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Japan’s porn industry preys on young women: activists

AFP-JIJI, Staff Report

Japanese women are being exploited and abused in Japan’s multibillion-dollar pornographic film industry, rights advocates have said, calling on authorities to strengthen laws to protect them.

Pornography is widely available in Japan, where some actresses become well known enough to appear on mainstream TV chat shows or as commentators in weekly magazines.

But the dark side of the industry is seldom discussed openly and the rights of those who work in it even less so.

In an attempt to shine a light on abusive aspects of the business, a coalition of campaigners and attorneys held a news conference to announce findings from research conducted over a six-month period last year.

More than 130 cases in the past four years have come to their attention in which mostly young women sought help after claiming sexual abuse.

The mistreatment included being forced to engage in repeated intercourse without protection and even being gang-raped during filming.

The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors.

Initially, women are casually approached on the street by brokers who pretend to be scouting models, the advocates said.

When victims realize the con and try to break the contracts they are threatened with lawsuits and so give in.

But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract.

Originally an aspiring TV talent, the woman decided to terminate her contract with the company after being forced to appear in a number of obscene job assignments while still a minor and in a porn film once she was an adult.

“These women are forced to perform in such sexually abusive movies against their will,” Yukiko Tsunoda, one of the lawyers, said.

The group of activists and lawyers said they have been alarmed by an increasing number of young women, mostly in their early 20s — and even young men and boys — who seek their help. At least one young woman later committed suicide, they said, her ordeal beginning when she was put in a small room surrounded by a number of men and forced to sign a contract.

“It seems to be widely assumed that these women agree to appear in porn movies,” said Hiroko Goto, a professor of law at Chiba University. “But they are sometimes minors and often young women in their 20s who are not yet socially empowered. They are being preyed upon by those with power and money.”

The advocates said they are pushing the government to increase oversight of the industry as well as to close legal loopholes that allow such exploitation to occur.

Annually, Japan’s porn industry is worth up to ¥500 billion ($4.4 billion) and creates about 20,000 films, the advocates said.

The industry is “very lucrative,” Tsunoda said, adding that “there are many people who buy films showing such cruel sexual abuse as entertainment.”

  • Charles

    A contract is a contract.

    If I sign a contract saying that I’m going to teach English for a year, then I’d better darn well teach English for a year, or I can expect some kind of penalty (for example, withheld salary, a worsening of my reputation, etc.). Of course, there are exceptions–if my employer beats me, for example, or if my employer expects me to work 60 hours per week when 40 is specified in the contract, or if my employer requires me to give massages instead of teaching English.

    If I sign a contract saying that I’m going to flip burgers at McDonald’s for a year, then I’d better darn well do that, or once again, I can expect withheld wages and a worsening of my reputation.

    Now, recently, feminists have been arguing that sex work (such as acting in pornographic movies) is “just another type of work.” Okay, fine. Let’s buy that argument for a moment, just for the sake of argument.

    If that’s true, then a pornographic actress who signs a contract to have sex with a bunch of old men on camera should be required to perform that duty, or else she should be subjected to the financial penalties and worsening of reputation called for in the contract for a contract breaker. Why should she be able to get out of that contract when other people are forced to follow their contracts? Creating a special legal exception that probably only applies to women 99% of the time, that seems like a form of female privilege to me.

    Of course, if these women are really being conned into this, thinking that they’re entering legitimate modeling or acting jobs, and it really said nowhere in their contracts that there was a possibility of doing porn, then okay, I understand allowing them to cancel their contracts (just as workers in any industry should be allowed to void their contracts if they are required to do work that has nothing to do with the contract). Is this really the case? Are they really being conned into this, or are they just getting cold feet at the last moment? This is for labor courts to decide.

    We don’t have enough information here to know for sure, but I’d suspect that this is less a case of “contracts that contained blatant lies” and more of “young, flaky women who wanted to do porn to make lots of money but got cold feet after signing the contract.”

    • shatonbytories

      What? At first I thought you were being satirical but I realise you will have no idea what that means.

      • Charles

        Ah, got it, you basically say “you’re wrong/you’re an idiot” but then don’t bother to explain why. That’s intellectually lazy.

    • Hans Gruber

      Yes, shatonytories. Charles is wrong. The court will not uphold a contract when there has been deception or it is unfairly ambiguous or is unlawful or violates the rights of one of the parties. You can always walk away from a contract too but may have to pay the other parties damages. See a lawyer.

      • Charles

        “Charles is wrong. The court will not uphold a contract when there has
        been deception or it is unfairly ambiguous or is unlawful or violates
        the rights of one of the parties.”

        I’m wrong?

        You obviously didn’t read everything I wrote (it was long, I know).

        Here, copied and pasted it to save you the effort:
        “Of course, if these women are really being conned into this, thinking
        that they’re entering legitimate modeling or acting jobs, and it really
        said nowhere in their contracts that there was a possibility of doing
        porn, then okay, I understand allowing them to cancel their contracts
        (just as workers in any industry should be allowed to void their
        contracts if they are required to do work that has nothing to do with
        the contract). Is this really the case? Are they really being conned
        into this, or are they just getting cold feet at the last moment? This
        is for labor courts to decide.”

