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Old 06-09-2010, 04:34 PM   #1
Trini
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Japanese, U.S. Manga Publishers Unite To Fight Scanlations

There's an article at Publisher's Weekly where it appears thatt Japanese and US publishers are set to fight against scanlations.

While I understand their stance as they're fully justified and it's within their legal rights, I can't help but hope it doesn't affect the sites I frequent. Manga is rarely sold in my country so it's almost impossible to buy titles that I'm interested in.

That being said I would like to think that the scanlation community has increased people's awareness of manga in a manner that the industry/ publishers may not have been able to do themselves. I know that's how I became aware of the industry.

I guess we'll have to wait and see the outcome of this action. I guess it's really more about control than anything else. I don't know how effective their actions will be though. One only has to look at the movie and music industry who has a lot more power and financial weight than the publishing industry.

http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/b...anlations.html
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Old 06-09-2010, 04:43 PM   #2
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Perfect. They get famous in foreign markets thanks to scanlations, and then they fight them. I've visited several anime and manga forums, and people always talk about buying the deluxe edition or the figurines or the boxed dvd or whatever - even though they've already read the scanlation or seen the fansub.

Fansubs of unlicensed anime are a legal gray area. Animesuki for example routinely hosts them, and then takes them offline as soon as they hear of a deal with a US publisher. However I managed to get a very nice threatening letter about downloading one such fansubbed episode. The anime was not licensed, and I had no way to buy the original product, language being only one of the barriers. Needless to say that the specific anime will never, ever get my money.

They should be thinking of reaching more people and instead they decide to limit their options. Who am I to say it doesn't make sense?
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Old 06-09-2010, 04:53 PM   #3
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I'll stop scanlating Happy Negative Marriage the second they tell me that they bring it to Spain. And that they bring it in its wholeness and decently. One of the best manga of all time, Excel Saga, was RAPED in the "professional" translation, which, fortunately, was canceled at the 4th issue, because noone would buy a manga book whose pages lost the glue at the third time of reading and which did distort the plot and the cultural references up to the point of rendering the thing senseless. A humble fansubber who works alone translating the English version to Spanish made me discover how full of utter crap the professional translation was.

I'm still thinking of buying the English version, imported from Amazon or something. Still, the whole episode pisses me off mightily. I don't trust content "owners" who behave like absentee landlords, and this is another reason why.

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Old 06-09-2010, 04:58 PM   #4
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If this happens I'll say goodbye to manga for good. 98% of the manga I read is untranslated and not popular here in the states. That's why I like scans I can read manga that will never see the light of day here in the states. I understand the licensed ones needing to be taken down but the unlicensed ones come on now. I know one thing American manga sales are going to suffer big time most of the series I bought in the past were due to scans I had found. I'm not going to buy a magna series at $10 a book that I know very little about when I can buy a real book for as low as $1 new depending on the type of book it is. They are shooting themselves in the foot.

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Old 06-09-2010, 05:03 PM   #5
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Manga you buy in Europa and USA is overpriced, and cencored. Sometimes they flop it, what makes me go mad.
I'm at the moment in the fansub and scanlation corner of teh intrawebs, and do some fansubbing myself (the timing) and the thing is, people love it. For companies who translate, translating and releasing is just a job, but with fansubs and scanlations, you can see the love from people for it. Hours of work on one episode. Days of work on a scanlation, it's beautiful if you know all the efford people put in it. And then, companies 'kill' the people who love it, the people who but it, the people who 'advertise' for them, because they are worried if some girl or boy downloads a manga instead of buying their overpriced ones.

One manga is about 400¥, that's about $4. But then if I want to but it here, it's about $10 or $11. It's just insane how high the prices are. I bought manga's till I found out the prices is Japan.
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Old 06-09-2010, 05:11 PM   #6
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I must say, however, that the Spanish manga professional translations tend to be excellent. I don't mind paying €7-€8 for books which are so well done as they are in good brands like Glénat, Ivrea or Norma. It's a quality product, something I collect. However, banning the fansubs for series which will never see the light of day anywhere is absurd. It's Geographical Restrictions for manga.
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Old 06-09-2010, 05:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tehKitten View Post
Manga you buy in Europa and USA is overpriced, and cencored. Sometimes they flop it, what makes me go mad.
I'm at the moment in the fansub and scanlation corner of teh intrawebs, and do some fansubbing myself (the timing) and the thing is, people love it. For companies who translate, translating and releasing is just a job, but with fansubs and scanlations, you can see the love from people for it. Hours of work on one episode. Days of work on a scanlation, it's beautiful if you know all the efford people put in it. And then, companies 'kill' the people who love it, the people who but it, the people who 'advertise' for them, because they are worried if some girl or boy downloads a manga instead of buying their overpriced ones.

One manga is about 400¥, that's about $4. But then if I want to but it here, it's about $10 or $11. It's just insane how high the prices are. I bought manga's till I found out the prices is Japan.
LOL I remember when they were larger and $20 a pop in some cases. The prices are better than in the past but the fact that you have to buy 5 or more books to complete a series is what's so off putting. Also I've been burned several times when the American company drops or postpones the title or it dies in Japan. If it's dropped or postponed by a company I'm forced to use scans to finish it now don't even bother to buy a series unless I know it's finished in Japan or it's a longer series that's doing well. I also avoid really long series because it costs so much money to read them.
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Old 06-09-2010, 10:36 PM   #8
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Funny how with media companies decreased sales is always someone else's fault.
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Old 06-10-2010, 08:10 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by omk3 View Post
Fansubs of unlicensed anime are a legal gray area.
They really aren't. They are illegal. Moral gray area perhaps.
Right or wrong, the fact that there is no legal way to obtain something does not make illegal ways of obtaining it any less so.
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Old 06-10-2010, 09:19 AM   #10
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Most of the scan users I've talked to seem to be in agreement about a best case for this.

