October 16, 2017
TOKYO- Japanese political parties are placing emphasis on online media campaigns in the run-up to Sunday's election of the House of Representatives, posting campaign videos on their websites and social networking sites to publicize their policy pledges. The Lower House poll will be the fourth national election since Japan lifted its ban on online electioneering in 2013.
While major parties were well prepared in terms of media campaigns, despite Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's sudden decision to dissolve the Lower House, some smaller parties were apparently not fully ready.
In the ruling Liberal Democratic Party's campaign video, Abe, the party's president, pledges to accelerate the implementation of his Abenomics economic policies and make preschool education free of charge.
"We'll protect this country. Please let us hear your voice," Abe says in a humble tone in the video, which has been posted on the LDP's website, social network sites and YouTube channel and has also been aired as a television commercial.
According to LDP officials, the party started working with a major advertising company on the video's production before a series of reports on the Lower House's possible dissolution appeared on Sept. 17.
Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike's newly formed Party of Hope put on its website and YouTube channel a video showing the party leader delivering messages on policy pledges.
The video includes such phrases as political webs and cover-ups to draw attention to favoritism and other scandals involving the LDP-led government. Koike wraps up the video by saying, "Let's give hope to Japan."
Komeito, the LDP's junior coalition partner, has on its Facebook page an app that allows users to take a quiz on child rearing knowledge, highlighting the party's efforts to realize free education.
The Japanese Communist Party, known for its unique online public relations activities, has created an animated campaign video this time.
The video shows a person with ear plugs suggestive of the prime minister not listening to the people's will and asks the viewers whether they want an administration that does not listen to the voice of the people to stay in power. Jiji Press
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