        Notice how in there, I write “Of course, if these women are really being conned into this (…) then okay, I understand allowing them to cancel their contracts.”

        And I wrote “This is for labor courts to decide.”

        Gee, such objectionable words!

        How dare I imply that generally, contracts should be followed unless they use deception? How dare I imply that courts should decide whether a contract has been broken or not?

        And above all (and I think why I’m attracting so much criticism), how dare I suggest a woman who voluntarily signed a contract, knowing full well what she was getting into, actually be held to that contract? Clearly I must be “anti-feminist” for holding pornographic actresses to the same standards as all other workers!

    • Hans Gruber

      Yes, shatonytories. Charles is wrong. The court will not uphold a contract when there has been deception or it is unfairly ambiguous or is unlawful or violates the rights of one of the parties. You can always walk away from a contract too but may have to pay the other parties damages. See a lawyer.

    • GBR48

      The article makes it clear that the consequences are not explained to the women, which would invalidate the contract in a country with 1st world rights legislation.

      You are defending sexual slavery and rape by proxy, which is contemptible.

      • Charles

        “You are defending sexual slavery and rape by proxy, which is contemptible.”

        Whoa, way to put words in my mouth.

        “Sexual slavery” is forcing people (usually women) to live in a situation in which they have to have sex without consent, or for no money.

        A contract to do pornographic acting, if signed by both parties, by its very nature, IS consent (unless there is deception), and I highly doubt most women would sign a contract to act in pornographic movies for free. Since they’re paid, and since it was their choice, I don’t see how you can call that “sexual slavery.”

        You should know better than to libel people. That’s illegal in this country and others, too (don’t worry, I’m not going to press charges unless this continues and gets really ugly, but you should know that not everyone is as forgiving as I am). I never, ever defended sexual slavery or rape by proxy–I had this paragraph in my original post:
        “Of course, if these women are really being conned into this, thinking
        that they’re entering legitimate modeling or acting jobs, and it really
        said nowhere in their contracts that there was a possibility of doing
        porn, then okay, I understand allowing them to cancel their contracts
        (just as workers in any industry should be allowed to void their
        contracts if they are required to do work that has nothing to do with
        the contract). Is this really the case? Are they really being conned
        into this, or are they just getting cold feet at the last moment? This
        is for labor courts to decide.”

        How on earth do you misconstrue that paragraph to mean “I condone sexual slavery and rape by proxy?”

  • GBR48

    If there are no laws capable of lockng the scum responsible for this sort of sexual enslavement up for 5-10 years, they need to be photographed, named and their activities documented on the internet.

    If someone then decides to remove them from the human genepool in a dark alley one night, so much the better.

    • Charles

      I agree with you.

      My previous comments were made to another article.

      Then it was merged with this article, which is about scum responsible for sexual enslavement of minors, 24 million yen fines for leaving, etc.–things that I don’t believe were in the original article. My comments were moderate in regard to the original article, but make me look like a jerk with this new merged article, so I deleted them because otherwise, I’ll attract 100 angry comments.

      To clarify my position:
      – Adult women who sign contracts with porn companies knowingly, without the company using deception, should adhere to their contracts.
      – Workers in any industry can be punished with withheld wages, lack of a positive reference, and perhaps certain other punishments–as long as they are stipulated in the contract, and as long as they are legal. Pornographic actresses should not be exempt from contract laws that all other workers have to follow.
      – However, (and this is where the new, merged article shifted the goalposts on me), if the person was a minor, or if the punishment in the contract is excessive (such as a 24 million yen fine), or if there is abuse or deception, then it should absolutely be possible to void that contract, and even punish the pornography company.

      Whew, now I understand what politicians have to deal with everyday–their comments being taken way out of context. I made a comment stating that pornographic actresses should adhere to their contracts (which was a reasonable position in regard to the original article), and then suddenly my remarks were transferred to a new context–an article about the nasty exploitation of minors, excessive contract breaking fines, and terrible abuses in the porn industry, things I do not condone and that I think should be punished.

      • GBR48

        In the circumstances, I’ve deleted my response to your comment in the other post.

      • Charles

        Thank you. I appreciate it.

  • Tara Cheney

    The desensitization of Japanese society to pornographic images (as is seen at a child height level in “Family” Mart) encourages the acceptance of the objectification of women in Japan. Unless society changes its attitude towards women, men (who are too insecure to have meaningful relationships) will resort to pornography and provide the “demand” part of this major economic industry.

  • TV Monitor

    This is why some Japanese porn actresses seemed to be too innocent to be doing porns. They didn’t know they were signing porn contracts.

  • Barry Rosenfeld

    What crap; take it on the chin as you knew what jaws you’re entering into. No one ever put a pistol to their collective heads to do this; a lot of them lack self-esteem and come from poor or broken families. No woman from a self respecting family would ever do this. Period.

    • shatonbytories

      Way to go blaming the poor for their lot.

      • Barry Rosenfeld

        Since you seem to be the type of guy who couldn’t get a job in his home country and thus ‘escaped’ to Japan were you seemingly enjoy a standard of living you couldn’t make back home, may I suggest you learn at last the English language as I had said nothing of blaming the poor; just pouring scorn on their choice of industry. Seriously, how on earth could you defend a harlot? I suppose if you had or have a daughter, no doubt you’ll happily have her enter the porn field one day. Real sicko you are.

