Commenting policy

By displaying reader comments, The Japan Times hopes to encourage a forum for discussion.

To foster an environment in which readers feel comfortable sharing their opinions, we aim to keep the conversations civil and focused. All comments on this site and other JT-related forums, such as Facebook, will be moderated in accordance with this Commenting Policy.

Comments found to be in violation of this Commenting Policy will be disallowed or deleted. Users who repeatedly violate this Commenting Policy will be warned and possibly banned from posting further comments.

If certain stories are found to attract a large volume of comments that contravene this Commenting Policy, the commenting function on those stories may be turned off.

[As of Feb. 22, 2021, commenting is only available to subscribers.]

How you treat others

  • Be civil: Don’t write anything that could be deemed libelous or defamatory.
  • Discuss the issues: Don’t make personal attacks or threats. As a rule, ad hominem comments directed solely at the story’s author or other commenters will be moderated. Focus on the ideas, not the individual.
  • Keep it clean:  Comments containing offensive language will be removed.
  • Show respect: Don’t disparage a person’s race, religion, color, gender or sexual orientation or generalize about a nationality or race.
  • ID check: With the goal of nurturing civil and constructive debate, we strongly encourage users to use their real names as their display names. We reserve the right to remove anyone who uses names that are offensive, convey ill intent or impersonate another individual.
  • Transparency: We understand that some users might desire anonymity, but please don’t abuse it to bully others.

Your intent

  • Share the floor: Do not attempt to monopolize a thread by responding to each and every comment. Make your point in the most relevant place. Commenters who post the same or similar comments on multiple stories will be treated as spammers.
  • Be original: Please read the comment thread before commenting.  Make sure that you’re introducing something new to the conversation. If you simply agree with another person’s comment, please upvote the comment.
  • Respond to the story’s take on an issue: Users who merely repeat an agenda and ignore the argument presented will be moderated.
  • Solicit elsewhere: Do not attempt to promote a site or product. Commenting or having a display name or signature designed to attract attention to your site, fan page or product is not allowed.
  • Use words, not volume: Don’t SHOUT your comment.
  • Be human: Don’t be a troll.

Commenting basics

  • Do not include a link without explaining why you are posting it. Comments that contain links automatically go into a pending status.
  • Do not use a comment signature linking to your website or your company’s website.
  • Never post contact information, such as email addresses or phone numbers.
  • As a rule, please comment in English. However, when appropriate, the mention of non-English words is acceptable.
  • Write clearly. Take a second to check before you submit your comment. One typo could change everything.

Comments about Japan Times’ moderation policies will not be displayed. The moderators’ decisions — be it the removal of comments or banning of commenters — will be final.

The Japan Times will not be held responsible for any misinformation in comments, nor do the opinions contained in comments represent the views of The Japan Times.

Per our site policy, your email address will be stored for administrative purposes but not shared with any third parties. For more information, see our privacy policy.

The Japan Times reserves the right to change these guidelines at any time, so when in doubt, please refer back to this page.

Comments will be closed on stories after a certain amount of time. If you want to comment on a story that lacks the ability to comment, let us know.


Found a mistake? Let us know here, not in the comments.

Having a technical problem? Contact us here.

[updated Feb 21, 2021]