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A few weeks ago I submitted a proposal for an April Fool’s story to a local publication. The piece would have been a news report about Japanese airline companies taking advantage of “Japan’s rapidly aging society” by offering “nursing care miles” to frequent flyers in order to attract middle-aged travelers. The joke was supposed to coincide with the start of the new kaigo hoken (nursing care insurance) system that, coincidentally, went into effect April 1.

Some people at the publication expressed interest in the piece, but it never got a go-ahead, which is understandable. In order for the joke to have any resonance, readers would have to understand the kaigo system, and, according to the media, they don’t.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
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