2019 年 95 巻 p. 125-142
This paper focuses on the example of NHK’s welfare program Heartnet TV
（NHK ETV）, for reexamining the public broadcaster’s role of incorporating
“silent voices” via social media. An important issue for rethinking public broadcasting
journalism of the digital era is to connect various types of marginalized
audiences’ “silent voices” to the wider public sphere. In this respect, many studies
suggest the importance of examining democratic process through the interaction
between broadcasting and social media.
Nevertheless, few empirical studies examine how broadcasting journalistic
practices could be restricted by incorporating “silent voices” via social media.
For this reason, this paper examines whether the existing television journalism
could both incorporate various voices and represent them in words easily
understood by members of the wider society. Heartnet TV is a challenging journalistic
practice that tries to use minorities’ voices on social media for representing
social reality to the wider public.
This paper conducted qualitative discourse analysis by referring to program
contents and audiences’ interpretations in the official BBS and Twitter
regarding two of the program series: ⑴ the series regarding the Sagamihara
Disabilities Murder（ 2016）, which was a hate crime against people with mental
disabilities and ⑵ NHK’s Suicide Prevention Campaign “Television for Surviving”
（since 2014）, which has been projected for reducing young people’s suicides.
Many opinions regarding these program contents appeared in social
media from people affected by problems.
Finally, this paper concludes that there is a contradiction between both of
the two roles mentioned above: incorporating various opinions and representing
its complex reality in words at the same time. This result also suggests a structural
problem regarding a democratic process centered around autonomous
audiences and shows revising the traditional sender-receiver relationship on
complex media landscape as a task.