Masami Ito

Masami is a staff writer for the Life and Culture Division at The Japan Times. She is in charge of the weekly Sunday Timeout, covering various issues related to Japan, from alcohol/drug addiction and juvenile crime to female sushi chefs and kendama. Over her 15-year career, she has written extensively on Japanese politics, foreign policy and social issues.

For Masami Ito's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Pedal power: Bike-sharing services expand in Japan

Oct 21, 2017

Pedal power: Bike-sharing services expand in Japan

It's a little past 7:30 a.m. at Shinagawa Station's bustling Konan Exit. The air is crisp on this beautiful autumn morning, with hundreds of people passing through the fourth busiest rail hub in Tokyo on their way to various appointments. Just off to the side ...

Winning the battle against breast cancer

Sep 30, 2017

Winning the battle against breast cancer

Oct. 1 marks the start of the annual Pink Ribbon campaign to raise awareness about breast cancer. Pretty in pink: Tokyo Skytree is illuminated in pink on Oct. 1 last year to mark the beginning of breast cancer awareness month. | COURTESY OF ESTEE ...

A ruff guide to Seeing Eye dogs in Japan

Sep 23, 2017

A ruff guide to Seeing Eye dogs in Japan

Ariel is a devoted labrador. Named after the title character in Disney's "The Little Mermaid," Ariel can’t get enough of her user, 37-year-old Kanako Suzuki. Ariel rolls on her back, begging to be petted, and when Suzuki joins her on the floor, the animal ...

Commuters fight back against groping

/ Jul 30, 2016

Commuters fight back against groping

Takako Tonooka's life at high school did not start out the way she had anticipated. On the very first day she attended class, she was groped on the train — and that was only the beginning of her nightmare. For a year and a ...