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Japanese government to urge more teleworking as coronavirus cases surge

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If you work like me in a japanese company with a very stubborn japanese management according Telework, The japanese government can urge as much as they want.

Nothing will change!

24 ( +26 / -2 )

Do I need TV to do Telework?

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

its changed from go to work but stax home on weekends

To work at home and travel at weekends.

Gotta say I like this much more.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

A good 1 GB broadband. Cheap location. Some locations prior to the pandemic were offering grants for relocations. Free housing if you stay 10 years.

Bahamas are offering a one year visa to teleworkers.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Great, more urging. That will continue to work wonders I'm sure.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

Say sayonara to the commercial real estate prices....

10 ( +11 / -1 )

I hope they make teleworking a mainstay even after this pandemic is over. Think about how decongested public transport and the roads would be on a regular basis and how much money a company and its employees would save. Think about not having to wake up early in the morning just to beat the morning rush and worry about keeping up with appearances. They should begin to break down the notion that people have to be physically "here" at work and looking busy is more important than actually getting work done even if they're not there.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

And for those who don't remember, when the real estate price bubble popped back the early 90's, that is what led to the lost decade(s) of economic despair.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Makes sense I suppose. But keep it cool while you’re at it eh, quit the endless worrying and fear and the rest of it, just keep it together ok.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

A good 1 GB broadband. 

My provider in fairly central Tokyo usually delivers under 20 mb even though it advertises "up to 1 gb." Today it is 2.2 mb download, 28 upload while I do a home-at-home shift.

This country needs better IT infrastructure - or at least more honest ISPs - if there is to be mass teleworking.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, May 25: "We have been able to bring the outbreak under control in only one and a half months through Japan's unique approach. The effectiveness of the Japan model has been shown."

Right, then why are there more cases popping up daily NOW then back when Abe declared an "emergency"!

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Unfortunately my company doesn't want to let people telework or have social distancing because "The State of Emergency is over!"

14 ( +14 / -0 )

JeffLeeToday  04:41 pm JST

A good 1 GB broadband. 

My provider in fairly central Tokyo usually delivers under 20 mb even though it advertises "up to 1 gb." Today it is 2.2 mb download, 28 upload while I do a home-at-home shift. 

This country needs better IT infrastructure - or at least more honest ISPs - if there is to be mass teleworking.

I think you must be talking about your mobile and not a fiber optic line. I haven’t heard of 20 mb for decades with cable modems.

Even my mobile is never less than 50 Mbps. My fiber optic service NTT West is 1 GB but in reality usually 500 Mbps up and down. Home wifi about 100 Mbps.

you seriously need to change your service provider.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

You will receive a pink slip at home.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Zichi wrote "Bahamas are offering a one year visa to teleworkers"

This is actually incorrect mate. It is Barbados, which is a separate country.

Here is the article showing it is Barbados not the Bahamas.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-53385227

(I corrected this before and the moderator bizarrely removed it as "off topic". In an article entitled "Japanese government to urge more teleworking" how can you be more on topic than mentioning a country offering a new teleworking visa?).

12 ( +12 / -0 )

It took a virus to finally, maybe, could be, get people to realise that the crap that's done in an office (you have to uncomfortably travel to) can be done in your lounge room. Don't need an urge to work from home need a manager to stop needing me to be under his supervision. I am an adult I know my job. A job he has absolutely no understanding of by the way.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Perhaps they should post those signs all over Kabukicho, Akihabara, Ikebukuro and every other place where crowds of people are out partying it up without taking precautions. It was just June 20th we were down to 684 active cases. What happened????

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The difference between working cultures of Japanese and foreign companies stands out sharply in this pandemic.

Most foreign companies I know insist on their employees working from home and have set up schedules which enables the same.

The Japanese companies I know, grudgingly declared work from home in April, were back to work on June 1 and are continuing the same with employees out drinking and kabakuraing like crazy.

Though I know a few Japanese companies who gave April and May off to a large number of employees but still paid full wages.

