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News: JManga Closes Adruptly

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Sayori x3
Post #591161 - Reply to (#591118) by hahhah42
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6:23 am, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 99


Quote from hahhah42
The official explanation per Jmanga's twitter[/url] is a lack of revenue:
Quote
We at @JManga_official thank everyone for supporting us since launch. We regret that we lack the revenue to continue as a business.


A simple Twitter message really means nothing. If JManga was truly suffering from not earning enough revenue, they would've given reasonable prior notice to its customers that they would be closing down sometime within the next few months or weeks.

From what modern economics and business has taught us, a company doesn't just have its stock price drop to zero in a day just because they "don't earn enough". The only times that those can happen are if there's some sort of lawsuit or court order forcing them to close, or if some sort of illegal activity is involved.

The whole "we're closing due to lack of revenue" is likely just a cover-up for other complications. If it was really due to that, they wouldn't have needed to post it on their Twitter. They could've plain mentioned it on their website, alongside their closure message. It was likely just posted in response to many people asking JManga exactly why they're closing down.

But anyway. Doesn't change the fact that they're still closing.

Quote from CuteManabi
The odd thing about Jmanga was that quality on some titles was basically on par with scanlations. I know in the Chitose Get You! manga I ran across 4komas where they forgot to translate the title, and I'm pretty sure I remember one where they did translate it, but forgot to box out the Japanese te ...


Better get to it then ;o.

Quote from imercenary
Then licensee companies should pay based on commission instead of salary? You're making it sound like they're failing due to management incompetence and blaming it on "you can't compete with free!"

And the U.S. manga publication of One Piece is a mere 3 volumes behind (not bad since we'r ...


Regardless of what you think I'm implying, the reality is, they really can't compete with free.

And One Piece is probably a poor example to throw out, since it's an extremely popular series and chances are, the licensee companies are focusing most of their effort in catching up with those high-tier series. If you wanted to know, my "it takes time to catch up" argument was more referring to the not-so-popular series (mid- to low- tier).

You probably think I'm being pro-scanlation, but see, I'm more just being pro-reality. I'm not taking either's sides. I'm simply analyzing the reality that licensee companies are having and are going to continue having a tough time trying to increase their market cap.

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caozhi
Post #591162
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Nice desu ne
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6:41 am, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 1049


lel this is some timing...

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RS456
Post #591167
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7:15 am, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 207


Are you sure they can compete with free? Cruchyroll does it and they are doing it with something more difficult which is anime. They get ad revenue and for people who want additional features like dowload get a paid subscription. Manga should be a piece of cake compared to anime.

Sayori x3
Post #591195 - Reply to (#591167) by RS456
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1:58 pm, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 99


Quote from RS456
Are you sure they can compete with free? Cruchyroll does it and they are doing it with something more difficult which is anime. They get ad revenue and for people who want additional features like dowload get a paid subscription. Manga should be a piece of cake compared to anime.


Crunchyroll uses a Netflix-like model for their anime. The issue with manga isn't so much that they can't get ad revenue or offer a paid subscription for all their manga, but it's the fact that readers generally crave speed and the latest chapters for all the manga they read, which most licensee publishers have not been able to produce.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of manga series out there, and not enough translators and editors to work on all of them, so there is easily a bias towards high-tier series (the really popular ones) as well as series that people don't care much about (the publisher could have had other tastes which might not appeal to the general population).

Since there isn't a ton of anime coming out all the time, both Crunchyroll and viewers have a limited selection to choose from, so eventually they'll both come to an agreement to watch the same stuff. Manga can't be like that. Publishers can only hope they picked up some good series that people will pay for.

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imercenary
Post #591214 - Reply to (#591161) by Sayori x3
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6:54 pm, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 124


Quote from Sayori x3
Regardless of what you think I'm implying, the reality is, they really can't compete with free.

And One Piece is probably a poor example to throw out, since it's an extremely popular series and chances are, the licensee companies are focusing most of their effort in catching up with those high-tier series....


And yet other industries compete against free just fine. They don't compete well enough to enjoy the same profits as before (lolnewspapers) but most survive.

Whats a "mid- to low- tier" manga? You're presenting an oxymoron. If a series is "not-so-popular" its probably because they're translating/releasing it years late. Why should fans buy into something late; or worse, already over?

