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  3. NSK News Bulletin July 2013

NSK News Bulletin July 2013

Asahi's 4 China-based Micro-blogging Sites All Disrupted, Simultaneously

All four Asahi Shimbun weibo micro-blogging websites became inaccessible on July 16-17, the newspaper has reported. The Asahi said it is making enquiries of the operators of its weibo accounts ? China’s equivalent of Twitter ? as to the reasons for the simultaneous disruptions.

The Asahi has been operating official accounts in the name of its online Chinese-language version since 2011 on all four major Chinese micro-blogging websites ? Sina, Tencent, Sohu and NetEase. The Asahi says it has about 1.3 million followers on its Sina and Tencent accounts alone.

The disruption of its weibo sites prevented the Asahi from getting its latest updated news reports to Chinese readers, Asahi officials said.

“We will be concerned if there was any intentional closure behind these disruptions, which took place despite our huge numbers of followers,” said a director in the Asahi’s International Division. "We call strongly on all four operators to promptly resume full services," the director said.

White Paper Calls for Overseas Expansion of Japan’s Broadcast Industry

The Ministry of General Affairs and Communications on July 16 released its fiscal 2013 white paper on information and communications in Japan, calling for the overseas expansion of Japan’s broadcast industry.

The government report says that using so-called “smart ICT” (information and communication technology) such as ultrahigh-resolution 4K liquid crystal displays, cloud computing and big-data platforms, is indispensable to Japan’s growth strategy. The report calls for an increase in the overseas reach of Japan’s broadcast industry.

Specifically, the report urges the broadcast industry to take steps to monetize peripheral businesses and to expand exports by creating a “Japan boom” worldwide through multilayer expansion of the anime character business, focusing on broadcast content, and the allocation of more quotas for teleshopping programs.

The ministry predicts that the global market for 4K TVs will leap from 1.7 billion dollars in 2012 to 8.8 billion dollars in 2016. The ultrahigh-resolution imaging technology is expected to find applications in wide-ranging fields beyond broadcasting, including medical services and crime prevention.

The report referred to economic growth expected to result from the utilization of big-data platforms, predicting an estimated economic value of 1.150 trillion yen in the retail sector, and 4.800 trillion yen in the manufacturing sector.

In 2011, Japan’s domestic content market amounted to roughly 11.160 trillion yen. Of that total, visual software represented 5.5026 trillion yen, including 2.8094 trillion yen for digital terrestrial broadcasting. Text-based content accounted for 4.8144 trillion yen, including 1.6898 trillion yen’s worth of newspaper articles, 1.2271 billion yen in magazine articles, and 719.3 billion yen for books.

Total sales by all broadcast businesses in fiscal 2011 edged up by 0.1 of a percentage point from a year ago, to 3.9115 trillion yen. The share of commercial terrestrial broadcasts, including community-based broadcasting, grew a small 0.7 percent to 2.2502 trillion yen. The share of satellite-based broadcasting kept on increasing, in keeping with the trend since fiscal 2010, posting a 7.3 percent year-on-year rise to 449.0 billion yen.

Fiscal 2012 advertising revenues for terrestrial broadcasting amounted to 1.9003 trillion yen, broken down into 1.7757 trillion yen for TV stations and 124.6 billion yen for radio stations, the report said.

Mainichi Shimbun Ending ‘MAINICHI RT’ Service

The Mainichi Shimbun announced on July 21 that as of Aug. 31 it will stop issuing its special tabloid-size daily newspaper, “MAINICHI RT,” which is linked to retweets on the Twitter message service.

The unique daily carries news items selected on the basis of the number of accesses to those items on the Mainichi’s news website “Mainichi.jp” over the previous 24 hours, coupled with reader comments sent to the publication’s Twitter account.

The daily Twitter-linked newspaper service was launched in June 2010 and has been published and distributed every day except for Mondays in Tokyo, Kanagawa Prefecture, Chiba Prefecture and Saitama Prefecture.

The parallel electronic edition of the “MAINICHI RT On-line Newspaper,” which was launched in April 2011, will also be ended as of Aug. 31.


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