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America, we have a problem!
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22 / M / Houston, TX
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Posted 4/18/14 , edited 4/18/14
I collect figures and manga/light novels. I have spent thousands of dollars in otaku goods. Currently, I order most of my books from Korea because of the problems I'm about to write below.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but my assumption is that, most of the people who buy manga (in North America) buy them for the sole purpose of collecting them.

Most of the manga that come out are the ones that already came out as anime. And they are way behind the anime. The exceptions are animes that are over or has had another season or really long ones (because of fillers). Which is WHY the only ones that actually sell a lot are the EXTRA mainstream ones. Attack on Titan's anime is over for now and the manga here is actually ahead of it (surprisingly). Same thing with Bleach, the only reason the manga here got ahead is because the anime is over for now. Naruto is a little bit ahead only because of all the recent fillers. I don't know about One Piece since I don't watch that. On top of that, those 4 are extremely mainstream so people would buy them anyways.

But look at all the other ones! Let's take Nisekoi for example. Volume 2 came out in March. That's when Volume 11 came out in Japan. Volume 6 came out at that time in Korea and people are complaining: "it's so much behind" and it has been ahead of the anime. Over here, volume 3 will come out in May and newer volumes will come out every 2 months.

Only people who actually buy these are otakus like me. I just got A Certain Scientific Railgun 9 in my mail. (Vol 8 is right after where the anime stopped.) I sold my Nisekoi volumes 1&2 for half the price and got volumes 1~6 from Korea. I buy Omamori Himari here because the ones in Korea come out slower because of explicit content issues. Omamori Himari was completed in September 2013 in Japan and the final volume, 12, will come out in July 2014 in North America.

You can tell that they are not selling that many by looking at the stock in the bookstore. Naruto and stuff has like 5 of each volumes but the ones I usually read, only has 2 volumes at most. That's why I go early as possible on days they release new books. I order online if I miss it. Generally, otakus are the ones that buy all the legal stuff. Most of the 'commoners' just watch all the illegal animes and read illegal mangas. Plus, generally, hardcore otakus like myself don't like mainstream. And hardcore otakus are the ones that buy lots of stuff. Which is why this statistics is still horrible.

Another huge problem is the price. Books here are so expensive. Seriously. No book in Korea and Japan costs over $10 unless they are limited editions with special attachments. Over here? We pay the same amount as the limited editions ($11~14) for something that's even worse than the normal edition (all books in Japan and Korea come with covers that can be used as bookmarks) I feel sorry all otakus who can't read anything other than English. Normal editions in Korea costs around $5 for manga and $7 for light novel. Should be about the same price for Japan.

When you go to a bookstore here, and grab 7 mangas, the total will come close to $100 including sales tax. With that, you can buy 20 books in Korea. (since the listed price is including tax)

We should seriously be complaining about this
Sogno- 
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Posted 4/18/14
well i could complain all day long but i'm pretty sure it ain't gonna do nobody any good
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Posted 4/18/14
Manga is a niche in the US.

Buy manga online, it's a lot cheaper. From Rightstuf or Amazon. You won't pay MSRP and likely won't have to pay tax. For a normal Viz manga, you'd pay $9.99 for a volume + tax at a local Borders. On Rightstuf, you'd pay $7.49 (10% less if you have Got Anime membership, even less if there's a Viz manga sale) + shipping (free economy shipping if you have an order over $49). (tax too if you live in Iowa)

During a sale, I paid $6.02 for a volume of Viz manga. (Got anime discount stacked on the sale price)
Amazon would average only around $1 savings on a single Viz volume. Though I did get some volumes for $5.99 before. It varies.


The price of a print manga also involves costs for editing, translating, lettering, the paper, royalties to the author, etc. Figure that too.
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M / United Nations, W...
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Posted 4/18/14
Or you could go on an illegal website and read it for free. (you can read even farther ahead if you can read Japanese like myself)
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22 / M / Houston, TX
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Posted 4/18/14 , edited 4/18/14

Ephermera wrote:

Or you could go on an illegal website and read it for free. (you can read even farther ahead if you can read Japanese like myself)


I can read Japanese too but idk where to get them for the right price. I don't like illegal manga because I like stuff stacked up in my room
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Posted 4/18/14

FkYouBish wrote:

I can read Japanese too but idk where to get them for the right price. I don't like illegal manga because I like stuff stacked up in my room

www.amazon.jp? I don't search for hard copies of manga that often.

