Departmental Bulletin Paper 統制と自発的検閲協働システムの形成─第 . 次大戦参戦における外務省令撤廃記者運動をめぐって .
Formation of a Collaborative System between Government Control and Voluntary Censorship: An Observation on the Journalist Movement for the Abolition of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Decree Concerning Participation in World War I

有山, 輝雄

This paper discusses how government control and the mass media's voluntary censorship responding to such control developed interactively into a collaborative relationship in Japan. Specifically, the paper focuses on the press censorship that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs exercised when Japan participated World War from 1914 to 1918 and how newspapers and journalists reacted to such government action. The pre-war newspaper law allowed the Ministers of War and Navy and the Minister of Foreign Affairs to exercise administrative power in the form of a decree to prohibit or restrict the publication of articles concerning military or diplomatic affairs. Based on this law, Foreign Minister Takaaki Kato in the second Okuma cabinet promulgated the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Decree No.1 on September 16, 1914, thereby controlling freedom of the press. Initially, journalists seeking freedom of the press started a movement calling for abolition of the decree. However, after discussions with newspaper company owners and Prime Minister Okuma, the parties concerned effectively reached a compromise by agreeing to moderate implementation of press control. After this development, the journalists' movement against censorship died down quickly and was replaced by the opinion that newspaper companies should be held responsible for exercising voluntary censorship. The decree remained in effect, and voluntary censorship carried out by the newspaper companies led to control over press freedom. This kind of interactive, collaborative relationship between the mass media and government control was to prevail even further in the years that followed.

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