Greg Ayres bootleg panel

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Greg Ayres bootleg panel

Post by Master of NERV » Wed Mar 26, 2008 12:08 pm

I had the privilege of attending Greg Ayres's panel on DVD bootlegs and illegal downloads. It was a sobering and illuminating experience, and if I had my druthers, I'd make it mandatory viewing for all anime conventions, clubs, and other gatherings.

When I sat down for the Friday panel, I knew that the anime industry was having problems on both sides of the Pacific, but I didn't know how dire it truly was until Greg got things moving. He started with a thumbnail history of the industry since the mid 90's, when American production money (funneled through ADV, Bandai, et. al.) helped rescue a Japanese production industry on the edge of collapse. Since then, the production studios have relied on American money to help finance new production. But two pernicious practices have siphoned off that cash flow as surely as fleas feed off a dog: illegal fansubs and DVD bootlegs.

We are already seeing the effects. Geneon USA's distribution arm, after a $40 million loss, was shut down last year by its Japanese parent company, Dentsu. Several Japanese production companies are facing bankruptcy. And no less a talent than Shinichi Watanabe (that's Nabeshin to some of you) cannot find the funding for four projects he has in the works. And if Nabeshin can't find backing, things have to be pretty desperate. Greg made the point that if something isn't done within the next year or so, the Japanese anime industry will implode by the end of this decade—leaving not only Japan but the rest of the world bereft of a unique and beloved entertainment and, in my opinion, genuine art form.

When Greg opened the floor for comments and questions, he jotted down all the excuses and rationalizations: "I can't afford it", "I don't want to wait a year", "I want to preview it before I buy it", et cetera ad nauseam, and proceeded to demolish them in turn, leaving the defenders of illegal fansubs and devourers of bootlegs with no defense at all. There were a few tense moments, to be sure, but the panels maintained a civil and respectful tone by all parties concerned. The fact that the panel didn't degenerate into angry bickering gave me hope.

He made it absolutely clear that there were plenty of ways we can support the industry legally, and without breaking the bank. Anime DVDs are cheaper now than they've ever been (and as a collector, I can vouch for that myself), and outfits like Right Stuf sometimes have incredible sales. ADV and Funimation now offer legal downloads, and sometimes offer episode one of a new series free of charge—a twenty minute trailer! And while he did concede the point of licensing delays (something the industry is trying to resolve), he reiterated that his panel wasn't about what the industry can do—it's about what fans can do.

Greg may have refused to spare the feelings of his audience, but that only revealed the conviction of his beliefs. Thievery is an ugly topic, and he did not hesitate to grab it by the horns and slam its head into the ground. Illegal downloads and DVD bootlegs are thievery, period—and no amount of rationalization, whining, or self-delusion is going to change that fact.

Some may claim that Greg is just a voice actor looking to save his own hide, but he made it perfectly clear that even if he never stepped into a dubbing studio again, he would have no problem making a living. Greg Ayres is a fan, as are we, and what he truly wants is a healthy and vibrant industry for many years to come.

Greg left us with one inescapable fact: to be truly a "fan" is not only to enjoy that which you love, but to support it as well. And the only meaningful way one can support a commercial art form is with our dollars. Nothing else will do. Japanese produce, Americans consume, and the anime circle of life continues. Everybody's happy—and employed.

For those that are interested, Greg's panel is available in 18 parts on YouTube, recorded at Sogen Con (Sioux Falls, SD) in October 2007. I sincerely suggest you give it a look. You may fume, you may squirm, but I hope and pray you won't regret it—or turn your back on it.

I also offer my sincere thanks to the Anime Boston staff, not only for asking Greg to give this panel, but who also gave him an additional hour on his Friday panel, and an extra hour on Saturday. This, coupled with AB's long-standing policies against screening illegal downloads and its ban on bootlegs in the dealer's room, demonstrates the con's commitment to this cause.
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Post by Koichi » Wed Mar 26, 2008 12:32 pm

I somehow managed to miss this panel so I have a question. Did anyone say anything about fansubs of anime that will almost certainly never appear legally in America like Macross 7?
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Post by DanoruX » Wed Mar 26, 2008 12:33 pm

Gonna starting buying anime en masse once I get my masters. (Yes, college students being poor is a real problem too) That said, I'm still going to get fansubs for the sake of not waiting 3 years for Naruto/One Piece to catch up...

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Post by NanamiAsagi » Wed Mar 26, 2008 4:07 pm

[quote=Koichi]I somehow managed to miss this panel so I have a question. Did anyone say anything about fansubs of anime that will almost certainly never appear legally in America like Macross 7? [/quote]

Just that it sucks and you should try to get the R2 (while technically illegal, it's still getting money to the industry- and that way you're not supporting a fansubbing group who will then do more work).

I've started a livejournal community for this- Stop Fansubs. The posting is public, so anyone can see even if they don't use LJ. It includes what's mostly a transcription of Greg's arguments from his panel at Sogen Con, with some bits from AB thrown in there too. Please feel free to visit it if you want an issue-by-issue refutation of excuses people use to justify downloading fansubs.

