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A message to everyone reading our daily re...

SJ-David's Photo SJ-David 09 Jan 2017

The following message was posted on all of our Now reports today, but we thought we'd post it here as well.


A message from SnowJapan to everyone reading the Now reports

Please do take a few moments to read this. Thank you.

This message is being posted on all the daily Now pages on SnowJapan today. It does not apply to any one report in particular - we just wanted everyone reading our reports to see it.

Firstly, a very Happy New Year to everyone. And thank you for using SnowJapan and reading our reports. We are always really excited to see how many people read them every day; it’s in the tens of thousands of people. We hope you like them, and are enjoying the new content we developed for this season.

We’re even more excited when it snows.

And we can hardly contain ourselves when it snows like crazy. That is what us long-term residents of Japan consider to be the norm here.

Continuing on from last season, the first part of this winter season in Japan has obviously not been classic in terms of snowfall – far from it in many regions - but we are still very hopeful that the Nihon-rashii (Japan-like) heavy and consistent snowfall will arrive.

When it happens, it really is truly something to be in awe of.

With such a large number of people reading our website and daily reports - effectively using them as the main guide on how the Japan winter season is shaping up - we take that responsibility very seriously. The integrity of our reports is extremely important to us. We need them to always be up-front, truthful and not to shy away from the truth.

We advise the people who post the reports that it is fine to get really excited about excellent conditions, but at the same time it is essential to also report things that are less exciting. Like rain. Or a lack of snow. Or poor snow conditions.

Such reporting is not ‘being negative’. It’s reporting the truth even if none of us particularly like it. Whatever is happening, that is what should be in the reports.

One of the things that makes SnowJapan unique is the fact that we are not here to convince you to visit any one region of Japan. We’re not here to ask you to book accommodation, or to join tours, or to take ski lessons. We’re not asking you to buy anything either. Rather, we are here to provide independent and correct information from around Japan - free from the inevitable pressures of having to sell and market specific services.

Unfortunately, when snow conditions are less than perfect some people do take issue with our position regarding reports. Sadly, it is a fact that there are some folk out there who would prefer that true conditions not be known - they would prefer people to believe snow conditions are always close to what the marketing blurb says, whatever the actual reality is. At times, we have been asked by businesses to ‘avoid mentioning the rain’ and to ‘sugar-coat the conditions’, as well as receiving more forceful requests that border on demands.

(Important note: We’re not implying that most people are like that – far from it).

Surely anyone visiting a ski resort would much prefer an honest report over something that reads like a brochure? Even if it means talking about things that might not paint a perfect picture.

(Which would you prefer?)

Anyway, we just want to assure our readers that even with increasing pressure to sometimes do otherwise, we have no intention of changing the way we do things.

Just a few further related points while we are here.

Each regional report is written by a different person and so it is natural that each has its own personality or character. Some of the reports are longer than others; some are shorter; some are more humorous; some cover one ski resort; some cover a wider region.

Posting a report every single day - day in and day out, without a day off, for over five months - is a considerable commitment and a real responsibility. If a report appears later than usual, or a report is missed, or is shorter than usual, etc… we’re sorry, but sometimes it might happen. The people posting the reports are indeed real humans with their own lives, and sometimes circumstance might get in the way. (If a report is missed we’ll try to post a backdated report - when possible and especially when there was snowfall).

We’re not claiming that our reports are perfect, but we do what we can to try and provide the best reports that we can.

We are happy to pass on any comments to our reporters, but please understand that it is not possible for them to respond to specific questions and comments. We already ask enough of them every day. All (well, almost all, see below) feedback is welcome. It does not have to be positive. We have long been very aware that we will never be able to provide something that satisfies everyone, but we are always keen to hear on how people feel we can further improve things.

It’s always very nice to hear from people who are reading the reports and just want to say hi and pass on some friendly comments as well.

So, anyway, here is the form if you would like to contact us:

Contact form

Please note:

* We’re not going to enter into discussions with people contesting the accuracy of how much snow we report has fallen. Stuff like “It was 23cm, not 18cm!!!!!!”. If you feel something in our reports is wildly off the mark, please do let us know and we will certainly look into it. But hopefully that won’t happen because we do keep an eye on the numbers and we also trust our reporters, their consistency and their integrity in reporting.

* If you are feeling the urge to send us an aggressive or demanding email, before doing so please remember… our service is a free service – and one that a lot of people put a lot of effort into every day throughout the year. As a rule, we generally ignore anything aggressive or demanding anyway.

And if you haven’t already read it, here is our main ‘About the daily Now reports on SnowJapan’ information page, so please do take a look:

About our daily reports

I’d like to end this post by perhaps stating the obvious in that of course we absolutely love snow and Japan. It’s why SnowJapan was created in the first place back in 1999 and remains the same now. And it is why a few of us literally put our lives into constantly improving it and moving forward.

We want nothing better than to be able to report consistent and large amounts of snowfall falling on the Japanese mountains with excellent conditions everywhere.

But we’ll only report it when it happens!

Here’s to a fine rest of the season.

Thank you for reading.

SJ-David's Photo SJ-David 16 Jan 2017

Oh no, it’s another general message from SnowJapan!

Apologies for taking up space on the reports again, but we have had a few people asking why our reports don’t appear much earlier in a morning. It’s a fair question and I’ll try to answer it. There are a few reasons...

First, it seems necessary to point out that <b>we are not a ski resort</b> and <b>our reports are not official ski resort reports</b>. Some people seem to think (or just presume) these things. If we owned and operated a ski resort, I’m fairly certain that we would make it a high priority to post updates as early as possible each morning - how much new snow at top and at base, snow depth, conditions. We’d also be sure to have multiple and meaningful webcams pointing out to locations around the resort. But we’re not official ski resorts/reports.

These things are what ski resorts should ideally be doing, right?

It varies, but a fair number of Japanese ski resorts only post their morning updates after 8am - and sometimes later. If we (SnowJapan) posted our reports earlier than we currently do, we would often miss important information - like news of how much fresh snow ski resorts are reporting, news of any early morning lift disruption at the start of the day, etc. We would often be missing that kind of information.

We like to think of our reports as a season-long ongoing commentary, rather than simply an early morning report for people who are going to be queuing for the first lift of the day. And after all, people who are lucky enough to already be at a ski resort and hitting the first lifts can get a good idea of weather conditions by taking a look outside of the window when they get up.

If we posted our reports just for the benefit of those people, the reports would not be as good or detailed as they are. We feel that our way makes for better all-round reports.

In addition, there’s also the people who post the reports and their circumstances to consider. They probably need some coffee and toast before posting, they may need to dig themselves out of their home, they may need to see to other complexities life throws at them. And - some of the reports in particular - take much longer than just a few minutes to put together each morning.

For a bit more on that kind of thing, please refer to my previous message. It can be found above.

There are many new people using the website, and our traffic records are being broken every day at the moment. Thank you. Please be sure to read our “About” pages associated with the daily report pages and ski resort listing pages – they cover a lot of information.

About our daily reports

About our ski resort pages