crime

Online manga piracy surges as people stuck at home during the pandemic

9 Comments
By Casey Baseel, SoraNews24

The New Year’s season is usually a pretty festive time in Japan. Along with late Christmas parties there are end-of-the-year parties and start-of-the-year parties. Most people also get about a week off from work straddling New Year’s Day, which they use either to travel back to their hometowns to spend time with relatives or for pleasure trips both inside Japan and abroad.

This year, though, not a whole lot of that was happening. With coronavirus infection numbers surging, people were encouraged to stay home, and apparently a lot of them kept themselves entertained by reading pirated manga online.

According to a study by Japanese publishing industry group ABJ (Authorized Books of Japan), the internet’s 10 largest manga piracy websites were accessed by users in Japan some 200 million times during December of 2020. That’s nearly three times the figure for January of 2020, which was around 72 million. “The increased amount of time people are spending at home during the pandemic is likely a factor,” said an ABJ representative, and the organization estimates the total cost of the content illegally viewed by Japanese users in December, had it been purchased instead, would have been somewhere in neighborhood of 41.4 billion yen.

While widespread piracy of anime and manga has long been an open secret in overseas fan communities, it hasn’t traditionally been a high-profile issue within Japan, particularly for manga. While prices for anime in Japan tend to be higher than officially licensed DVDs or Blu-rays overseas, manga is a fairly low-cost hobby in Japan, where weekly anthologies and collected volumes are often priced at 500 yen or less, and used volumes can be bought at second-hand stores for as little as 100 yen. But as advances in technology make it easier for pirates to set up sites, and also easier for tempted and curious individuals to find them, it seems an increasing number are finding the allure of getting something for nothing too strong to resist, even as it angers and frustrates the art’s original creators.

Source: Asahi Shimbun via Livedoor News via Otakomu

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© SoraNews24

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

9 Comments
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@Chibakun:

Most of the illegal sights I have seen offer fan translations in languages that are otherwise unavailable to readers.

Simply put, if someone can’t read Japanese and wants to read a particular manga, they very likely couldn’t outside of these fan translations.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

manga is a fairly low-cost hobby in Japan, where weekly anthologies and collected volumes are often priced at 500 yen or less, and used volumes can be bought at second-hand stores for as little as 100 yen. But as advances in technology make it easier for pirates to set up sites,

Also with advances in technology it is should be easier for people outside Japan to get affordable Japanese content. If only they make it easier for people outside Japan to get those content

For fans outside Japan that really eager to get those contents in official way. Those fans really need to wait before they really make it available for people outside Japan. Even some of those contents won't be available outside Japan.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Whats the average cost for the netflix equivalent of a manga reading app, and how much content are they limited to?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

People are reading manga at home illegally? Oh dear! How ever shall the world survive?! /s

3 ( +3 / -0 )

As most piracy businesses run with servers located overseas, it's hard for Japanese authorities to investigate and charge them.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

how can people access manga and pay for them if they are not even available in any website, if they want people to support them make an official website that have at least most of the manga's like webtoon its free also its translated to English and u have an option to pay to read the new chapters or wait for it to be released and become free its not hard and its easy profit.

if you only sell the manga in Japan and want people from outside Japan to pay for it then don't make them wait for months for the release.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

piracy has and will always be around for as long as the people can't afford to pay the inflated prices of goods.

Same with fake and copies, and there is plenty these days as it becomes easier to sell online.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Why can't the manga be sold on Amazon Kindle or something instead people having to access it illegally?

You have to release globally at the same time, not give preference to home markets too.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I know this is supposed to be in the crime section but you know the thing about online piracy... ... it’s funny when we can say we’re all “criminals”.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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