These are crazy times.....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

We all know Japanese business system is all based on paper and hanko (seal). People are still struggling to get used to zoom meetings and teleconferences. This decision by Nishimura is a prime example of Better late than never! Still it is going to take a lot of time to accept the new change. Ganbatte Nihon!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@zichi

I think you must be talking about your mobile....

Nope. It's wired and integrated into the 3 year old building through 4 ethernet jacks spread thru out the unit. Only one jack works and the 5ghz band usually rejects devices or delivers an extremely faint signal. Yeah, gotta love Japanese IT infrastructure.

you seriously need to change your service provider.

No kidding. The problem is that it's supplied by my building management company. I wrote a complaint in nihongo to the company, since you can't speak directly with them, and got a reply saying the message should have been sent to another address, despite what their website says. I guess I'll try again, after today.

Nothing new. My previous 2 ISPs in other locations in Tokyo in practice delivered speeds that were a small fraction of that advertised. Again, the IT infrastructure here needs to be vastly improved for teleworking to catch on.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Present Abe Govt does nothing as politics about Covid19, only depends on each efforts of people or companies, and tries to put responsibility of infection to them.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

JeffLee

Again, the IT infrastructure here needs to be vastly improved for teleworking to catch on.

Japan has one of the best internet structures in the world and in the top five for speeds. I would move home myself.

After our last lease ended I spend a couple of years looking for the right place. One thing I always did first was check the internet speeds. We are in the countryside and we get 500Mbps.

If you won't want to move home then I suggest you find an alternative wifi service.

Who is the fiber optic provider and who is your IP?

You need to sort it out I wouldn't accept that service even for a single day.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Suspicious. Old families own the prime real estate in Tokyo. Somethings on the brew.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Indeed, JeffLee

Again, the IT infrastructure here needs to be vastly improved for teleworking to catch on.

Someone needs to whisper (as no-one has yet noticed) "Korea's running rings round us!"

On a not-unrelated note, are 30-somethings borrowing their parents' trusty old fax machines?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

And for those who don't remember, when the real estate price bubble popped back the early 90's, that is what led to the lost decade(s) of economic despair.

You are confusing correlation with cause.

Real estate prices feel because the economy fell into recession, not the other way round.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Real estate prices feel because the economy fell into recession, not the other way round.

Down here real estate prices today are HIGHER than during the bubble, go figure huh?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

As long as the trains are running, the virus is going to continue to spread.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

You are confusing correlation with cause.

Real estate prices feel because the economy fell into recession, not the other way round.

For most recessions in typical economies, that is usually the case. But for Japan's "Asset Bubble" that popped in the early 90s, it was specifically about an over-inflated real estate and stock markets. Real estate speculation was rife. Go ahead and reasearch it. Maybe start here:

The Lost Decade: Lessons From Japan's Real Estate Crisis

https://www.investopedia.com/articles/economics/08/japan-1990s-credit-crunch-liquidity-trap.asp

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They keep "urging" people to do the right thing, and people keep ignoring them.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

at My company we are ready to do telework. Our school are going to start sending copies of textbooks and lessons by fax in the morning. Then we all grade them at the office and have a staff meeting to decide about the next day. Ganbare Japan

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I am kind of sad and want to see my commuter crush brethren on the 200% overcrowded morning train soon. They are always as happy to see me as I am to see them.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Teleworking is "going viral".

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Zichi.

Japan has one of the best internet structures in the world and in the top five for speeds.

Haha, according to the Japanese. I really wish I could share my Speedtest.net results with you. I measure my speeds routinely while working. Throughout today it was around 2 mb. Right now, late at night, I assume because the servers aren't so busy, it has sped up to 18.66 mb download, 43.07 upload. I can stream video, so that makes me happy enough. Earlier today, I couldn't, although my clients and I did manage to exchange Word and PDF docs. Welcome to 1998.

