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NEWS: Retailer to Stop Imports of Funimation BD/DVDs into Japan


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The King of Harts



Joined: 05 May 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:34 pm Reply with quote
So they're doing this to stop reverse importation, right? If that's the case, I'm cool with it. Hopefully this will get rid of that reverse importation fear the Japanese appear to have and allow more simultaneous releases of blu-ray and DVDs over here.
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hikaru004



Joined: 15 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:39 pm Reply with quote
And since when has a licensing agreement prevented R1 from buying R2 DVDs? I wonder who is pressuring that site to stop importing R1 DVD/BDs.

And why only FUNimation?

It only stops people from buying from that site. It's not going to stop reverse importation.


Last edited by hikaru004 on Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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The Naked Beast



Joined: 26 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:46 pm Reply with quote
hikaru004 wrote:
And since when has a licensing agreement prevented R1 from buying R2 DVDs? I wonder who is pressuring that site to stop importing R1 DVD/BDs.

And why only FUNimation?

Blu-ray disks have different region coding. I like it better since there is only coding for three regions. We should not have any problems importing Japanese Blu-ray disks. The only problem is you must be able to read Japanese.
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domino



Joined: 25 Nov 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:46 pm Reply with quote
I wonder if they reverse import for the relatively cheap prices or for curiosity about English dubs?

I have no idea how the industry has survived so long selling $70 one-or-two episode DVDs in Japan... My Japanese friend recently told me that a recent box release for the series "Clannad" was $600 in Japan. I bought a Clannad box set last week at rightstuf for $30.

Though for old popular shows I think it would be neat if companies released an official discounted "International Edition" (like Square Enix does for its video games..) DVD with Japanese and English voices for Japanese fans who didn't get to see the old show and want a discount version and/or want to see the English dub.

I think this would help the Japanese companies compete with used DVD stores (which are EVERYWHERE) for sales while putting a little extra cash into dubbers' pockets.

I do know Japanese people who watch English dubs and read English-translated manga to help them learn English so the market does exist. :p


Last edited by domino on Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:49 pm; edited 1 time in total
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yellow ledbetter



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:48 pm Reply with quote
Can't blame them for importing from the states. They are paying 40-50 bucks for 2 episode dvds while funimation is selling entire series for 30-40 bucks. All they have to do is play it without subtitles.
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Draneor



Joined: 19 May 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:48 pm Reply with quote
hikaru004 wrote:
And since when has a licensing agreement prevented R1 from buying R2 DVDs?

This has nothing to do with individuals importing R2 DVDs into R1 for personal use. A retailer was importing R1 DVDs into Japan for sale in Japan. FUNimation does not have a license to sell their product in Japan and is perfectly within their right (and may be obligated) to prohibit commercial sales in regions for which they cannot legally sell these titles.


Last edited by Draneor on Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:50 pm; edited 1 time in total
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hikaru004



Joined: 15 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:49 pm Reply with quote
The Naked Beast wrote:
hikaru004 wrote:
And since when has a licensing agreement prevented R1 from buying R2 DVDs? I wonder who is pressuring that site to stop importing R1 DVD/BDs.

And why only FUNimation?

Blu-ray disks have different region coding. I like it better since there is only coding for three regions. We should not have any problems importing Japanese Blu-ray disks. The only problem is you must be able to read Japanese.


Why only FUNimation? Lots of other BD titles can be imported into Japan. Bandai Ent also does BDs.

Draneor wrote:
hikaru004 wrote:
And since when has a licensing agreement prevented R1 from buying R2 DVDs?

This has nothing to do with individuals importing R2 DVDs into R1 for personal use. A retailer was importing R1 DVDs into Japan for sale in Japan. FUNimation does not have a license to sell their product in Japan and is perfectly within their right (and may be obligated) to prohibit commercial sales in regions for which they cannot legally sell these titles.


I don't think so. Yesasia does the exact same thing as well as Amazon. No one has sent notices to these guys yet.
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Zin5ki



Joined: 06 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:05 pm Reply with quote
Draneor wrote:
FUNimation ... is perfectly within their right (and may be obligated) to prohibit commercial sales in regions for which they cannot legally sell these titles.

For the sake of the numerous fans who wish to obtain hard copies of anime unavailable in their own region, one hopes such a prevention of exports is not one of Funimation's chief concerns.
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Josh7289



Joined: 27 Aug 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:13 pm Reply with quote
That sucks for Japanese fans. There's no way I'd pay Japanese prices if I were in Japan.

