This is about piracy in general (not just anime) and the effects it has on different industries.
The other day I was reading an article in UK anime and asian culture magazine NEO, I've typed it up for your enjoyment:
Its sounds to me like some publishing companies are feeling butthurt. But then what do they expect, they charge $40 a DVD in the UK, each DVD containing about 5 episodes yet for the same price I can watch SKy TV for a month. Not to mention that the dubs theys spend so much money on are usually ear splittingly bad. I pay $5 a month here and at anime-eden and I can download as much as I want, hell I can go to a public library and download 4GB in 2 hours, thats value for money, especially when 99.999% of the time I don't want the dubs. Do they really expect to be able to compete with that. The other day I went into a store and went to the anime section, I picked up the first volume of speed grapher, heading towards the checkout I see a box set for the same price (in the end I didn't get speed grapher, I got the entire first season of Tactics, 2 box sets, costing £18 each instead of 5 episodes costing £20), if they can do this, one assumes that they don't need to charge £20 for a single DVD.Quote:
Everyone knows that its easy to get your hands on illegal anime online if you know where to look.
Downloading anime is one way to go, but video streamining sites also play host to countless examples of unauthorised anime, series for which the lisence holders and Japanese creators get no money for their work in producing.
The anime world was stunned this month by news that a popular site hosting these unauthorised videos, Crunchyroll.com, had secured around $4.05 million form an investment company. The company claims that it complies with copyright laws, as it has removed titles when requested, such as Death Note and Cowboy Bebop.
Acording to Kokoro Media, the site generates around 4 million unique visitors, and some 250 million page views per month. 60% of theis traffic is from outside the United States.
Crunchyroll has plans to introduce instream advertising on its site, claiming that "pay for play or ownership downloads don't work because the anime community has been living for years on free fansubs."
Whilst it sounds like Crunchyroll is making serious headway into solving the problem of generating income from fansubs, the fact remains that that income isn't finding its way to the Japanese creators - yet. The company claims to be in talks with anime firms to use content on its site for undisclosed lisence fees. Although so far, only "a select number of firms" have been approached, it is claimed that Crunchyroll intends to lisence all its content leagally - eventually.
American distributors, on the other hand, have responded to this news with concern. FUNimation issued the following statement: "Without proactive and effective copyright policing and enforcement by those that control anime content, sitesl lie this will continue to gain a reputation as outlets for free anime. If this happens, the entire anime industry will suffer, making the expensive and time consuming work of producing anime content for the US market impossible."
Bandai Entertainment echoed the sentiment, saying it had "also informed the websit crunchyroll.comto remove content that infringed on its copyrights and furthermore has been working with licensors in Japan, educating them abouth the pervasive illegal downloading and streaming of anime that has negatively impacted the market."
Meanwhile, it's been suggested that the Gonzo/GDH anime company has been in talks with crunchyroll about online content. Although at the time of press, no official staement had been released, by the time you read this, Gonzo should have released a statement outlining its intentions.
Whilst on the one hand, a truly legal and free streaming anime website could solve the problem of illegal downloading in the west, any revolution is not without its casualties - namely the DVD distribution companies here in the US and the UK.
There are tough times ahead for the industry.
Would it really be hard to release subs only DVDs at a fraction of the cost? And if they are so insistent on creating dubs and then poorly dubtitling the Japanese track, I have to wonder how well they know their market.
Sure there will be kids shows like Pokémon, where the target audience is not concerned that its anime and are not interested in reading subtitles, but the majority of series are going to appeal to anime fans, people who were probably brought into the community by illegal fansubs. Since these people can get it for free and are aware of how bad dubs tend to be compared to subs, what incentive is there to buy DVDs, especially considering the price. There are many shows that I would like to own on DVD, but the price makes ownership prohibitively expensive. As a result most anime fans probably aren't interested in buying the DVDs unless its an outstanding series (but then they've probably already watched it anyway).
Releasing subs only would mean that production would be cheaper, there could be more episodes on a disk, disks could be released faster and potentially disks would be cheaper or at least more value for money. I could quite happily pay to watch anime, but because of these companies, this is not an affordable option.
As such, I have no sympathy for these companies, and I'm not worried about them disapearing either (subs will still be around when these companies fall).
Well with 60% of the audience outside the US, I'm now more sure than ever that these companies don't know their own market.Quote:
Originally Posted by FUNimation
One other thing though, I read somewhere that prices are high because the Japanese studios like to charge high licensing fees. Does anyone now if this is true?
OK, I've ranted enough about anime for now, and I'd like to keep this thread in CC legitimately, so lets talk about other forms of piracy.
Piracy is always going to happen, its a fact, no matter how affordable something is, it has been pirated and cracked (a rule of the internet). So the question is:
Where do you stand on piracy?
Pesronally I, think its wrong, it doesn't stop me doing it, but I do feel guilty about it (although maybe not so much with anime). However there are places where I draw a line. I will not pirate games that are still on sale, and if I have the opportunity to buy a game instead of pirating it I will. This stems mostly from the fact that I studied games design in Uni, and I know just how much work goes into a game. The games industry is something I want to see succeed.
Thats not to say that a lot of work hasn't gone into other forms of media, but games hold a special place in my mind, they provide interactivity, while say a movie, although cheaper, is the same everytime.
I do pirate movies, although not often. I find that the DVD extras do warrant the cost of the DVD andI don't watch movies that often anyway.
Music is a bit different, I don't often bother with albums, its usually only a single song that I want, and I usually pirate it. The difference is that with music, if I want a song, I have to have it. so if I can't easily pirate it (I can't use torrents at the moment) I will buy it. I buy my albums most of the time, although if its an entire discography I'm after, I pirate it (I'm not made of money lol).
As I've already said and I think most of us here would agree, I'm OK to pirate anime and manga. Since I read and watch so much of it, it woulf be un-economical to actually pay for all of it (especially when most of it is actually pretty rubbish TV fodder). That said there is occasionally a series that is so good, such a classic that I just have to have it (GITS and Cowboy Bebop are two good examples), these are few and far between but good enough to warrant a buy even if I have already watched it.
Anyway, sorry to rant for so long (its my first thread in a while lol), I know its not my blog. So what are everyone's opinions on piracy?