Future of Manga

And manga ...

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GhostLine
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Future of Manga

Post by GhostLine »

It's been exactly a year since anyone has posted on the manga forum. I read a couple years ago that manga sales having actually been slipping in Japan and giving way more towards portable technology.

But, now same with US Manga sales...perhaps with all of the reports of a recession.

What does everybody else feel about the future of manga?

Do you buy all you can get your hands on? Do you just choose carefully some precious pieces (this is what I do...I will never part with my Nausicaa collection!)...or do you plan on waiting for the anime?
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GhostLine
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soooo....

Post by GhostLine »

okay, now it's been yet another year...and by now, a few manga distribution houses in the US has shutdown. DC Comics' Manga distribution imprint CMX (something like that) is folding and will shutdown this summer. other anime-based fanzines are ending. but really, with all of the massive amounts of monthly releases, all $9.95 and up...who really has the budget to go exploring with different titles other than pre-existing? 'prolly just gonna be surefire sellers like Bleach or whatever will be the mainstays. original english manga releases i think are being shutdown...except for cross-media franchises such the push of the Twilight graphic novel.

you can probably look to seeing manga-kas going to digital (since works can mainly be created on computer anyway...Manga Studio and a decent Wacom tablet will suffice....) as the American comic industry is looking to the likes of the color screen iPad to save the superhero...but an online issue is like $1.99 US. Yikes!

what is the future of manga in the US?

Anime is another story.... Many feel that that most of the new films that will come out, will be in fact US funded...as we have seen in Gotham Nights, Dante's Inferno, Halo:Legends. Of course they are all vignette based shows, utilizing separate anime studios for each small tale...thanks to Animatrix for starting that weird genre.... FullMetal Alchemist: Brotherhood was just released the other day...$40 US for the first volume!!! BUT...it contains 13 episodes...as opposed to $20 for like 4 (sometimes 3) episodes. This, I wonder if will be have to be the new trend...more bang for the buck. At the same time DC and Marvel animation projects (with much lower quality art IMHO) are selling like hotcakes. Planet Hulk anyone? HUGE seller...which i think goes to say that there is still a market for anime...it just has to be better marketed, better priced...you can get away with charging more for a complete work, because it's complete...but i seriously doubt people are going to shell out their recession dollars for only a smattering of episodes. one of the reason why US comic individual issues are flailing, but trade paperback (TPB) sales are still strong.

i guess we'll have to go back to the days of telling stories around the campfire....
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Post by Freitag »

It' been in the last few (2 or maybe 5?) that I have started seeing large sections of Barnes and Noble (or whatever passes for B&N in the area) of Manga.

I had the same observation as you - $10 per book and series like Bleach where there are 100+ books. $1,000+ Not me man.

Heck I don't even have the budget to buy Start Trek: The Original Series on DVD. I just record mine from over the air.

And then there are online comics like this: http://zudacomics.com/azure that are pretty good. And they are original and serialized (sort of like in original magazine format) and free. Did I mention that they are free? (That site has other comics too. Some of them suck)

I think there is a balance in the somewhere between several variables.

* The price any one person will pay. (lately this number has been decreasing - or at least the available budget for this item has)

* The number of people in the audience.

* The cost of living/producing your art. (this number is constantly increasing thee days)

I mean image if you made something that everyone in the world wanted ($7 billion per episode!). You could charge $1 per episode and every one would buy it. I'd pay that much even for series that I wasn't that happy with, just in case it got good later on.

But I think that Manga is enough of a niche that the audience size is in the low thousands (or even high hundreds) at least in the US

I agree that online publishing is probably the direction it is all headed -that at least minimizes the publishing costs. and increases the revenue option (advertising)
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Post by Jeff Georgeson »

I've watched the manga sections of some local bookstores nearly disappear; it's back to the way it was 10 years ago, when you were lucky to see any of those "strange Japanese comics" outside specialty stores. You can certainly find the most popular things (Bleach, Naruto), but the rest is often pretty random. US publishers seem to be printing the first few volumes of a series and then quitting, making it even worse for anyone trying to follow a story.

