It will be intriguing to see how the totally inexperienced new Government in Japan will adapt to its role but it certainly looks like things will be different. For one thing I note that changes are being made to the particularly Japanese system of making information available only to selected journalists who agree to play the reporting game in accordance with rules devised by public servants. From now on that closed shop approach will end — at least at the Foreign Minister — where press briefings will in future be open to all media outlets.
The Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada said on Friday that in princi0ple (the briefings) will be open to all media organisations, paving the way for non-members of Japan’s press club system to cover ministry interviews. The Mainichi news reported that members of the Japan Newspaper Publishers and Editors Association (NSK), the National Association of Commercial Broadcasters in Japan (NAB), the Japan Magazine Publishers Association (JMPA), the Internet News Association of Japan, and the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan (FCCJ) are among those subject to the open-door policy.
In addition, holders of the Foreign Press Registration Card, as well as freelance journalists who regularly contribute stories to organization members will also be allowed access to the ministry briefings, according to Okada.