—-by Christopher Johnson Japan Journalist —-
Amid allegations of cyber-bullying, Panasonic security engineer Ken Nicolson on Tuesday called a reporter a “Dead Sheep” in a scathing article on his stalker site Japologism.com.
The UK-born Nicolson, who has been with Panasonic since 1998, is founder of the sites Tepido.org and Japologism.com, which are dedicated to harassing Japan Times columnist Debito Arudou and other reform-minded critics of Japan.
On February 26, 2013, Nicolson posted a message threatening action against this reporter for releasing a 9000-word article documenting cyber-bullying by foreigners in Japan during regular business hours at major corporations. “Mr Johnson, I think I’ve put you in check,” Nicolson wrote. “You have in my opinion recklessly disregarded lot of things that have happened in the pursuit of your vendetta.”
Referring to his cohort Adrian Havill of Google Japan, Nicolson wrote: “I don’t think he got to where he is today without knowing the right time to be a hard-nosed bastard. I reckon you’ll soon be informed of a couple of facts that, well, I don’t want to spoil the surprise.” US-born Havill, a mid-level manager at Google Japan, claims that he has legally changed his name to Eido Inoue and renounced his US citizenship to become Japanese.
A number of sources in the Globalite Magazine article released this week accused Nicolson and Havill of leading a group of “cyber-haters” to harass foreigners in Japan, including a large number of journalists, activists, teachers and others who have questioned the government’s handling of immigration, the Fukushima nuclear meltdown and the killing of dolphins and whales. They say that Nicolson, Havill and others wrote thousands of comments on Japologism.com, Japan Probe and other sites during their regular work hours at Panasonic and Google, with the effect of staining the online reputations of their targets on Google searches. They have been compared with Japanese cyber bullies on 2chan, and with China’s alleged military unit known as “The Comment Crew.”
Havill, who recently wrote 1500 words in comments on a Japan Times article, has admitted he wrote a 2700-word unsigned article on Japan Probe in 2011 vowing to “discredit” journalists in Japan. Dozens of unsigned Japan Probe attack articles appear high up on Google searches for reporters for BBC, CNN, the New York Times, the Japan Times and many others. The articles also attacked foreigners in Japan, including English teachers, who questioned levels of nuclear radiation in Japan. While Japan Probe claims to have 24 anonymous editors and contributors, sources have accused Havill of secretly writing many attack articles.
Panasonic and Google have not replied to requests this week for comment.
Nicolson in Japologism on Tuesday called the Globalite Magazine article “yet another screed of ill-sourced nonsense.” He said the 9000-word article, which cites dozens of examples of hateful comments, “failed completely to demonstrate” that Nicolson is involved in cyber-bullying. He demanded the reporter “withdraw that accusation.”
Nicolson on Wednesday published a number of comments by people writing under phony pseudonyms. Many of the comments were made during regular business hours in Japan, calling into question how Japanese organizations, including Panasonic and Google Japan, supervise their foreign employees. Some names appeared for the first time on his blog, while others such as “VK”, have posted thousands of comments harassing foreigners in Japan.
Below are screenshots of some of the comments on Japologism.