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Old 2009-03-06, 09:49   Link #61
Slice of Life
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But now I'm curious. What did that man say and where? In the ANN thread? sorry, if I missed something important here, I normally do not follow the American scene.
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Old 2009-03-06, 10:26   Link #62
Ash Falls Town
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Originally Posted by Slice of Life View Post
But now I'm curious. What did that man say and where? In the ANN thread? sorry, if I missed something important here, I normally do not follow the American scene.
He's an American voice actor. He plays Satoshi in DNAngel.
He's rather infamous for his very anti-fansub views. I believe he has panels at cons where he explains the detrimental effects of fansubs on the anime industry. You can find the panels on YouTube but I don't think they are officially uploaded.
I haven't seen any of them but I've heard of people who have both stopped watching fansubs thanks to him and people who think his arguments are flawed. Apparently he uses the guilt method a lot.

Anyway he recently has had a heart attack which is what sa547 is presumably referring to.
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Old 2009-03-06, 10:28   Link #63
cyth
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You mean Greg Ayres? He's a voice actor who just attends lots of American conventions where he hosts panels such as this one. If you don't care to waste time, he basically preaches how fansubs are the work of the devil. On the topic of how important the American anime industry is to Japan, he basically claims that North American capital saved the Japanese anime industry back in the late 90's. >_>
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Old 2009-03-06, 10:43   Link #64
jsieczkar
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Originally Posted by Nosauz View Post
why would a us crash be that detrimental to the japanese industry, the us produces zero anime, all it does is distributes the product. .
To expand on what bayoab has said if you look at some of the titles from around 2002 or so American based compines were on the production committees for the shows.

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Originally Posted by oompa loompa View Post
forgive me if im wrong, but didnt the increased introduction of anime in the US market bring the anime's industry after the 'crash' of the late 1980's back on its feet? if i am wrong, its a good thing
It was in part from the increase in sales to the international market, but it was mainly internally done. A group of 20 - 30 year old men who were the first group to grow up with high budget anime aimed at older audiences were the primary cause. These were in large quantity's buying up OVAs along the lines of Genocyber. By 1995 this market was growing to the point that GAINAX, NAS, and TV Tokyo produced Neon Genesis Evangelion. This brought a new interest in anime mostly to a more adult audience, Evangelion got a massive boost from the incredible amount of free advertising the show got. It set the Japanese TV censors on their collective behinds and as they say all publicity is good publicity. As a result of this, shows of a similar nature were aired later at night, largely creating the late night time blocks. This then leads us to:

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Originally Posted by Nosauz View Post
anime is profitable, otaku in japan support the industry, if it wasn't profitable you wouldn't have all these industries based around anime. What we are talking about is a slow down in the industry, because all industries go through a growth and shrikage cycle, it just some are worried with the compounding of the global economy the industry might shrink or burst so to say. Similar to other sectors of the economy that have burst in the past, like housing, to blue chips. Like any industry as long as you have a solid product that consumers want, with time you can rebuild, this happened with blue chips, it will happen with housing, it really depends on what your selling.
This group has been providing a large boost to the industry, the basic functions of the industry are mostly kept afloat by the kids shows and other daytime shows. The large quantity of late night anime was beyond what could be supported by the small number of people. Add to it that this group is getting smaller and the monetary power of this group has been shrinking as well. That grouping is no longer as stable as it was in the last few years.

Oddly the late night block that is doing the best (none are doing great most have been cut back) is the NoitaminA block on Fuji Television which is geared at women.
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Old 2009-03-06, 10:53   Link #65
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Originally Posted by Toua View Post
You mean Greg Ayres? He's a voice actor who just attends lots of American conventions where he hosts panels such as this one. If you don't care to waste time, he basically preaches how fansubs are the work of the devil. On the topic of how important the American anime industry is to Japan, he basically claims that North American capital saved the Japanese anime industry back in the late 90's. >_>
@offtopic: Though I have recently given respect due to that heart attack, looks like he'll have to revise his own history of anime in America because without the industry leaders who'd been deep in Betamax'd fansubs in college (see Sean Leonard for his thesis Progress Against the Law), he wouldn't be working today in anime; he would be out there doing voice-overs for Pizza Hut commercials.