      • Sam Gilman

        I’m not blaming the poor. I’m just saying it’s their fault.

        Of course. It’s all clear now.

        Personally, if my daughter ever got into any kind of trouble, I’d like to be confident that she would feel able to come to me for help without fear of me simply dismissing her as “a harlot” and abandoning her to her fate.

      • Barry Rosenfeld

        Well, I trust that you won’t ever have a daughter who would even dare consider getting into that ‘profession’. And if she does, well we all know who to blame for apathetic poor parenting.

      • Sam Gilman

        Congratulations on being a perfect parent who can control everything about their children’s future circumstances and character simply by force of will.

        You should write a book about how you do this.

        Or perhaps when you have a second child and see the difference with the first you’ll realise there’s only so much a parent does to form their personality. There’s a whole part of them that you play no particular part in shaping. Sure, you can hammer in good manners and eating habits and all that, and most of all you can educate them nonmoralistically about dangers and empower them, but still… What you can do for that large bit you don’t shape is provide a supportive, stable, loving relationship so if God forbid they have problems, they allow you to help.

        Everyone knew girls at school with hyperstrict moralising parenting in the way you present yourself as doing. They had two ways of managing it: too scared to take any kind of risk, or they learn to lie to you, possibly go out of their way to rebel while doing so. Neither way is good for them.

      • Barry Rosenfeld

        For your information I happen to be 45 years with two girls who are attending a top Japanese University both earning a LLB in law (mother is Japanese) and are quite ‘alright in the head’ because their mother, I and their grandparents took a very active, fair, but straight interest in their doings. My father was the same to I, and my sisters and so the same was my grandfather to my father. Hence why we enjoy a solid middle class ethos in my family (same goes for my wife; we are both lawyers) not living paycheck to paycheck like some people. And you’ve forgotten the moral; there’s no such thing as a bad child, only a bad parent. Your child first always, yourself last always. I’m sorry you don’t seem know how to raise children properly. I do. And if my daughter ever entered that trade let me tell you that would be a reflection on me as a parent. Apparently you’ve never heard of taking personal responsibility.

        I suggest that we agree to disagree because your ethics or shall I say morality leaves a lot to be desired. Woe betide your children’s future with you at helm.

        Good day.

      • Sam Gilman

        You’re a rather insecure individual.

      • Barry Rosenfeld

        Indeed, the standard answer of a someone who had to leave his home country to find a job in Japan as an English Instructor. I pity you in both senses.

      • Sam Gilman

        I see you dislike Japan so much as to suppose someone would settle here only because of unemployment at home. Shame. I live here because I rather like the place. I don’t feel insecure as a foreigner in the way that you do, and have never really understood the need to look down on English teachers.

        Maybe that’s because my parents taught me never to look down on or sneer at people, particularly people from less fortunate backgrounds. Your nasty swipe at people in insecure employment would have brought a severe bollocking had it come out of my mouth.

      • Barry Rosenfeld

        I’ll let you think that. And since you’re English like myself you happily proved my point. It is you that cannot seem to stomach others opinions or thoughts as you immediately launched an attack on me without kindly choosing to discussing it in an appropriate manner. You chose the brickbats session old boy, not me. Learn to be a man and accept things on the chin then come back and speak to me. You need a lesson in how to behave in society my young millennial.

    • KetsuroOu

      I am hoping that what you wrote was sarcasm, because if it was not, it was an absolutely crap comment, both morally and logically.

      Some of these production companies are incredibly adept at deceiving and manipulating women, which is one of the main points of the article. These women do not know “what jaws they are entering into”.

      It is one thing to be told that you will get paid for having sex on camera. It is another thing to show up to the set to discover you will have to have sex with multiple partners, with no condoms, or under demeaning or degrading conditions. It is no wonder that some actresses want to break their contracts.

      And these young women are especially at risk if they lack self-esteem or come from poor or broken families. These are people who need to be protected, not condemned.

      And the article explicitly mentions one woman being forced to sign a contract by a roomful of men, which is the next best thing to a pistol held to the head.

      I really, really hope that you were being sarcastic.

      • Barry Rosenfeld

        It’s called taking responsibility for your actions. Since you seem to lack morals of any sort and thus of the entitled variety, I have nothing say to you. It’s over your head.

      • KetsuroOu

        Apparently, fellow readers of the Japan Times, Barry Rosenfeld was not being sarcastic.

      • Barry Rosenfeld

        You’re an idiot.

  • Inter Idoru

    The idol industry has some connection to this issue as well. Signing very young girls from countryside to contracts in the idol/music industry. Those that are average/better continue on with concerts. Those that are mediocre and lower are encouraged to do extra bikini modeling, then underwear modeling, then AV. Years of oppressive management and desire to keep similar lifestyle based on income can “Stockholm” a girl signed at 13 and then being guided in to adult modeling at 17-19 and porn by 19-21.

