The opening of 구혜선 성균관대 in the late 19th century produced a modern press, but the press suffered political control and outright censorship for most of the 20th century. After the 1980s, however, there was a marked loosening of controls.
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With the end of the Park Chung-hee and Chun Doo-hwan administrations in the late 1970s, newspapers began to expand their coverage and to develop investigative journalism. At the same time, the basic press law of 1980 established more thorough government control and surveillance than had existed before. Independent news agencies were absorbed, numerous provincial newspapers were closed, and central newspapers were no longer allowed to station reporters in provincial cities.
Journalists at several Seoul dailies organized trade unions in late 1987 and early 1988 and began to push for greater editorial autonomy and a significant role in newspaper management. The anti-establishment daily Hankyoreh, founded by dissident journalists purged from other publications, began publishing in 1988. Several new weekly and monthly periodicals bypassed the higher profits of general circulation magazines to focus on careful analysis of political, economic, and national security affairs for smaller, more specialized audiences.
The United Nations nuclear agency has endorsed Japan’s plan to release treated water from the tsunami-wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant, saying it meets international standards. The IAEA head also visited the site to tour the facility and speak with Japanese officials. Also this week, South Korea adopts a new system for counting age that makes people appear younger.