@Toua/ontopic: I think the other blog you picked up regarding a similar problem facing the music industry somehow hit the mark: the greater diversification of entertainment options may have contributed to reduced patronization of commercially-distributed music.

Now let's see... I don't know if this might be a viable option for those studios, but they should cut down the production rate a bit because not everyone's be able to consume them all, and instead reconsider the storytelling part because a bad story is a waste of resources: after several bad reviews, only a few are gullible enough to buy a rehashed storyline, even if they try to wave a huge boxset of such a mediocre show with a basement bargain sticker price (and all the T&A "service" he could get) to a geek in downtown Akihabara.

Furthermore, making admission that they admire (and possibly fear) Miyazaki shouldn't be said -- well, they have to be reminded that in Japanese business, there's always war, and in war they have to use their collective heads to fix the problem with their storytelling today.

I want to tell them in their faces: "Show me something unique and entertaining, and I'll show you the money, and what I buy may save your hide."
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Old 2009-03-06, 11:04   Link #66
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Originally Posted by jsieczkar View Post
Oddly the late night block that is doing the best (none are doing great most have been cut back) is the NoitaminA block on Fuji Television which is geared at women.
Nodame Cantabile played a big part in expanding Noitamina's popularity, I believe; it has consistently pulled higher ratings than other Noitamina offerings. It also had the advantage of airing after the live-action version had been shown, so there was something of a built-in audience for the anime.

Noitamina also airs programs that fall well outside the norm for anime like Mononoke or Genji. Even their more mainstream offerings like Moyashimon (school) or Toshokan Sensou (action) are rather dissimilar from most shows in the same genre categories.
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Old 2009-03-06, 12:16   Link #67
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Originally Posted by jsieczkar View Post
By 1995 this market was growing to the point that GAINAX, NAS, and TV Tokyo produced Neon Genesis Evangelion. This brought a new interest in anime mostly to a more adult audience, Evangelion got a massive boost from the incredible amount of free advertising the show got. It set the Japanese TV censors on their collective behinds and as they say all publicity is good publicity. As a result of this, shows of a similar nature were aired later at night, largely creating the late night time blocks.
Do you have the figures to back that up? Not that I disagree you, because I don't recall that many "notable" anime appearing prior to Neon Genesis Evangelion, Akira, Ghost in the Shell and Mononoke Hime. Those who followed my earlier link would know that I had claimed that the industry is moving through creative cycles of boom and bust and, right now, they seem to be in stuck the doldrums, made worse by the gloomy global economy.

It'd be nice to have hard numbers to support my assertions.

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Originally Posted by sa547 View Post
I don't know if this might be a viable option for those studios, but they should cut down the production rate a bit because not everyone's be able to consume them all, and instead reconsider the storytelling part because a bad story is a waste of resources: after several bad reviews, only a few are gullible enough to buy a rehashed storyline, even if they try to wave a huge boxset of such a mediocre show with a basement bargain sticker price (and all the T&A "service" he could get) to a geek in downtown Akihabara... I want to tell them in their faces: "Show me something unique and entertaining, and I'll show you the money, and what I buy may save your hide."
If only it were so easy to write a "good" story. Creative endeavour is not the same as an engineering project where you can use some basic formulae to do some calculations, and hey presto, construct yourself a building.

I'd bet you that many a writer who produced a dud sincerely believed he had a winner in his hands. That's why the rewards of producing a Hollywood blockbuster are so big — it's because the financial risks are so high: You never know whether you have a "great" story until the product hits the market.