    • Blair

      By the time they are adults they can make their own decisions

      • Inter Idoru

        You are discounting that these girls are signed to idol contracts when they are 13-15, come from lower income homes, are given promises of music stardom, and kept under the extremely close watch of management. They do not attend regular school, but are tutored. Every activity is coordinated by the management and their only friends are the other group members. When it is determined by management they are not the singers audience prefers, they are carefully guided in to the modeling of smaller clothes, then swimsuit, then lingerie. When they age to being 19, with no outside friends, no actual future in music, no “life” experience as regular high school students might have experienced, no visible career options, and the producer says “so…what about nude modeling?” it is an easy step. Yeah ~ some people in porn went there of their own accord (and note, just because someones job is porn, doesn’t mean *rape* is okay because “hey, they are porn actresses!”) but these girls are kept sheltered, controlled, and guided.

      • Blair

        You’re giving to much credit to how “sheltered” people can be made. My youngest son is a regular in a kid’s TV show, my eldest daughter has done plenty of modelling. She is now a university student. She’s never done swimsuit or underwear modelling. I have a lot of experience with entertainment related agencies…”sheltered, controlled and guided” kids are not…Sorry to ruin the narrative

      • Inter Idoru

        Blair, my guess is that neither your son or daughter were signed to a 5 year 360 degree contract, removed from your home, and installed in the agencies dormitory with all their activities monitored and structured. Probably your kids come home nightly and you have control over the jobs they accept. In the case of situations like AKB idols, they are taken from real life and placed under almost 100% manager control. Often the families are based in other cities, lower education, and no idea what they are signing their kids into. When those kids age to adult, after years of management control, they are already groomed to accept whatever advice their manager gives. It is a very different situation than your own.

      • Blair

        Children up to the age of 15 are required to attend school. If these managers are preventing them from attending school they are breaking the law. If by the age of adulthood a person doesn’t feel uncomfortable being naked and having sex on camera, then that’s their prerogative. That said, there should be stricter controls within the industry if what the article claims is true and women have been forced to do things they were not willing to do. There should always be room for a man or woman in this kind of business to say no I won’t do that. Also, if what you say has any truth to it there should be far greater monitoring of what is going on within these agencies. Firstly, young boys or girls should not be permitted to be kept in dormitories. Any parent that allows for that needs to check their soul. I don’t care how uneducated they are.

      • Inter Idoru

        Education through junior high is compulsory, but one doesnt need to attend public school. Tutors and in house education plans can be filed and the ward checks in. As for dormitories, that is the same as what boarding schools and universities provide for housing, so I wouldnt say its inhumane, just very isolating from the rest of the community. As is the way in any country, any situation of young kids being signed into long term harsh contracts, the companies prey on lower income families who see this as their way out. Yes, there should be better regulation on the idol industry practices, but currently there are not.

      • Blair

        What exactly is the curriculum for this “in house education” . Is there no element of ethics or moral education. I know in the public school system there is. In my youngest daughters second grade elementary school class, she had an assignment for her sakubun just last week in which she had to give 5 reasons for there being rules in society. Do you mean to tell me that an 18 year old doesn’t have an idea that performing fellatio on screen for money isn’t somewhat compromising in terms of his or her moral character? I mean, come on! How sheltered can one really be?

      • Inter Idoru

        “Free” education (education from home or other source) is required to teach: Japanese, math, science, social studies. Ethics or “morality” is not a government required class in Jr/Sr High school. Offering that course is up to the schools. However, the idea of sex being dirty or that a money exchange is wrong, is not so prevalent here. (Check “compensated dating” by high school and university girls.) But the crux of our discussion Blair is that you feel there is no way that girls from the “idol music industry” such as AKB could be “led” into porn because no one is that sheltered. My stance is that, yes. These girls are corralled, taken from home, kept from making regular friends, have all activities monitored from the age of 13 or so…and it is quite easy to lead a person with no social skills, no actual music talent, no friends outside the industry, no strong family tie, slowly slowly from bikini modeling to lingerie modeling to nude modeling to sex on camera. I think it might be an compassionate idea for you to consider that while, by the grace of yourself and a higher power, your own children have not fallen prey to such things, there are indeed young women and men who thru poor circumstance are led into a situation that to an extent became beyond their control.

      • Blair

        I have compassion for anyone being forced to do something they don’t want to do. I also believe there comes an age when one must take responsibility for one’s own actions, regardless of circumstance (unless in the extreme one must steal or sell their bodies to survive, for example). If it has been found that a person has been forced to do something against his or her own will, then I believe there should be (is there?) recourse to nullify such a “contract”

      • Jeff Jensen

        Do your contract sign contracts without your guidance or permission? Do they live at home or with you? Do they come from poor families or live with single mothers? What is the mother’s occupation. Yeah, they could nullify their contracts. Many of us in Japan could. Illegal contracts are not unusual in Japan.

      • Jeff Jensen

        Do your contract sign contracts without your guidance or permission? Do they live at home or with you? Do they come from poor families or live with single mothers? What is the mother’s occupation. Yeah, they could nullify their contracts. Many of us in Japan could. Illegal contracts are not unusual in Japan.

      • Blair

        The beauty of illegal contracts is you’re not beholden to them

      • Blair

        The beauty of illegal contracts is you’re not beholden to them

      • Jeff Jensen

        You are right. But do these children or even young adults know that? Or do they know that the contracts are illegal? The ugliness of illegal contracts, in Japan at least, is that they are not rare, at least for foreigners. Apparently, according to this article, it is not just foreigners that are not victims to illegal contracts.

