost yer 50 quid!

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

The best unannounced visitors to my place are the bunch of school kids who just come into the genkan, recite something, and then roll a big wooden penis into my house. It is in a rural area though. Neighbours and delivery people usually just come in. Does not bother me. We are all a pretty friendly bunch around here.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"The BBC produces a lot of good quality programmes which are also watched by millions abroad. ""

Oh yes, they do indeed!

Dancing on chairs, Dancing on Ice, Dancing on wheels, Dancing on skates; the only dancing program I will like is Dancing in between the sheets, once I produce them!

All sorts of cookery programmes, from cooking biscuits to how to eat them, same old movies repeated ad nauseam.

Yer rite, with such a plethora of excellent programming, the BBC is more than justified in forcing anybody to pay, whether you watch TV or not.

NHK on the other hand.....!

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Oh well, you know, in the USA, if a stranger comes into your house unannounced, they want to take something. In Japan, they usually want to leave something. Nobody will take anything. At least that has been my experience.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Farmboy, usually true, but not my father-in-law's case this weekend unfortunately. Someone snuck into his place on Saturday and relieved him of 1.1 million yen of his savings. No one has a right to enter anyone's house uninvited. The Japanese are generally great, but there is the occasional criminal here too.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The thing I always do is turn off the lights and look through the peephole. Sometimes I forget to turn off the lights so in that case I don't answer because the person on the other end could probably see the sudden darkness in the peephole.

I do miss kids selling candy bars for their school or girl scout cookies at my door. I sometimes get a craving at night.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hampton,

Wow, sorry to hear that. That would be awful. Never had any problem, and my door has always been open. The only slight annoyance I've ever had are the Jehovah's Witnesses, and even they want to leave something. Takkyubin just leaves stuff in the genkan if I'm not there.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Had a rather nasty visit yesterday evening, 2 ladies from Kensho-Kai(radical off-shoot from Nichiren Shoshu) and a cult opposing Soka.

At the end they asked me if I want to go with them to watch a Video said No and that we are told to call the Cops, they left.

Informed my leaders and word is being spread among members.

This whole thread and topic reminds me of am old 'Men at Work' song called 'Who can it be now'. lyrics are spot on.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

NHK story: I lived here in Japan for about 3 or 4 months when an NHK man came to the door. I kept telling him I don't even own a TV. He seemed surprised and was like "do you watch nothing?" and I told him I watch DVDs and YouTube on my laptop. I swear, I had to tell him I didn't own a TV about 5 times before he stopped. I was about to drag him inside and give him a forced tour to prove I didn't have a TV! A few months later, a lady came by. Also NHK. I told her I didn't own a TV. She was like, "Oh, okay. Have a nice day."

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@ StewieMay I would very much like to see a photo or video of the phallus carrying school children.

My wife says her mother is not home when salespeople call on the phone. If you have an answer phone then the same technique could be used when people call at your house.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yeah this all makes sense. When I'm not expecting someone, I'm usually hesitant to see who's knocking as it's usually some salesperson who'll take a while to get rid of

1 ( +1 / -0 )

the NHK man who is not above resorting to downright bullying tactics in an attempt to make people sign up for a completely non-legally-required TV license.

It is required by law to sign the subscription contract with NHK once you have a TV set that can receive HNK programs.

放送法

第六十四条  協会の放送を受信することのできる受信設備を設置した者は、協会とその放送の受信についての契約をしなければならない。

Broadcast Act

Article 64. Anyone who has set an equipment that can receive the broadcast by the Association (NHK) must conclude a contract with NHK on receiving of the said broadcast.

There is no criminal penalty for not concluding the subscription contract. But those who fail to contract owe civil liability and compensation payment.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

In American suburbs, the old joke was that the only reason to lock your door was to let your friends know you weren't home. Times have changed.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The way to handle the JWs is to get a long hooded black cape, and a realistic looking sacrificial dagger prop. Answer the door with dagger in-hand and all the lights off and claim "The Master told me offerings to him would appear at my door today. DO come in!" That usually ends the pestering.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Fadamor, love your approach. An old friend of mine (now sadly dead) used to love it when JWs came round, he would invite them in, sit them down, whereupon he would then set about taking them apart using Biblical quotations and arguments. Funnily enough they tended to want to leave! In fact they ran and never came back. A couple of months later a fresh batch of sacrificial victims would be sent round and his fun would start again!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't answer to doorbell unless it's a delivery. Who would want to have a forced convo from random people or NHK guys? sigh

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Have The Ring WiFi doorbell (with camera and speakerphone) and tell 'em you're busy and can't come to the door (or if you're really cruel, keep talking to them to stick around wasting at the front door, when you're really across town doing something productive with your day, lol)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My wife and I always do our bit to support the love hotels during the week, but we are not sure what the government plans to do about cosplay during the 2020 Olympics, as that is a part of love love fun.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's a free country, but people are chained to their own Chains; Oh yeah, don't let the NHK guys in, they are such a pain in the buttocks.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

In my home country I used to have a large sign on the front door--so soliciting. Even with that a few clueless salesmen would ring the bell. When I asked them if they could read the sign, the invariably said they were not soliciting (and then of course tried to sell me some product or service).

Why should I stop what I am doing just to listen to their spiel?

Maybe a beware of dog sign would have worked better.

In Japan I won't answer the door unless I know who it is.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

When I lived in Japan, I loved getting solicited. A great chance to 'practice my Japanese on them'....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Re my earlier comment..type. Sign read "No Soliciting"

0 ( +1 / -1 )

People don't hide as such.It's more like screening.Who wants to deal with the door to door salespeople or bible thumpers?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I don't answer the door either as its pointless. I can't speak much Japanese unfortunately and they can't speak any English, unfortunately. So it would just end up being a whole lot of sumi maseming and head bobbing as we both backed away from the door.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I live in a large condominium complex in Osaka , and recently the NHK collectors have been cute young women. I bet they are better collectors than the yakuza types of the past...

One tactic you can try when a salesman is at your door is quickly tell them you are not interested in what they are offering, but try hard sell them your English lesson. This will guarantee that they won't come back.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

it’s simply too much of a hassle to open the door multiple times a day to salespeople, who are often pushy, and other callers who have little to offer and everything to ask of residents. Religious groups . . . are the worst.

The sign says 'no solicitors' but these holy people are so full of the spirit of the deity of the day they can't read and so ring the bell to which a boney finger points at the sign and waves bye. WWJD?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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