As I've explained, my real world experience as a long-term resident of Tokyo (who works in media and relies on my home internet connection for my job) flatly undermines the fiction that Japan "has one of the best internet structures in the world."

2 ( +2 / -0 )

JeffLee

I have had no problems with my internet speeds for more than 15 years. I live in the middle of the country and have speeds of 500Mbps.

I don't understand why you have not taken action with your apartment management. Or move home if you need the internet for your work.

I don't understand why you don't have a portable wifi then.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My provider in fairly central Tokyo usually delivers under 20 mb even though it advertises "up to 1 gb." Today it is 2.2 mb download, 28 upload while I do a home-at-home shift.

Wifi issues seem the most likely reason. The only reliable way to test what speeds your ISP is capable of giving you is to check using a wired connection.

20 Mbps from a 1Gbps service would indeed be lousy, but far from impossible if there's some issue with your own wifi environment or equipment. That's outside the control of the ISP. If an Ethernet or coaxial connection from your network device to your modem/router gives you a measured speed of exactly 100 Mbps, then it's almost certain that something in the chain is not gigabit compatible. Ethernet cables must be cat 5e minimum, the router and modem must be gigabit compliant, and so must the computer's NIC.

In a house, you should regularly get at least several hundred Mbps out of a gigabit service; in a mansion, the optical line is usually shared with other units in the building so your speeds are often lower.

Conclusion, however: use wired wherever and whenever possible.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

JeffLee

I too use my internet for part of my work and move very large files at times. I write and make translations. I do graphic artwork. I can download a full scale movie in less than 20 minutes while watch TV (also internet) call by family in the UK/America.

I don't even have to think about it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If they're just going to urge, why not just do it already. Why do you need a plan to "convince" people?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

But for Japan's "Asset Bubble" that popped in the early 90s, it was specifically about an over-inflated real estate and stock markets. Real estate speculation was rife. 

Divinda - real estate speculation and bubbles are very common in any boom and they always turn to bust. See the housing bubble ahead of the 2008 crash.

But they are a symptom and not the cause. They no doubt compound the problem, but the underlying cause was the initial bubble and the events that led to the bubble becoming inflated. Once that occurred, the crash becomes an inevitability.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Okay, so I read your later post, and you're wired. You still need to make sure everything that you put into the chain yourself is fully Gbit compatible, and that you can certainly test easily enough.

I don't see how you can pin the blame on your ISP, and then decide it was your building management company and the supposedly lousy state of IT infrastructure in Japan. In reality it's unlikely to be all three. The ISP can't control what your building does or doesn't do to make Gbps connection possible, though if it's really true that a 3-year old building had Ethernet installed that isn't capable of gigabit transmission, then that is a bit ridiculous. But that's something you can only thrash out with the management company.

By the way, neither megabit nor megabyte is written as "mb".

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Universities are probably going to be online again from September then. Some unis in Tokyo have already said as much but from what I've heard on the grapevine from instructors around Kansai it's not being considered... yet

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It's the only really senible thing to do. I'm glad we have this technology. Had this CoVid-19 occured 10, 15, 20 years ago the world (economy wise) would be even more screwed up than it is now.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am living in west and I am work in Japanese company. We started teleworking end of March and its still continuing. They not all bad.. or I am just super lucky.

Good luck to everyone and stay healthy!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Right, then why are there more cases popping up daily NOW then back when Abe declared an "emergency"!

Because they're testing more. Not that difficult to figure out of you'd just actually think about it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If they're just going to urge, why not just do it already. Why do you need a plan to "convince" people?

Um, because the government cannot force companies to make people at home. At least not without creating new laws.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Nope. It's wired and integrated into the 3 year old building through 4 ethernet jacks spread thru out the unit. Only one jack works and the 5ghz band usually rejects devices or delivers an extremely faint signal. Yeah, gotta love Japanese IT infrastructure.

You must not be in IT. Nothing you described there before criticizing Japanese IT infrastructure, was part of the Japanese IT infrastructure. It's the wiring and hardware in your building.