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25 / M / Inside Lorreen's...
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Posted 4/18/14 , edited 4/18/14
Slowly, I have been noticing, Manga has been coming over here to the States whether it has an Anime already or not, but still that is like maybe less than 5% of everything that is translated over, that is including what shows up in WSJ.


I personally get Manga to read it, I have series I never thought I would get, just because I want to read the series. Given with how much Anime I have seen, like 99% of them are from Anime series I have seen before. 1% being split two ways, one half being an Anime that just recently started, the other half not having an Anime.


On the argument of reading for free... well some of us like to actually support the industry. If we keep going to scanlation sites and fansub sites, eventually no manga or anime will make it to the states (legally at least). Also in the eyes of this thread, apparently we are collecting Manga and Anime, just to... collect it... rather than watch or read. Thus having everything illegally brought over, mostly through fansubs and scanlations that are online, you would never actually "see" your collection past a monitor.


Which even with my meager collection I can say would be utterly boring. Despite the saving on money.

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22 / M / Houston, TX
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Posted 4/18/14

Stonewolfe wrote:

Slowly, I have been noticing, Manga has been coming ov....



I do read them. I don't even read the illegal ones. I actually wait for the books to come out because that gives me more reason to buy them
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17 / M / Crimson Mage Village
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Posted 4/18/14
Probably because America lacks the true "hardcore Otakus". Anime doesn't mean the same thing here as it does in the East. We can complain all we want, but I highly doubt anyone with any influence will do anything about it. There is the problem of being separated by half a globe of cultural differences, and the fact that America as a whole won't benefit as much from fixing these issues as some other places, though.
I can't really say much more without being hypocritical, since I lack the money to do anything but watch/read illegal anime and manga, but I do agree that it is a problem. The best thing to do right now is to do what you can- buy what you can, support if you can, and fall back on illegal sources only every once in a while if something is either unavailable anywhere are extremely hard to find. If you can spread the word like this, we might end up seeing a change- no matter how small it may be, though it will probably take a long time for it happen.
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M / United Nations, W...
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Posted 4/18/14 , edited 4/18/14
(@ Stonewolf )As much as I want it to happen, most manga I love will never be serialized/translated for the west, with the exception of the biggest manga. (Naruto, One Piece, etc.) The only manga I've bought because I loved it was TWGOK, and I only have 5 of the 19 volumes.

In the end it just differs from person to person. I don't need stacks of manga, but I wholeheartedly support favorite mangaka's of mine. And my budget doesn't leave much room for entertainment items.

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22 / M / Houston, TX
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Posted 4/18/14

Ephermera wrote:

As much as I want it to happen, most manga I love will never be serialized/translated for the west, with the exception of the biggest manga. (Naruto, One Piece, etc.) The only manga I've bought because I loved it was TWGOK, and I only have 5 of the 19 volumes.

In the end it just differs from person to person. I don't need stacks of manga, but I wholeheartedly support favorite mangaka's of mine. And my budget doesn't leave much room for entertainment items.



TWGOK just ended. Volume 26 should come out in Japan soon. Volume 24 came out in Korea so I'm gonna get it
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21 / M / Tiphares
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Posted 4/18/14
Where do you shop at? Best-buy?
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M / United Nations, W...
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Posted 4/18/14
Ah, I'm fully aware TWGOK just finished FkYouBish. I just don't have the cash to purchase 20 volumes from Japan. Yet. I'll probably get one a month until I have the complete collection.
Posted 4/18/14
Your tone and even your username is why I don't mind the harassment hardcore fans of this hobby feel they get. May as well add in a "you're only hardcore if you can read content in other languages." Other than the elitism, I agree.
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22 / M / Houston, TX
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Posted 4/18/14

Shrapnel893 wrote:

Where do you shop at? Best-buy?


Barnes & Noble and Amazon

Aladdin US for Korean books
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