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Post by DanoruX » Wed Mar 26, 2008 8:18 pm

Problem with the R2 argument is that they don't come with subtitles. That said, fansubs + R2 would be the correct solution in my opinion since it gets money to the studios and the viewer gets a translation long before the show is out in the US. Don't get me wrong - I'm not against paying for anime (though I joke about it), I just think the arguments are a bit one sided. I actually did do some encoding for a fansub group years ago for a show that didn't get licensed for 2 years after we did it. And guess what - I quit because of two reasons: fansubbing groups for the most part are the most unprofessional bunch of people you'll ever get to work with and we did absolutely nothing to support the industry. All that said, there is no legal substitute for speed subs. Millions of dollars in potential revenue is lost to the million (literally) people that grab Dattebayo's Naruto and Bleach subs which are out a few hours after the show airs on TV Tokyo. Sure we can get R2 DVDs, but we'd have to wait a few months...

If you want to kill fansubs, the solution is easy - beat the fansubbers in their own game. Has anyone here seen Hulu.com? The newest Late Night with Conan is always up within 24 hours, and the viewer just has to bare with a total of about 3 minutes of commercials to watch decent quality streamed video. If Funimation and Viz could team up and provide a similar service but with popular anime (from an internet perspective) that's based on releasing exact copies of what's aired on Japanese TV but with subtitles I guarantee it'll be a success and a year after it launches we won't need to have discussions over the industry losing tons of money to fansubs. (Heck I'd even pay a subscription for this kind of service.) Another thing to note is such a website can also act as a platform to sell DVDs, Blu-ray, merchandise, etc.

Sorry for the long rant :p

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Post by Seer » Wed Mar 26, 2008 10:26 pm

It's definitely an interesting subject. I dare say it's a conundrum, this piracy/bootlegging issue.

Sure, there are the delusioned people and the people that make excuses, but then there are the people who just don't care.

And for however many self-righteous or anti-pirate people there are, there are dozens more pirates eagerly awaiting. When people can get something for free as opposed to paying 20+ dollars, there'll be no end to the number of people who would do what they can to save a buck.

How do you stop that when no known security feature yet has been able to stop piracy for very long? Shut down the internet?

I don't have a solution and, really, I have to admit I'm a little indifferent (I like "free" myself) but the subject is interesting. And while gaming is a different creature all together, I found an article by the people at Stardock to be very interesting. Maybe something can be learned from it. .

http://forums.sinsofasolarempire.com/po ... tid=303512

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Post by jms » Wed Mar 26, 2008 11:38 pm

When I can pay for One Piece in HD with good subtitles, and that money is going to the right people, I'll buy. Until then, fansubs is the only way to fly.

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Post by DanoruX » Wed Mar 26, 2008 11:48 pm

Just to back my previous post with some numbers...

According to the internet *rolleyes* typical anime costs about $150000 per episode to make. (Without marketing and distribution costs.) Lets add a generous $3000 to sub it for our internet viewing pleasure (DB charges $300 for 30 minutes, we'll have our subbers double check everything). Then we deploy a video streaming service that serves 200 meg episodes of anime, taking up 100 Terabytes for half a million views, costing around $5000 at $0.05/GB. This brings our total per-episode cost to:

$158000 (500k views)
$163000 (1M views)
$203000 (5M views)
etc.

Of course this doesn't factor in storage and hardware costs (but I'm sure it's cheap in comparison to all the other stuff). That said I have no clue what the publisher overhead is, but this is to give a rough idea as to how awesome the viability of digital distribution really is, considering how much money can be made off advertising and merchandising.

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Post by jms » Wed Mar 26, 2008 11:53 pm

[quote=DanoruX]Just to back my previous post with some numbers...

According to the internet *rolleyes* typical anime costs about $150000 per episode to make. (Without marketing and distribution costs.) Lets add a generous $3000 to sub it for our internet viewing pleasure (DB charges $300 for 30 minutes, we'll have our subbers double check everything). Then we deploy a video streaming service that serves 200 meg episodes of anime, taking up 100 Terabytes for half a million views, costing around $5000 at $0.05/GB. This brings our total per-episode cost to:

$158000 (500k views)
$163000 (1M views)
$203000 (5M views)
etc.

Of course this doesn't factor in storage and hardware costs (but I'm sure it's cheap in comparison to all the other stuff). That said I have no clue what the publisher overhead is, but this is to give a rough idea as to how awesome the viability of digital distribution really is, considering how much money can be made off advertising and merchandising.[/quote]Exactly.
I'd be overjoyed to stream a show a week after it's air-date, in standard-def - with commercials - free, like the way hulu, fancast, and other services are setup. I'd also pay for a commercial-free 720p download.

Also, the suggestion of buying R2 DVDs is an outright joke, right?

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Post by Michiyoyoshiku » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:20 am

Typical Industry Whining if you ask me.

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:29 am

[quote=Michiyoyoshiku]Typical Industry Whining if you ask me. [/quote]
More like the anime industry starting to sound like the movie and recording industries in that they want people to stick to the old, higher-overhead distribution models while the consumer base shifts to what's most accessible, which in our case are fansubs.

Oh and I could care less about the English dubbing industry until the standards come closer to Japanese and more distant from what I've seen fandubs do. (Not discrediting Greg, but lets face it - most English dubs voices are either crap or miscast. I tend to promote the idea of the latter in good faith...)

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Post by Michiyoyoshiku » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:30 am

yeah exactly what I said.