And Gundam Unicorn, haha. Bandai (Visual) doesn't learn.
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PetrifiedJello



Joined: 11 Mar 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:17 pm Reply with quote
hikaru004 wrote:
And why only FUNimation?

Probably due to FUNimation releasing more BD than anyone else, but that's just a guess on my part.

Quote:
It's not going to stop reverse importation.

Agreed. From posts (elsewhere), there are many Japanese fans who have "hooked up" with American friends who buy locally and ship to them. Even with shipping costs, this is still cheaper.

Now on topic:
I'm sure we'll see even more news like this regarding BD. Nature of the beast when both Japan and the US share the same region code.

I wouldn't be surprised one bit if Japan gets BD player manufactures to refuse play if an English audio track is embedded in the BD.

Such idiocy to limit buyer options, but not surprising one bit.
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hikaru004



Joined: 15 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:20 pm Reply with quote
Josh7289 wrote:
That sucks for Japanese fans. There's no way I'd pay Japanese prices if I were in Japan.

And Gundam Unicorn, haha. Bandai (Visual) doesn't learn.


Actually, they did learn. That site would still be able to sell the R1 BD version so in the end they didn't lose any sales to reverse importation.

PetrifiedJello wrote:
hikaru004 wrote:
And why only FUNimation?

Probably due to FUNimation releasing more BD than anyone else, but that's just a guess on my part.



Hmm... I see live-action titles there like Bourne movies (use the advanced search feature and type Bourne, select blu-ray). So I doubt that FUNi is producing more than those guys.
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tuxedocat
Aria CompanyAria Company


Joined: 14 Dec 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:31 pm Reply with quote
hikaru004 wrote:
And since when has a licensing agreement prevented R1 from buying R2 DVDs? I wonder who is pressuring that site to stop importing R1 DVD/BDs.

And why only FUNimation?

It only stops people from buying from that site. It's not going to stop reverse importation.


The only reason I can think of is that Funimation wants to keep positive relationships with the license holders in Japan. Meaning: the Japanese companies get to maintain their ridiculous prices.

IMO, the Japanese really need to alter their business model on how they price and sell the homegrown product. IMO, if they lowered their prices and sold in box sets they would sell more product, not less. I cannot believe that there could be any "cultural difference" in consumerism. A customer is going to recognize a better deal when they see one, regardless of where they were born. Since the hard-core otaku in Japan are still willing to pay these prices, we see more and more otaku targeted shows aimed at their shrinking market. The mainstream isn't going to pay otaku prices, especially for a more mainstream targeted show. Someone over there needs to make a big leap of faith, and try a boxset release with a lower price point.
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pparker



Joined: 13 Oct 2007
Posts: 1185
Location: Florida

PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:31 pm Reply with quote
PetrifiedJello wrote:
Such idiocy to limit buyer options, but not surprising one bit.

Same reactionary behavior seen in every changing market. Trying to hold back the clock. It's a hollow victory, as the flow won't stop. But they aren't stupid for trying to buy themselves a bit more time til they can figure out a way to make money in the new anime age. As long as they don't think, like the music business, that they can use force to stop it.

I don't know how large that importation is, but it would seem to me that differentiating the Japanese releases is the best way to combat it. The hardcore otaku will buy whatever offers them the most content and merchandise, apparently regardless of price. If the Japanese edition contains a lot more extras and features, the core market won't import stripped-down economy versions (most Funi releases) regardless of price.
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bayoab



Joined: 06 Oct 2004
Posts: 829

PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:33 pm Reply with quote
PetrifiedJello wrote:
hikaru004 wrote:
And why only FUNimation?

Probably due to FUNimation releasing more BD than anyone else, but that's just a guess on my part.

It is more likely that FUNi just stopped supplying them due to some external force and thus both BD and DVD are affected even though both the US and JP are Region A.
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pparker



Joined: 13 Oct 2007
Posts: 1185
Location: Florida

PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 3:35 pm Reply with quote
tuxedocat wrote:
the Japanese really need to alter their business model on how they price and sell the homegrown product. IMO, if they lowered their prices and sold in box sets they would sell more product, not less. I cannot believe that there could be any "cultural difference" in consumerism. A customer is going to recognize a better deal when they see one, regardless of where they were born.

Markets just aren't entirely logical and don't work that way. The Japanese have experimented with lowering prices, and they didn't sell more units. Listen to the Geneon U.S. ANN podcast. Same thing. They found that below a certain price point, no additional sales resulted, so it didn't make sense to lower prices.
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