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Old 2008-09-30, 08:02   Link #1
pichu
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Fansub Preference: Leader or Staff?

Again one of my stupid questions...But I have had this conflict in my mind, and I saw that a lot of new people were starting new groups without actually being staff before... So, it just makes me curious?
  1. Do you prefer to lead and be in charge of a group/project?
  2. Do you prefer to be a staff of that project/group working what you were told to do?
  3. Do you prefer to do both? Like--you can't live in fansub without editing and without ordering others around!

Example:
  • A politician or a manager
  • An engineer
  • Both a manager and an engineer

Me: right now, I prefer to work as a staff (a pawn I called). And at times, I prefer to freelance and does work on a per diem basis, so that after the day is over, I'm not bound to listening to anyone anymore.
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Old 2008-09-30, 08:07   Link #2
sangofe
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Lol, you have the weirdest topics, pichu. I personally hate to lead, because I've only been on projects where I've had to get on peoples' asses to get things done, and that gets tiring after a while. I think I'd have another reply if people would do things by themselves, though.
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Old 2008-09-30, 09:19   Link #3
False Dawn
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Being a leader is too much work. I think people starting groups without any fansubbing experience don't seem to realise just the sheer workload of releasing a series. The best leaders are generally the ones who know every part of the fansubbing chain and can fill in wherever needed to push projects along.

I'm too lazy to be a leader, so I'm fine being a pawn, as you call it ^_^
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Old 2008-09-30, 09:44   Link #4
dj_tjerk
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I like communism.
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Old 2008-09-30, 11:56   Link #5
getfresh
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I like slacking and dodging deadlines~

Is that an option?
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Old 2008-09-30, 11:59   Link #6
pichu
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Quote:
Originally Posted by getfresh View Post
I like slacking and dodging deadlines~

Is that an option?
lol, good point... I like that too, unless it's something new to me *enjoys taking challenges*
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Old 2008-09-30, 12:14   Link #7
tun
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If you have a staff with competent people who do their work in a timely fashion without having to be reminded every week, you really don't need a leader.
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Old 2008-09-30, 12:22   Link #8
Kristen
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I personally have always preferred to just fansub and have other people tell me what to do, but more often than not, I just end up asking other people in the group to do something, even if I'm not the group leader. So, I guess I prefer to lead?
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Old 2008-09-30, 12:37   Link #9
the.Merines
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Being a group leader is a lot of work that I'm generally too lazy for anymore. Handling recruiting, answering questions, making final decisions on everything, beating people into working, being omnipresent in the staff room... No more.

As for project leader, this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tun View Post
If you have a staff with competent people who do their work in a timely fashion without having to be reminded every week, you really don't need a leader.
Personally, it depends on the project. I wouldn't want to be project leader for a show I won't be in love with because I feel my lack of motivation would trickle down into the subs we'd produce, so I'd rather be a grunt in those situations. Shows I know I will enjoy, I know I will enjoy working on.
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Old 2008-09-30, 12:43   Link #10
Sylf
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I prefer to go solo, so I don't need to get on people's asses yet I'm still in total control of the project.
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Old 2008-09-30, 16:32   Link #11
martino
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sylf View Post
I prefer to go solo, so I don't need to get on people's asses yet I'm still in total control of the project.
I like that approach too.

And I agree with tun as well. If you have people who know what to do, how to do it, and do it, then I believe you don't need a leader.
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Old 2008-09-30, 16:42   Link #12
Koroku
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I prefer being the leader and ordering people around... I'm not the fastest at what I do, so it's just easier for me to coordinate others doing it.

And I've found that if I don't sit on people's asses, nothing ever gets done.
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Old 2008-09-30, 19:36   Link #13
Daiz
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I like leading projects. I also don't mind being a pawn, as long as the leader is good and people won't get annoyed about my tendency to push other people into doing their things in a very leader-like manner. The most important thing is good teamwork: A good leader can help a lot with this.
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Old 2008-09-30, 21:43   Link #14
Access
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The days of strong leaders who "manage" groups or people are long over, these days leaders can't really force others to do anything they wouldn't normally do, and tend to be more of a figurehead or a 'face' for the group. They're the people who end up doing the stuff that no one else really wants to do, but don't have any real power. If they try to force someone into doing something, they either end up with a dysfunctional group or all alone.

