Effect of Name Change of Schizophrenia on Mass Media Between 1985 and 2013 in Japan: A Text Data Mining Analysis

Schizophr Bull. 2016 May;42(3):552-9. doi: 10.1093/schbul/sbv159. Epub 2015 Nov 26.


Background: Mass media such as newspapers and TV news affect mental health-related stigma. In Japan, the name of schizophrenia was changed in 2002 for the purposes of stigma reduction; however, little has been known about the effect of name change of schizophrenia on mass media.

Method: Articles including old and new names of schizophrenia, depressive disorder, and diabetes mellitus (DM) in headlines and/or text were extracted from 23169092 articles in 4 major Japanese newspapers and 1 TV news program (1985-2013). The trajectory of the number of articles including each term was determined across years. Then, all text in news headlines was segmented as per part-of-speech level using text data mining. Segmented words were classified into 6 categories and in each category of extracted words by target term and period were also tested.

Results: Total 51789 and 1106 articles including target terms in newspaper articles and TV news segments were obtained, respectively. The number of articles including the target terms increased across years. Relative increase was observed in the articles published on schizophrenia since 2003 compared with those on DM and between 2000 and 2005 compared with those on depressive disorder. Word tendency used in headlines was equivalent before and after 2002 for the articles including each target term. Articles for schizophrenia contained more negative words than depressive disorder and DM (31.5%, 16.0%, and 8.2%, respectively).

Conclusions: Name change of schizophrenia had a limited effect on the articles published and little effect on its contents.

Keywords: news; prejudice; stereotyping; stigma; terminology.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Data Mining / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Mass Media / statistics & numerical data*
  • Schizophrenia*
  • Social Stigma*
  • Terminology as Topic*