Japan


Language skills among foreign care workers a concern for nursing home officials

The Japan Times

While a new visa system approved by the Diet, set to take effect in April, has been welcomed by Japan's labor-short nursing care businesses, questions remain about how to provide sufficient Japanese-language education for foreign workers. Despite steps taken by the government in recent years to relax rules on foreign workers in the sector, language skills have been a major barrier. Vu Thi Thu Trang from Vietnam is among those who could obtain working status after the government eased the requirement for foreign nationals to work as caregivers. The 31-year-old certified caregiver, who came to Japan in 2014, said she first found out about nursing care work while studying at a Japanese language school. She then entered a caregiver vocational school and finished a two-year curriculum earlier this year.


Myanmar opens first training course for Japanese-language teachers

The Japan Times

YANGON – Myanmar's first-ever training course for Japanese-language teachers is opening as part of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's plan to invite more Asian youths to work in Japan. The initial phase of the training program starts this month at the Yangon University of Foreign Languages for students majoring in Japanese and for teachers from private Japanese-language schools, the Japan Foundation said. The foundation, a government-backed institution that carries out international cultural exchange programs, picked Myanmar as the third country in which to offer such training courses, after India and Vietnam, following Abe's speech at an international conference in Tokyo in 2017 where he said Japan would choose three locations in Asia to nurture Japanese-language teachers. Noriyuki Matsukawa, executive director of the Japan Foundation Center for Japanese Language Testing, said the yearlong program aims to support Myanmar's human resources through Japanese-language learning, recruit a new kind of teacher and improve current teachers' skills. "Myanmar has high demand for Japanese-language proficiency," he said, adding that the number of people in Myanmar taking the Japanese-Language Proficiency Test nearly tripled from 13,099 in 2016 to 37,786 in 2018.


Waseda's newly elected president aims to make university a top-notch global draw for scholars

The Japan Times

Perhaps he won the presidency thanks to his specialized knowledge of voting behavior and public opinion, or maybe it was his casual tweets in conversations with students, his use of mocking buzzwords or his adoption of slang used by his pupils. Whatever the case, 67-year-old Aiji Tanaka assumed the presidency of Tokyo's Waseda University last month, becoming the institution's first leader selected from the political science and economics department over the past 50 years. Tanaka envisions raising Waseda into the ranks of the world's top schools, with clear measures he says must be "effective first, and then efficient." Tanaka said he intends to boost the university into the top 30 to 40 institutions worldwide. "To be a top university in the world, serious determination and commitment are necessary. That was the first thing I thought of when becoming president," said Tanaka.


Showbox back online but free movie and TV streaming app could endanger people who try to use it

The Independent

Showbox, a mysterious app that allows people to watch new films and TV shows for free, is back after a strange outage. But the circumstances around that return is largely unknown, and anyone trying to use the popular app might be endangering themselves and their computer. Showbox is a hugely popular app that allows for a Netflix-like experience but includes apparently torrented versions of new movies and TV shows. More specifically, there appears to be a number of versions of the app, all of which present themselves as the legitimate app. The service stopped working recently, prompting concerns that the service might have been taken down entirely – but it seems to have emerged once again.


Language skills remain major concern for foreign nursing care workers coming to Japan

Japan Times >> News

While a new visa system approved by the Diet, set to take effect in April, has been welcomed by Japan's labor-short nursing care businesses, questions remain about how to provide sufficient Japanese-language education for foreign workers. Despite the government's steps taken in recent years to relax rules on foreign workers in the sector, language skills have been a major barrier. Vu Thi Thu Trang from Vietnam is among the people who could obtain working status after the government eased the requirement for foreigners to work as caregivers. The 31-year-old certified caregiver, who came to Japan in 2014, said she first found out about nursing care work while studying at a Japanese language school. She then entered a caregiver vocational school and finished a two-year curriculum earlier this year.


Irasshaimase!: Foreign-born clerks are becoming a familiar sight at convenience stores nationwide, but is Japan ready to welcome them?

The Japan Times

Phan Hoang Tu Linh feels she has gotten the hang of working in a Japanese convenience store now, but she admits she found it tough at first. "We have three cash registers in our store but only two lines to wait in," says the 23-year-old Vietnamese national, who came to Japan to study at a Japanese-language school in Tokyo in July 2017 and started working part-time at a convenience store two months later. "One of the customers went before another customer who was supposed to be first, but I didn't see it because I was too busy," Phan says. "The customer got really angry and started shouting at me that they were supposed to be first. I felt really bad after that. My co-workers all told me that there was no need for the customer to get so angry and that it wasn't my fault. Sometimes people bring their stress from the workplace and take it out on us."


O2 down compensation: Free credit and airtime package revealed for users after day without service

The Independent

O2 has revealed the compensation package it will offer to customers hit by its data outage. Both pay monthly and pay as you go customers will receive free time after they were left entirely without data for a whole day. Pay monthly customers will be given two free days on their contract. And pay as you go customers will get 10 per cent of their credit for free. "We're very sorry about yesterday's data issue," an O2 spokesperson said.


O2 down compensation scams spread across internet as people try to get money back for 4G outage

The Independent

Customers frustrated by the O2 hack are now being tricked into scams as they search for ways to get their money back. Police say that scammers are taking advantage of angry users in an attempt to dupe them into getting themselves in trouble. It comes as false rumours spread across the web about the vast sums of money people might be able to claim. All the same, O2 really is offering compensation. But it is vastly less than the scams suggest.


Apple Watch heart features finally arrive, allowing people to take ECGs on their wrist

The Independent

The Apple Watch's long promised heart features have finally arrived on people's watches. When the Series 4 was announced in September, the company said that it would let people take ECGs and see if their heartbeat is irregular. But it would not be available straight away because it had to be approved by regulators, it said at the time. Now the features have been given clearance by the US Food and Drug Administration and so will finally be available, arriving through a software update. The ECG and atrial fibrillation features are not yet available outside the US, including in the UK.


O2 4G working again: Here's what to do about complaints and compensation if you were affected

The Independent

O2's 4G is finally working again, after people were left for almost a full day without internet. Plenty of people are using their newly restored internet connections to vent about the outage, and to try and secure some compensation for the day spent without any data at all. The outage caused issues not only for people rushing to catch up on social networks. Many rely on their data connections for important healthcare or other uses, and the lack of data even meant that bus timetables and other important infrastructure stopped working properly. Amid that frustration, many have asked whether it will be possible to claim compensation or at least some form of redress for the problems, to make up for the frustration.