Japanese worker fired for being out of frame during Zoom video call

He was only employed for 1 month.

Jason Fan | May 22, 2020, 04:42 PM

With the global Covid-19 pandemic showing no signs of stopping, long, drawn out Zoom calls have become de rigueur for many employees working from home.

However, for an unlucky employee in Japan, who was barely a month into his new job, such a Zoom call had caused him to be fired.

He was deemed to have been disrespectful and had his chin out of frame during the Zoom call, among other reasons.

Terminated due to "bad manners"

According to Soranews24, a graduate from Hosei University in Tokyo, who was given the pseudonym Yota Yoshida, was one of 300 new recruits at an unnamed company in Japan.

Due to growing Covid-19 concerns, all the new recruits were instructed to attend an online training course, which was to stretch from April to July.

They were instructed to wear a dress shirt and log onto the company chat room daily, which Yoshida promptly did throughout the month of April.

However, at the end of April, Yoshida was abruptly asked to visit the company's office, just before Japan's Golden Week holiday.

This would be Yoshida's first physical visit to the company, ever since he was hired.

When Yoshida got to the office, he was immediately told that he was terminated due to "bad manners during online training".

According to Soranews24, the company representative explained that Yoshida could be seen wearing a cardigan over his dress shirt, his chin was occasionally out of frame during video calls, and his knee could be seen in the frame at times as well.

"We are an IT company that attaches great importance to manners over technology", said the company representative.

Plans to go back to school as he has missed the hiring window for the year

Yoshida was reportedly offered to be paid for the month of May, if he voluntarily resigned at the end of the month.

It was reported that he used the money towards tuition debts and previous travelling expenses, and is now currently crowdfunding his tuition for a vocational school and the cost of a MacBook Air, in order to learn programming and find a new career path.

Although his actions may seem peculiar, Soranews24 explained that in Japan, those who cannot find jobs immediately after university are potentially stigmatised, and their employment prospects will drop significantly.

According to Nikkei Asian Review, most new graduates start their first year of work at the same time in April, and that Japanese companies focus heavily on recruitment of new graduates during this time.

Given that he has missed the hiring window for 2020, it is perhaps for the best that he plans to go back to school.

Top image from Unsplash.