Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby chibi-oni » Mon Sep 28, 2009 3:14 pm

Flavy wrote:You do not finish or underprint way too many of your titles!


All publishers have this issue - VIZ, Tokyopop, etc., etc. - have all stopped publishing series at one time or another. I know it's disappointing for the fans, but we can't continue publishing something that loses money. Nor can we overprint lots of copies of all our titles and warehouse them indefinitely so they never go out of print. Especially in the current economy, where so many returns are coming back our way as the book chains dump all their manga stock. If we did that, we would soon go out of business.

Ai No Kusabi is one of our better selling novels, but all the novels currently lag behind our manga in sales. For as beloved as Ai No Kusabi is, and as vocal as its fans are, you would think we'd see that reflected more strongly in the number of copies we sell. I can honestly say that if the numbers were spectacular for us, then we would probably make every possible effort to re-license with Tokuma and continue publishing the series. It would obviously and clearly be in our financial best interests to do so. The truth, though, is that it's questionable based on the numbers I've seen. So if we do renegotiate the license and continue publishing with vol. 7, it would be more for the fans' benefit than any financial benefit for DMP.

I am told that we still do plan to pursue re-licensing with Tokuma, but patience and understanding on the part of the fans would be appreciated. For one thing, vol. 7 still has yet to officially come out in Japan. So any production and release from this point forward, even if the license deal was already in-place, will take a while. Also, our license with Tokuma might not be successful, despite our efforts.
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby aoi_aka » Mon Sep 28, 2009 6:49 pm

I firmly believe that part (mayhap a small part but a part, nonetheless) of the slumping sales of manga and light novels across the board, not just for DMP, is the blatant scanning of English licensed titles for the benefit of those who refuse to pay money for an actual book.

I don't have numbers but the things I have seen just makes me so angry because it's those people with the "best intentions" who are not helping manga sales. Hell's road is paved with best intentions and all that jazz.

If people realized how their acts affect so many people, maybe they'd stop. I highly doubt the even think of how much damage they're doing to the industry.
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby chibi-oni » Mon Sep 28, 2009 8:29 pm

aoi_aka wrote:I firmly believe that part (mayhap a small part but a part, nonetheless) of the slumping sales of manga and light novels across the board, not just for DMP, is the blatant scanning of English licensed titles for the benefit of those who refuse to pay money for an actual book.


I left it unsaid, but your point is subtext in my comments at the very least. I agree with you - I see the sales numbers, and so I see when something a lot of people seem to be huge, passionate fans of only sells x-number of copies for us. There's only one way it computes, and it's that a lot of people didn't actually buy a copy.

Yes, it will (and has) put publishing companies out of business, and very likely result in certain licenses being dropped along the way.
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby Hiyoshimaru » Tue Sep 29, 2009 7:23 am

chibi-oni wrote:
Flavy wrote:You do not finish or underprint way too many of your titles!


All publishers have this issue - VIZ, Tokyopop, etc., etc. - have all stopped publishing series at one time or another. I know it's disappointing for the fans, but we can't continue publishing something that loses money. Nor can we overprint lots of copies of all our titles and warehouse them indefinitely so they never go out of print. Especially in the current economy, where so many returns are coming back our way as the book chains dump all their manga stock. If we did that, we would soon go out of business.

Ai No Kusabi is one of our better selling novels, but all the novels currently lag behind our manga in sales. For as beloved as Ai No Kusabi is, and as vocal as its fans are, you would think we'd see that reflected more strongly in the number of copies we sell. I can honestly say that if the numbers were spectacular for us, then we would probably make every possible effort to re-license with Tokuma and continue publishing the series. It would obviously and clearly be in our financial best interests to do so. The truth, though, is that it's questionable based on the numbers I've seen. So if we do renegotiate the license and continue publishing with vol. 7, it would be more for the fans' benefit than any financial benefit for DMP.

I am told that we still do plan to pursue re-licensing with Tokuma, but patience and understanding on the part of the fans would be appreciated. For one thing, vol. 7 still has yet to officially come out in Japan. So any production and release from this point forward, even if the license deal was already in-place, will take a while. Also, our license with Tokuma might not be successful, despite our efforts.


How about Fujimi Orchestra? Its a BL novel that hasn't been translated yet, and has inspired manga and an OVA!
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby mo2468 » Tue Sep 29, 2009 11:36 pm

chibi-oni wrote:
aoi_aka wrote:I firmly believe that part (mayhap a small part but a part, nonetheless) of the slumping sales of manga and light novels across the board, not just for DMP, is the blatant scanning of English licensed titles for the benefit of those who refuse to pay money for an actual book.


I left it unsaid, but your point is subtext in my comments at the very least. I agree with you - I see the sales numbers, and so I see when something a lot of people seem to be huge, passionate fans of only sells x-number of copies for us. There's only one way it computes, and it's that a lot of people didn't actually buy a copy.

Yes, it will (and has) put publishing companies out of business, and very likely result in certain licenses being dropped along the way.