      • Jeff Jensen

        You are right. But do these children or even young adults know that? Or do they know that the contracts are illegal? The ugliness of illegal contracts, in Japan at least, is that they are not rare, at least for foreigners. Apparently, according to this article, it is not just foreigners that are not victims to illegal contracts.

      • Blair

        Children don’t sign contracts to perform in Porn films. That’s illegal

      • Jeff Jensen

        You live in an ideal world.
        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors….

        When victims realize the con and try to break the contracts they are threatened with lawsuits and so give in.

        But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract….

        The group of activists and lawyers said they have been alarmed by an increasing number of young women, mostly in their early 20s — and even young men and boys — who seek their help. At least one young woman later committed suicide, they said, her ordeal beginning when she was put in a small room surrounded by a number of men and forced to sign a contract.

        The advocates said they are pushing the government to increase oversight of the industry as well as to close legal loopholes that allow such exploitation to occur.

      • Blair

        How about citing a case in which a woman was “forced” to continue filming porn against her will

      • Jeff Jensen

        I’m sorry. Either reading comprehension in English is not something you are good, at you are being disingenuous for not admitting that you do not have a valid argument.

      • Blair

        Point being, there IS recourse for those who find themselves in the position of being involved in something they don’t wish to do. This is the case with all work, not just porn. What’s disingenuous is how people are being portrayed as helpless victims. What’s pathetic is how they are being argued as “children” to win a point on the JT comments section

      • Jeff Jensen

        You are the only one trying to win points. You use only abstract arguments. You are not in their shoes, so you cannot judge. Obviously, the fiends who exploit them know what they are doing. You sign something, the are told it is legally binding. You understood contract law at that age?

      • Blair

        at 12…no. At 18, I understood what performing fallatio on camera for money meant. I think anyone who says they couldn’t is the disingenuous one

      • Jeff Jensen

        *fellatio
        18 are not minors.

      • Blair

        exactly

      • Jeff Jensen

        The article claims that minor are exploited. Cite where performing fellatio on camera for money was in a contract. And even if some even if some women (18+) had no problem with that, did these contracts specify unprotected sex with multiple partners or gang rape?

      • Blair

        The article makes extraordinary claims for which it provides no evidence whatsoever. Let me know when you can cite a case in which a minor was contracted to perform sex on screen or a case in which the producers of porn won a suit against an actor or actress who refused to perform. I’ll wait…

      • Jeff Jensen

        This article does quote people. That is evidence. The following professions I recommend that you do not attempt to apply for:
        teacher–any kind, but especially English or philosophy
        lawyer

      • Blair

        The article quotes who? “an aspiring actress”…What? I’m not the least bit interested in any of the professions you mentioned, but I am interested in a little more evidence than “an aspiring actress, said…”

      • Jeff Jensen

        So, she has no right to privacy?

        How about her lawyer,

        Yukiko Tsunoda

        For the general problem, Hhw about Hiroko Goto, a professor of law at Chiba University?
        Reading comprehension or logic? Which do you have the most problems with?

      • Jeff Jensen

        So, she has no right to privacy?

        How about her lawyer,

        Yukiko Tsunoda

        For the general problem, Hhw about Hiroko Goto, a professor of law at Chiba University?
        Reading comprehension or logic? Which do you have the most problems with?

      • Blair

        What of the 130 cases of abuse? I’m not interested in Ms.Goto’s vague statements. They mean nothing without cases to corroborate her claims. What about these 130 abuse cases? You’d think such a serious charge of gang rape would have a follow up. No names needed, besides the production company (especially concerning the very serious claim “they are sometimes minors”!!!). What production company has contracted minors for sex in films? This information should be front and centre in the article…

      • Jeff Jensen

        You want more details, contact the Japan Times, the lawyer and the professor cited, the Tokyo District Court, and the activists?

      • Blair

        The article quotes who? “an aspiring actress”…What? I’m not the least bit interested in any of the professions you mentioned, but I am interested in a little more evidence than “an aspiring actress, said…”

      • Jeff Jensen

        This article does quote people. That is evidence. The following professions I recommend that you do not attempt to apply for:
        teacher–any kind, but especially English or philosophy
        lawyer

      • Jeff Jensen

        The article claims that minor are exploited. Cite where performing fellatio on camera for money was in a contract. And even if some even if some women (18+) had no problem with that, did these contracts specify unprotected sex with multiple partners or gang rape?

      • Jeff Jensen

        You live in an ideal world.
        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors….

        When victims realize the con and try to break the contracts they are threatened with lawsuits and so give in.

        But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract….

        The group of activists and lawyers said they have been alarmed by an increasing number of young women, mostly in their early 20s — and even young men and boys — who seek their help. At least one young woman later committed suicide, they said, her ordeal beginning when she was put in a small room surrounded by a number of men and forced to sign a contract.

        The advocates said they are pushing the government to increase oversight of the industry as well as to close legal loopholes that allow such exploitation to occur.

      • Jeff Jensen

        You live in an ideal world.
        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors….

        When victims realize the con and try to break the contracts they are threatened with lawsuits and so give in.

        But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract….