Japan is in the top 10 of fastest home internet in the world:

https://www.webfx.com/blog/internet/fastest-internet-connection-infographic/

https://www.pandasecurity.com/mediacenter/panda-security/countries-with-the-fastest-internet/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_Internet_connection_speeds

We've all been working remotely for months at my company, and none of my employees have had any connection issues whatsoever.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@JeffLee - I have a 1 Gb connection, and can mimic what you're seeing by sharing my connection between two similar ISP routers - one will get the full (well... 500 Mb/s) whilst the other rarely tops 3 Mb/s - both get different Global IP addresses.

I think you need to contact your provider and ask them to investigate... I suspect a wiring issue - which if true, you could put to your housing management, and ask them to sort it out - if they refuse then you can investigate whether or not you can sue them for the discrepancy between what you're paying for and what you're getting... to explore the suing option, will cost you initially 5000 JPY - well worth it for advice, though go prepared.

Good luck!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Makes sense I suppose. But keep it cool while you’re at it eh, quit the endless worrying and fear and the rest of it, just keep it together ok.

I guess that, scientifically speaking, keeping cool makes you immune, just like the radioactivity back after 3/11 that wouldn’t affect you if you smiled, right?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan's IT infrastructure is somewhat good. A bit piecemeal in places, and very backwards in others, but in general it's good.

However when a person see's an issue... please don't dismiss it... it may actually be real, and more complicated than you may have thought of at first.

For consumer tech - just bare in mind, Japan is all about disposable/fad technology - something that lasts a couple of years (if that) then .. just gets replaced - because its "Old" and Manufacturers want you to replace with something newer... though they haven't really thought towards how to dispose of the old equipment.... unlike the Apple Rip-off system.

The Cancel culture should actually be relevant in the Tech World.... why, should a perfectly working good piece of equipment, suddenly be deemed non-functional. I strongly suspect Microsoft is operating a Cartel operation with various Manufacturers... and seriously would welcome an opportunity to partake in a Class Action against them on that matter.

Linux is currently the only recourse for older hardware.... but Google needs to fix their HTTPS stance in order to allow older builds to upgrade.... something I have hit a brick wall upon of late.. so perhaps sue Google too...!!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

why, should a perfectly working good piece of equipment, suddenly be deemed non-functional.

Because technology, and especially internet technology, being so new to humanity, is still new, and being developed. Better things regularly created. New considerations regularly arise. New requirements arise as infrastructure increases etc.

Like for say, imagine if we took the effort to ensure legacy devices still work - would a 28.8k modem serve anyone any good these days? It would take half a day just to load this very webpage.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@wipeout

Wifi issues seem the most likely reason.

Well, obviously I have thought of that. I have in the past plugged my laptop directly into the wall ethernet socket with a new, short and high-quality LAN cable, only to get a zinging 18 mbps, same as the wireless speeds I'm getting.

At a Teams meeting today, with ONE other person, also located in Tokyo, we had to shut off the video as our connection couldn't handle it and even then the audio was choppy. The other guy also said he's been having do this recently.

My building's ISP, in case you're interested, is INTERNET MULTIFEED, which seems to deal with commercial clients as opposed to consumers. Avoid it like the plague. As I've said before, Japan needs better IT infrastructure for this remote working thing to happen.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Well, obviously I have thought of that. I have in the past plugged my laptop directly into the wall ethernet socket with a new, short and high-quality LAN cable, only to get a zinging 18 mbps, same as the wireless speeds I'm getting.

Not to split hairs, but while "new and high quality" may mean your Ethernet cable is likely to be gigabit compliant, it's not a guarantee. It needs to be category 5e or above. Length isn't really an issue up to 100 metres.

