Kokumin Kayo [songs for the public], Shi-no Rodoku [poetry recitation], and Monogatari [stories], to name a few, Kumao Okuya developed countless radio programs at the Osaka Central Broadcasting Station in the 1920s and 30s. Japan’s first live coverage of baseball and Rajio Taiso [radio exercises] were also introduced by Okuya. The philosophy of this extraordinary broadcaster focused on “guidance” by broadcasting. Back then, the most popular radio program was naniwabushi performance (Japanese traditional narrative singing). Okuno asserted it was not that the public would tune in to naniwabushi because they liked this genre but would rather become fond of naniwabushi because radio aired them. “Radio generates radio audience masses” was what he believed. Okuya, who strived to develop popular culture through broadcasts, even argued, We can say “broadcasting is the power to transform the characteristics of the times and the culture.” Nevertheless, we somewhat have déjà vu from the way he emphasized the guiding role of broadcasting. When Japan was entering turbulent times from the Manchurian Incident to the Second Sino-Japanese War, Kenjiro Tamura of the Ministry of Communications, who was featured in the third part of this series, asserted, “Times have changed from the days when radio programs were scheduled influenced by the social trends” and “Radio should make the public follow.” The guidance sought by Okuya, who wanted to develop popular culture, gradually became closer to and overlapped with the guidance sought by Tamura who intended to lead the public to cooperate in the war. Thus, Okuya devoted himself to creating recreation programs (what are called today entertainment programs). How were those programs transformed? The first installment of Part V delves into Kumao Okuya ‘s endeavor from his starting point.
“Series: Sixty Years of Educational Television” comprehensively analyzes programs aired on NHK’s Educational Television (ETV) that celebrated its 60th anniversary early this year. The second part of the series looks into the transition of the following three groups of programs: “hobby and lifestyle,” “women and childcare,” and “educational and cultural courses.” Traditionally, ETV’s program scheduling has been based on “the same type of content for the same time slot” in order to have a clear target viewership for each slot and help viewers to use programs for coordinated and systematic learning. Along with NHK High School Courses and language programs, which were covered in “Series: Sixty Years of Educational Television [Part I],” and school broadcast programs covered in The 2019 Annual Bulletin of NHK Broadcasting Culture Research Institute (the 63rd issue), “hobby and lifestyle” series and “educational and cultural courses” have been scheduled in the same time slot, respectively,throughout weekdays. Analyzing the transition of each program group, we can see how “hobby and lifestyle” series have been responding to the interests and concerns of a wide range of viewers, by initially providing Gino Koza [skill courses] and “hobby lessons” and later adding diverse programs including Kyou no Ryouri (Today’s Menu) and Shumi no Engei (Hobby Gardening), both of which had been broadcast on NHK General TV. Programs for “women and childcare” started with NHK Fujin Gakkyu [NHK classroom for woman], which was terminated in the 1970s, but a series themed on childcare was introduced in the 90s and continues to date. “Educational and cultural courses” have changed their approach by offering programs conveying the joy of learning, for example, replacing early Nichiyo Daigaku [Sunday university] with NHK Shimin Koza [NHK citizen university] to meet the mounting public needs for lifelong learning in the 1980s. The author examines the change in each program’s content and broadcast time slot to discuss the roles NHK Educational Television has been playing in contributing to society that seeks lifelong learning.
This paper reports the findings from the “Nationwide Survey on Changes in the Japanese Language” conducted in March 2019. - The first chapter examines the usage of “ageru” (dedicate, offer) instead of “yaru” (give something to plants, animals, children, or one’s subordinates). As for “ueki-ni mizu o ageru” (give water to plants), “kodomo-ni okozukai o ageru” (give a child an allowance), “petto no inu-ni esa o ageru” (feed a pet dog), more than 70% of the respondent “do not find it wrong or actually use it,” which indicates that using “ageru” for such occasions is not necessary a misuse nowadays. - The second chapter presents survey results on expressions used for weather information. Respondents were asked which they would use for indicating temperature, “… do … bu (…degrees and…)” or “… ten … do” (…point… degrees), the latter expression was used by more people than the former was. Likewise, between “hyootenka”(below freezing, below zero) and “mainasu” (minus) for temperature below 0 degree Celsius, more people use “mainasu” themselves but more people prefer “hyootenka” as a term used in broadcasting. - The third chapter explores the public attitudes towards foreign and Japanese languages. It is revealed that most of the Japanese are in favor of “providing English language education for all the Japanese people (rather than for particular groups of people)” and “prioritizing education for improving Japanese people’s foreign language proficiency (rather than Japanese language education for foreigners),” and “are least confident in English conversation,” “agree with teaching English at elementary school,” and “feel more foreign people speak Japanese than before.” Regarding the increase of loan words, around 50% think “it will make Japanese language more ambiguous” while around 40% think “it will enrich Japanese language.” The younger, the higher affinity for English (and loan words) they have. Conversely, elderly people tend to place more importance on Japanese.
