Yoshimoto Kogyo’s Controversial Matsumoto Hitoshi Announcement Sparks Backlash | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Yoshimoto Kogyo’s Controversial Matsumoto Hitoshi Announcement Sparks Backlash

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“Differences Finally Emerge Between ‘Downtown’ Matsumoto Hitoshi and Yoshimoto, Previously Thought to be Inseparable Kindred Spirits.”

“At present, within our company, we are conducting fact-finding through interviews involving the parties, with the assistance of compliance advisors and external lawyers, following their guidance.”

On January 24, Yoshimoto Kogyo announced on its official website that it had issued a statement regarding the Downtown Matsumoto Hitoshi women’s scandal.

“Our Response Strategy to Weekly Magazine Reports and Similar Issues”

The company announced the following statement on its official website in response to the Downtown Hitoshi Matsumoto scandal.

“Recently, we became aware of articles indicating that multiple women who participated in gatherings associated with talents affiliated with our company, despite being private activities, experienced psychological distress. We acknowledge that this is a matter that requires sincere attention and response on our part.”

This was the first time the company expressed words of remorse.

Furthermore, during the Governance Committee meeting held on the 23rd, it was pointed out that, “After thorough fact-checking, it is necessary for the company to fulfill its responsibility to explain in some form.” The initial company comment stating “There are absolutely no such facts” caused misunderstanding in the public and seemed unclear, leading to confusion.

“On the other hand, there seems to be an image of a deviation from Matsumoto, who is asserting baseless claims. On the 24th, the fourth installment of revelations from Bunshun was published as a breaking news report, featuring a former talent who comes forward with her real name and face to talk about the damage, adding a strong impact to the situation.

In response, Yoshimoto issued a statement. While Matsumoto is personally taking legal action, for Yoshimoto, it’s challenging to easily align with Matsumoto when a woman is alleging harm. Yoshimoto seems to be in a half-helpless state” (Television industry insider)

In response to Yoshimoto’s announcement of progressing with fact-checking,

“A 180-degree turnaround from baseless claims.”

“Wait, were they defending Mr. Matsumoto without verifying the facts or having any basis?”

“It seems like Yoshimoto is finally steering towards cutting ties with Mr. Matsumoto.”

Various voices are pouring in, expressing a range of opinions.

Yoshimoto’s statement includes terms such as compliance and harassment. On the other hand, on the internet, videos of past performances by Yoshimoto comedians are circulating, bringing to light numerous instances where they have exhibited behaviors belittling the dignity of women. This has become a widely discussed topic.

For Yoshimoto, which is also involved in projects like the Osaka Expo, may have begun to think, 

“We cannot sink with Matsumoto on the same ship.'”

And they might be starting to consider this line of thinking—whether they can afford to be on the same boat as Matsumoto.


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