November 12, 2008
One of the good things about anime conventions is that they provide opportunities for fans to hear from industry professionals about what's new, and what directions various influential companies might take. For example, Erin Finnegan's excellent coverage of a NYAF panel with representatives from Bandai and FUNimation. The talk was candid:


Funimation rep Adam Sheehan says, “Our sales have gone up in the last couple of years. We’ve been lucky to get quality shows.” Funimation has been doing 13-episode sets of One Piece for hardcore fans. “One Piece is the most illegally downloaded series in the world” Sheehan says. “If just 1% of those people bought a DVD it would increase our sales tenfold.”


This news is disappointing for two reasons.


  1. It means that, as Chris MacDonald from the Anime News Network says, “It’s not exclusively a DVD industry… DVD sales of Naruto are inconsequential. Viz doesn’t give a damn... They only care about licensing. Boxed Home media is never going to be as big as it was in the ’90’s again.”
  2. One Piece? Seriously?

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Comments:
Hardcore fans? Buying Funimation versions of One Piece? Really?

Yeah, even in the 90s, people bought bootlegs of anime.

It's a funky business.
One Piece IS probably the best series right now. I don't watch the anime but the manga is awesome.

Besides, I prefer to watch shows in their original language, with english subs. For that I just download, no use supporting DUBs if I don't approve of them. Not that all DUBs are bad, there are good voices in a bunch of animes, I just prefer it in the original language, the way it was meant to be watched.
Or... instead of letting the anime business continue to wither simply because your preferences aren't always met, you can actually put in some effort and try supporting an industry that will undoubtedly take several, several more months to pick back up again.

Problems with the anime industry in Japan; such as illegal downloading, poor working conditions, and inadequate committee relations among other things; have trickled down to the problems we face in the west... problems that, though slightly different, are mutations of the same problems (shelf space, market support, marketing and promotions, digital delivery)...
I don't really watch animes anymore though. But even if I did, I wouldn't buy it, because like I said, I don't approve of the idea of DUBs much.

"instead of letting the anime business continue to wither simply because your preferences aren't always met, you can actually put in some effort and try supporting an industry that will undoubtedly take several, several more months to pick back up again." I'm not going to spend money on things I don't want, whether or not an industry will take a hit for that is not my problem. If I don't want it, I don't buy it. If someone who likes DUBs downloads rather than buys, then there's the problem.
And you don't support the industry because obviously not a single North American DVD release includes the original Japanese language as one of its language options...
Didn't say that either. I am aware that they do. But because of the DUB it costs more than it would with just the original language and subs. They have to pay the voice actors and such.
Finally, VIZ is offering Naruto online, SUBBED. This is a good thing for VIZ. Now people like me who don't want to spend unnecessary money on DUBS can pay for what we really want. SUBs.


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