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Email usage in Japan 2021/7/7 16:42
Hello everybody!

I'm currently doing a study on workplace communication patterns across different cultures. I found out that Line is actually a very popular messaging platform in Japan. Do many people also use Line to communicate with their co-workers or is it mostly used to communicate with friends/ families? In where I live, Whatsapp is actually used very often in workplaces so im not sure if this applies in Japan (in the case of Line).

Any insights will be super helpful for me!
by Steve Yong  

Re: Email usage in Japan 2021/7/7 22:41
Hi Steve

I work in a restaurant in Japan and my boss has us all in a LINE group and he communicates our shifts for the week and any news we need to be aware of through that

I don't know if this is what you were interested in as I don't work for a big corporate company, just a small restaurant job but I hope it's helpful in some way
by Shelly (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Email usage in Japan 2021/7/8 00:17

I think it totally depends on what specific job you do, rather than the country. It also depends on the individual to a certain extent.

I've been doing the same job (translator) for decades, often with individuals of various ages or corporates in various continents as well as Japan, and no one has ever asked me for a Line account. I don't even have a smartphone. About once or twice a year, I'd text short messages (SMS) on my mobile phone if I have to. Other than that, all business communication and occasional lunch appointments with co-workers are done through email on my computer, if not by phone or face-to-face conversation.

I do know, however, that some of my friends in the industry do create Line groups with co-workers. I don't know what goes on there. I don't have to have anything to do with it, and they're still my friends and co-workers.

I hope it helps.
by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: Email usage in Japan 2021/7/8 00:21
I have heard of a word 'LINE banare' and was told that asking people at work and person who you have just met to add is not so welcomed that there is another word 'so hara' which is a shorter form of social media harassment. Many Japanese people seem to use it for contact their family and closed friend though.
by Mabuhay (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Email usage in Japan 2021/7/9 07:47
I've never heard of those terms that Mabuhay mentions, but I do understand what (s)he is talking about, and I feel that it shows that Line is generally meant to be used for "friendship".

Why I use "" is because it's often fake friendship. Once you're dragged into a group, you tend to be obligated to respond to every non-business message ASAP, and sometimes your group members expect you to put priority in those non-business messages than your business.

I say this, because I already felt that when people (particularly women) kindly put me in an email friendship group. Thankfully, all the other members moved on to Line. (And again, they're still my friends.)

Communication tools can be addictive. When I was young, I used to be on the phone with friends all night long. Then the world shifted to email, and now it's Line. In the same way, I feel that smartphones are addictive.

I'm not really saying we should ban them. But if we're going to utilize them, we should control it instead of letting the tools control us - which is the reason I try to be the first to stay out of them as long as it's possible. Considering how addictive I am, I don't think I'd be able to control them at all.
by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: Email usage in Japan 2021/7/9 11:57
Line is the most commonly used in Japan.
by H (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Email usage in Japan 2021/7/9 12:58
In general, from what I have seen, it will be Line for family and friends, then Skype, phone call, or e-mail for business interactions.

However, you can get involved with people that blur the lines between business and personal. My opinion is to avoid such, when possible. Skype is a very acceptable alternative to Line in Japan, and is more generally known across different countries.

With that typed, Line is very popular in Japan and people do use it for business communication. I just don't think that you should get trapped into a situation where business associates are messaging you in the middle of the night or forcing uncomfortable personal exchanges. Where with Skype, people tend to keep it more professional or business-like, if you choose to use it in that way. Doing phone calls is perfectly acceptable too, but Skype is free.

Lastly, if a personal interaction, various people prefer Line over giving out phone numbers. It's way easier to block people without worrying about unwanted calls.

by Rejo rate this post as useful

Re: Email usage in Japan 2021/8/17 23:01
Line for personal usage, ChatWork and email for work communication seems to be the standard for the IT industry here. You can send both personal direct messages as well as create group chats on ChatWork.
I'd say the bigger the company, the more likely they'll use email/ChatWork or something similar instead of Line.
by IT worker (guest) rate this post as useful

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