Yesterday I read about how AnimeJunkies has been unethically fansubbing the new Ninja Scroll TV series. In short: Urban Vision is co-financing the project with Madhouse in Japan, so they had liscensing rights from day one. AnimeJunkies fansubbed anyway (either not knowing, or ignoring this) despite the unspoken creedo of the fansubber that thou shalt not distribute liscensed titles. When UV asked them to stop distributing, AJ sent back a junior-high level e-mail loaded with four letter words and condemnations of UV, and at least stopped fansubbing it… but didn’t pull episodes 1-5 from their distribution channels and their fans have been going on a hate-mail campaign against UV ever since.
I really don’t see how anybody can support AJ here. The supporters I have read tend to go on and on about how fansubbing is the lifeblood of American anime and how without them there would be no anime and therefore AJ is fully justified in treating UV like crap because they’re providing waiwai free advertising, which is to use my unbiased and rationally thinking mindset, absolute bullshit. They acted like spoiled children and are giving all sensible and respectful otaku a bad name.
If fansubbers act like this then we’re gonna see the legal hand of god smiting the hell out of all of them, grey hat and black hat alike, and that ain’t a good thing. I’d never have known about Arcade Gamer Fubuki or Utena without fansubbers, and that could be the future we’re headed towards if anime companies begin to feel that subbers are more of an antagonistic bunch of dicks than a group of fans trying to promote anime culture. Thanks a lot, AJ.
(Side note: Ninja Scroll TV sucks ass. I stopped watching after two episodes.)
Another issue spotted today involves the tobacco industry suing the state of Caly. Apparently as part of state legistlation passed Back in Tha Day, the industry has to pony up the money needed to develop and distro anti-smoking ads. The industry is suing now, saying that it’s against free speech to be forced to pay for ads that they disagree with.
As much as I loathe the classically legalized deadly drug industry responsible for a product that kills en masse… I’m tenatively siding with them on this one. I don’t have all the details but unless this is part of a punitive damages settlement, it doesn’t quite make sense that they should be forced to pay for the ads.
Of course, the ads cost $16 mil compared to the $1.5 billion they spend on PRO-smoking ads, which sucks, but what can you do? As long as people are willing to voluntarily commit a slow form of suicide, free market says they’re allowed to, until the industry gets slotted alongside cocaine and heroin where it should be. (Or until cocaine and heroin get slotted into their own legal industries.) You don’t see the gubment trying to get money from Columbian drug cartels for anti-heroin ads. (Or from terrorists for those wacky anti-terrorist-anti-drug ads.)
Now I’ll go hide in my flameproof bunker. Excuse me.