I know from experience that publishing on the Web is much, much cheaper than print, and especially with iPads and other tablets appearing, that may be the way things go. (Although I'd point out that Apple, at least, are very prudish and unpredictable when it comes to what they'll allow to touch their proprietary tech; they've been known to ban formerly approved apps from their iPhone with no reason given, and recently even banned an app from a big publisher [Kodansha]. So anybody publishing for the iPad, etc. is taking a certain amount of risk doing so. Sort of like asking Disney to release Studio Ghibli products ...)

Advertising (on the Web, anyway) is still an iffy proposition--typically, only high-traffic sites make much ad revenue. I don't know how it works on tablets; maybe that would be much more like print adverts in magazines, only with loads of interesting extra features like animation, targeting to specific audiences, etc.

--Jeff
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Post by John_234 »

Manga could go the way of itunes with relatively minimal fees for a personal use license offered at minimal prices. It gains lots of profits, not because the buyers cannot pirate, but it's so cheap it's hardly worth pirating. We see this as well with Kindle e-books.

As long as there's a big enough audience, it could work. That said, I like having physical books myself.
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GhostLine
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News article

Post by GhostLine »

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/201 ... -reaction/ Both Borders & Tokyopop are going down together...
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Post by Rien »

I used to buy manga, but it was too expensive to keep up and by the time I found out about OneManga, they had to shutdown since I guess they were a threat to the industry(afterall, who would buy manga when you can read scans online for free?) Now I'm forced to start back getting physical manga(whenever I actually have money in my pocket again).

I've always been a physical book lover(no e-books for me. They can never truly replace old fashioned hard copies), but I like my books cheap too(which is why I went to OneManga despite my preference). The only real exception is fanfiction since I'm forced to read those online.

I heard about Borders closing and wanted to cry. It's like a slap in the face to us physical book lovers.
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Post by John_234 »

Mangafox, manga reader and a lot of indie sites are out there. Some exist that only publish non-licensed manga, too.

I still don't understand why these guys don't go with micro-selling and licensing. I wouldn't mind reading manga on a kindle tablet, I really wouldn't (it's a fairly good replica of what a page looks like), and while I'd rather retain physical copies, I'd rather see the standard evolve than the manga industry collapse completely.

I hated seeing Borders go, too. They were just a lot nicer than a lot of the alternatives.
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Post by GhostLine »

Great article on the current state of manga:
http://io9.com/5874951/why-manga-publis ... get-better
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Post by GhostLine »

http://dankanemitsu.wordpress.com/2012/ ... y-in-2012/

My semi-yearly post on manga..here is a great insider article about the challenges of manga publishing, a most tiring and thankless occupation...which is why pirating is so crushing to the industry. Otherwise, digital applications of manga reading is now king...duh.
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Freitag
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Post by Freitag »

GhostLine wrote:http://dankanemitsu.wordpress.com/2012/ ... y-in-2012/

My semi-yearly post on manga..here is a great insider article about the challenges of manga publishing, a most tiring and thankless occupation...which is why pirating is so crushing to the industry. Otherwise, digital applications of manga reading is now king...duh.
I'd buy more Manga, but it's so darn expensive. You've practically got to take out a second mortgage to buy Bleach. I mean at $10 per book and 57 books so far and factoring in local taxes, that's over $600. Not to mention between 3 and 4 feet of shelf space. And that is just one series.

I'd get electronic versions in a heartbeat if they were just a couple of bucks (and that's still $125 for the series). Considering I will NOT buy it at the present price and that I'm not unique, they'd make a pile more money selling like that. Bleach I suspect is one of the titles that's doing OK, but there are lots of others.

I have a paid subscription to Crunchyroll and I'm on my 3rd series there. So I know I'm a consumer.

I really hope the industry survives.
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update

Post by GhostLine »

http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-t ... arket.html
US sales down...but fandom and scan sites heating up. Post bubble business plays a smarter game and is growing again.
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Post by GhostLine »

Barnes & Noble Bookseller stores are expanding graphic novel/manga sections. Back on the rise. In America, comic fandom has exploded with a huge saturation of comic related adaptations...superhero films and television plus The Walking Dead. Now DC is about to kick off their own big screen universe...but also Attack on Titan has also cracked open a renewed interest in manga as well.
http://icv2.com/articles/news/view/3200 ... a-sections

Tokyopop also has been making a slow return since its demise in 2011...but looks like it will operate a different business model...seems to be looking to publish more original content as opposed to licenses.
http://www.comicbookresources.com/artic ... a-comeback
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