When Bandai stops charging $50 for 1 DVD that has 40 mins of video we'll stop downloading.

And don't get me wrong I buy anime. I spent almost $800 in the dealers room this year.


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Post by dokool » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:37 am

[quote=Michiyoyoshiku]yeah exactly what I said.

When Bandai stops charging $50 for 1 DVD that has 40 mins of video we'll stop downloading.[/quote]


This, more or less. And that's standard industry pricing in Japan. Maybe if the Japanese industry would do things like price Naruto/One Piece so that the kids watching them can actually afford to buy the DVDs, they wouldn't be in the financial bind that they're in now.


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Post by Michiyoyoshiku » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:50 am

Exactly

But they also merchandise the hell out of everything too. You'd think they'd make some of the money back.

Also if you do want to buy, legit Hong Kong DVDs (Region 3s) are super cheap as well.

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Post by jms » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:57 am

[quote=dokool][quote=Michiyoyoshiku]yeah exactly what I said.

When Bandai stops charging $50 for 1 DVD that has 40 mins of video we'll stop downloading.[/quote]


This, more or less. And that's standard industry pricing in Japan. Maybe if the Japanese industry would do things like price Naruto/One Piece so that the kids watching them can actually afford to buy the DVDs, they wouldn't be in the financial bind that they're in now.

[/quote]
I dunno man, pressing DVDs is REALLY EXPENSIVE!!! Not to mention printing the covers.

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 1:03 am

[quote=jms][quote=dokool][quote=Michiyoyoshiku]yeah exactly what I said.

When Bandai stops charging $50 for 1 DVD that has 40 mins of video we'll stop downloading.[/quote]


This, more or less. And that's standard industry pricing in Japan. Maybe if the Japanese industry would do things like price Naruto/One Piece so that the kids watching them can actually afford to buy the DVDs, they wouldn't be in the financial bind that they're in now.

[/quote]
I dunno man, pressing DVDs is REALLY EXPENSIVE!!! Not to mention printing the covers.[/quote]
As my Japanese friend explained it to me - the reason why R2 DVDs are expensive is because of the way they encode the anime. They actually have screening rooms to have people find any sort of noise in the encode. The stuff gets reencoded over and over until it's perfect (or as good as possible for DVD). That's what raises the cost of Anime in Japan.

That said, with h.264 codecs you don't need too high a bitrate to get a perfect encode for PC playback, bringing us back to the digital distro solution. (Which, now that I think about it, could work well on PSN too.) :)

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Post by Dimon » Thu Mar 27, 2008 3:41 am

The idea of companies subbing things early like that actually sounds really good, course it wouldn't really be the American companies doing that. I can see where the logic stands, and I can also see where it doesn't stand, at least in the streaming sub point.

The fast streaming of files of that nature are often rather expensive, as you explained. Granted that if the Japanese companies can hire translators to sub them correctly, then you'll get extremely accurate translations, and possibly also rather quick translations. The funding from commecials could be very good, and the way advertising is in Japan, if the series becomes popular, decent from that perspective. And American side of the site is also an interesting idea, but since most of the production companies take a while to get the license for a new series, might be a little problematic for getting it up quickly. As it stands, there isn't enough cashflow to generate the needed support on the US side for each new anime, and since several animes develop in a way that creates to large of a culture shock, some US production companies won't touch some series.

Basically, while the idea has s great deal of potential, it also has several logistic problems that would need to be dealt with. I'd love to see something like this created, but there is a lot of red tape that would be needed to be cut through to make it happen, unfortunately.

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Post by NanamiAsagi » Thu Mar 27, 2008 5:33 am

One Piece is coming out May 27, I believe. The Funimation redo- which will still have some of the original changes, because- what's that- the Japanese are the ones that changed it? Yeah.

[quote=Michiyoyoshiku]yeah exactly what I said.

When Bandai stops charging $50 for 1 DVD that has 40 mins of video we'll stop downloading.

And don't get me wrong I buy anime. I spent almost $800 in the dealers room this year.

[/quote]
I'm sure you only download shows that would otherwise be only Bandai-accessible, too.


Also, Dimon, American companies ARE involved in the early-on sub-only streaming of anime. Check out this article on ANN. Gurren-Lagann ran from April to September 2007, and by December it was up streaming. It's ridiculous to act as though that's an unreasonably long time to wait for anime, and that the wait is justification for STEALING it.


Basically, what people seem to fail to understand with this topic is that by supporting the existence of fansubs, you are not supporting the industry. I don't care if you sometimes buy, or if you have every intent to buy when you're out of college, or WHAT- the fact that you are supporting fansubbers (some who have admitted to only being in it for the glory, others who have admitted to PURPOSELY MISTRANSLATING) means that they will continue to do their thing and the industry will continue to go down and eventually, there will be minimal releases in Japan. The old anime prime spots on TV (I think it was Weds. night and Sat. afternoon/evening?) are now ALL LIVE-ACTION. You can try to delude yourselves for as long as you like about the fact that this is just "industry whining" all you want, but it's not true.


[quote=Michiyoyoshiku]Typical Industry Whining if you ask me. [/quote]
If you're going to come in solely to say something like that, please save yourself the trouble of clicking the "submit" button and just don't. Healthy argument is fine, coming in to say "lol you guys are dumb" is, quite frankly, immature. Thanks.