In December 2016, NHK introduced a dual frame telephone survey that used mobile phones in addition to conventional land-line phones. This survey method does not weight samples to re-balance the data set based on sampling probabilities and demographics such as genders and ages but calculates the survey results by simply aggregating the figures from the land-line and the mobile surveys. However, we conducted an experimental survey in March 2019 to examine whether it would be appropriate to keep this approach even if the number of land-line owners further decreases and that of mobile phone owners further increases in the future. This was the second examination since December 2016 when the dual frame survey was introduced. The key results are as follows. - We were able to collect more responses from young male respondents in the mobile survey than the land-line survey, due to which the sample composition ratio by age and gender in the dual frame became closer to that in the census.
- There was almost no difference in response tendencies between the land-line survey and the mobile survey. - As to the ownerships of land-line phones and mobile phones, the result of the dual frame calculation without weighting was closer to the result of a public opinion survey (drop-off and pick-up method). - We compared the results of the dual frame calculation and three types of weight sample calculations and found little difference in the results for most of the questions. The above findings indicate that there is no need to change the conventional approach to the dual frame survey using land-line and mobile phones—simply adding up results from the land-line survey and the mobile survey without weighting—for the time being.
This is a report on the 2019 Annual Conference of AAPOR (American Association for Public Opinion Research) held in Toronto, Canada for four days from May 16th to 19th, 2019, which the author attended. The AAPOR Conference is a grand-scale academic meeting where over a thousand researchers and academics gather together not only from the United States but from all over the world. The 2019 Conference set no themes but organized a number of sessions related to survey designs, which did represented the turning point of the survey design. The author took part in a short course instructed by Don A. Dillman— internationally renowned authority, who developed web-push survey that send a request for responding to a survey by post and collect the responses on the Internet. Dr. Dillman explained the purpose of the survey method and let the participants experience practical examples. Dillman’s web-push survey method is expanding worldwide, and it was mentioned even in the key note speech at the opening of the Conference as a successful example that Canadian census in 2016 had introduced the web-push survey method and increased the Internet response rate to nearly 70%. This paper also reports a practical example of a study combining data measured by various sensors on smartphone and survey data, a session on transparent reporting of integrated data quality, and a case with combination of apps, wearable devices, and survey results to collect data on elderly persons’ daily lives. Throughout the Conference, we strongly felt that concrete solutions were yet to be found; research data, big data, and data integration were all faced with certain challenges.
Following the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Games, Andy Stevenson, Producer of Whisper, a U.K. TV production company, will make programs covering the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics for broadcasts in the U.K. He has been involved in the Paralympics coverage as reporter and producer, displaying his multiple talents on TV and radio.
“Disability is individuality” said Mr. Stevenson, who was born with impaired arms and left leg. Mr. Stevenson presented three important points for Paralympics broadcasts. First, in order to draw audience attention to exquisite performance of Paralympians, it is necessary to make audience to empathize with the athletes by introducing their back stories including how they have been facing up to impairment. Secondly, program producers must listen to the voice of para-athletes and understand them, which will be a trigger for novel Paralympics broadcasts. Thirdly, he stressed the importance of adding perspectives of persons with an impairment by incorporating them in production teams for covering Paralympic Games, where athletes with an impairment take center stage. This was actually displayed by the U.K television industry’s adoption of a system at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games to train and appoint persons with an impairment as production staff members. For the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, Mr. Stevenson plans to produce a Paralympics-related program for children because it may serve as the very first opportunity for many children to see persons with an impairment, and, unlike adults, children do not have preconceived ideas about them. He said producing children’s programs on the Paralympics would be crucial when looking ahead to the future.