That said, I do wish the anime industry would get out of its moe fetish, and move on to other things soon. What the next big "thing" will be, though, is anybody's guess.
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Old 2009-03-06, 12:39   Link #68
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That said, I do wish the anime industry would get out of its moe fetish, and move on to other things soon. What the next big "thing" will be, though, is anybody's guess.
Well it's not really the "industry" per se, it's the consumers. But the popularity of moe does not preclude the viability of other genres. In fact I think moe will always be around. There have been many successful titles that either don't contain any moe or contain moe characters but do not focus on moe.
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Old 2009-03-06, 13:51   Link #69
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In my opinion, the Japanese industry has produced many great series over these past few years. I don't share sympathies with the ever popular Occam's razor theory, but notability isn't so much about quality as it is about the establishment. Case in fact, the prevalence of certain genres or animation styles has nothing to do with the notion of having less notable anime series available in the present age.

But I digress. The number of productions isn't so much a consequence of demand as it is stretching it thin due to sheer necessity. As it was said before, many studios can't finance whole productions by themselves, so they form production committees where the number of business partners rapidly increases. Consequently, revenue decreases, warranting more projects for some of these companies to stay afloat. I honestly wonder how much of the Japanese music industry (the biggest sponsors) lives off of anime alone.
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Old 2009-03-06, 14:15   Link #70
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Originally Posted by SeijiSensei View Post
Demographics pose a serious threat to the long-term health of the otaku market in Japan. The birth rate continues to decline, and Japan's population becomes older and older. Since anime viewing falls with age, the market for anime in Japan will inevitably shrink in the years ahead. Of course, this is a slow, extended process, not something that will force studios to close their doors in the next twelve months.

One compensating factor that's often discussed is the tendency for younger Japanese adults to remain at home with their parents. Nearly three out of five 25-29 year-old men are still living at home along with just under half of the women.* Young people living at home presumably have more money to spend on entertainment than they would if they were building a family and establishing a household.

__________

*Comparable data for the US were harder to find, probably because the incidence of adult children living at home is so much lower. From Table F1 in this report by the Census Bureau, roughly five million households had a child over 25 years of age at home, or some 6% of the estimated 78 million "family" households in 2008, with another 8% having a child between 18 and 25.
its actually quite interesting to see how the declining birth rate affects the anime industry so adversely.. but is expected. I did hear that their birth rate picked up somewhat in 2007, but droppped again in 2008 (?). I am curious as to how they plan to solve this problem ( if they plan on solving it at all - i most certainly hope they do) but i guess thats irrelevant to this topic.

At any rate.. it would seem that demographics are playing a major role in eroding the anime industry.. apart from simply scaling down, and perhaps targeting a different audience, i wonder if theres a solution to this.

Last edited by oompa loompa; 2009-03-06 at 14:31.
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Old 2009-03-06, 16:31   Link #71
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Originally Posted by ArrowSmith View Post
You have to realize the Japanese are very racist and look down at the Americans.
Japanese aren't racist like Americans who look down on the rest of the world; they’re just ignorant and xenophobic at times. (Realize I’m just spiting)

I don't see a reduction in the amount of titles coming out as a bad thing. A lot of it is low-budget, low-profit crap anyway. I'd like to see resources pulled together and used on higher quality and/or innovative productions. The problem is getting someone to prove that this method is cost effective enough.
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Old 2009-03-06, 16:42   Link #72
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mmm this is an issue isnt it?.. well it will become one eventually - perhaps not any time in the immediate future - though the current economic conditions dont help either. well, until the demographics set themselves right, the old avenues of income are not really going to work too well ( that is the problem isnt it? the majority of revenue is generated through japan - blaming fansubs for a dent in sales is technically correct, but it isnt as important as is made out), guess they have to try and do something else. to increase the size of the US market would probably not do too well either, as sales are already dropping - dvd sales are dropping in all industries, though anime seems to be effected a little worse. the first step would obviously be to scale down production - 200+ series a year is.. more than can be handled at the moment. i cant really say what this will mean. the market will probably continue to shrink, until the demographics start improving slightly. Still apart from scaling down, the anime industry is going to have to do something extremely clever, to fix this in the long run, and i have no idea what that may be - i doubt waiting for another NGE to come along is the answer.. what do you guys think?
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Old 2009-03-06, 16:56   Link #73
Ryuou
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The answer to the anime industry's problems is not for another mega hit to come out. That's only temporary and helps only a select few companies. The system under which it operates needs to be changed. Too many companies just skimp by from production to production.
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Old 2009-03-06, 19:01   Link #74
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I think the most important reasons for the problems in the anime industry have already been touched in previous posts. My impression is that too small an portion of the income of a production flows back to the production companies. When the economy makes a turn for the worse they get hit hardest.

