NJPW President Takami Obhari has requested for the vocal crowd noise ban in Japan to be lifted.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, New Japan Pro Wrestling has seen their business significantly decrease. Since then, NJPW shows have seen fans not be able to freely cheer.
Instead, the New Japan audiences had only been allowed to clap until NJPW announced that some fans could cheer at reduced-capacity shows, starting in September.
On Tuesday, several heads of combat sports companies held a meeting in Japan, marking the first time they assembled since 2020.
The professional wrestling industry was represented by Ohbari, NJPW Chairman Naoki Sugabayashi, CyberFight President Sanshiro Takagi, and TJPW Co-Founder Tetsuya Koda.
Speaking on behalf of NJPW and professional wresting itself, Obhari made two requests at the meeting. One request centered around lifting the ban on vocal crowd noise in venues that are completely filled.
Elaborating more on the request, Obhari said:
“There is a rule that says that if there is no vocal crowd noise, then the venue can accommodate 100% of the audience, but I would like you to reintroduce such a rule set by the government.”
“There are venues and municipalities that do not accept the new rule, which states that areas with shouting can be accommodated at 50 percent capacity, while areas without shouting can be accommodated at 100 percent capacity, and these can coexist.”
“Public agencies are no longer tracking people who have come into close contact with the public. Many venues are still required to have the contact information of individuals. The handling of personal information is very sensitive and burdensome.”
In response to the request, the lead representative of the group revealed that they are consulting with experts regarding vocal crowd noise in venues, and they will continue to study the situation.
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