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yaoi_onna [userpic]

January 21st, 2006 (12:07 pm)
annoyed

current mood: annoyed
current song: Red vs Blue

In another livejournal community, someone decided to post an anonymous message about my manga sharing:

no manga is free. all of us who scanslate these wonderful stories actually BUY the manga. and we encourage people to buy it in english, possibly in japanese too, to support the mangaka. 2 of the ones you have up as "free" are in fact licensed. wild rock is available and hybrid child will be available sometime this year. from one manga lover to others, please, go out and buy them instead of just dling the "free manga"....which some wonderful mangakas have worked so hard to create.

Which is very odd to me because I do buy manga. In fact, they know me quite well at my local Waldenbooks and are always quite happy to see me. But I figured you'd like some proof.

This is my shelf of manga. This is where I keep the stuff that I still like to read. Notice by this pic and this pic, that these shelves have two layers of manga on them. One in the front and one in the back. BTW, I have some manga stored in the bottom three containers here. And some in the basement which I'm not photographing because it's cold.

Here's some of my yaoi. Notice Wild Rock is in there. So is Love Mode and a few others I've shared. What's not included is the full set of Gravitation and the full set of FAKE. I also have From Eroica With Love 1-4, all of Petshop of Horrors, all of Demon Diary, 1-9 of Descendents of Darkness (Yami no Matsuei), and a bunch of others that hint at hot guys snogging but will probably never deliver. Those are on the shelf. And if I'm too lazy to clean my room, I'm too lazy to take them down. I pretty much have all the yaoi that my local Waldenbooks has put out. With the exception of the rest of Kizuna and Level C. I've lost interest on those and have stopped buying them. And no, I don't have the scanlations for either.

So what does this prove? One, yaoi_onna is a lazy bitch who can't clean her room. Two, those weren't ghost orbs, I just have a cheap digital camera. Three, yaoi_onna has been collecting manga for a long time now and needs to get a life. But the most important lesson is, scanlations work. They get people interested in a manga and will actually buy manga. The purpose of free manga isn't to discourage the people from buying manga. It's to get them interested so they will buy it. Why do you think that Tokyopop and Viz are still going strong? And why do you think they haven't been shutting down many scanlation sites? Because people are more likely to buy something if they know what they're getting. And scanlations make people interested in manga. I've converted several real life friends into mangaholics just from giving them scanlations alone. But enough with the ranting. You'll believe what you want to believe.

And you know what? Thank you anonymous troll. You've gotten me interested in sharing manga again. I think I'll do some uploading this weekend, if I get the chance.

Comments

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: May 13th, 2006 05:21 pm (UTC)
spector

Yeah. D/L'ing manga online...it's just like going to your local library. The only difference between these two is that libraries that I see usually don't have "manga" sections. Everyone gets to read books for FREE, does this hurt sales? I have no idea. BUT it is a form of advertisement and, when people like the work, they will generally go out of their way to read more via bookstore or library, or even purchase their own copy if they love the book enough (harry potter anyone?).
My prediction is, is that if manga weren't distributed online like this they probably wouldn't be published in places like the US. Without a solid fanbase it's hard to start something in a foreign country (different culture and all...it's hard to tell what people will accept/reject).
From the presepective of a foreigner, the US, being a "Christian" country and all, it's a RISKY business publishing stories about gay men and getting them onto shelves in stores like Barnes and Noble or Borders. I think the scanlating world has shown that this conception isn't true, and that people are willing to buy a story about two men fucking (or kissing, or whatever).
I think the transition of manga from places like Japan/china/korea into stuff english speakers can understand also helps spreads awareness about foreign culture and sexuality to those who read them. I've learned a lot about Japanese culture from these books (sneaky pictoral bastards), without them I'd probably view Japan as an uptight country in need of some good porn (I go to UC Berkeley and in one class, while we were talking about sexuality, a lot of students were surprised that places like Japan were more open about these things than America has been...they were pretty shocked hearing about all the cartoons dedicated to relationships we'd consider taboo). I was fortunate to not be one of the ignorant, only because items such as manga and subbed anime (not distributed in the US) were avaliable to me in english.

Despite the US' large porn industry, having things like Love Mode translated into English and then put onto bookstore shelves is a big thing. I know in my hometown was being a christian bitch about playing brokeback mountain (only one theatre played it...in a population of around 900 thousand). I was pretty surprised to find it was licensed. And it was probably licensed BECAUSE it got such a good response from english speakers via scanlation community.

lirin@sailormoon.com

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