In that way, I don't believe any one person actually chooses, or actually becomes either; though pleanty still fool themselves into thinking so. In the first generation leaders would dictate "we're doing this series" and translators, everyone else would follow suit. Likewise, do a series the leader didn't approve of and it would never hit distro, even if it was otherwise release-able. These days, it's pretty much the other way around, projects begin with a translator who is willing to work on it, other staff pretty much falls into place if the series has any viability / promise, and groups are "led" by de-facto mob rule, if at all.

It's just like irl where the whole 'middle management' thing is disappearing and companies want managers who can work (and, to some extent, workers who can manage). The line between the two isn't as clear as it used to be.
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Old 2008-09-30, 23:57   Link #15
Mio
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I think the only group I'm working for is in actuality pure communism, so...I like that. No real boss and everybody gets some say in making decisions.
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Old 2008-10-01, 02:24   Link #16
getfresh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martino View Post
I like that approach too.

And I agree with tun as well. If you have people who know what to do, how to do it, and do it, then I believe you don't need a leader.
I personally don't really agree with the "no leader" thing. I believe ppl sometimes take the leader as a "power play" or just don't really appreciate what one does behind the scenes. Everyone can know what they have to do and shit can still happen. Having a leader or rather an organizing element is a great asset to projects if it is the right person. During most any project of any length you will have situations where one staff may become unable to sub and epi or something special is needed to make it happen and the leader is the person assigned to make that happen.

Having that person do this rather than the project team scrambling around to find a way to solve the issue relieves them of a heavy burden to they can focus on the task at hand. Also a group leader does much more than just single projects, they make sure the distro and site are in functional order, they handle staff disputes, research all the new shows coming out, assign teams based on who likes what and who works best with whom, etc... etc...

It just needs the right person for the job. As many of us have seen, great leaders have made certain groups insanely popular in the past, and when these leaders left their groups the groups fell apart generally. They are pillars of the groups foundation.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Access View Post
The days of strong leaders who "manage" groups or people are long over, these days leaders can't really force others to do anything they wouldn't normally do, and tend to be more of a figurehead or a 'face' for the group. They're the people who end up doing the stuff that no one else really wants to do, but don't have any real power. If they try to force someone into doing something, they either end up with a dysfunctional group or all alone.

In that way, I don't believe any one person actually chooses, or actually becomes either; though pleanty still fool themselves into thinking so. In the first generation leaders would dictate "we're doing this series" and translators, everyone else would follow suit. Likewise, do a series the leader didn't approve of and it would never hit distro, even if it was otherwise release-able. These days, it's pretty much the other way around, projects begin with a translator who is willing to work on it, other staff pretty much falls into place if the series has any viability / promise, and groups are "led" by de-facto mob rule, if at all.

It's just like irl where the whole 'middle management' thing is disappearing and companies want managers who can work (and, to some extent, workers who can manage). The line between the two isn't as clear as it used to be.

HUH?!

I've never seen someone "force" anyone to do anything before. They may make statements in a joking manor like *whips so and so*, or *beats with a timing stick*, but no one every forces ppl. Most the time I've been asked it was pretty much "please get this done soon" type stuff. Not to sound ego'd out but I've been subbing far longer than you and for way more groups with the "strong leader" type you mentioned (prob get flamed on this). And your statement about middle management is pretty off the wall. First off a leader wouldn't be middle management, they are what the name implies, the C.E.O.. Last I checked, and I _COULD_ be wrong *snicker*, companies aren't removing the C.E.O. position. Pretty much every group that has staying power has an appointed leader/founder/head.
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Old 2008-10-01, 04:06   Link #17
Access
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Quote:
Originally Posted by getfresh View Post
I've never seen someone "force" anyone to do anything before. They may make statements in a joking manor like *whips so and so*, or *beats with a timing stick*, but no one every forces ppl. Most the time I've been asked it was pretty much "please get this done soon" type stuff. Not to sound ego'd out but I've been subbing far longer than you and for way more groups with the "strong leader" type you mentioned (prob get flamed on this). And your statement about middle management is pretty off the wall. First off a leader wouldn't be middle management, they are what the name implies, the C.E.O.. Last I checked, and I _COULD_ be wrong *snicker*, companies aren't removing the C.E.O. position. Pretty much every group that has staying power has an appointed leader/founder/head.
"I've been subbing far longer than you..."
Really? Like first-generation groups, basically anything founded 2001? Even if I was far more active in the second-generation groups, I was there when some of these groups were founded and was at least technically a "member" (in the private channel) of a couple of them.