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Post by Michiyoyoshiku » Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:19 am

And How long have fun subs been around?

I think as long as there as been anime in this country there have been Fan Subs. Fan Subs 20 years ago didn't kill the industry they won't now.

And Gurren Langen Oh that's coming out he......oh wait somebody either at ADV or in Japan changed their mind so at the moment it's not.......

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Post by NanamiAsagi » Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:43 am

[quote=Michiyoyoshiku]And How long have fun subs been around?

I think as long as there as been anime in this country there have been Fan Subs. Fan Subs 20 years ago didn't kill the industry they won't now.

And Gurren Langen Oh that's coming out he......oh wait somebody either at ADV or in Japan changed their mind so at the moment it's not.......[/quote]

There have been fan subs- the ones 20 years ago are probably why there are companies like ADV doing what they do now. The difference is that the fans who had those subs were very few (copying VHSes takes a HELL of a lot more time than uploading something), and they were excited to buy when the opportunity arose. Now anyone with high-speed internet can get high-quality files, DVD quality in some cases, without paying for them, INSTANTLY. Are you getting what I'm saying, here?

Now, why do you think GL and a bunch of other titles were removed from their site? Maybe because ADV is having a hard time selling, perhaps, since everyone just downloads? Wake up and smell the coffee, my friend. If you need any further proof, again, look at my point about anime's former time block on Japanese TV being filled with live action shows. Or if you're a Nabeshin fan, know that he's got 4 show ideas that nobody will pick up because there's no money in the industry right now.

Please respect the fact that I've done research on this and read up on the issue yourself before you try to argue points, because otherwise I'm basically left restating myself over and over even though there's a link up there to a community that contains all of the info I've said so far.

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Post by KitKat » Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:57 am

I'm really a subtitles person, I feel the originally cast voice actors give a better feel for the tone and mood.

That said, if I cant afford an anime I just dont buy it. If real subtitles aren't available, I get the dubs. An acurate translation is more important than one or two poorly chosen voice actors.

Regardless of the 'Hur Hur its free' mentality, I would rather PAY for something that actually says the right lines than get innacurate fan subs and not help support companies who are putting out products that entertain me.

I'm in the process of learning Japanese. While it's career-based, eventually not even NEEDING subtitles when I buy new anime straight from Japan is a big perk that I'm looking forward to.

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 9:44 am

[quote=NanamiAsagi]Gurren-Lagann ran from April to September 2007, and by December it was up streaming. It's ridiculous to act as though that's an unreasonably long time to wait for anime, and that the wait is justification for STEALING it.[/quote]
Fansubs: 1 week delay
Legal streaming: 8 month delay

Hmmm... yes I'd still say it's an unreasonably long time to wait. Put it this way - if it takes longer to get up there than it takes for a bunch of people who are doing it for free there's a problem. Say you have two TV networks A and B. Network A broadcasts things first, and Network B airs stuff that A did but 32 weeks later. Network A will always get the higher ratings because B is essentially the rerun network showing stuff people have already seen ages ago. Now lets move to an extreme example by talking about current shounen anime Naruto and One Piece. Network A (Japanese TV, fansubs) shows the latest episodes every week. Network B (Cartoon Network) just started airing (this is just for sake of example) the shows and are 200 episodes behind. Do you seriously expect fans who were watching the latest episodes every week to wait for 4 years for Cartoon Network to catch up?

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Post by dokool » Thu Mar 27, 2008 9:57 am

[quote=DanoruX]As my Japanese friend explained it to me - the reason why R2 DVDs are expensive is because of the way they encode the anime. They actually have screening rooms to have people find any sort of noise in the encode. The stuff gets reencoded over and over until it's perfect (or as good as possible for DVD). That's what raises the cost of Anime in Japan.[/quote]

As an AMVer who's worked with R2 footage I call complete and utter BS.

Most DVDs in Japan, not just anime, cost anywhere from $30-50/disc, whether it be anime, drama, whatever. For American shows they'll pay as much as 6x more than we do for a season. VHS tapes used to cost about $100! Per tape! Hell, a lot of major rental shops (Tsutaya, etc) still rent VHS tapes! I'm pretty sure Blockbuster and the rest (at least the ones still in business) have switched over to all-DVD by now, right? Basically a lot of their business practices are ass-backwards and it's come back to bite them.

I'm all for supporting the industry and I've bought far more than I've ever downloaded, but I think it's a little foolish for us to say that the American industry is keeping the Japanese industry afloat and thus we owe the American companies our support without questioning why the Japanese side has shot itself in the foot so many times.

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 9:59 am

[quote=dokool][quote=DanoruX]As my Japanese friend explained it to me - the reason why R2 DVDs are expensive is because of the way they encode the anime. They actually have screening rooms to have people find any sort of noise in the encode. The stuff gets reencoded over and over until it's perfect (or as good as possible for DVD). That's what raises the cost of Anime in Japan.[/quote]

As an AMVer who's worked with R2 footage I call complete and utter BS.

Most DVDs in Japan, not just anime, cost anywhere from $30-50/disc, whether it be anime, drama, whatever. For American shows they'll pay as much as 6x more than we do for a season. VHS tapes used to cost about $100! Per tape! Hell, a lot of major rental shops (Tsutaya, etc) still rent VHS tapes! I'm pretty sure Blockbuster and the rest (at least the ones still in business) have switched over to all-DVD by now, right? Basically a lot of their business practices are ass-backwards and it's come back to bite them.

