Jan. 14th, 2011

piranha: red origami crane (Default)
i've just not been up to it, or even up to taking pictures. but it seems that i am finally over what turned out to be horrid side effects of the wellbutrin. i can't say that it's doing much for my depression, but i want to give it another month without miserable side effects, since those make it hard to assess how i am really feeling. hopefully this journal will provide some content again. happy new year, y'all!

i've mostly been hermitting, and been keeping myself busy with reading; i'm back into mysteries (mostly oldies like ngaio marsh and andre garve), and i've also dusted off my BL manga collection. which means i am studying japanese again, yay. i missed that, but it became too hard to concentrate.

found out that some japanese publishers now write cease and desist letters to scanlation groups, some of whom have apparently slunk off into their own gated communities with demands about not sharing their scans outside -- which i don't get. i mean, they're not all THAT gated (3000 of your closest friends!), so they're not actually safe from "spies", and demanding limited distribution on the internet never ever works. me, i'd change my name, sever all connection with past sites, and distribute randomly through a variety of channels, letting those who're attentive enough to grab the scans do the rest of the distribution.

and japanese publishers kid themselves if they think those letters actually halt, or even diminish scanlation for more than a few weeks. there is a solid fan base, there is ongoing demand, they are not filling it (english licenses are few, only of already-famous mangaka, often years behind the original, and mostly inferior quality, plus people from countries where BL is censored or forbidden often rely on scanlations), ergo there will always be people who jump to fill that demand, and the net makes it so much easier now to cooperate across large distances, and yet to remain anonymous if needed. and i keep thinking that they're not losing anything much from english scanlation, but are possibly even gaining customers -- i bought no manga at all before i found out about scanlation; now i do, heck: i started buying japanese originals before i could read any japanese, just to hold those little treasures in my own hands, and to support the mangaka i really like. without scanlation i wouldn't know about 70% of the mangaka out there, and i certainly wouldn't know about up-and-coming ones who most need the support, because they are first published in the japanese "phone book" magazines which are hard to get here (though i am getting to the point where i will probably buy those from japan, even though the shipping costs are formidable). i am by far not unique; lots of other BL fanciers do the same thing.

to me scanlation and general book sharing over the net is no different from libraries and used bookstores; it allows me a preview before buying my own, and it's more convenient; not tied to store hours, inventory, or location, which means i read more and across a wider range of authors. good writers have nothing to worry about from that; i find more of them, and buy more of their works than i used to; my spending on new ebooks has really gone up quite considerably, while my spending on print books has gone down, and i buy few used books anymore -- the latter used to be the vast majority of my book budget, and it's not like authors and publishers benefitted much from that.

i grant that mediocre and bad writers might be losing out; at least in my case. i no longer buy as many random authors on impulse as i used to, and i don't buy crappy books i've read. then again, i also give mediocre authors more of a chance now -- i used to not buy ever again if i didn't like my first purchase. nowadays i read further works because it costs me nothing, and that additional exposure might just change my opinion and put the author back on my "buy" list. i'm really curious how that shakes out; maybe i'll keep better track of it for a year to see whether my impressions are correct, and how much that comes to in monetary terms.

ah, enough rantage -- i need to go buy a hard drive enclosure so i can clone my mac boot disk in order to move to a new machine. my first SATA drive (not even eSATA) -- wow, am i ever behind the curve in computer hardware now. need more POWER, *arrrrr*!

photos soon!


piranha: red origami crane (Default)
renaissance poisson

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