I'm not sure how presenting outdated conditions and unrealistic goals makes you a realist. I don't think you even know what you're talking about if you're bringing up market cap. Most U.S. manga publishers are subsidiaries and are only listed on Japanese stock exchanges.

cmertb
Post #591221 - Reply to (#591167) by RS456
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7:51 pm, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 158


Quote from RS456
Are you sure they can compete with free? Cruchyroll does it and they are doing it with something more difficult which is anime. They get ad revenue and for people who want additional features like dowload get a paid subscription. Manga should be a piece of cake compared to anime.

You have no clue what you're talking about. Scanlation is a more labor intensive process, in particular due to redraws. Only translation is more difficult in anime.

Your analogy fails on two additional points: the size of the market and the ease of getting the free product.

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claxio
Post #591222
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7:58 pm, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 1


Sorry to interrupt the conversation a little, but I wonder what will happen to the licenses that JManga holds?

Sayori x3
Post #591223 - Reply to (#591214) by imercenary
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8:03 pm, Mar 17 2013
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Quote from imercenary
And yet other industries compete against free just fine. They don't compete well enough to enjoy the same profits as before (lolnewspapers) but most survive.

Whats a "mid- to low- tier" manga? You're presenting an oxymoron. If a series is "not-so-popular" its probably because the ...


I explain tiers as more of a way of generalizing what kind of population of readers is expected from a manga series once it starts coming out. Usually, the heavily cliched ones these days get more readers than the somewhat uncommon genres that get put out.

I mean market cap as more of how big the company is, which can usually prove a point in determining just how much they can compete with others (other companies and hitherto scanlation). If a company is more popular (bigger usually as well), chances are they'll have a larger work force to put out material faster, and they'll (presumably and hopefully) earn more. And usually, better, more popular series can contribute to them doing just that.

And yes, I know, most of them are subsidiaries. I was referring them more as a single entity owned and led elsewhere, and not as a joint-enterprise with their host companies.

Quote from claxio
Sorry to interrupt the conversation a little, but I wonder what will happen to the licenses that JManga holds?


Nope, you're not interrupting anything at all. Feel free to say or ask anything about JManga.

To answer your question, they'll just "lose" their license, since it's rendered dormant (even if the contract's signed for longer). In terms of whether scanlation should be concerned, groups can pick up the project if they'd like, once the company closes down.

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Nicole28
Post #591225
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8:37 pm, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 1


I don't believe it has anything to do with competing against "free" either. Most people who purchase from Jmanga do so to support the creators, nothing to do with unable to get it free, as almost all manga there is available in pirate form somewhere.

DRM might be one of the probable issues. Can't download after buying. If you are talking about customer unsatisfaction.

JustPassingBy
Post #591227 - Reply to (#591221) by cmertb
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9:07 pm, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 54


Quote from cmertb
You have no clue what you're talking about. Scanlation is a more labor intensive process, in particular due to redraws. Only translation is more difficult in anime.

Your analogy fails on two additional points: the size of the market and the ease of getting the free product.


But are redraws really necessary? Why don't they just give them the pages without the text over it?

MasamiAkane
Post #591233 - Reply to (#591227) by JustPassingBy
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10:02 pm, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 1230


Quote from JustPassingBy
But are redraws really necessary? Why don't they just give them the pages without the text over it?

What do you mean?


Anyways, I was actually interested in purchasing from JManga a while back so I decided to check out some of their free chapters. It had enough mistakes (e.g. what CuteManabi mentioned) that it just turned me off completely.

RS456
Post #591234
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10:03 pm, Mar 17 2013
Posts: 207


Or just give two sets one with text and the other without text. There are ways to do it. If they go digital with option of buying print version they can completely cut off surplus printing losses. Redrawing is not as labor intensive as some make it out to be if you have the right stuff. With anime that is not the case. It was only mentioned translation is more difficult in anime but there is also timing. A single episode of an anime has between 200-300 lines that needs to be translated and timed. Compare that to 15-30 pages of redrawing and 30-80 lines of translation with no timing.

Sayori x3
Post #591255 - Reply to (#591227) by JustPassingBy
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12:34 am, Mar 18 2013
Posts: 99


Quote from JustPassingBy
But are redraws really necessary? Why don't they just give them the pages without the text over it?


That's simply because the minimal standard readers expect from translated manga is for it to have all the text replaced. Not much you can do about that.

