Almost two years on from a damning report about life for Konami workers, fresh allegations have been made about the company’s treatment of its workforce.
Specifically, it has been alleged that Konami makes a pro-active effort to prevent former workers from gaining new employment.
Nikkei reports that a former Kojima Productions worker was told that their application for a job at a health insurance company that focuses on the games industry was blocked by the board chairman, who also happens to be a director at Konami.
Furthermore, an application from Kojima Productions itself to join the health insurance company has been denied.
Other former workers have also allegedly faced similar struggles. One recruitment agency even admits to telling companies if an applicant is an ex-Kon”, as Konami is known to file complaints with companies who hire its ex-workers.
Some companies apparently now employ an active policy of not recruiting former Konami staff merely to avoid the issue entirely, while there are anecdotal claims that some workers will take jobs in other fields before trying to rejoin the games industry so as to shunt Konami off their CV. Indeed, Konami requires that former staff do not name them on any future CVs, it is claimed.
It also claims that Konami contacted Hideo Kojima after his appearance at the 2016 Tokyo Game Show to express its unhappiness with remarks he made about the Konami-made Metal Gear Survive. The letter accused him of unfairly discrediting the company”.
It is also alleged that Konami is stalling payments owed to the Metal Gear creator, although Konami denies this and Kojima has not commented.
The Nikkei report contains all manner of odd details, such as the fact that Konami staff who wish to communicate with people from outside companies are allocated a temporary email that uses random numbers and letters to do so. This email is then terminated after a few months.
Employees who take more than their maximum lunch break are also named and shamed across the company, and all social media activity is monitored, with recriminations for those who like the posts of former employees.