        The group of activists and lawyers said they have been alarmed by an increasing number of young women, mostly in their early 20s — and even young men and boys — who seek their help. At least one young woman later committed suicide, they said, her ordeal beginning when she was put in a small room surrounded by a number of men and forced to sign a contract.

        The advocates said they are pushing the government to increase oversight of the industry as well as to close legal loopholes that allow such exploitation to occur.

      • Jeff Jensen

        You live in an ideal world.
        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors….

        When victims realize the con and try to break the contracts they are threatened with lawsuits and so give in.

        But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract….

        The group of activists and lawyers said they have been alarmed by an increasing number of young women, mostly in their early 20s — and even young men and boys — who seek their help. At least one young woman later committed suicide, they said, her ordeal beginning when she was put in a small room surrounded by a number of men and forced to sign a contract.

        The advocates said they are pushing the government to increase oversight of the industry as well as to close legal loopholes that allow such exploitation to occur.

      • Jeff Jensen

        You live in an ideal world.
        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors….

        When victims realize the con and try to break the contracts they are threatened with lawsuits and so give in.

        But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract….

        The group of activists and lawyers said they have been alarmed by an increasing number of young women, mostly in their early 20s — and even young men and boys — who seek their help. At least one young woman later committed suicide, they said, her ordeal beginning when she was put in a small room surrounded by a number of men and forced to sign a contract.

        The advocates said they are pushing the government to increase oversight of the industry as well as to close legal loopholes that allow such exploitation to occur.

      • Jeff Jensen

        You live in an ideal world.
        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors….

        When victims realize the con and try to break the contracts they are threatened with lawsuits and so give in.

        But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract….

        The group of activists and lawyers said they have been alarmed by an increasing number of young women, mostly in their early 20s — and even young men and boys — who seek their help. At least one young woman later committed suicide, they said, her ordeal beginning when she was put in a small room surrounded by a number of men and forced to sign a contract.

        The advocates said they are pushing the government to increase oversight of the industry as well as to close legal loopholes that allow such exploitation to occur.

      • Blair

        The beauty of illegal contracts is you’re not beholden to them

      • Inter Idoru

        Education through junior high is compulsory, but one doesnt need to attend public school. Tutors and in house education plans can be filed and the ward checks in. As for dormitories, that is the same as what boarding schools and universities provide for housing, so I wouldnt say its inhumane, just very isolating from the rest of the community. As is the way in any country, any situation of young kids being signed into long term harsh contracts, the companies prey on lower income families who see this as their way out. Yes, there should be better regulation on the idol industry practices, but currently there are not.

      • Jeff Jensen

        Sorry, there are many teenagers who drop out of or do not even attend junior high school. I am happy that your children are doing well. But many Japanese children are not so lucky.

      • Blair

        This is a story about adults

      • Jeff Jensen

        Blair, if so, then why did you write the following?
        “Children up to the age of 15 are required to attend school by law. If these managers are preventing them from attending school they are breaking the law and should be prosecuted. If by the age of adulthood a person doesn’t feel uncomfortable being naked and having sex on camera, then that’s their prerogative. That said, there should be stricter controls within the industry if what the article claims is true and women have been forced to do things they were not willing to do. “

      • Jeff Jensen

        Blair, if so, then why did you write the following?
        “Children up to the age of 15 are required to attend school by law. If these managers are preventing them from attending school they are breaking the law and should be prosecuted. If by the age of adulthood a person doesn’t feel uncomfortable being naked and having sex on camera, then that’s their prerogative. That said, there should be stricter controls within the industry if what the article claims is true and women have been forced to do things they were not willing to do. “

      • Blair

        “Japan’s Porn Industry Prey’s on Young Women”…the key word here being Women

      • Jeff Jensen

        You read only the headline?

        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors.

        Originally an aspiring TV talent, the woman decided to terminate her contract with the company after being forced to appear in a number of obscene job assignments while still a minor and in a porn film once she was an adult.

        “It seems to be widely assumed that these women agree to appear in porn movies,” said Hiroko Goto, a professor of law at Chiba University. “But they are sometimes minors and often young women in their 20s who are not yet socially empowered. They are being preyed upon by those with power and money.”

      • Jeff Jensen

        You read only the headline?

        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors.

        Originally an aspiring TV talent, the woman decided to terminate her contract with the company after being forced to appear in a number of obscene job assignments while still a minor and in a porn film once she was an adult.

        “It seems to be widely assumed that these women agree to appear in porn movies,” said Hiroko Goto, a professor of law at Chiba University. “But they are sometimes minors and often young women in their 20s who are not yet socially empowered. They are being preyed upon by those with power and money.”

      • Blair

        The “woman” decided to terminate her contract. “They are sometimes minors”…citation please

      • Jeff Jensen

        I cited the article above. Have you read only the headline?

      • Blair

        I read the article…it gave no case citations in which children were forced or coerced into signing contracts to do porn

      • Jeff Jensen

        Don’ be a sophist. Again, you are being disingenuous. This isn’t a scholarly paper, thesis, or monograph. And even they can be intentionally or unintentionally inaccurate. There is a lot of bad journalism, no doubt. But you cannot use that to support your argument because newspapers will not cite the way scholarly articles, etc., do. If you want sources, contact, JT. However, from this article:

        But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract.