DVD sales are unfortunatly one of the major sources to recoup the cost of anime production and that medium is slowly going the way of the Dodo. It's not unlikely that fans still spend the same amounts of money on their hobby but probably have switched to buying other items like mangas and merchandise then DVDs. Given the high DVD prices in Japan that might have had an even bigger impact there.

I think a similar thing is happening in the west. Major retail chains offer less anime (like Best Buy) but Diamond distribution for example has offered more and more manga related content in recent years.

The canned dogs website has an interesting article about the way the cash flows are devided in a typical anime production:

anime bussiness
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Old 2009-03-06, 19:05   Link #75
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well really, all we can do now i suppose is wait and watch - hopefully all of this will result in an industry contraction, rather than a 'crash', and hopefully the anime indusry will take effective action to fix things - things are looking grim, but were still not near a 'collapse' right?
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Old 2009-03-06, 19:12   Link #76
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The Japanese domestic anime audiences had aged beyond believe due to an aging Japanese population. Not only that, the number of Japanese youth TV audiences can no longer provide a good TV viewing rate due to low birthrate, so the TV stations had long since taken out anime TV series off prime times, because Japanese companies no longer interested in sponsoring anime programs that's not generating enough target audiences, to watch programs that were paid to be on Japanese TV networks with Japanese companies advertising venues. Most anime in Japan are now being broadcast on PPV channels, with the anime industry themselves paying for the time slots. In another word, the cause of a dying Japanese anime industry was not due to a failed business model. But Japan as a nation is failing on a social level due to the social breakdowns(http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/...etired/27301/1) caused by the darker side of the Japanese society(http://www.wilsoncenter.org/index.cf...vent_id=368261). And the 10 years long Japanese economic recession was only an indication of the social breakdown, because normally a recession should only last for 2 years at most.

It was during the 10 years long Japanese economic recession, that's when the 3rd generation of anime otakus/fanatics took over the general direction of anime series from the 1990's to early 2000's, to be more realistic instead of being idealistic, and more comforting instead of inspiring. The story settings had more references based on current events of that time period, and more emphasis was put on characters developments rather than the story plots. This is because during the recession period, a lot of the social issues like elitism and collective mentality(ironically, the Japanese economic boom during the early 50's to late 80's was a direct result of such educational & social structure) weren't addressed during the previous economic boom, had begone to cause social breakdowns within the Japanese society. This discouraged the Japanese youths back then, to a point that made a good number of them antisocial, if not cynical and/or suicidal. So in order to appeal to this generation of Japanese youths, the anime industry was forced to change their orientations.

At the same time, the anime industry was scrambling to reform in order to survive the impending economic recession. The media publishers, toys manufacturers, and the gaming companies were collaborating more and more with each others, while using anime as an medium to advertise their products toward the Japanese youths. OTOH, most of the anime production companies and studios were being bought out by the bigger medias, toys, and games corporations in order to survive. In the end, the anime industry survived the 10 years long recession together with a new breed of anime fanatics, at the cost of their ideals and inspirations. As they entered the early 2000's led by an even more niche but now antisocial 4th generation anime otakus. And the rest, is the reality of now as we know it; a dying industry with a tanked domestic market due to an aging & failing society, not economic recession.

