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Chicks On Anime - Fansubs (Pt 1)


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Axe-336



Joined: 19 Jan 2007
Posts: 143
Location: Springfield, VA
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:17 am Reply with quote
HikariNinjaX wrote:
Well, I have lived only two years in the United States, and I think the companies are doing a great improvement about anime and manga in general, but most fans don´t appreciate it.


Sadly you'll only come to find that there are a lot of things that Americans don't fully appreciate in general.

I thought this article raised some interesting points about older anime shows being fansubbed. Honestly, I'd never had a problem with older shows being fansubbed for similar reasons: It hasn't become available yet, am I gonna hold my breath for a US release now? As to the mainstream question, I think it has become mainstream to a degree. Pokemon is certainly mainstream, I'd dare to say Naruto and Dragonball Z are fairly well known, and if you say "Anime" or "Manga" to people most will probably have an idea what you're talking about what you're talking about saying "Oh, like, um, a Japanese cartoon/comic?"... Or maybe my view is skewed? Oh, I also echo whoever it was that kind of wished it would go back to an underground thing so that they could feel they were into a cool underground thing. Non-standardized format American Manga releases make me feel nostalgic.
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tankerboy



Joined: 15 Mar 2008
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Location: Chicago
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:18 am Reply with quote
Doesn't the fact that entire world or even the entire US can't watch streaming video have any bearing on the issue? I live 5 miles south of Chicago on the stateline. I have a DSL but because of the distance to the switch it's only slightly faster than dial-up. On a good day 5-6 seconds of download lets you watch 2 seconds of streaming video and even then in the middle the speed can slow down to infinity. Downloading a funsubbed 25 minute episode takes at least two and a half hours. This has nothing to do with the server, I've crashed both XP and Vista many times trying out numerous suggestions to increase speed. It's just a fact.

Downloading fansubbed anime is the only practical choice for me. And I have friends in rural areas who don't even have the option I do - their only choice is dial up or expensive cable modems. You wanna watch crunchyroll over a 126k modem or pay over $700 a year to watch "Naruto: Shippuden"? If it weren't for being able to download fansubbed torrents or files using a download manager over the days it takes to download a series I wouldn't even bother with anime but I do; as is evidenced by my anime list.

Also, I suppose I'm in a minority but I own almost everything I rated very good or above (or 8 or better at MyAnimeList, where I'm "chinaboat") If I hadn't been able to see them first I never would have purchased them. Purchase "Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu" or "Hayate No Gotoku" based solely on description? I think not.

So, speaking for myself and friends in my situation God Bless the fansubs and please keep up the good work.
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Unit 03.5-ish



Joined: 07 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:22 am Reply with quote
Cait:

I think one of the most irksome rationales is the waving around of the My Anime lists just to SHOW THAT YOU SUPPORT THE INDUSTRY even if you download fansubs. That does not justify or excuse the illegal downloading of these shows -- the damage is done, you already saw it for free, and you think that just by buying it when it comes out the damage is undone? Please, kindly STFU if you believe that non-logic is justified. The funny thing is, all the excuses fansub watchers make can easily be refuted with simple logic, yet they continue to defend their choices to the death.
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Zac
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ANN Executive Editor


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:22 am Reply with quote
animehermit wrote:


I see one trailer that's just a generic action movie score set to a bunch of shots of random characters, no story description at all, no explanation of what the hell's going on, and is basically an AMV aimed at people who have already seen the series.

Then I see one that's an attempt at actually selling a show to people who haven't seen it, which is what marketing people do.

Case in point you could probably just cut together meaningless out-of-context segments of action sequences, climactic moments and other emotionally charged bits from any shonen series, set it to Hans Zimmer music from any historical epic from the last decade and anime fans will unanimously declare that to be the superior "trailer" because they understand the context of each clip and they already know what the significance of it all is.

A trailer is a marketing tool, not a best-of clip show designed to wow people who have already seen what you're trying to sell. Yeesh.
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Greed1914



Joined: 28 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:24 am Reply with quote
animehermit wrote:


A lot of people talk about how fansubs kill the industry because nobody buys anything anymore, I don't think this to be true. Sure nobody buys anything, but not because of fansubs. Because of Advertising, most anime trailers are just the opening theme set to random clips from the anime, which is ridiculous. There are people who make trailer amv's with windows movie maker that make better trailers.


I doubt if the trailers are really to blame. Even if it's well made, it's pretty hard to get someone to plunk down $20 for a DVD from a show they've only seen a two minute mash up from.

As far as the article goes, I do think it's ridiculous for groups to keep fan-subbing certain shows when they're coming out faster than ever. Hulu has several threads with people whining that they miss Dattebayo's subs because apparently free and good quality(for streams) within a week just isn't enough. I'm a little conflicted about the argument about spelling errors and such on certain R1 licensed products. I can certainly understand wanting to see an error free version, but I'm not so sure that making a fan-subbed version of a licensed product is the answer. Contacting the company seems like it would get their attention a bit better.

