Jake Adelstein, co-host of the program, correspondent for The Daily Beast
Shoko Plambeck, co-host, reporter and producer for Campside Media
Himari Iwamoto, journalist, translator and fact checker

14:00-15:00 Thursday, December 8, 2022
Language: The speech and Q & A will be in English.

Behind the scenes and a sneak preview of "The Evaporated: Gone With The Gods (神隠し)," the new series from podcast producers Campside Media and Sony Music Entertainment taped at the FCCJ

Join three FCCJ journalists and a fact-checker as they explain how they spent a year making a groundbreaking podcast about the 80,000+ people that go missing in Japan each year. The podcast is sponsored by Sony Music Entertainment.

What if someone close to you just vanished one day? In Japan, this happens surprisingly often. In fact, the Japanese have a word for it: johatsu, or "to evaporate; evaporation." And this is no new phenomenon. Ancient myths of kamikaushi (神隠し), or to be hidden by the gods, were created to make sense of johatsu.

Over 80,000 a year in Japan seemingly evaporate into thin air but that may be just the tip of the iceberg. As a rule, the police usually only allow family members or intimates to file a missing persons report. So back in 2018, when Jake Adelstein’s trusted accountant suddenly disappeared, just before tax-day, Adelstein's only option was to investigate without help from the police. And it turns out that the accountant had been tangled up in much more than taxes.

Adelstein, author of Tokyo Vice, and co-host Shoko Plambeck go in search of the evaporated accountant and take us on a journey into the world of Japan's johatsu-sha in the nine-episode series The Evaporated: Gone With The Gods. They encounter stories of the vanished whose disappearances were a choice––and those for whom it was the only choice.

This is personal for Plambeck: her family faced this choice when she was a child. "My father was involved in this incident where afterwards, the federal government suggested we go into witness protection and start entirely new lives. Otherwise, we could discreetly leave America and wait it out in hiding. My parents chose the latter."

"I am excited to take listeners into a colorful, mysterious realm that's yet to be explored in audio," said Adelstein. "I've been a reporter in Japan for nearly 30 years, and I'm sadly used to seeing people here one day, and gone the next. Including trusted sources. This series will take us into the underworld and beyond as we explore unique stories of Japanese society that have rarely been revealed before, including the worlds of police, yakuza, private detectives, night-movers and the vanished—as they pursue and hide from each other."

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