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INTEREST: 23 Shogakukan Manga Magazines Launch Anti-Piracy Campaign


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mangamuscle



Joined: 23 Apr 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 5:26 pm Reply with quote
Calling this "pro-active" is like calling "mission acomplished" the Just say no 1985 anti-drug publicity stunt. So if no real steps are taken to modernize the manga publishing business model, in less than 30 years no doubt it would be under the equivalent of an opioid epidemic crisis.
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Romuska
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:10 pm Reply with quote
When it comes to these things I go by the Jim Sterling philosophy. People want to push the button and get the thing. If you try to put an extra step in there then you're part of the problem.
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GoldCrusader



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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:31 pm Reply with quote
Wishing the best of luck. Even when a cheap and easy to use alternative is offered pirates will always pirate. These people just don't care.
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mangamuscle



Joined: 23 Apr 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:37 pm Reply with quote
GoldCrusader wrote:
...Even when a cheap and easy to use alternative is offered pirates will always pirate....


I used to hear that when torrents were a new technology but lo and behold, Netflix and Crunchyroll are the new normal. Meanwhile manga publishers continue to kick the dead horse we all know as the 20th century business model; heck they must be praying to Yato to blow up the internet to make manga (business) great again.
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GoldCrusader



Joined: 25 Apr 2017
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:49 pm Reply with quote
mangamuscle wrote:
GoldCrusader wrote:
...Even when a cheap and easy to use alternative is offered pirates will always pirate....


I used to hear that when torrents were a new technology but lo and behold, Netflix and Crunchyroll are the new normal. Meanwhile manga publishers continue to kick the dead horse we all know as the 20th century business model; heck they must be praying to Yato to blow up the internet to make manga (business) great again.

Yet stuff like VIZ's shonen jump exist and people sure as heck prefer to read badly translated scans 3 days early.
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wastrel



Joined: 26 Oct 2012
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 7:03 pm Reply with quote
mangamuscle wrote:
GoldCrusader wrote:
...Even when a cheap and easy to use alternative is offered pirates will always pirate....


I used to hear that when torrents were a new technology but lo and behold, Netflix and Crunchyroll are the new normal. Meanwhile manga publishers continue to kick the dead horse we all know as the 20th century business model; heck they must be praying to Yato to blow up the internet to make manga (business) great again.


I know this article is about conditions in Japan. However, as an illustration of how companies still don't get it: I just went to the Crunchyroll site to check out their manga. It took a bit to find a series where they have a few chapters to read for 'free'. However, as I just verified again, they require installation of Flash player to read them on my computer. I will not install the malware known as Flash on my computer, hence Crunchyroll offers me nothing of value.

I will gladly purchase a Crunchyroll membership when they let me view the manga I want to read on the device I want to read it, in a way I am willing to accommodate. There's even a specific manga I'd love to read, "Soredemo Machi wa Mawatteiru", but until they upgrade to non-Flash tech, I will not be their customer.

All these companies are in an uproar about people being able to get, in this case, manga without paying for it. What they forget is that even if they did stamp out all piracy, if they can't get their product to the customer in the way the customer wants it, the customer can still just decline to buy it and do without it altogether. If you want the money, then deliver more value to the customer than the pirates can. A company can rail about illegality, unfairness, unmoral behavior; or they can deliver what the customer wants the way the customer wants it.
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Top Gun



Joined: 28 Sep 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:16 pm Reply with quote
GoldCrusader wrote:
Wishing the best of luck. Even when a cheap and easy to use alternative is offered pirates will always pirate. These people just don't care.

"Eh, no one will ever buy songs for 99 cents each! We have Napster and Limewire!"
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Sakagami Tomoyo



Joined: 06 Dec 2008
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Location: Melbourne, VIC, Australia
PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:36 pm Reply with quote
Romuska wrote:
When it comes to these things I go by the Jim Sterling philosophy. People want to push the button and get the thing. If you try to put an extra step in there then you're part of the problem.