Finally, Cait pretty well voiced many of my views. When will every fansub group be satisfied? Probably never. Satisfying most of them seems to be next to impossible. Everybody wants something different, some want direct literal translations, some want it fast no matter the quality, some are fine with a few liberties to help make the dialogue flow in a different language. We'd end up having longer release schedules and discs with fewer episodes because we'd need five different tracks. As I see it, the R1 companies have been at this for quite awhile and have facts to back up their choices, so I don't think they do things arbitrarily. Certain groups may think they do it better, but how often can such claims really be verified?


Last edited by Greed1914 on Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:36 am; edited 1 time in total
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Animehermit



Joined: 05 Aug 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:24 am Reply with quote
Cait wrote:
There are a host of legitimate reasons why titles are "altered" or formatted in certain ways for commercial distribution,


I will have to agree with you here, some altercations have to be made its just the nature of the two languages. As long as those "altercations" don't go so far as censorship, and/or changing major plot/character details for no reason.
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Greed1914



Joined: 28 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:42 am Reply with quote
Zac wrote:
animehermit wrote:


I see one trailer that's just a generic action movie score set to a bunch of shots of random characters, no story description at all, no explanation of what the hell's going on, and is basically an AMV aimed at people who have already seen the series.

Then I see one that's an attempt at actually selling a show to people who haven't seen it, which is what marketing people do.

Case in point you could probably just cut together meaningless out-of-context segments of action sequences, climactic moments and other emotionally charged bits from any shonen series, set it to Hans Zimmer music from any historical epic from the last decade and anime fans will unanimously declare that to be the superior "trailer" because they understand the context of each clip and they already know what the significance of it all is.

A trailer is a marketing tool, not a best-of clip show designed to wow people who have already seen what you're trying to sell. Yeesh.


At first I wasn't going to bother watching, but you're right, Zac. The first one explains the basic premise of what's going on pretty well. The second informs me of nothing. I don't know who anyone is, what they're doing, or why they're doing it. Plus the translations have to be translated again so I can read it. If it's that uninformative to someone like me who has seen a good chunk of One Piece, I can't imagine it doing anything for a new viewer.
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504NOSON2



Joined: 28 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:56 am Reply with quote
Nice conversation. Very pro-fansub, as well. Unlike some other unnamed ANN staff members Rolling Eyes My thing is, Fansubs are still relevant because all shows aren't going to get licensed. Now, speaking from the perspective of a fan, sure, fansubs are great! How else will I enjoy the latest episodes of long running series like Bleach, Naruto, Hitman Reborn(which isn't on U.S TV,by the way.)? Fansubs make it possible. And, also, I'm not going to act like I don't enjoy subs of newer, shorter series that air every season, even though theres a good chance it may get licensed only months after airing. But, I wanna see it now! From an industry standpoint, it's a thorn in the butt cheek. Because, if a shows been online for months, once they decide to buy it, more than half of their potential audience has probably seen it. And, only a fraction of them may actually still buy the legal alternative. It's a gray area, alright. Plus, they can't depend on guys in their 40's, who wear extra small Sailor Moon shirts and collect Gundam figures, forever. Cool
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Unit 03.5-ish



Joined: 07 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:01 am Reply with quote
You have a problem with our resident Sith Lord's stance on them? Sheesh, you can't please some people.

"Relevant"? "Some shows won't get licensed"? Be thankful for what DOES get licensed. The stuff that comes here is sometimes quality, sometimes crap. I bet more crap gets left over in Japan, and for one I'm thankful that the majority of awful moe and dating sim and boring romance shows don't make the journey across the ocean. That or the shows are so steeped in Japanese culture it wouldn't be enjoyable for an American audience anyway...but you can't please everyone, can you?
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Animehermit



Joined: 05 Aug 2007
Posts: 963
Location: The Argama
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:06 am Reply with quote
Zac wrote:


I see one trailer that's just a generic action movie score set to a bunch of shots of random characters, no story description at all, no explanation of what the hell's going on, and is basically an AMV aimed at people who have already seen the series.

Then I see one that's an attempt at actually selling a show to people who haven't seen it, which is what marketing people do.

Case in point you could probably just cut together meaningless out-of-context segments of action sequences, climactic moments and other emotionally charged bits from any shonen series, set it to Hans Zimmer music from any historical epic from the last decade and anime fans will unanimously declare that to be the superior "trailer" because they understand the context of each clip and they already know what the significance of it all is.

