The Japan Times

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The Japan Times
Type Daily newspaper
Format Broadsheet
Owner(s) Nifco
Publisher Toshiaki Ogasawara
President Takeharu Tsutsumi
Managing editors Takashi Kitazume
Staff writers Approx. 160
Founded 1897
Language English
Headquarters Tokyo and Osaka, Japan
ISSN 0447-5763
OCLC number 21225620
Yukiko Ogasawara, vice-chairperson of The Japan Times, with her father, Toshiaki Ogasawara, the publisher and chairperson of the newspaper and its parent company, Nifco, in November 2007

The Japan Times is Japan's largest English-language newspaper.[1] It is published by The Japan Times, Ltd. (株式会社 ジャパン タイムズ Kabushiki gaisha Japan Taimuzu?), a subsidiary of Nifco, a leading manufacturer of plastic fasteners for the automotive and home design industries. It is headquartered in the Japan Times Nifco Building (ジャパンタイムズ・ニフコビル Japan Taimuzu Nifuko Biru?) in Shibaura, Minato, Tokyo.[2][3]


The Japan Times was launched by Motosada Zumoto on March 22, 1897, with the goal of giving Japanese an opportunity to read and discuss news and current events in English in order to help Japan to participate more fully in the international community.[4] It was successively renamed The Japan Times and Mail (1918–1940) following its merger with The Japan Mail, The Japan Times and Advertiser (1940–1943) following its merger with The Japan Advertiser, and Nippon Times (1943–1956) before reverting to the Japan Times title in 1956.[citation needed] The temporary change to Nippon Times occurred during an anti-English language sentiment during World War II era Japan.[5]

At first, the paper was independent of government control, but from 1931 onward, the Japanese government was mounting pressure on the paper's editors to submit to its policies. In 1933, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs managed to appoint Hitoshi Ashida, former Ministry official, as chief editor.[6] During World War II, the newspaper served as an outlet for Imperial Japanese government propaganda and editorial opinion. The paper's circulation at that time was about 825,000.[4]

Nifco, a manufacturer of automotive fasteners, acquired control of The Japan Times in 1996.[7] Nifco chairman Toshiaki Ogasawara (小笠原 敏晶 Ogasawara Toshiaki) is also the chairman and publisher of The Japan Times. His daughter Yukiko Ogasawara (小笠原 有輝子 Ogasawara Yukiko) was president of the company from 2006 to 2012, when she was replaced by career Japan Times staffer Takeharu Tsutsumi.[8]



The Japan Times, Inc. publishes three periodicals: The Japan Times, an English-language daily broadsheet;[9] The Japan Times Weekly, an English-language weekly in tabloid form;[10] and Shukan ST, a weekly in tabloid format, targeted at Japanese learning English. The daily's content includes:

  1. News: domestic and world news; domestic and overseas business news.
  2. Opinion: Editorials, Op-eds, and Letters to the Editor.
  3. Features: life and style, community, media, technology, food and drink, travel, environment, education, cartoons.
  4. Entertainment: film, art, music, stage, books, event previews, festival listing.
  5. Sports: domestic and overseas sports news, including coverage of baseball, soccer, basketball, sumo, figure skating.

Since 16 October 2013, the Japan Times has been printed and sold along with the International New York Times.[11]


Printed stories from The Japan Times are archived online. The newspaper contains a reader's forum and, since 2013, the website offers a section for readers' comments below articles. This came about during a complete redesign and redevelopment of the newspaper, using Responsive Web Design techniques so that the site is optimised for all digital devices. The Japan Times has a social media presence on Twitter (2007), Facebook (2007) and Google+ (2011).[12]

Regular contributors

  • Debito Arudou, (Just Be Cause) columnist[13]
  • Philip Brasor, (Media Mix) media columnist, music writer[14]
  • Amy Chavez, (Japan Lite) columnist[15]
  • Gregory Clark, commentary writer[16]
  • Sir Hugh Cortazzi, commentary writer
  • David Cozy, literary critic
  • Roger Dahl, Opinion Page cartoonist, Zero Gravity cartoonist
  • Thomas Dillon
  • Brad Glosserman, commentary writer
  • Alice Gordenker, (So, What the Heck is That?) columnist
  • Giovanni Fazio, film critic
  • Wayne Graczyk, baseball writer
  • Michael Hoffmann, (Big in Japan) media columnist
  • Noriko Hama, business columnist
  • Makiko Itoh (Japanese Kitchen), food writer
  • Misha Janette, (Stylewise) fashion columnist
  • Judit Kawaguchi (Words to Live By)
  • Matthew Larking, art critic
  • C.B. Liddell, art critic
  • David McNeill, feature writer
  • Jon Mitchell, Okinawa, military contamination, social issues
  • Kit Pancoast Nagamura, (Walking the Wards and The Backstreet Stories) columnist
  • Hifumi Okunuki, labor law scholar
  • Dreux Richard, immigration reporter, investigator
  • Mark Schilling, film critic
  • Mark Schreiber, media columnist, book critic
  • Kaori Shoji, film critic
  • Steve McClure, music critic
  • Jean Snow, (On Design) design columnist
  • Robbie Swinnerton, (Tokyo Food File), food writer
  • Peter Vecsey, sports columnist
  • Jeff Kingston[17]

Former contributors

Employee unions

Staff at The Japan Times are represented by two unions, one of which is Tozen.[18]


  • Motto: "All the News Without Fear or Favor", "The World's Window on Japan"
  • Chairperson: Toshiaki Ogasawara (小笠原 敏晶 Ogasawara Toshiaki?)
  • Capital: ¥476,437,000
  • Business: Publishes The Japan Times, The Japan Times Weekly, Shukan ST (a bilingual weekly), books in English and Japanese

See also


  1. "Media: The Japan Times". World Eye Reports. Retrieved 29 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "Map to the Japan Times." (Image) The Japan Times. Retrieved 15 October 2011. "4-5-4 Shibaura Minato-ku"
  3. "Map to The Japan Times." (Japanese version, Image) The Japan Times. Retrieved 15 October 2011. "ジャパンタイムズ・ニフコビル 港区芝浦4-5-4"
  4. 4.0 4.1 Kamiya, Setsuko, "Japan Times not just wartime mouthpiece", The Japan Times, 13 August 2011, p. 3.
  5. Ishii, Hayato. "Wartime naval cadet recalls the twisted history of English in Japan" (Archive). Kyodo News at The Japan Times. Retrieved on 5 April 2015.
  6. Peter O'Connor, The Japan Times at War Time: Mouth piece or Moderator?
  7. "Company History". Nifco. Retrieved 2 August 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. About Us The Japan Times.
  9. "Newspaper Sizes". Paper Sizes. Retrieved 2 December 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "English daily". The Japan Times Online. The Japan Times. Retrieved 16 October 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"English weekly". The Japan Times Online. The Japan Times. Retrieved 16 October 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. Japan Times "'The Japan Times / International New York Times' to launch tomorrow; commemorative event scheduled for 23 October", 15 October 2013
  12. "Twitter account".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"Facebook account". Retrieved 16 October 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>"Google+ account". Retrieved 16 October 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. Japan Times - Debito Arudou Retrieved September 25, 2015
  14. Japan Times - Philip Brasor Retrieved September 25, 2015
  15. Japan Times - Amy Chavez Retrieved September 25, 2015
  16. Japan Times - Gregory Clark Retrieved September 25, 2015
  17. Japan Times - Jeff Kingston Retrieved September 23, 2015
  18. "Tozen - The Japan Times". Tozen. 7 August 2010. Retrieved 7 August 2010.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links