Basically. The closest anyone's gotten to getting it right was Comixology, before they decided they didn't want to pay Apple their cut for in-app purchases.
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Zalis116
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:54 pm Reply with quote
Romuska wrote:
When it comes to these things I go by the Jim Sterling philosophy. People want to push the button and get the thing. If you try to put an extra step in there then you're part of the problem.
Unrealistic expectations and impossible demands from the readers/viewers are just as much of a problem.

mangamuscle wrote:
I used to hear that when torrents were a new technology but lo and behold, Netflix and Crunchyroll are the new normal. Meanwhile manga publishers continue to kick the dead horse we all know as the 20th century business model; heck they must be praying to Yato to blow up the internet to make manga (business) great again.
Netflix and CR may be the new normal for legal consumption, but bootleg streaming sites and readers are the new normal for the much-more-prevalent illegal consumption. Certain cult-of-personality leaders may claim that piracy is a service problem, but if the chief problem people have with the services is that they don't want to pay very much or anything at all for them, it's a pricing problem.

wastrel wrote:
All these companies are in an uproar about people being able to get, in this case, manga without paying for it. What they forget is that even if they did stamp out all piracy, if they can't get their product to the customer in the way the customer wants it, the customer can still just decline to buy it and do without it altogether.
That would be a more positive outcome from the companies' perspective, though. Because (A) People wouldn't be receiving the companies' products/services for free (which stokes resentment among paying customers whose purchases subsidize the moochers' consumption), and (B) bootleg streamers/readers wouldn't be profiting from the companies' labor and investments. Sure, there'd be a loss of exposure/popularity, but those metrics really just benefit the bootleggers; pirates tell their friends about great free places to watch/read, then those friends tell their friends, and so on.

Quote:
If you want the money, then deliver more value to the customer than the pirates can. A company can rail about illegality, unfairness, unmoral behavior; or they can deliver what the customer wants the way the customer wants it.
I guess that means they need to jack up the prices on the high-end physical items even more, so that they can pay people to watch/read online in order to deliver "more value" than the pirates. If "what the customer wants the way the customer wants it" is technically or legally unfeasible to accomplish (because pirates who aren't bound by contracts, laws, or costs have artificially raised expectations to impossible levels), then the only recourses are legal enforcement actions or persuasion campaigns.
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mangamuscle



Joined: 23 Apr 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 10:49 pm Reply with quote
Zalis116 wrote:
mangamuscle wrote:
I used to hear that when torrents were a new technology but lo and behold, Netflix and Crunchyroll are the new normal. Meanwhile manga publishers continue to kick the dead horse we all know as the 20th century business model; heck they must be praying to Yato to blow up the internet to make manga (business) great again.
Netflix and CR may be the new normal for legal consumption, but bootleg streaming sites and readers are the new normal for the much-more-prevalent illegal consumption. Certain cult-of-personality leaders may claim that piracy is a service problem, but if the chief problem people have with the services is that they don't want to pay very much or anything at all for them, it's a pricing problem.


Irrelevant! There are only two scenarios:

1) Make no profits in the digital era and bemoan about the existence of pirates.
2) Make profits and outperform pirates whenever possible.

There is no such scenario IRL where pirates cease to exist, human beings have xeroxed books, copied tapes and recorded broadcasts before most people in this forum were even born yet those industries have not gone bankrupt, far from it. But the cheer hardheadedness of the manga industry is mind boggling, the anime industry has already made the example to follow, continue to bemoan "pirates, piratess, pirates everywhere" instead of modernizing is downright childish.
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wastrel



Joined: 26 Oct 2012
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:03 am Reply with quote
Zalis116 wrote:
wastrel wrote:
If you want the money, then deliver more value to the customer than the pirates can. A company can rail about illegality, unfairness, unmoral behavior; or they can deliver what the customer wants the way the customer wants it.
I guess that means they need to jack up the prices on the high-end physical items even more, so that they can pay people to watch/read online in order to deliver "more value" than the pirates. If "what the customer wants the way the customer wants it" is technically or legally unfeasible to accomplish (because pirates who aren't bound by contracts, laws, or costs have artificially raised expectations to impossible levels), then the only recourses are legal enforcement actions or persuasion campaigns.


Your comment would make sense if the only "value" under consideration were monetary. But there are other things that customers find to be of value: timeliness (does the manga get online at the same time or quickly after the physical copy comes out?), notification (do I get an email/text/notification when a chapter of a manga I subscribe to is newly available, instead of having to visit the site over and over), centralization (can I visit just one site to see all the manga I want, instead of umpteen different companies' sites?), flexibility (can I read in any browser, using any operating system, using any device desktop/phone/tablet?).

