Various Blog-Tick readers have brought it to our attention that the EMTG system requires international Fish Tank members to register a Japanese phone number in order to apply for Fish Tank Only tour tickets.
To reiterate: according to the announcement on the Japanese Fish Tank site, international Fish Tank members (that is to say, Fish Tank members with addresses outside Japan) are ONLY allowed to purchase digital tickets.
To purchase digital tickets, you first have to install the EMTG app on your smartphone.
However, according to what y'all have told us, installing the EMTG app requires an SMS-equipped Japanese phone number with an 070, 080, or 090 area code.
Of course, it's highly unlikely that international Fish Tank members possess Japanese phone numbers. In fact, so far as we know, Japanese phone numbers don't even work outside of Japan.
Since international Fish Tank members can't have access to Japanese phone numbers, but are only allowed to purchase digital tickets, but a Japanese phone number is required for digital ticket purchases, what this means is that effectively, under the current system, international Fish Tank members are physically unable to purchase tickets through Fish Tank.
This, despite the fact that the cost of an international Fish Tank membership is the same as the cost of a Japanese membership, and access to Fish Tank tickets is the main benefit of joining Fish Tank.
Obviously, this is a totally unfair situation and needs to be solved immediately.
We sincerely doubt that Fish Tank, Victor, and EMTG intended this situation to occur when they set up their new system. As we explained in our previous article, it's likely that the people making the decisions are so out of touch with the needs of foreign fans that they never even considered the phone number issue. Surely, they want y'all to be able to purchase tickets, because they want your money, so it's in their interest to fix this problem as soon as they can.
Luckily, the ticket applications are open until July 24th, so you still have time.
What should y'all do?
Write to Fish Tank IMMEDIATELY, and explain the problem. We encourage you to use your own words. Write in Japanese if you can speak Japanese, but if you can't speak Japanese, do NOT use Google Translate. Instead, write in simple English. Fish Tank needs to see just how many foreign fans are out there who want tickets and who require English-language service. Every single person who is affected by this problem needs to write - the more complaints they get, the better. The more English letters they receive, the better - we want to impress upon them that the Japanese-only service thing is not going to work for international fans.
And do not think for a single hot minute that you aren't entitled to these tickets. This is the privilege you paid 6000 yen to join Fish Tank to receive. They are not giving you what you paid for, so you have every right to complain. If they weren't willing to do business with international fans, they should never have opened up Fish Tank to international membership, but the fact is that Fish Tank has accepted international members for as long as they've existed, and to stop now just because more people from overseas are joining would be crazy. Japanese companies are highly attentive to customer service and customer needs. If enough of you write to them, they will feel ashamed and they will fix the problem. Write immediately.
If this situation continues to develop, please keep us updated in the comments section. We can't check on international fan issues for ourselves because we are located in Japan.