Hi-tech Japan gets low-tech Subbuteo

Updated 16 April 2013

Hi-tech Japan gets low-tech Subbuteo

YOKOHAMA, Japan: Fans of Subbuteo from around the world have brought their low-tech table-top sport to high-tech Japan, in the hope of persuading a nation of video gamers to get offline. Frenchman Cedric Garnier, a one-time runner-up in the world championships, led the field at the annual Yokohama Tournament in the city south of Tokyo on Sunday.
A small crowd of spectators clapped with appreciation as he flicked his two-centimeter plastic players into a ball around the same size. The biggest cheer was reserved for an astounding move by his forward, who leapt a line of defenders and slammed into the ball, knocking it past the stunned — plastic — goalkeeper and planting it safely in the back of the net.


Japan Airlines ditches ‘ladies and gentlemen’ for gender-neutral greetings

Updated 28 September 2020

Japan Airlines ditches ‘ladies and gentlemen’ for gender-neutral greetings

  • Japanese carrier will use the new forms of address from Oct. 1

Japan Airlines said on Monday it would swap “ladies and gentlemen” for gender-neutral greetings, following other global airlines in adopting more inclusive language for passengers.
Announcements at airports and on flights operated by the Japanese carrier will use the new forms of address from Oct. 1, the airline said. “Attention all passengers” and “Good morning everyone” will be among the terms adopted, local media reported.
Several airlines around the world have made a similar change in recognition of non-binary and transgender customers. Air Canada and European low-cost carrier EasyJet said last year they would drop “ladies and gentlemen.”
“We aspire to be a company where we can create a positive atmosphere and treat everyone, including our customers, with respect,” Japan Airlines spokesman Mark Morimoto told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in an email.
“We have committed to not discriminate based on gender, age, nationality, race, ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or other personal attributes.”
The announcement comes as gender-equality advocates say corporate support for LGBT+ rights is growing in socially-conservative Japan, where same-sex marriage remains illegal and being openly gay seen as taboo.
In April, a Japanese charity that launched a scheme offering digital partnership certificates — allowing same-sex couples to tap into the same staff benefits as heterosexual couples — won the backing of businesses from banks to insurers.
About a third of Japanese companies have measures in place to support gay couples, according to campaign group Nijiiro Diversity.
But activists say discrimination persists, and even though about two dozen cities, towns and wards issue same-sex partnership certificates to gay couples, they lack legal standing.
In March, Japan Airlines announced it would allow female flight attendants to wear trousers and ditch their high heels at work, following a feminist campaign that took off.