I'm all for supporting the industry and I've bought far more than I've ever downloaded, but I think it's a little foolish for us to say that the American industry is keeping the Japanese industry afloat and thus we owe the American companies our support without questioning why the Japanese side has shot itself in the foot so many times.[/quote]
I never said whether they actually do a good job at it or not. ;)

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Post by NanamiAsagi » Thu Mar 27, 2008 11:22 am

[quote=DanoruX]Fansubs: 1 week delay
Legal streaming: 8 month delay

Hmmm... yes I'd still say it's an unreasonably long time to wait. [/quote]
All I can say is you must thank god every day that you weren't born 20 years earlier if you don't think that's impatient.

The reason it takes longer to get over here is because they're making full DVDs with extras and language options and correct subtitles- unlike fansubbers, who put things out in a week, sure, but also tend to be amateur translators and miss things! If you really think you deserve that illegal fix that quickly, then I guess there's nothing I can do to persuade you otherwise. But honestly, is it really going to hurt you so much to just wait and support the industry instead of supporting something that's bringing it down? Is your life that dependent on knowing what happens in the next episode? I've had manga series completely drop off on me as far as US releases being in stores goes (like, for example, the one from which my username here derives); that doesn't mean I went out and found them illegally! I just recently found the third available online from the publisher, so I'll buy it when I can. But in the meantime, I haven't DIED or anything without knowing what happens next. This is just a ridiculous argument.

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Post by jms » Thu Mar 27, 2008 11:39 am

[quote=NanamiAsagi] The old anime prime spots on TV (I think it was Weds. night and Sat. afternoon/evening?) are now ALL LIVE-ACTION.[/quote]Got the names of these shows? I'm sure I could find some fansubs of them. And if they're replacing the animu, they must be pretty good. I know Densha Otoko was! (^▽^)

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 11:50 am

[quote=NanamiAsagi][quote=DanoruX]Fansubs: 1 week delay
Legal streaming: 8 month delay

Hmmm... yes I'd still say it's an unreasonably long time to wait. [/quote]
All I can say is you must thank god every day that you weren't born 20 years earlier if you don't think that's impatient.

The reason it takes longer to get over here is because they're making full DVDs with extras and language options and correct subtitles- unlike fansubbers, who put things out in a week, sure, but also tend to be amateur translators and miss things! If you really think you deserve that illegal fix that quickly, then I guess there's nothing I can do to persuade you otherwise. But honestly, is it really going to hurt you so much to just wait and support the industry instead of supporting something that's bringing it down? Is your life that dependent on knowing what happens in the next episode? I've had manga series completely drop off on me as far as US releases being in stores goes (like, for example, the one from which my username here derives); that doesn't mean I went out and found them illegally! I just recently found the third available online from the publisher, so I'll buy it when I can. But in the meantime, I haven't DIED or anything without knowing what happens next. This is just a ridiculous argument.[/quote]
You have no idea just how much I appreciate living in this day and age. And no it's not a ridiculous argument to want stuff fast. As for translation accuracy, I think it's worth sacrificing it a little bit for the sake of getting the latest episode of Naruto 6 hours after it airs on Japanese TV. Again, it's not worth waiting 1 to 4 years for Cartoon Network to catch up on stuff that's usually not even airing anymore in Japan just for the sake of slightly more accurate translations. In 2008 we should expect the anime industry to take a hint and capitalize on speed-subs and make money off the millions of internet viewers. I'm not saying they should axe DVDs, but rather offer uncut subtitled anime within a week after original airdates and make money of it instead of complaining about the people who do it for free.

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Post by Amjam » Thu Mar 27, 2008 11:52 am

[quote=NanamiAsagi][quote=DanoruX]Fansubs: 1 week delay
Legal streaming: 8 month delay

Hmmm... yes I'd still say it's an unreasonably long time to wait. [/quote]
All I can say is you must thank god every day that you weren't born 20 years earlier if you don't think that's impatient.

The reason it takes longer to get over here is because they're making full DVDs with extras and language options and correct subtitles- unlike fansubbers, who put things out in a week, sure, but also tend to be amateur translators and miss things! If you really think you deserve that illegal fix that quickly, then I guess there's nothing I can do to persuade you otherwise. But honestly, is it really going to hurt you so much to just wait and support the industry instead of supporting something that's bringing it down? Is your life that dependent on knowing what happens in the next episode? I've had manga series completely drop off on me as far as US releases being in stores goes (like, for example, the one from which my username here derives); that doesn't mean I went out and found them illegally! I just recently found the third available online from the publisher, so I'll buy it when I can. But in the meantime, I haven't DIED or anything without knowing what happens next. This is just a ridiculous argument.[/quote]
[color:#556B2F] Not to mention the reason fansubs are so speedy is because they're often ripped directly from television (Believe it or not, America is not the only place where the Japanese decided to cut things from broadcast anime), put up with iffy quality, and because the "subs" are a pretty shoddy translation. I sat down with a Japanese friend (read: native-born, speaks Japanese), pulled up the third episode of Black Cat on Youtube, then lent him my DVD. The verdict? Even the fansubbers who do like the show or are trying hard just don't have the Japanese to back up a decent translation. Not to mention a lot of the cultural references and puns that are completely missed. It's not just a time issue, it's also a quality one.[/color]

