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I read the title of the article キタシロサイ、地球にたった1匹のオス、24時間体制で守られる as
"The last male rhino on earth is being protected by a system that is active 24-hrs per day."

The " ...is being protected... " makes me want to say "...守られ ている "

  1. Were the title: "キタシロサイ、地球にたった1匹のオス、24時間体制で守られ ている ", how would the meaning change?
  2. Were space not an issue, would the continuous tense have been used?
  • It's northern white rhino, not just rhino. Other species of rhinos have much more males, fortunately. – firtree Apr 16 '15 at 0:03
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It is headline grammar, not "regular" grammar. Words are often omitted intentionally in article headlines in Japanese just as in English.

In English, you would see "[Name] Shot Dead" instead of "[Name] Has Been Shot Dead" as a headline, would you not?

1.Were the title: "キタシロサイ、地球にたった1匹のオス、24時間体制で守られ ている ", how would the meaning change?

The meaning would stay the same, but it would sound pretty awkward as a headline; It is just too long.

(For fairness, I wonder why you did not mention the absence of a subject marker as well. That, too, is intentional. No は/が in headlines, generally.)

2.Were space not an issue, would the continuous tense have been used?

No, for the reason I stated above, it would not have.

  • "匹" was the counter in the title, but "頭" was the counter in the article. That seems inconsistent but not important I think.. – red shoe Apr 15 '15 at 16:50

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