From our view, going after scanalators of series licensed in country is not only acceptable but justified. (But hey, we're old school. Used to be groups would quit once something was licensed but now it's not rare to see groups "scanalating" by just running the licensed book through a scanner, sticking the group logo on it and yelling "Stick it to the man".)

Unlicensed series? That's where we hope they continue to treat with benign neglect. More than a few of them get scanned because, even though they are popular in their origin countries, the publishers have stated that they will never be brought to the US. (Team Medical Dragon and Glass Mask are two examples. One is to mature for the tween market that they push Stateside and the other is not as...pretty as newer series though it has a rabid following among those who have read it.)

Not to mention all those niche issues that just would not sell in amounts worth all the hassle of negotiations, shipping, proofing, drinking (Yes, drinking. If you've dealt with these guys you know what I'm talking about.) and then getting a dwindling store presence to carry a slow seller.

Now if we want to talk Very Best Case (fantasy scenario), they'd quit all their bloody territorial squabbling and ego stroking and just start selling them digitally like text publishers are (slowly) starting to accept. Add in physical copies of omnibus editions with 3 or 4 issues in each one and they would have a good presence in both worlds. (Blast it, if I have to buy one more copy of the Fruits Basket Omni because it gets stolen again, heads will roll! Roll, I say!) But like I said, that is a fantasy currently. The only group more hidebound and resistant to change than english publishers would be eastern ones.

Side Note: My mother (mid-60's, nurse, and living in rural Oklahoma) has threatened violence if she can't get regular updates on Umi no Misaki and Hajime no Ippo. This may actually force her to learn IRC. My mother, the anarchist.
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Old 06-10-2010, 10:43 AM   #11
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Here is another piece on this (site is pretty NSFW.) Now if you'll excuse me, I'll go back to grabbing everything that looks remotely interesting while it is still easiest to get (just grabbed 66 chapters of the above mentioned Umi no Misaki in 10 minutes.)

Edit to add-- for anyone looking to join The Hoarding, here's a good starting list:

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...7&postcount=55

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Old 06-10-2010, 12:02 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by omk3 View Post
Perfect. They get famous in foreign markets thanks to scanlations, and then they fight them.
No real surprise. Once the fan-made versions have created a market they are no longer required and must be stamped on to make room for their own (often inferior) product.
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Old 06-10-2010, 12:59 PM   #13
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They really aren't. They are illegal. Moral gray area perhaps.
Right or wrong, the fact that there is no legal way to obtain something does not make illegal ways of obtaining it any less so.
That makes law something "good", when law is something which at best is neutral. At worst it implies the inability of the different groups to come to fruitful private agreements, and the need of a neutral referee that hammers out a solution. A necessary evil, but an evil nonetheless.

Of course, that's all theory. Since the case is usually that the referee is in the paycheck of one of the groups, or that said referee effectively hampers other solutions which neglect his action, the moral case becomes muddier and thicker.
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Old 06-10-2010, 03:12 PM   #14
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No real surprise. Once the fan-made versions have created a market they are no longer required and must be stamped on to make room for their own (often inferior) product.
Perhaps, but it sounds like in this case that a lot of the scanlation sites are actually commercial interests and "pirates" in a more appropriate sense of the word than it is normally used -- namely, collecting profits off of the work of others.

This is no longer exclusively a fan-driven enterprise that serves to spread the word; many sites are commercial enterprises that collect revenues from a variety of methods (including ads and membership fees), hence the recent actions. Seems like the manga publishers turned a blind eye to this when it really was small-scale fan sites.

I would also hope that they'll translate more manga. However, such activities are typically incremental in nature (since I doubt manga publishers can afford to quadruple the number of titles to translate into, say, 10 languages, all in one shot). It's also positive news, which doesn't get as much press as a negative event like a law enforcement action.
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Old 06-10-2010, 03:29 PM   #15
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Perhaps, but it sounds like in this case that a lot of the scanlation sites are actually commercial interests and "pirates" in a more appropriate sense of the word than it is normally used -- namely, collecting profits off of the work of others.

This is no longer exclusively a fan-driven enterprise that serves to spread the word; many sites are commercial enterprises that collect revenues from a variety of methods (including ads and membership fees), hence the recent actions. Seems like the manga publishers turned a blind eye to this when it really was small-scale fan sites.

I would also hope that they'll translate more manga. However, such activities are typically incremental in nature (since I doubt manga publishers can afford to quadruple the number of titles to translate into, say, 10 languages, all in one shot). It's also positive news, which doesn't get as much press as a negative event like a law enforcement action.
And that part is wrong. The scanlation groups are silent and quiet. Most of them exsist of a wordpress page and an IRC channel, nothing more. The thing you are talking about are the site who 'steal' the manga from the scanlation groups, and put them on their website, so you can view it online. (Just like streaming video's) And they need to pay for the huge server costs for the bandwith, so they have adds. The scanlation groups are all for the fun. No-one gets any money. I've been there, and I know it. There's zero money.
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