Wednesday, June 9, 2010


scanlation = scan + translation

I just discovered this one today in this article. Scanlation refers to illegally scanning, translating, and posting online manga, including brand new, hot-off-the-presses manga books from Japan. It's a lot like what Google Books is doing, only there's no patina of working with publishers or doing it for the greater good. Scanlation sites now get enough visitors to make them profitable, through ad posting. None of these profits are shared with publishers or manga authors, and the newly formed Japanese Digital Comic Association claims that legitimate manga publishers are losing money to these sites.

Scanlation is digital piracy, plain and simple.

A warning about the link above: The article highlights some user comments about the issue. These can be very frustrating. As always there are those who think that (a) everything on the Internet should be free; (b) everything in print should be on the Internet; and (c) publishing is not and shouldn't be a profit-making endeavor. Whenever I read comments like that, I just have to try to imagine that whoever posted it has never had a job.