Quote from RS456
Or just give two sets one with text and the other without text. There are ways to do it. If they go digital with option of buying print version they can completely cut off surplus printing losses. Redrawing is not as labor intensive as some make it out to be if you have the right stuff. With anime that is not the case. It was only mentioned translation is more difficult in anime but there is also timing. A single episode of an anime has between 200-300 lines that needs to be translated and timed. Compare that to 15-30 pages of redrawing and 30-80 lines of translation with no timing.


Print versions on demand would cause the prices of the book to have to go up, as it costs quite a bit to start up the printing process in a printing press just for a couple of volumes.

And as for the concept of anime fansubbing, I myself tried it for once (just to see what it would be like), and I can safely say that it's can roughly get just as difficult or time consuming as manga. It's more tedious at times, yes, but a few dedicated days is quite enough for a single episode, if it's a solo job (I did the entire episode all by myself without help). This is quite easily parallel to a manga chapter that needs heavy redrawing (and this is doing the chapter entirely by myself as well).

I agree that translating is more difficult in anime. Mainly because you can't just read it, and thus, must rely a lot on intuition. For me, a translator that believes that something should not be released unless there is at least 99% or more accuracy, it easily took out hours of my life just to get some few lines that were heavily bogged by lots of noise too much colloquialism.

I gave up on fansubbing after that one episode because it was too much effort that was really not worth using, and too many competing groups these days are opening up from the availability of public anime raws.

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-shiratori-
Post #591268 - Reply to (#591255) by Sayori x3
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1:26 am, Mar 18 2013
Posts: 425


Quote from Sayori x3
That's simply because the minimal standard readers expect from translated manga is for it to have all the text replaced. Not much you can do about that.


I think he meant that the english publishers should get the raws without text from the japanese publishers (which I don't believe is true), but just to comment on this: I wonder why that is the case. If redrawing is such a hassle then why not simply drop it in a fanmade scanlation? For text outside of bubbles you can use fonts with big stroke and glow added and SFX doesn't need to get removed anyway. Yes it doesn't look as good or professional but you can read it, that's the most important. Many manga scanlations take a few months or more between each chapter release just because nobody wants to or can redraw. As a reader I'd rather see the chapters released more frequently without redraws than wait aeons for a chapter with them.

/rantendsorry

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cmertb
Post #591287 - Reply to (#591227) by JustPassingBy
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4:50 am, Mar 18 2013
Posts: 158


Quote from JustPassingBy
But are redraws really necessary? Why don't they just give them the pages without the text over it?

Hopefully that's what happens.

But manga typesetting is still somewhat harder per line than its anime counterpart -- subtitle timing. Ditto for cleaning versus encoding. Now consider this in terms of revenue per staff hour spent. Given how many people will look at an anime episode compared to a manga chapter (even if we assume ~5 weekly manga chapters [100 pages] = 1 anime ep), you see a problem, right? Now consider the competition (i.e. fansubbers vs scanlators): you can read any scanlated manga on an online aggregator within 60 seconds of you deciding to try it. Finding fansubs you want is a bit more challenging, not to mention the time it takes to dl them. I suppose CR is actually easier in terms of effort alone, without even considering money, than getting fansubs. Completely the opposite seems to be true of scanlation. Even if a legit manga publisher decided to give manga away for free with whatever half-baked DRM scheme they come up with (like a Flash reader), fans would still more likely go to current aggregator sites where there's more choice and no DRM.

I don't know how much CR is making, but if they're barely breaking even, for example, a CR-like scanlator would be deeply in the red.

I'm more and more convinced that given the current scanlation scene, legit manga translation can't hope to compete. Only crowd funding seems to be a viable option to me (something like estimate the cost of translation beforehand, get money from fans to do the work in advance, and then count any additional sales as profit). And even that is doubtful without some ruthless C&D'ing, i.e. first you gotta remove a scanlator before the fans will pay up to continue a title.

Quote from -shiratori-
I think he meant that the english publishers should get the raws without text from the japanese publishers (which I don't believe is true), but just to comment on this: I wonder why that is the case. If redrawing is such a hassle then why not simply drop it in a fanmade scanlation? For text outsi ...

It's not as simple as you think. Even if you disregard the psychological aspect (i.e. the fact that scanlators don't like to produce ugly product), in case of Japanese, in most cases you can't adequately cover the original text because it flows vertically rather than horizontally. You might have to rotate the translation as well in that case. It would be painful to read.

But the scanlator psychology trumps everything in the end. You have to try it yourself to understand.

Last edited by lambchopsil at 8:27 am, Mar 18

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