[quote=DanoruX]Oh and I could care less about the English dubbing industry until the standards come closer to Japanese and more distant from what I've seen fandubs do. (Not discrediting Greg, but lets face it - most English dubs voices are either crap or miscast. I tend to promote the idea of the latter in good faith...)[/quote]
[color:#556B2F]
I'm not going to turn this into a Japanese dub vs. English dub argument, but your preference of the voice is just that - your own preference. I've seen plenty of shows where I felt that either the Japanese or English dub had not been perfectly cast to the point of sounding exactly how I imagined it in my mind. Generally it's a directing and casting decision, and to quote another of Greg's panels: "I don't merit something as being better simply because it's in a foreign language."
Guess what?! =D DVDs come with more than one language track nowadays! Except for smaller titles which are being released japanese dub with subtitles only nowadays thanks to people not buying and supporting. Either way, you can listen to all the Ishida, Sakamoto, and whoever else you like to hear all you want.




Also - Why are so many people arguing over this? As stated before; it's illegal and harmful. Double D's. Didn't they teach you that in sandbox? Nothing's going to change the fact that in the eyes of the law, it is wrong. That is a factual statement. We just need to find a way of shutting more major areas down.
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Post by Amjam » Thu Mar 27, 2008 11:55 am

[color:#556B2F]ps. Why are so many people who watch anime so spoiled, greedy, and egotistical? It's not your God-given right to get whatever you want the moment it exists. Grow up. [/color]
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Post by Michiyoyoshiku » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:10 pm

I think one of the things ADV is doing to shoot them selves is releasing Extraless box sets. the Big draw on most anime DVDs are the extras it's the difference maker on weither I buy or pass. Bandai has the right idea with Anime Legends ADV needs to reevaluate their box set deal. The way it is now we're just buying fansubs when we get most ADV Box sets.

As for fan subs here's another perspective on it, we're usually unless it's a movie or OVA just downloading a TV feed. How many of us see an anime on TV and just watch it and not buy it?








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Post by NanamiAsagi » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:40 pm

[quote=Michiyoyoshiku]As for fan subs here's another perspective on it, we're usually unless it's a movie or OVA just downloading a TV feed. How many of us see an anime on TV and just watch it and not buy it?
[/quote]

YOU PAID TO WATCH THE ANIME ON TV BECAUSE YOU PAID FOR CABLE. Come on.

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Post by Bluebeard45 » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:47 pm

I'll have to check out the Youtube vid of the panel later because I'm curious as to what he says about using fansubs as a preview before you purchase anime. I agree wholeheartedly that abuse of fansubs hurts the industry, but that doesn't mean people should have to buy dvds they end up not enjoying. It takes me 2 episodes to decide if an anime is worth watching/buying, and I don't think the companies would ever preview 2 whole episodes online. We'd get maybe the first 5 minutes of an episode which may sell me on something like Haruhi Suzumiya, but not on Rumbling Hearts. If worse comes to worse I suppose a Netflix subscription would be a viable way to preview, although that adds an extra cost on top of purchasing the dvds. I'll be checking that panel out first thing after work. Sounds like it's definitely worth watching.

And buying bootlegs... well that's just stupid.

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Post by Michiyoyoshiku » Thu Mar 27, 2008 12:58 pm

[quote=NanamiAsagi][quote=Michiyoyoshiku]As for fan subs here's another perspective on it, we're usually unless it's a movie or OVA just downloading a TV feed. How many of us see an anime on TV and just watch it and not buy it?
[/quote]

YOU PAID TO WATCH THE ANIME ON TV BECAUSE YOU PAID FOR CABLE. Come on.
[/quote]

You pay for your broadband connection that lets you download fansubs too.

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Post by Seer » Thu Mar 27, 2008 1:12 pm

[quote=NanamiAsagi][quote=Michiyoyoshiku]And How long have fun subs been around?

I think as long as there as been anime in this country there have been Fan Subs. Fan Subs 20 years ago didn't kill the industry they won't now.

And Gurren Langen Oh that's coming out he......oh wait somebody either at ADV or in Japan changed their mind so at the moment it's not.......[/quote]

There have been fan subs- the ones 20 years ago are probably why there are companies like ADV doing what they do now. The difference is that the fans who had those subs were very few (copying VHSes takes a HELL of a lot more time than uploading something), and they were excited to buy when the opportunity arose. Now anyone with high-speed internet can get high-quality files, DVD quality in some cases, without paying for them, INSTANTLY. Are you getting what I'm saying, here?

Now, why do you think GL and a bunch of other titles were removed from their site? Maybe because ADV is having a hard time selling, perhaps, since everyone just downloads? Wake up and smell the coffee, my friend. If you need any further proof, again, look at my point about anime's former time block on Japanese TV being filled with live action shows. Or if you're a Nabeshin fan, know that he's got 4 show ideas that nobody will pick up because there's no money in the industry right now.