And here's another piece of fact to consider. In the late 90's, legally digitized anime medias were first made available outside of Japan by pioneer VHS-fansubbers turned international anime licensing companies, as R1 anime DVD. However, the rampant fansub release and distribution over the internet killed off the incentive of legally digitized anime medias around mid 2000's, while international anime licensing companies were already sponsoring anime production since early 2000's.

And now, as the world heading towards global recession, no international company is stupid enough to sponsor a dying anime industry with next to nothing market return. And the fear incited elitist attitude & collective mentality of the fansub community, while surprisingly mirroring the aging & failing Japanese society, is dragging down the anime community along with it. Me? I'll just collect only the R1 anime DVD medias that I like, then sit back and watch with the rest of my buddies while poking fun at the fansub community as I please. Because as long as they don't actively fight back the corruption of fansubs themselves, the anime community consisting of the anime industry and their fans, will share the same misplaced fears incited mentality as the fansub community, and they shall share the same fate as the aging & dying Japanese society. And don't even count on the authority to stop the corruption, because as long as the community's collective mentality lacks the courage to face the truth, the authority means nothing. This is also why Japan has such low crime rate despise the social breakdowns, because the collective mentality lacked the courage to report the corruptions.

And with that, I'll make my peace by no longer subjecting myself with the corrupted collective mentality and the perverse incentive of misplaced fears. For I no longer wish to fight a war that's not worth fight for.
what do you guys think of this?
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Old 2009-03-06, 19:24   Link #77
Ryuou
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There is no need to worry about the anime industry collapsing. It's not going to crash. It may stumble a bit and need to pick itself back up, but it won't crash. The American anime licensing industry; however, I think will disappear in time.

One thing that that article mentioned is that high prices for DVDs are affected by high TV timeslot costs and expected low sale numbers. I don't doubt that this has a part in it, but I read somewhere that the anime companies wouldn't charge lower prices even if they could. High pricing is sort of built into the system, and many companies think that they wouldn't sell any extra DVDs by lowering the price. Basically that, the ones who will buy it, do buy it. Anyone else read something along these lines? I think it’s kind of a flawed system and I hope there isn’t any truth to that assertion.
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Old 2009-03-06, 20:08   Link #78
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ya at a recent con, media blasters, funi, and some fansubber had a panel, basically the guy from media blasters said that the price of dvds japan is at the highest profitibility point, basically at the current price point they sell the maximum amount of titles for the best price. So currently they would be in a sale v price function the derivative would be zero.
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Old 2009-03-06, 20:19   Link #79
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i agree, theres no need to be *that* pessimistic.. though it may contract a lot, in the worst case scenario.. the anime industry is in a tight spot, but so is the rest of japan as well - theyre going through some tough times.. the idea, and style, of anime is not just going to dissapear overnight or even in a year - they do have to stop clinging to old models and look for some way to make a profit out of it, i find it extremely hard to believe that thats impossible.

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Originally Posted by Ryuou View Post
There is no need to worry about the anime industry collapsing. It's not going to crash. It may stumble a bit and need to pick itself back up, but it won't crash. The American anime licensing industry; however, I think will disappear in time.

i would love to see legal digitized media from japan, i'm not sure how well crunchyroll works, its plus or minus points, but i think its a step in the right direction. hopefully something similiar will be set up in place in the future - i do believe that the licensing industry will fail though..
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Old 2009-03-06, 20:36   Link #80
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Digital initiatives like Crunchyroll's will probably work as an idea. After all, people are already watching either downloaded or streamed anime, so we might as well try to make some legal money out of it.

However, here's the problem: I don't believe that relying on digital distribution alone would be a sustainable business model. The reason is simple: Online viewers will not be willing to pay anywhere near as much as what they would pay for a DVD or a Blu-ray disc.

This is a problem faced by the entire mass-media industry — newspapers, radio, movies and TV — and not just anime. We can all see that online distribution works, but converting it into sustainable revenue is an entirely different problem altogether.
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