Don't you use any other devices like Ethernet hub or router? It all has to be gigabit compatible; not all routers are, even today. The only way to be certain of your internal network is to start at the device you're connecting, your laptop or whatever, verify that its NIC is gigabit and that it's correctly set in your OS, that the Ethernet port is working correctly (some if not all use color-coded LEDs to indicate whether connection speed is 100 or 1000 Mbps), and from there go item by item along the (wired) chain until you get to the wall connection.

If it's still the case that the building itself rather than your own network is what limits your connection, there are numerous possibilities and you may not be able to get them interested in fixing the issue. But if the building is only three years old, it's actually hard to imagine them having anything less than gigabit Ethernet lines installed to all the units and gigabit service from the ISP. There aren't really major savings in having anything less. Then, even if you're sharing the fiber connection to the building with other residents, you should be able to get somewhat decent speeds. If you really mean you're getting below 20 megabits per second rather than megabytes on a wired connection, you'd be right to feel cheated. 20 MB on the other hand could on the other hand could be because of a 200 Mbps service package: they're still available, for consumers at least, although the difference in cost between that and a gigabit line is trivial; about 200 yen a month for me.

Good luck getting it sorted: the irony is that NTT is now (as of April 2020 I think) bringing out 10 Gbps service in parts of Tokyo. It's targeted at consumers and the price is pretty reasonable.

I guess when you next to your next place, you're going to be very focused on what kind of internet connection speeds you can get. Something we should all keep in mind when we move.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Couple of typos in there - long day.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I can stream two 8K video without any problem.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@wipeout

Thanks, I will verify the LAN cable specs. Router is Giga compatible: 11ac 1733+800Mbp. Dual band, although 5ghz usually drops out.

I should mention that upload speeds are way, way faster than download. This morning it's download 2.06 mbps, upload 27.16, the gross imbalance possibly indicating extreme congestion, ie, infrastructure, rather than my own equipment.

This is ridiculous. Whenever Japan touts its "advanced" networks or connection speeds, it always gets my goat and feel the need to speak out. My previous two homes in Tokyo also had mediocre internet connections, far short of what was touted.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is ridiculous. Whenever Japan touts its "advanced" networks or connection speeds, it always gets my goat and feel the need to speak out. My previous two homes in Tokyo also had mediocre internet connections, far short of what was touted.

It's a fact of life that no matter which country you're in, 1Gbps service will deliver less than 1Gbps. There's an unavoidable data overhead, I think that's about 50 Mbps. The rest of the loss, and it's usually considerable, is added by real-world conditions, which include network traffic. The lucky ones might get 850 or 900; most of us can't get anything close to that.

I can't know what precisely causes your problem, but it does sound more likely to be building related rather than ISP related. If your management company really chooses the ISP you use and is in charge of whatever lines you connect to, I guess all you can do is lean on them to try and sort it out for you; perhaps not a high chance of success there.

Wifi didn't suit my setup because it was unstable, often slow, and my PC is too far from my router - not even on the same floor. It was always frustrating, and I dumped it as soon as I found a way to get wired connections. I would expect that if you have a slow connection even for a wired network, using wifi is just going to make things worse, especially if there are multiple devices. It also throws in more variables, so it can be a lot harder to troubleshoot.

But I don't think any of this extrapolates to poor IT or poor Internet in Japan. Connection speeds are high in the world rankings (though no two lists ever seem to agree, and information is often a few years out of date). Once you take out the Liechtensteins, Monacos, and Andorras, and allow for the fact that of course Singapore and Hong Kong have excellent speeds because they're very small and mostly urban, Japan is in a pretty respectable place. There is very extensive optical fibre coverage, and has been for a long time now, and the national speed average is good. Many areas have 1Gb available, some have 2Gb, and 10Gb is rolling out in Tokyo now. That's for consumer contracts, and the price is only around 6,000 yen a month.

To be honest, the experience you describe doesn't sound like what most people are having to deal with. Also I know for a fact that other places famed for great internet speeds are not without problems: in Hong Kong people on Lantau, Cheung Chau, Lamma, and other islands and remote areas have been complaining for years about being left behind.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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