Tokyo-based employer’s limited-time offer helps anime fans better enjoy life with their 2-D spouse.
Recently, a number of legally-binding anime-themed wedding registration forms have gone into circulation in Japan, letting couples who share a love of, say, Pokémon, or Sailor Moon, make their first step into married life an otaku-appropriate one. We’ve even seen VR games that let users experience a wedding ceremony with an attractive 2-D partner.
Until now, though, we hadn’t heard of a company in Japan providing actual additional benefits to employees who’re married to an anime character. But should you be lucky enough to get hired by Akihabara-based tech developer Gatebox, the company will slip a little something into your paycheck each and every month to help give you and your 2-D love a better life.
Of course, the company has to guard against fraudsters who would try to abuse the system when they’re merely dating an anime character, so in order to secure the benefits you will have to provide documentation proving your married status. Thankfully, Gatebox itself provides the necessary marriage registration form here on its website, available in four different designs.
The forms ask for a plethora of information, starting with standard items such the name of you and your spouse. Gatebox would also like to know how you and your anime crush became acquainted, how you became a couple, where you proposed, your happiest memory together, and whether the bride will be keeping her maiden name or adopting her husband’s surname.
▼ As a company making virtual assistant AI technology, it’s no surprise that one of Gatebox’s marriage registration forms is futuristic-looking
▼ Although they have a plain form too
Once the form is filled out, it can be submitted either by mail or hand-delivered to Gatebox’s office, after which your marriage certificate will be mailed to you. While otaku are welcome to register their marriages with Gatebox as a gesture of their devotion to their favorite character, they can also opt for the wedding registration form to double as a job application, as Gatebox is currently hiring. Applicants who have filled out the wedding registration form, if hired, will receive an additional 5,000 yen (US$45) per month as a stipend to support their married life. They’ll also be allowed to take their spouse’s birthday off (it’s common for anime characters in Japan to have an official birthday), which is a service most companies in workaholic Japan don’t even provide for their employees with flesh-and-blood spouses.
▼ Gatebox marriage certificate
Speaking of flesh-and-blood spouses, Gatebox expressly states that these benefits are only available to applicants with non-human spouses (hand-drawn anime, 3-D animation, video game, and costumed characters are all allowable). Furthermore, while the harem genre continues to be one of the most popular in anime, applicants (who must use their real names) are not allowed to submit multiple marriage registration forms with different partners. “We ask that you submit paperwork only for the one individual your heart belongs to,” Gatebox says on its website.
On the other hand, the company progressively honor same-sex marriages, as well as inter-species ones, specifically mentioning that it has no objections to humans marrying elves, beast girls, or any other non-human characters. Gatebox also promises that the contents of the marriage registration forms it receives will be kept strictly confidential, and not made available for anyone other than the applicant to see.
While the extra 5,000 yen a month is likely built into the salary Gatebox was prepared to offer applicants anyway, the extra day of vacation really is a nice perk, as tongue-in-cheek rationale aside, it’s a cool gesture that the company realizes that everyone could use an extra day off now and again. However, there’s a limit to even Gatebox’s generosity, so applicants who want to lock in these benefits will need to submit their marriage registration/job application form by December 7.