        Originally an aspiring TV talent, the woman decided to terminate her contract with the company after being forced to appear in a number of obscene job assignments while still a minor and in a porn film once she was an adult.

        “These women are forced to perform in such sexually abusive movies against their will,” Yukiko Tsunoda, one of the lawyers, said.

      • Jeff Jensen

        Don’ be a sophist. Again, you are being disingenuous. This isn’t a scholarly paper, thesis, or monograph. And even they can be intentionally or unintentionally inaccurate. There is a lot of bad journalism, no doubt. But you cannot use that to support your argument because newspapers will not cite the way scholarly articles, etc., do. If you want sources, contact, JT. However, from this article:

        But in one case last September, the Tokyo District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by a porn production company against a woman in her 20s in which it was seeking more than ¥24 million in damages after she declared she would end her contract.

        Originally an aspiring TV talent, the woman decided to terminate her contract with the company after being forced to appear in a number of obscene job assignments while still a minor and in a porn film once she was an adult.

        “These women are forced to perform in such sexually abusive movies against their will,” Yukiko Tsunoda, one of the lawyers, said.

      • Jeff Jensen

        You read only the headline?

        The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors.

        Originally an aspiring TV talent, the woman decided to terminate her contract with the company after being forced to appear in a number of obscene job assignments while still a minor and in a porn film once she was an adult.

        “It seems to be widely assumed that these women agree to appear in porn movies,” said Hiroko Goto, a professor of law at Chiba University. “But they are sometimes minors and often young women in their 20s who are not yet socially empowered. They are being preyed upon by those with power and money.”

      • Hyperbole Hunter

        seriously please read the whole article

      • Blair

        I did

      • Blair

        This is a story about adults

  • Download

    >The majority of the cases have their genesis in coercive or fraudulent signing of contracts — sometimes targeting minors.

    ‘Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it’

    This is like WW2 comfort women all over again. Just like how in the past Japan deceived women into becoming prostitutes, Japan is now deceiving women into becoming porn stars. Japan attempt at white washing history has now cause them to repeat the same mistake again.

    • KetsuroOu

      This is nothing at all like WW2 all over again. “Japan” is not now deceiving women into becoming porn stars. Exploitative and possibly criminal groups of Japanese people are, but other Japanese people like the activists and lawyers mentioned in the article are trying to stop this.

      Furthermore, the Tokyo District Court ruled against one of these exploitative companies, allowing one of the actress to break her contract. So the government, “Japan”, is actually doing the opposite of what you claim.

      • Download

        Maybe, just maybe if Japan didn’t attempt to whitewash their history and teach in school on how Imperial Japan deceive women into becoming prostitutes,Japan women perhaps would be more knowledgeable,aware and be more careful of this contract fraud thing.

      • Blair

        wrong article…move along

  • Dave Doyle

    Japanese porn has the reputation of being full of the most kinkiest porn in the world. Some of the stuff depicted is abusive beyond belief. But i have never seen what could be called “under age” or very young wome. The porn industry, in any part of the world is exploitative.I have also seen older women in some movies. So who knows the truth. The reformed actresses? With an axe to grind? Anyone going into the porn industry knows what they are getting into, otherwise they must be very stupid. Many make a very good living. It’s the one industry where women make more money than their male counterparts.

  • Dave Doyle

    Japanese porn has the reputation of being full of the most kinkiest porn in the world. Some of the stuff depicted is abusive beyond belief. But i have never seen what could be called “under age” or very young wome. The porn industry, in any part of the world is exploitative.I have also seen older women in some movies. So who knows the truth. The reformed actresses? With an axe to grind? Anyone going into the porn industry knows what they are getting into, otherwise they must be very stupid. Many make a very good living. It’s the one industry where women make more money than their male counterparts.

    • Michele Marcolin

      I agree.

  • skillet

    I remember in the 90’s, every day when I would get my mail in our apartment unit, I would see lots of little papers with pornographic shots. Does that still exist ?

    No matter how bad a day I had had, I could always have a little chuckle on the way up to my aparrtment as a sorted through the hottie phone lines. Never called. But I had a friend who used to collect the advertisements. Funny dude.

    I heard that the beer machines disappeared. I was sad about that. I agree the porno is in bad taste and some kids buy beer when they should not.

    But I say, just leave people alone. Let them enjoy what they want to enjoy. American feminist culture corrupting Japan.

    Some people like sushi, and others like cheese toast.

    I personally miss my whale meat !

    • Uchinanchu

      I don’t think it’s about people being able or not to enjoy what they want. It’s about sexual abuse and, perhaps, certain social issues which allow this abuse of human rights -and dignity- to happen. As you stated, just leave people alone; no girl should be psychologically forced into doing something she doesn’t want to. it’s not about porno being in bad taste or not, neither is it against the concept of pornography. It’s about protecting young girls from abuse.

      I also disagree with your comment about American feminist culture corrupting Japan, partly because I don’t think America has much to do with the gender issues in Japan (I am not American, by the way). First of all, I won’t use the word “feminism”, because it could bring certain negative connotations for some people, even if the whole meaning of it is equality. So, I will speak of equality. Does your comment suggest you want Japan to stay fixed in its old values? Even if that means a sexist, unjust, out of date society? I believe times change, and thus society should also be able to adjust. If Japan being corrupted by western influence means a more equal country, by all means, let it be corrupted! I don’t mean to compare Japan to Europe, nor am I trying to take the moral high ground. I’m just trying to be reasonable.

