March 12, 2017 / 5:28 PM / 6 months ago

Japan's decluttering guru Kondo now has an app for tidying up

Japanese author and creator of the KonMari Method to declutter, Marie Kondo, is interviewed by Reuters at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Music Film Interactive Festival 2017 in Austin, Texas, U.S., March 11, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - The newest tool for internationally acclaimed organizing guru Marie Kondo in her global battle against messy rooms is an app.

“My goal is to have as many people as possible who can get the job done in tidying up,” she said in an interview after speaking at the South by Southwest technology conference in Austin, Texas over the weekend.

“To achieve that, I’m implementing various measures, one of which is the app to support decluttering,” said the woman whose name has been turned into a verb by followers who clean out clutter at home and say that have “Kondoed” their closets.

Kondo is known to global audiences for her best-selling books, including “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing,” which has been translated from Japanese to more than 40 languages, with more than 7 million copies sold worldwide.

The app called “KonMari,” was launched a few months ago and gives out organizing tips, allows people to share before and after pictures, and provides a platform for her followers to socialize.

The followers of the woman who earned a spot on Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People list in 2015 call themselves “Konverts.”

But her critics see her as an irritating presence with a cult-like following, harping on the glaringly obvious need to be better organized.

Kondo has made an art of folding clothes into optimal shapes for storage and her KonMari disciples see her words as a philosophy about seeking a happier life by putting their homes in order.

Kondo spends 80 percent of her time outside of Japan, but with the help of technology, she wants to knock on the doors of more homes around the world.

“Tidying up is a broad theme that is relevant to anyone in any country,” said Kondo, who has a knack for decluttering her quotes.

Reporting by Sachi Jenkins; Editing by Jon Herskovitz and Nick Zieminski

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