All of the first-generation groups I can remember, including the ones I was in, had some type of "strong" leader. The stuff I wanted to sub was either killed by the leader before it was started or refused to be released once it was done. A few of these groups were still actively producing around 2003 or so, and I think one or two might still be around to this day, though perhaps in name only.

It wasn't until the second-generation groups (mid-2001 and after) where things really opened up and the far majority of those groups had weaker leaders and an 'open' group policy where anything people were willing to work on could be done and released with the group's name attached to it. Leaders were pretty much relegated to the roles you see them in still today.

By "forcing" I would mean things you don't really see a lot of today, one person alone can't really kick another out of the group, dictate that something should be done or refuse to allow something to be done, and people aren't really beholden to single groups; a new group can come and go just like that today. Before the forums here crashed, there was a thread about a split that happened in some older group (anime-keep?) where "strong" leadership was practiced, ie. the leader tried to kick people from the group for political reasons and it ended up forcing a split in the group. That's what happens in this era.

Companies aren't removing the CEO position, no, but CEOs of large companies are swapped in and out all the time, at the request of the board. CEOs aren't ultimately the ones on top, they have to answer to the board and ultimately the stock / stockholders. By middle manager I just meant someone who tries to exercise power and delegate stuff but otherwise doesn't actually do any work. That kind of leader is long gone. It's the same sentiment that you expressed above, I think. Today a leader fills in the cracks between the typical assigned roles (translator, editor, timer, etc.) and ends up doing the stuff that no one else wants to do in order to keep things moving forward. Doesn't have much real power, except when others want them to or agree with what they are doing. In that way, they're not really any different than any other 'staff' member; except maybe that their role is undefined.

I honestly don't think we're disagree-ing any on major points...

Last edited by Access; 2008-10-01 at 04:21.
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Old 2008-10-01, 07:58   Link #18
Heibi
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By default I'm the leader. I have all the toys. But I'm a benevolent dictator. Luckily I have benevolent followers.
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Old 2008-10-01, 09:04   Link #19
Vegard Aune
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While the only fansubbing I do is like, extreme speedsubs of a certain anime I won't say the name of due to it being licensed, where I keep looking at what the manga said to compensate for my lack of skill, I suppose I could be considered the "leader", being that I'm the one doing the translation and timing, and the only other member of my "group" is the encoder. (If anyone wonders why I even sub it in the first place when I suck at japanese... I have nothing better to do. Also, it seems like most other speedsubbing-groups for said anime know even less japanese than I do, and the only "quality"-subbing groups are several months behind.)

Oh, and seeing how that wasn't as much saying what I prefer doing... I prefer being in charge, simply because I have several problems with how fansubs tend to be, (I hate karaoke-effects, I think keeping words in japanese is stupid, and I think translation-notes should be kept to a minimum, only being used when they are actually necessary to understand the scene) and when I'm the leader, I can ignore all those "fansubbing-trends" and just release them the way I want. Or technically, I guess it would be most accurate to say that I prefer doing EVERYTHING on my own.
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Old 2008-10-01, 10:49   Link #20
VincentRPG
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I like being a Leader. I actually don't mind it. I enjoy telling the staff what to do, and for the most part they follow what I ask them too. Sure there are a few rogues that have to be dealt with, but over all my group is pretty tight knit I think. I manage the projects for the most part, I also have Merines and Soichiro back me up if I can't be there to take care of things. Everything tends to go faster when I'm around and when I'm not it tends to be slower, but that is cause I work them all so hard when I'm there. People come, people go, staff leaves, staff comes back. I can't please everyone, but I think I do a decent job for the most part, otherwise, I'd have no staff. And if I was indeed such a bastard the rumors say I am, Shinsen would've been dead ages ago, hahaha.

- Vincent
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