      I would never want Japan to lose its cultural uniqueness. However, I don’t believe gender inequality or sexual abuse is something deemed worth keeping.

      • skillet

        No, I have become cynical about feminism. It starts out reasonably. Like in the 80’s and 90’s, it really was about equality. I certainly was happy for my wife to work. Always enjoyed cooking, cleaning at home and helping my wife. Actually, I was more keen on her being in the workplace than she was. But at the end of the day, whatever she decided was fine with me.

        I only became cynical in the past 5-10 years as feminism has morphed into this man-hating PC movement with rape culture hysterics and kangaroo courts. I have come to think that it is a sort of trojan horse and that other countries would do better to find their own solutions without the “help” of Western feminist gender warriors.

        When I see the feminist movement refusing to condemn the rapes by Muslim immigrants in Europe. And trying to hide it, I have come to see the feminist movement as having little to do with the betterment of conditions for women but simply pushing a radical leftist agenda across the board.

        It just leads me to think that it is not really about making things better for men and women, keeping women safe etc.

        It is a movement that has been made into a tool of other agendas. Gender equality can also mean valuing different gender roles equally.

    • Blair

      “phone clubs” are gone…beer vending machines are still here

      • skillet

        Thank God for the beer. Too bad about the girls.

    • Oi-Ocha

      whale meat is toxic

      • skillet

        yum yum

      • Blair

        cow meat is colon cancer

      • Jeff Jensen

        We do agree.

      • Jeff Jensen

        We do agree.

  • Michele Marcolin

    Probably 1) they should seek another job… 2) before deciding they should consult with friend and families 3) before signing a contract for videos and wealthy productions they should hire a lawyer. How happens that a minor can sign a contract without the authorization of her family and being forced to do things agains her will without the family say nothing…? These are absurdities.

  • Sarah

    It’s a good thing this is finally coming to light. There is a long hard road ahead, but girls in Japan should know they are doing the right thing by speaking out. Easier said for me a Westerner as it’s considered bizarre and hostile for a girl to speak out in Japan. It’s “unfeminine” there. (If I am wrong, let me know, but that’s the impression I get and that’s what I have been told by Japanese women)

  • Blair

    So, if that same girl drove a car while wasted and ploughed through a group of schoolchildren standing on a corner, she should bare no responsibility for killing them according to you, because “people are complicated” and not having perfected her moral compass we should absolve her of responsibility.

    • Billy Valvo

      Not an accurate analogy. It might apply if some sleaze ball convinced the girl in her drunken stupor that it would be a good and safe idea to drive. And in that case I would more readily single out the guy who deceived her… I guess you would also be okay with taking a blackout drunk girl to a hotel and raping her? Cause it’s not rape, it’s her decision and her fault, right?

      Look, I’m not saying there is 0 responsibility. But it’s not black and white and in this case the gray is heavily shaded to the black of the people deceiving and taking advantage of these girls. It seems like you just want to simplify and find someone to blame. It’s not simple. The people deceiving the girls are also likely not in that life because they think it’s the greatest thing to do. Judging from your other comments you are so eager to defend nearly everything about Japanese society and seem pretty proud to be a part of it, but you need to learn that it is a SOCIETY where people have a social responsibility to each other. Part of the responsibility is recognizing when people are being taken advantage of or being abused, and, at the very least, not participating in it. Don’t justify it.

      Sorry but I’m done here… if you don’t get it by now there is nothing more to do.

      • Blair

        It’s accurate in as much as when one becomes old enough to drink one must take responsibility for oneself if one is to drink. Just as one must take responsibility for oneself is one is to engage in sex. There is a reason SOCIETY has made laws concerning these matters. SOCIETY is foisting responsibility on it’s members by enacting laws that they must adhere to. Society doesn’t have the resources to babysit and hold the hand of each and every citizen though every moment in life. SOCIETY gives you until adulthood to be legally responsible for your own actions.

    • Billy Valvo

      Not an accurate analogy. It might apply if some sleaze ball convinced the girl in her drunken stupor that it would be a good and safe idea to drive. And in that case I would more readily single out the guy who deceived her… I guess you would also be okay with taking a blackout drunk girl to a hotel and raping her? Cause it’s not rape, it’s her decision and her fault, right?

      Look, I’m not saying there is 0 responsibility. But it’s not black and white and in this case the gray is heavily shaded to the black of the people deceiving and taking advantage of these girls. It seems like you just want to simplify and find someone to blame. It’s not simple. The people deceiving the girls are also likely not in that life because they think it’s the greatest thing to do. Judging from your other comments you are so eager to defend nearly everything about Japanese society and seem pretty proud to be a part of it, but you need to learn that it is a SOCIETY where people have a social responsibility to each other. Part of the responsibility is recognizing when people are being taken advantage of or being abused, and, at the very least, not participating in it. Don’t justify it.

      Sorry but I’m done here… if you don’t get it by now there is nothing more to do.