A trailer is a marketing tool, not a best-of clip show designed to wow people who have already seen what you're trying to sell. Yeesh.


it should be noted that the fan made trailer is a teaser trailer and is not really supposed to show important plot details, and, is perhaps a poor comparison.

My whole point behind posting the whole trailer argument is that its fairly easy to make a good trailer, even with generic Hans Zimmer music, the FUNImation one did more to show what its about yes, but it was still not a very good trailer. Trailers should get you excited not bored, and not have an extremely annoying voice over throughout the whole thing.


Greed1914 wrote:
I doubt if the trailers are really to blame. Even if it's well made, it's pretty hard to get someone to plunk down $20 for a DVD from a show they've only seen a two minute mash up from.



you'd be surpsrised how many would, 20$ isn't that much more expensive than 8$, which millions of people pay to see a movie based on a 2 minute "mash" as you call it.
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4nBlue





PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:15 am Reply with quote
animehermit wrote:


I see difference. I see a lame amv (fan made) and I see a text that tells me " This video is not available in your country".

Sorry but not all fansub watchers live in US. I really can't understand why I should stop watching the fansubs because it has been licensed on the other side of the world. Fansubs are important for people who can't get the anime in other reasonably priced ways. Importing a dvd and buying a dvd player that can play it is not reasonable for your typical fansub watcher (teen who often already uses the little money he has for entertainment). Also getting a credit card needed for buying from other countries and many streaming sites is not so easy everywhere.

I'm not saying that fansubbing is only a good thing, because there are also the idiots that never buy anything and believe that anime is a gift from heaven that you don't need to pay for.

Also none of the shows I'm watching at the moment have no other options other than fansub/raws if I want to see them (other importing from Japan).

If the fansubs did not exist I can swear that I would not have even half of my 5000€ collection at the moment and I sure as hell would not be flying to Japan today with over 300 000¥ with me for shopping.
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Dop.L



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 663
Location: London
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:20 am Reply with quote
Streaming services are mostly useless to me, as I live in the UK and most of the stuff I'd be interested in is US only.
The vast majority of my anime DVD collection is in R1, because either these series have never and probably will never get a UK release, or if they do, it will be a year (or more) later. When I have a multi-region DVD collection and ordering from the US is a handful of clicks away, it makes more sense to buy the R1 that's out now than cross my fingers and hope it comes out over here eventually.
Also, many of the things I've bought in the last few years are things which I saw in fansubs first, and might not have even heard of otherwise.
Would series like Simoun, Aria or Maria Watches Over Us have been heard of without fansubs establishing an interested fanbase?

What I'd like to see is a more rapid release of series - more subs only boxsets, less waiting years between something being licensed and anything coming out. (Say VIZ, where's NANA? Honey and Clover?)[[/i]
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Greed1914



Joined: 28 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:26 am Reply with quote
animehermit wrote:
Zac wrote:


I see one trailer that's just a generic action movie score set to a bunch of shots of random characters, no story description at all, no explanation of what the hell's going on, and is basically an AMV aimed at people who have already seen the series.

Then I see one that's an attempt at actually selling a show to people who haven't seen it, which is what marketing people do.

Case in point you could probably just cut together meaningless out-of-context segments of action sequences, climactic moments and other emotionally charged bits from any shonen series, set it to Hans Zimmer music from any historical epic from the last decade and anime fans will unanimously declare that to be the superior "trailer" because they understand the context of each clip and they already know what the significance of it all is.

A trailer is a marketing tool, not a best-of clip show designed to wow people who have already seen what you're trying to sell. Yeesh.


it should be noted that the fan made trailer is a teaser trailer and is not really supposed to show important plot details, and, is perhaps a poor comparison.

My whole point behind posting the whole trailer argument is that its fairly easy to make a good trailer, even with generic Hans Zimmer music, the FUNImation one did more to show what its about yes, but it was still not a very good trailer. Trailers should get you excited not bored, and not have an extremely annoying voice over throughout the whole thing.


Greed1914 wrote:
I doubt if the trailers are really to blame. Even if it's well made, it's pretty hard to get someone to plunk down $20 for a DVD from a show they've only seen a two minute mash up from.



you'd be surpsrised how many would, 20$ isn't that much more expensive than 8$, which millions of people pay to see a movie based on a 2 minute "mash" as you call it.


And you'd be surprised how many wouldn't. Many consumers are savvy. A commercial will only prompt such people to seek more information and then decide whether or not to pay. Sorry, but unless I actually know what it's about, no trailer is going to sell me anything. In essence, I'm saying that what constitutes a good trailer is a very subjective thing. Some seek information and others are looking for entertainment.
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crilix



Joined: 16 Nov 2005
Posts: 208
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:28 am Reply with quote
Bamboo wrote:
See, I thought fansubbing was obsolete several years ago. When we had that bubble back in the early 2000s where we had tons of anime companies releasing titles left in right, I thought there would be no more use for fansubbers. But the argument remained, "Well, I can't afford anime" or "Well, I want my anime now." But that's finally happened.
You were under the impression that fansubs were obsolete back then, and you obviously had compelling reasons to believe that, but doesn't history have this nasty habit of repeating itself?