I can't stand those certain unscrupulous people who do buy a copy, scan the English language release and then spread it all over the internet for others for free (I'm looking at you, yshare and mangafox!). I can't fathom why anyone would do that. It's a step even worse than spreading around scanlations of licensed titles. If the book you liked enough to read in scans is available in English, buy it! Don't take it for free off the internet because you're too cheap to open your wallet. And, certainly, don't pay good money yourself for the book and then give it to 1,000 of your closest anonymous friends on the internet who won't then go out and pay good money for that said book.
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby Hiyoshimaru » Wed Sep 30, 2009 5:33 am

Maybe its becuase publishers haven't liscensed the titles they want to see in English yet. But if anything, I absolutely hate aarinfantasy of all! They have gotten away with YouTube BL fan-subs and a scanslations group. WTF!
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby aoi_aka » Wed Sep 30, 2009 7:46 am

mo2468 wrote:I can't stand those certain unscrupulous people who do buy a copy, scan the English language release and then spread it all over the internet for others for free (I'm looking at you, yshare and mangafox!). I can't fathom why anyone would do that. It's a step even worse than spreading around scanlations of licensed titles. If the book you liked enough to read in scans is available in English, buy it! Don't take it for free off the internet because you're too cheap to open your wallet. And, certainly, don't pay good money yourself for the book and then give it to 1,000 of your closest anonymous friends on the internet who won't then go out and pay good money for that said book.


What?! Mangafox is a website like Mangaone (or onemanga or whatever they're called). If they're sharing scanned books of English publishers, you need to share that with the affected publishers. With closed comms like yshare it's harder for the publisher to pursue the matter legally.

Somebody had scanned (she claimed they were "somebody else's" scans. right.) and shared one of my favorite Kaname Itsuki books whose name I can't remember now (the one with the boys rooming together) and this person had the balls of steel to ask the leechers to please go out and buy the book and support the mangaka and the publisher. That broke the proverbial camel's back. Somebody suggested (name withheld) that if I like the mangaka so much to go buy the book. So I did a little proof-of-purchase to show that I already had the book. The person deleted their reply to me and the original poster wrote a combination apology/excuse/reasoning for what they do. I was a step away from calling them names and getting banned so I stopped. It's a lost cause 'cause we, as fans, don't have a leg to stand on.
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby chibi-oni » Wed Sep 30, 2009 11:45 am

We've actually politely gone after Mangafox before, asking them to take down contents, etc. They pretty much don't care what they're doing, so we would have to proceed to legal action to get any response there. Not to say we would never consider that, but it's a lot of time, effort, and potential expense, and we're a smaller independent publisher just trying to stay afloat in a very challenging economy right now.

We know our scanned books go out all over Livejournal, too. But because of the community nature of it, it's very hard to police.

I don't really have a problem with a scanlation of a book that hasn't been licensed yet, as Hiyoshimaru points out. I don't think most publishers do. But once the scanlation is out there, it's not something that always goes away when a book eventually does get licensed, either.

Given our options, and what we have to work with to fight the problem, our best bet is probably to get more fans to understand and accept that it's actually wrong to grab free contents off the internet. It seems many, many people don't see that's it's a problem in any way, which is the frustrating part of it. We also try to combat with things like eManga, which offers viewable online content at a reasonable price. But if more fans don't actually change their habits, the problem's always going to be there.
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby mo2468 » Wed Sep 30, 2009 8:34 pm

It's like with fansubs, too: once it's out there it is very hard to stop it from being out there. Once a person has gotten something for free, it is very easy for them to justify giving it to someone else for free. It's the people that pay for something and then give it to everyone else for free that I just can't fathom. Why do people do this? The scanlation groups are very good about dropping (and keeping dropped) projects of licensed titles. I remember back when DramaQueen announced Not/Love. The scans practically disappeared from the internet, and even after DQ sat on the license for years, no one picked it back up again to scanlate. Same with Omen (which, thankfully, has been rescued now).

The MangaFox title I was specifically thinking about was a straight scanning of the English volumes of the Only the Ring Finger Knows novels. I was flabbergasted and really really aggrevated when I saw it. I bought those books. I love those books. It' pisses me off that someone would even think to do all that work to scan the individual pages and post them on the internet for everyone to read for free. It's not helping the novel localization market when they do this. Novels don't get scanlated, which makes them a part of the BL fandom that could possibly actually make companies some money, and to see this sort of thing go down is unbelievable. I want to recommend BL novels to friends but I hesitate because God knows how long the printing will last, and some jerkoff will eventually scan the books and make it so no one even wants to buy them anyway, virtually ensuring it won't see another printing.
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Re: Ai no Kusabi - volume 7?

Postby Flavy » Mon Oct 05, 2009 8:04 pm

As much as I agree with everything said here, I must say that everyone's doing it for a profit, not "just because". Those sites that scan licensed English manga and post it up probably are much like isohunt.com. Basically they have a ton of paid advertisements all over their website and the only way to profit from them is to get as many people as you can to visit your website. In that respect, it is not surprising that they take weeks to scan 4 huge volumes of a novel. They're just trying to get popular and get more clicks. Basically, the main problem with EVERYTHING in the world today.

That's not to say I condone it, I absolutely detest people who do that, especially with manga. Because I adore my manga as actual books, I spend tons of money on it, yes, but it's money well spent in my opinion. I love keeping the books on my shelf and I love sitting down in my bed and reading them by flipping the pages, not scrolling through a website. And I never regret spending a penny on them. And I hate it when publishing companies go under because of this behaviour, because then I am the one who suffers along with other fans.

P.S. I am one of those very old-time fans from the time when there were ZERO licensed BL mangas, and Kaze to Ki no Uta was one of the very very few BL animes out there. First time I realized BL manga was becoming popular enough for companies to form exclusively BL brances, I was absolutely ecstatic. Since then, a lot have gone under, and others slowed down. I would HATE to see June go under. They're the biggest BL publisher right now and I'd rather they go on than get the rest of AnK, honestly.
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