Tokyo Olympics ticket site jammed with traffic on launch day
Nikkei -- May 10
The online ticketing site for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo opened on Thursday, only to be overloaded by a stampede of visitors, with many customers unable to access the lottery application for long stretches of time.

The games' organizing committee had taken steps to prepare for the initial wave of traffic. A virtual "waiting room" able to accommodate tens of thousands of users was set up to handle the overflow if too many people tried to visit at once. A committee insider expressed confidence that applicants "should be able to complete the process without delay."

But when the site opened at 10 a.m., the traffic load was so heavy that 13,000 people were shunted to the waiting room within the first minute. In just 15 minutes, users were unable to even connect to the waiting room, instead seeing a message informing them that the website is "currently experiencing a very high volume of visitors" and telling them to try again later.

The waiting room queue reached roughly 180,000 visitors at its peak around 5 p.m., according to the committee. The site received a total of 1.3 million access attempts between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

The committee believes some users were under the mistaken impression that tickets were being sold based on application order, rather than via a lottery, leading to a rush to get in first. It urged people to take their time, as applications can be submitted through May 28.

The planners also say slow processing of login attempts apparently contributed to the problem. While 3.19 million had already signed up for IDs as of 12 a.m. Thursday, many who had not yet registered were also trying to access the login page, possibly aggravating the traffic issue.

東京五輪のチケット申し込みが9日午前10時から始まる。チケットは、インターネットからIDの登録をして申し込み、抽選に当たれば購入できる仕組みで、申し込みの締め切りは今月28日となっている。抽選結果は6月20日に発表され、購入手続きの終了は7月2日となっている。
News sources: Nikkei, ANNnewsCH
Sep 19
A member of the House of Representatives has tested positive for the novel coronavirus and was admitted to a hospital, the Lower House’s secretariat said Friday, the first confirmed infection of a Japanese lawmaker. (Japan Times)
Sep 19
An international research team including a Japanese scientist on Thursday won the Ig Nobel Acoustics prize after showing that an alligator’s pitch rises after it inhales helium-enriched air. (Japan Times)
Sep 19
The former chairman of Japan Life Co, a now-bankrupt company, was arrested Friday along with 13 others on suspicion of running a "rental owner" investment scam involving clothing, jewelry and other goods it claimed had health benefits, police said. (Japan Today)
Sep 19
The Tokyo Metropolitan Government has confirmed 220 new coronavirus cases on Friday. (NHK)
Sep 19
The Japanese government has decided to set up a system to exempt athletes competing at next year's Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games from entry restrictions currently placed on 159 countries and regions due to the novel coronavirus that forced the games' postponement, sources familiar with the matter said Friday. (Kyodo)
Sep 19
Japan's new prime minister will pursue economic structural reforms through a mixed bag of policies that target specific industries, rather than a grand strategy to reshape society and boost long-term growth. (Japan Today)
Sep 18
Tourism businesses in Japan are starting to sell travel packages to and from Tokyo under the government's "Go To Travel" campaign to stimulate domestic tourism. (NHK)
Sep 18
Tokyo Disneyland's new area with attractions featuring characters and sets from 'Beauty and the Beast' will welcome the public starting Sept. 28, operator Oriental Land Co. said Thursday. (Japan Times)
Sep 18
Japan's government is easing entry restrictions for travelers from Singapore on Friday to allow short-term visits by businesspeople between the two countries. (NHK)
Sep 17
Japan's new prime minister says he will prioritize measures against the coronavirus and its economic fallout. Suga Yoshihide is taking over from Abe Shinzo, a close ally who was Japan's longest-serving prime minister. (NHK)
Sep 17
More than half of Suga Yoshihide's cabinet ministers were part of an Abe government -- a reflection of the new leader's intentions to continue his predecessor's policies. (NHK)
Sep 16
A government survey shows that the number of centenarians in Japan has exceeded 80,000 for the first time ever. (NHK)
Sep 16
Japan's Hayabusa2 space explorer will aim to probe the asteroid "1998KY26" located between the orbits of Earth and Mars in 2031 after completing its current mission of collecting samples from another asteroid, the country's science minister said Tuesday. (Kyodo)
Sep 16
Fraudulent e-money withdrawals in Japan have expanded to five other service operators in addition to NTT Docomo Inc, internal affairs minister Sanae Takaichi said Tuesday. (Japan Today)
Sep 14
Japan's main ruling party has elected Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide its new leader. (NHK)
Sep 13
Japanese tennis star Osaka Naomi has won the women's singles title at the US Open. (NHK)
Sep 13
Japanese director Kurosawa Kiyoshi has won the Silver Lion for best director at the 77th Venice Film Festival. (NHK)
Sep 12
Japan and Britain have reached a broad agreement on a new economic partnership. (NHK)
Sep 12
The Tokyo Metropolitan Government says it confirmed 226 new cases of the coronavirus in the capital on Saturday. (NHK)
Sep 12
Gunma Prefectural Police launched a murder case after the female manager of a love hotel in Maebashi City was fatally stabbed on Thursday, reports Jiji Press (Sept. 10). (tokyoreporter.com)