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Console giant Sega has assigned 12 disgruntled employees at its Tokyo headquarters to sit in a windowless room from 9am to 5.45pm every day "waiting" for nothing to happen, in order to avoid a financial slap from the authorities.

The 12 employees claim the videogame giant is bullying them into quitting, According to an intriguing article at Mainichi News.

Sega is obliged to abide by the workers' request to be posted at the company's Tokyo headquarters under law, but says there is no work for them to do there.

The company's labour union, of which all 12 are members, is furious. "Transferring a full employee can only take place with the consent of the worker, but this is simply a unilateral order issued by the company," a rep told Mainichi. "Anybody who refused to obey the order was shunted off into the separate room. It's outright bullying."

Many employees had to be removed from their posts at Sega due to restructuring of the business, with the company struggling to balance its books. Sega has usually lent full employees to subsidiaries, but from yesterday morning, any employees sent to an affiliate company will go as full employees of that company and not of Sega Corp. The 12 holdouts are refusing to abide by the new policy, and the union is angry at their treatment.

Their job description is now "waiting, because there are no foreseeable duties at the moment, with working hours continuing as they have been." ®

Copyright © 2001 Eurogamer.net. All rights reserved.

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