Please respect the fact that I've done research on this and read up on the issue yourself before you try to argue points, because otherwise I'm basically left restating myself over and over even though there's a link up there to a community that contains all of the info I've said so far.[/quote]

I certainly agree with the fact that it wasn't as easy back then as it is now but I simply have to dispute what I put in bold. To believe that every single or most people that got "fansubs" would then go and buy the actual show is absolutely silly and naive.

It's easy for us to say "I support the industry and will do what is necessary" but do you honestly believe that most common folk, after going to the effort of torrenting an entire series would then delete it and buy? Even back then I seriously doubt it. While it's a weak example to use close peers, I'd like to point out that I've known people that try to delete and buy but sometimes just cave in and keep whatever series they've obtained. And this all ignores the population of people who outright don't care and keep a series they download.

You must forgive me if I sound a little snappy; I just get irrate when people dance around the subject of fansubs. Whether they come off as "oh, we in the past were respectful and support the industry not like people today" or "fansubbing is okay so long as you delete it". It's still technically piracy and regardless, especially on bit torrent, you are helping people who don't care to support the industry get those files.

Honestly, I'm not going to poo poo on pirates or fansubbers. I'd be a hypocrite if I did and that simply wouldn't do.

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 1:59 pm

[quote=Amjam]
[quote=DanoruX]Oh and I could care less about the English dubbing industry until the standards come closer to Japanese and more distant from what I've seen fandubs do. (Not discrediting Greg, but lets face it - most English dubs voices are either crap or miscast. I tend to promote the idea of the latter in good faith...)[/quote]
[color:#556B2F]
I'm not going to turn this into a Japanese dub vs. English dub argument, but your preference of the voice is just that - your own preference. I've seen plenty of shows where I felt that either the Japanese or English dub had not been perfectly cast to the point of sounding exactly how I imagined it in my mind. Generally it's a directing and casting decision, and to quote another of Greg's panels: "I don't merit something as being better simply because it's in a foreign language."
Guess what?! =D DVDs come with more than one language track nowadays! Except for smaller titles which are being released japanese dub with subtitles only nowadays thanks to people not buying and supporting. Either way, you can listen to all the Ishida, Sakamoto, and whoever else you like to hear all you want.[/quote]
That was not my intention. My point was that it's economically viable to skip the whole dubbing process in the name of getting stuff out really fast on the net. Guess what - people watch fansubs because they're sitting at their computers anyway and it's simply easier to access than legit measures. Noone has yet to come up with a solid argument against creating a Hulu style service in favor of getting people to wait for ages.

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Post by NanamiAsagi » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:02 pm

[quote=Michiyoyoshiku][quote=NanamiAsagi][quote=Michiyoyoshiku]As for fan subs here's another perspective on it, we're usually unless it's a movie or OVA just downloading a TV feed. How many of us see an anime on TV and just watch it and not buy it?
[/quote]

YOU PAID TO WATCH THE ANIME ON TV BECAUSE YOU PAID FOR CABLE. Come on.
[/quote]

You pay for your broadband connection that lets you download fansubs too.
[/quote]
Oh. My. God. That isn't how it works. The money for my internet connection is not going into the anime industry. The money that pays for cable goes towards the channels that pay to buy and show the various programs that I see upon them.


[quote=DanoruX]Noone has yet to come up with a solid argument against creating a Hulu style service in favor of getting people to wait for ages.[/quote]
I agree that it needs to come out legally faster; I don't agree that downloading illegally is justified because you can't get it legally quick.


Seer- I know far more fans who have/had original fansub tapes that have massive collections than I do kids now. So yes, I do think that people back then were excited to buy things when they were licensed initially because it was probably easier than getting fansubs and it made anime more accessible to more people since back then the internet was not all broadband and cable. I agree with your second-to-last paragraph, there. And as for the last bit, it's not as if I'm not guilty. But I'm reformed on DLing anime/manga, and I've never been a massive music pirate anyway (it's taken something like 4 years to get the 10 GB of music that I even have, and some of that was purchased).

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Post by Michiyoyoshiku » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:12 pm

what if your ISP is your cable company?

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Post by NanamiAsagi » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:14 pm

[quote=Michiyoyoshiku]what if your ISP is your cable company?[/quote]
Paying for your internet is not the same as paying for cable to see anime, even if they are the same company. You pay for a cable package with CN on it, that money goes towards the anime. You pay for an internet package, the money goes to a different part of the cable company. The two have nothing to do with one another.

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:17 pm

I think we can agree that at present the only justifications for getting legit anime are more accurate translations and the fact that you're supporting the industry. Fansubs have so many perks to them it's ridiculous (speed, cost, fancy karaoke, legible color-coded subtitles with custom fonts, attacks get cool effects in their subtitles, guaranteed not to be edited/censored...). Yes I know there are limitations when it comes to DVDs, and that's precisely why the industry needs to shift to publishing on the net (no FCC is another bonus!) so that people start to get into the idea that all the anime publishers provide competitive service.

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:21 pm

[quote=NanamiAsagi][quote=Michiyoyoshiku]what if your ISP is your cable company?[/quote]
Paying for your internet is not the same as paying for cable to see anime, even if they are the same company. You pay for a cable package with CN on it, that money goes towards the anime. You pay for an internet package, the money goes to a different part of the cable company. The two have nothing to do with one another.[/quote]
Although if you do subscribe to cable and internet, the cable part of your fee IS partially going into anime...

