What do you give a group of people who have fingers too large to text and a hard time connecting with 21st Century technology? An iPad, of course! The Japan Sumo Association is distributing around sixty iPads to all of the training facilities and top association officials to help improve communications between the groups who have, until now, still mostly relied on "outdated" tech like telephones and fax machines to share information.
The sport has come under fire recently amidst many scandals including apprentice hazing, gambling, match fixing, and gang ties. Clumsy and ineffectual information sharing between leaders has been tagged as a major culprit, and the JSA is hoping that the iPad will help the sumo leadership connect in ways that are nearly physically impossible with a cell phone or even a computer for the sport that has been slow to adopt new tech.
"It seems rather easy to use," association chief Hanaregoma said following a brief training session on the popular tablet gadget. "Sending emails was very easy." Hanaregoma also stated that although he can read texts on his phone, he doesn't know how to reply and rarely uses a computer. This is commonplace among the Sumo, who are tightly bonded with their traditions and ancient ways. "If we place this (iPad) in all the stables, we should be able to contact them anytime," the association's spokesman Nishonoseki has said.