Letter from the Encyclopedist
My Anime and My Manga

by Daniel DeLorme, Jul 27th 2003
Today, on ANN's 5th anniversary, we unveil a new feature which, while not a part of the Encyclopedia per se, is intimately connected to it. I am talking about My Anime (and My Manga). While not the most imaginative names we ever came up with, these two sections allow users to create their own custom listings from titles and releases in the Encyclopedia, a web adaptation of a long tradition among anime fans. You can even make those lists public if you wish, so you can give an URL to your friends and impress them with how much you have seen or how much you own.

Let me give you a little tour. Let's say you are looking at a title's details (for example, Spirited Away). If you are logged in, you will now see some new options in the right menu. Under a section titled My Anime (or My Manga, depending on what kind of title you are viewing), you will be asked if you have seen this title before. In the case that you have (or you want to), clicking on the appropriate link will place this title in one of the My Anime categories.

There are four basic categories in My Anime: Want to see, Seen some, Seen all, Will not finish. These are mutually exclusive; you cannot have a title under two of those categories at the same time. Once a title has been added to those categories you can then write a comment about it, or partake in the long tradition of rating titles on a scale of 0 to 10. Well, except that the scale is not from 0 to 10 but rather composed of descriptive labels — from "masterpiece" to "worst ever" — in the hopes of avoiding that other long tradition... ratings that bunch around "perfect 10s" and "absolute 0s". Once we have enough ratings, I will add a statistics pages — in the long tradition of top 10 lists — where we will find some staples of the tradition such as "most popular" as well as more uncommon lists such as "most underrated" and "most overrated". You will also notice that when rating titles, you can give a rating for the dub AND the sub. This should allow us to eventually build a list of "best dubs" and "worst dubs" based on the difference in ratings between different versions of the same title.

Beyond making lists of titles, you can also make lists of items. You can select releases from the Encyclopedia and add them to "My Collection" or to "Wish List". We are well aware that the Encyclopedia doesn't yet contain every anime VHS and DVD ever released, so it's also possible to add items that are not in our release list. And then, just like for titles, you can enter a comment about each item.

All that is well and good, but a bit restrictive. What if you want to make a list of "Recommended anime" for your friends? No problem! This is where My Anime truly shines: if you click the link "Edit my categories", you can add your own custom categories as well as edit the properties of the default categories. For each category you can decide on the layout of the lists and whether to allow the public to view the contents of the category. With this, you can almost make your own webpage right here on Anime News Network!

I invite you to play around with this new feature and hope you will like it.

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