Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: December 16, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412972048 | Print ISBN: 9780761929574 | Online ISBN: 9781412972048 | Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Contemporary democratic Japan enjoys a relatively high degree of free speech. Under the country's constitution, freedom of speech and press are guaranteed without censorship. However, journalistic practice and the press system are significantly different from those in the United States, reflecting Japan's historical experience and societal values and systems. Media technology has grown considerably, and Japan has become one of the world's biggest producers and consumers of media-related products. By 2008 Japan had a population of about 127 million people living in 49 million households. Roughly 14 percent were children below the age of 15, 65 percent were between 15 and 65, and 21 percent were older than 65. In 2008, the population growth was -.14 percent, and life expectancy was approximately 82 years. The speed of aging of Japan's population was much faster than other developed countries in Western Europe or the United States. The nation is composed of ...