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Japanese Government Moves Forward With Plans to Relax Visa Restrictions for Foreign Animators




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kinghumanity



Joined: 03 Nov 2014
Posts: 352
PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 12:00 am Reply with quote
So rather than paying Japanese animators a living wage, they are simply trying to exploit cheap foreigners?

Where have I seen this before...
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zrnzle500
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Joined: 04 Oct 2014
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 12:41 am Reply with quote

Somehow I don't think that is the official Cool Japan logo.
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mangamuscle



Joined: 23 Apr 2006
Posts: 2579
Location: Mexico
PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 1:09 am Reply with quote
zrnzle500 wrote:
Somehow I don't think that is the official Cool Japan logo.


Shhh, once they are through with the foreign slave labor they are going to (fill the blanks).
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AJ (LordNikon)



Joined: 14 Apr 2009
Posts: 418
Location: Tokyo & Maryland
PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 6:35 am Reply with quote
kinghumanity wrote:
So rather than paying Japanese animators a living wage, they are simply trying to exploit cheap foreigners?

Where have I seen this before...


I'm conflicted between door #1, which his Subaru (motors), or door #2 which is the Filipino nurse training academy working for ¥30/hr.

Regardless, there's plenty of room for expat exploitation in Japan, so I suppose paying sub-par expats, and by sub-par I mean lower than what the industry already paying skilled Japanese animators, to bolster the financial stability of the industry as it works pretty well right now.

TL;DR: Well, we can't really afford to pay Japanese animators a living wage, so let's just replace the ingrates with expats who no one in Japan will care about.
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Stuart Smith



Joined: 13 Jan 2013
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 9:22 am Reply with quote
kinghumanity wrote:
So rather than paying Japanese animators a living wage, they are simply trying to exploit cheap foreigners?


People often said Japan should be more like America.

Only half joking, because admittedly the only reason I don't hire foreigners is accountability if it comes down to a lawsuit. I suppose it depends on the industry and how frugal a person is.

-Stuart Smith
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Hoppy800



Joined: 09 Aug 2013
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 9:28 am Reply with quote
Getting citizenship though is still bollocks for the anime industry but at least there's training now providing you graduated from a Japanese university, and being an animator pays jack shit in Japan so exploitation is extremely high.
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aifhak



Joined: 06 Jan 2016
Posts: 57
PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 1:27 pm Reply with quote
kinghumanity wrote:
So rather than paying Japanese animators a living wage, they are simply trying to exploit cheap foreigners?

Where have I seen this before...


iirc the initiative mentioned in the article only speeds up the process to get a visa without changing the point-based system itself?
So you would still need to get to a certain amount of points to qualify for the visa via evaluation of your education, pay (that you're going to get in JP), your age (if you're below a certain age) etc.
And that's all stuff that's really high up there in terms of how hard or easy it is to fulfill. In fact people have criticized this very thing for being utterly impossible to achieve with even the average salaries japanese people get in the industry.

So long story short... I don't think foreign people are going to get paid less because of this... but I don't think someone who wants to become an animator is ever going to get in via this thing either. It's probably thought for people who earn a lot, are well educated (bachelors/masters), are still in their thirties and get their visa faster that way. Just that you usually don't start as a series director to back up those requirements without ever having done anything else in the industry. So that group of people is probably pretty nonexistent
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grooven



Joined: 16 Aug 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 2:07 pm Reply with quote
This is really sad. If they are actually trying to fix the animator shortage over there they need to pay them properly.
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MarshalBanana



Joined: 31 Aug 2014
Posts: 4420
PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 2:17 pm Reply with quote
kinghumanity wrote:
So rather than paying Japanese animators a living wage, they are simply trying to exploit cheap foreigners?
The Japanese government is not in charge of animation salaries.
grooven wrote:
This is really sad. If they are actually trying to fix the animator shortage over there they need to pay them properly.
it takes a lot of people to make animation, so even a big budget gets spread thin. I do not belive it is because they don't want to, but because they simply can not.
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SWAnimefan



Joined: 10 Oct 2014
Posts: 634
PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 9:02 pm Reply with quote
grooven wrote:
This is really sad. If they are actually trying to fix the animator shortage over there they need to pay them properly.


Easier said than done.

If you give animators a proper living salary, means the cost of Animation work will go up significantly. Anime that now cost $400,000 per episode will become $600,000 per episode. DVDs / BRs that's now $40 to $50 per set will become $70 to $80. Which very well will impact sales of anime. So to combat that, studios will have to focus on automation to do the work, or find cheaper labor to do it for them.

This is why in the US there is so much contention over minimum wage. Fast food restaurants like McDonalds need to retain a profit margin to stay a running business. So to stay in operation with the increase of minimum wage businesses have three options:

    1) Go automated (since robots don't need a wage)
    2) Reduce employee numbers to retain profitability
    3) Increase costs of the product. (Increasing that Big Mac from $3.99 to $5.99. Do you want to pay that much for a burger?)

** Figures in this post is used examples, not as facts.


But with Animators, it's not all doom and gloom like with fast food workers. Some studios like P.A. Works, have taken up the challenge to lessen the burden on animators by providing dorms, which reduces the burden of living expenses on their workers. So if other studios do the same, it might help the situation. If fans of anime have better methods to lessen the burden without adding burden to the consumer, I'm sure they would be open to suggestion.
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Jose Cruz



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
Posts: 1741
Location: Brazil
PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 9:26 pm Reply with quote
Animators make a low wage in Japan because they are willing to work for a low wage. That is, people who are animators are usually young people (mostly, young women) who live with their parents and can afford a job that is almost like a hobby. That is what allows Japan to produce hundreds of animated TV shows per year as the size of the local market is not large enough to support the anime industry as it is if animators made 50,000 dollars a year. But it can work if the average salary in the industry is low enough and there are people willing to work for low enough salaries.

Also, about 65% of all the animation work in these Japanese series is already done outside of Japan in places with cheaper labor like Korea, China, Philippines, Malaysia, etc.

Anyway, low wages in animation is a product of supply and demand in that market: demand for animation in Japan is not high enough to pull animator's wages very high up and there is the fact that supply of animators is apparently highly elastic as Japan's animation output increased because they were able to keep costs down because they can outsource a lot of the animation to cheaper countries while paying low wages for domestic workers.

Maybe with the growth in anime watching around the world with streaming platforms like netflix, crunchyroll, and in particular the growing Chinese demand for anime, the amount of money flowing in the anime industry will increase as it becomes more globalized like Hollywood and so animator's pay increases as well.
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