Ushijima the Loan Shark is the latest to be compromised
Even in Japan, where manga is readily available and doesn't require translating, manga piracy is a major problem. Most recently, Japanese readers have taken to YouTube to propagate manga scans—or, rather, pieces of them—in a method which YouTube has now deemed illegal.
Manga titles such as Shogakukan's Ushijima the Loan Shark have been propagating on the video sharing platform as "spoiler videos," in which video creators will upload key moments or major events. But instead of scanning the pages, they isolate the speech bubbles. These spoiler videos convey the new issue's story without using copyrighted art, enabling viewers to follow the story without purchasing the manga while video makers avoid copyright strikes.
A case was brought before Tokyo District Court yesterday by Shogakukan, claiming that these spoiler videos still violate copyright as they contain licensed material in the form of the manga's written word. This comes at a time when spoiler videos are becoming a favorite way to propagate new manga, as they do not require creating and managing websites to house scans.
The court ruled in favor of Shogakukan, and YouTube will be asked going forward to disclose the contact information of anyone who makes a spoiler video (with or without images) based on one of their properties so a cease-and-desist may be issued.
Source: Anime! Anime!
Kara Dennison is a writer, editor, and interviewer with bylines at VRV, Sartorial Geek by Jordandene, We Are Cult, and many more. She is also the co-founder of Altrix Books and co-creator of the OEL light novel series Owl's Flower. Kara blogs at karadennison.com and tweets @RubyCosmos.