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Amazon Grapples With More Labor Strife, This Time in Japan

  • Drivers rebel against AI’s unrealistic delivery routes
  • Amazon workplace protests are spreading around the world
An Amazon fulfillment center in Japan. 

An Amazon fulfillment center in Japan. 

Photographer: Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP/Getty Images Inc., which is struggling to quell workplace movements from the US to Europe, faces a growing union effort in Asia’s second largest economy.  

A group of 15 subcontracted drivers in the southwestern city of Nagasaki is protesting the long hours and excessive number of deliveries in the absence of overtime pay. They blamed Amazon’s vaunted artificial intelligence algorithms for exacerbating their plight, by setting impossible deadlines and routes. The group formed a union this week and joined drivers in Yokosuka, just outside Tokyo, who organized in June.