With simulcasting their shows, the industry, or should I say, Crunchyroll has finally become a worthy opponent to fansubs, but I'm afraid it has ways to go as it's evident merely from the amount of persisting techical and quality issues and lack of an effective business model for its suppliers, the content creators themselves.
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kazekaeru



Joined: 03 Apr 2008
Posts: 4
PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:30 am Reply with quote
Ever since digital fansubs gave the fandom the possibility to distribute anime at an alarming rate, it has always been a debated issue whether it was deviating from its initial purpose. Being an ex-fansubber of the old guard myself, it is interesting to hear getfresh say that the purpose of his group it to bring anime to the "mainstream". The first groups that fansubbed anime mostly had the same goal, which is to bring Japanese anime shows to this side of the Pacific, because these shows were nigh impossible to get and, consequently, to understand. This part could very well refer to the ideal of taking anime to this "mainstream".

I believe the situation now lies in the potential viewership and how that translates into a useful base of anime fans rather than an army of leechers that, even if given a good release, will not buy the show because it is "free" elsewhere. It is important to add that anime fandom is not restricted to Japan and the US. There are many countries that have had anime dubbed and broadcasted for far longer than the US has. Part of this relates to a rich history of US animation and creation of content that enabled the airwaves to be filled with its content and did not need foreign content to entertain their people. This continues to our day, where the US produces a majority of broadcasted content worldwide. Many countries and regions (particularly Latin America, Spain, France, Italy and the Middle East) have imported and broadcasted anime widely and for a long time. One example is “Heidi” as it was mentioned in the chat. It was created and broadcasted in 1974 in Japan and it was dubbed and broadcasted in Mexico since 1978 where it has never left syndication due to its never ending popularity. There are many examples of anime holding such a place in people’s hearts worldwide, but this fact is often overlooked in fansub discussions.

The transition from DVD content from VHS was problematic at first, but it enabled anime to be far more affordable to the mainstream that could not decide whether to buy dubs or subs (remember, oh old comrades?). Now with new anime being fansubbed in a matter of days rather than months as in the old days, it has permitted fandom to get accustomed to the newer shows and trends in anime, in VERY high quality encodings, some largely surpassing in both video and translation quality than its commercial counterparts. Add to this that the large majority of consumers of media online come from a generation where media and content is not bought as a normal means, but as a “donation” to the artist, where downloads and streaming, be they legal or illegal, become the main means of obtaining entertainment. How can you sell something to a consumer that can get a higher quality item for free (in terms of technical specifications)?

The legal implications of this have also been hotly debated and, in my opinion, can only be somewhat clear when you put in the same table a representative of the Japanese Anime industry, the R1 Anime Industry, a legal expert on international and domestic Trademark and Copyright Law, a fansubber of a current and popular group, a fansubber of “the Old Guard” which was there to witness the changes of the industry, and a normal young human that watches anime both online and broadcasted. If you have all these people discussing what is right, wrong or the state of anime and fansubs, you could be able to have a very good idea of their points of view, their arguments and their stance on many of the topics where we endlessly debate, yet never understand fully as the other party is never there to provide with a proper response.
People often say that the industry never listens the fans. What Bandai and Crunchyroll did recently is something that reflects how the industry is trying to reach out to the consumer, but I believe their efforts, while impressive as an improvement, are too little, too late and have reflected the slow response to the changing trends of media consumption that not only the anime industry was affected by, but the whole spectrum, such as tv, movies and music.

We definitely live in a far better communicated era since those first raw VHS tapes travelled to this side of the Pacific to an enthusiastic, but small market, but this has also brought changes in the dynamics of its nascent industry, dynamics that were not and continue not to be fully understood and acted upon by its commercial actors. The fandom was responsive, but it is becoming harder to justify fansubbing a show as a legal means to obtain a show that is not legally licensed and has little chance for broadcast here. New shows, which surely makes the great majority of fansubbing, are very likely to make it over here, in no small measure thanks to the massive marketing data that fansubbing and blogging provides. Most shows in the old days were a gamble for both customers and companies, while today there is extensive coverage on most of the shows produced for the current anime seasons and it creates both a fanbase and a huge market sample that tells the companies which shows are more popular, best rated and more suitable for licensing in the domestic R1 market than shooting in the dark or relying on the popularity of a show just in the Japanese market.

Just my two cents here...


Last edited by kazekaeru on Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:49 am; edited 2 times in total
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