Sannenzaka Correspondence

Editors’ Diary 19/08/2023

During holidays, the urban landscape witnesses a metamorphosis in the ebb and flow of individuals. Coined as “Jinryu” (human flow), this terminology reflects the dynamics of movement exhibited by individuals during their leisure time. It’s worth noting that communication and digital technologies facilitate the meticulous monitoring of these intricate patterns.

Admittedly, within the domain of journalistic endeavors, there emerges an occasional dichotomy where reporters grapple with the challenge of opposing such dynamic shifts. At times, they emit information without the sensitivity to context, leading to the rapid creation of articles through expedited phone interviews and the incorporation of provided photographs. However, in recent times, a conspicuous impression has solidified that certain digital news desks within several newspapers are proceeding with an approach that conspicuously overlooks context. The result is a morning distribution of insipid headlines that hardly anyone among the Japanese populace places their trust in this.

The notion that news articles needn’t necessarily find readership is a comprehensible sentiment. Take, for instance, articles centered around a woman escorting her kid to pursue higher education in an American university. These pieces, often referred to as “Hitomono” (human-interest stories), epitomize a conventional approach, one that is effective from a journalistic perspective yet often embellished with exaggeration.

In actuality, the quantity of Japanese individuals embarking on prolonged graduate studies in American universities has markedly dwindled. The majority of candidates are male like me, and the significance of such trajectories within Japan’s labor market is marginal at best. This factual foundation eclipses the narratives considerably. During my academic tenure, I had the privilege of interacting with a UCLA female student grappling with the rigors of job hunting within Japan’s labor market. In the realm of newspaper reportage, her case ought to have assumed precedence.

Given the eroding readership of newspapers, it is foreseeable that the proliferation of peculiar headlines will intensify in the coming years. However, the longevity of the endeavor to symbiotically align with financial institutions while adroitly navigating diversified managerial strategies, all the while emanating a sense of judicious moderation, remains an enigma.

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