There is a lesson to be learned in the fact that two of the major players these days in providing legal access to North American localizations of Japanese media are Crunchyroll and FAKKU, both of which started out as pirates. Both realized that the service they were providing to customers was so superior to what the 'legit' companies were giving at the time, that they could take on the costs of going legit themselves and still make money.
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SHD



Joined: 05 Apr 2015
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2018 1:43 am Reply with quote
GoldCrusader wrote:
Wishing the best of luck. Even when a cheap and easy to use alternative is offered pirates will always pirate. These people just don't care.

First you have to offer actually cheap and actually easy to use alternatives that cater to your audience's needs, instead of trying to force them into un-userfriendly digital schemes. Japan has shockingly few actually good digital manga distribution schemes, and a whole lot of services that aren't cheaper or more convenient than buying physical manga; and even those that exist are usually region locked to Japan. (Same with music, the Japanese entertainment industry's idea of digital music distribution is pathetic and self-defeating in the long run.) Moreover, digital services are not promoted particularly well, publishers aren't really trying to make people like and use digital alternatives.

Not to mention, even with all this noise about OMG PIRACY I'm willing to bet money that if someone made an actual, well thought out survey about why manga sales are failing in Japan, digital piracy would be very low on the list. Obviously it exists but from what I see I think tachiyomi, reading manga in cafés, and buying from secondhand stores are a lot more prevalent... along with the fact that times have changed, the market has saturated, and people simply don't want to shell out thousands of yen each month for magazines just because there's one series in them that they follow, or manga that they don't even like all that much but read ot of curiosity.

Perhaps instead of clinging to the old ways that work increasingly less and less, publishers should think more about what their customers actually want and come up with solutions for that...
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Aca Vuksa



Joined: 22 Mar 2018
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:42 am Reply with quote
Well, that is the most worst case scenario i have ever had. I feel like doujin artists and/or newer generations of mangakas will embrace the digital manga for sure, the older generations are so evil and are not aware about the digital manga being pirated looking sites.

(sorry for my poor English)
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Mc-Taz



Joined: 14 Jun 2011
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:35 pm Reply with quote
What I've actually seen recently on publisher's sites more often now is the offering of manga essentially as a free time-limited web comic that you can follow when they get released. After a few weeks the middle chapters are no longer accessible, but you usually have the very first 3 chapters and most recent 3 chapters available. Granted this is all going to be untranslated, but it does seem like an effort for them to combat piracy in their domestic market.

I've been importing a lot of manga as of late as well for the series that I really want to support that haven't been picked up yet for US distribution. These are either from artists that I am fans of from their previous works, or, ironically enough, stuff that I've discovered on bootleg websites that I very much found myself enjoying. I'm probably the exception to the norm though, since I doubt many people that visit pirate sites end up buying in the end, but the exposure isn't necessarily an entirely negative effect.

Bootleg sites have also allowed me to find personal favorites that I now constantly recommend to the US publishers to license so that I may eventually support them here as well with print releases. I feel like this is a great thing since a publisher licensing a title will have a much larger impact on the sales a title can potentially have compared to me picking up a few manga releases for myself. If it weren't for those sites I might have never found out about these titles on my own, and who knows if they would have any potential for licensing abroad without that sort of exposure.

In the end piracy isn't exactly a good thing, and I feel for the Japanese creators and publishers. I am skeptical however on these potential lost sales figures. There's no real way to quantify that a view of a chapter on a manga site is a lost sale when all is said and done. I've made the decision to support the Japanese releases for titles I really love so that they may continue to be put out in the long run. I just hope more of the people pirating stuff will feel that way eventually and support the artists that provide them with things they appreciate. Plus those Japanese tankobons are pretty awesome on their own. Shocked Many of them also have pre-order bonus items or limited edition versions with content you may never find onilne. Totally worth it in my book.
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Zin5ki
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:19 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
The campaign states that there was a rapid increase in the use of piracy websites since last fall and this increase has threatened the legal digital manga market and could influence the decline of the manga industry as a whole.

If I may ask, how have Japanese wages been faring as of late, particularly amongst younger demographics? It cannot be unprincipled to assume such statistics have a bearing on the present issue.
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