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Post by KitKat » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:32 pm

To all of you who say "Untill the companies come up with a way to get it to me as quickly and cheaply as fan subs, I wont buy it"

Have fun complaining about it not being AVAILABLE on TV in Japan to be snagged, poorly translated and given to you hours later.

We're not talking about two people, the majority of amrican anime fans watch most of their series on fansubs and bootlegs (Unless your talking the people who only watch whats on cable right now). I'm not saying I've never watched a fansub, I'm saying that regardless of weather or not its easier, eventually you wont be able to get anime because the companies failed. Anyone who refuses to buy anime, but steals it in stead is part of that problem.

It's not an argument of weather or not its right or okay. Its the fact that by watching it without contributing to the cycle, your are in effect helping destroy something you love. Period.
Excuses aside, it. Is. What. You're. Doing.

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Post by DanoruX » Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:50 pm

I'm not saying I won't buy it, I'm saying that people won't stop fansubbing until the industry gets it over as quickly in a similar format. It's not an excuse I'm making, it's the reality we live in. I'm excited about getting anime on Blu-ray but like I've said before if the industry wants to make tons of money, I've already shown how it's possible in this very thread. Don't blame me for not wanting to live in the dark ages.

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Post by StarlitRiot » Thu Mar 27, 2008 4:21 pm

Though I in no way, shape of form condone bootlegging, I think making a war against fansubs is a frivolous waste of time. I have no problem paying for anime, I happen to own quite a few. However, in Japan do the Japanese viewers PAY to watch anime on TV or is it like any other normal scheduled programming you'd find on TV in the USA? I don't see anything wrong with fansubbing because as far as I'm concerned it's not bootlegging. It was aired on TV free and should be viewable just as free to it's American fans.

Besides, I personally wouldn't have bought half the animes I have if I had not watched them first. Why? How would I know if I found the series worth while to rewatch? Also I wouldn't have bought some of the mangas I have if I hadn't first watched the fansubbed series only to later find out the manga included a different ending/more in depth stories etc etc. Just my two cents.

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Post by KitKat » Thu Mar 27, 2008 4:52 pm

In Japan they pay a tax for TV. So yes they pay for it. Then if its moved to cable, they pay for the cable service.
In with the shows are commercials, which help pay for the shows, money going into the industry. Those commercials dont count for americans who will never buy japanese tampons (etc.)

Just like money goes back to the studios for TV we watch here, its just dne in a different manner than buying a physical disc.

For those of you arguing FOR fansubs, I suggest you watch the pannel. The entire thing is available on youtube if you look up "sogen con 2007 - fansubs panel"

Even if it doesnt change your opinion, it will keep you from looking completely uninformed.
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Post by Michiyoyoshiku » Thu Mar 27, 2008 6:58 pm

and just what are we supposed to do about Sailor Moon and Hokoto no Ken?

Toei are notrous horders and ask all sorts of Unresonable requests where their properties are concerned.

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Post by jms » Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:09 pm

So they pay a small tax. Someone living in Japan caps the episode, gets it into the hands of other Japanese residents who might have missed it and want a download, and fansubbers, they then get it into the hands of fans. So please, tell me, how is the industry losing a dime in this scenario? The ads don't apply to anyone outside of Japan, and any Japanese residents still pay a tax, still watch on tv. So please, how is me downloading One Piece 345 today, going to actually result in losses? How is 500,000 Americans also downloading going to hurt the industry? Sure, lots of people will end up not buying DVDs, but people won't buy them if they don't want them anyway. I pay for cable, I could watch One Piece, or Naruto, or Bleach, or any myriad of shows available on cable networks and on-demand. So how, exactly, is me hopping on a torrent hurting the industry more than me going into the other room and watching an episode?

tl;dr this argument is dumb.

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Post by Aarana » Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:16 pm

Now my question is, why doesn't Japan and the US work together?

Who says the US has to start subbing after it is released in Japan?


The American Industries usually don't pick up on a series untill months, even years after the series has been completed over in Japan.

Why doesn't the US industry work with the Japan industry to licence earlier, before its even shown, work on getting it subbed (not dubbed) before its released, and then release it at the same time as they do in Japan, streaming on a pay site or something. Then, Release the box sets to however suits your fancy. But releasing online? You don't have to pay for shipping to stores, or making the DVD's themselves, or packaging or anything like that. Costs would be way down, while prices on the site would hopefully be reasonable. (Kinda like a Netflics subscription)

I'd totally go for it.

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Post by Kiarrens » Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:25 pm

I read about half of this before the term "supporting the fansubbers" really started to bug me a little.
Most people flinging this phrase around seem to be implying that we're giving them our money instead of the anime companies, which obviously isn't accurate. So far as I know they don't get any money for what they do.
Just my 2 cents on that little tidbit.

Also, I would LOVE to see a streaming solution as has been mentioned several times, and would GLADLY pay for it. Buying the R2s may be a feasible option for those of us lucky enough to be fluent in Japanese, but let's face it - how many American anime fans are fluent? I'd guess less than 5%.

Having an "online TV station" which airs the newest subbed anime for, oh, maybe 5$ a month or something would be TOTALLY acceptable and amazing. I'd even pay as much as $25 a month for something like that, in addition to buying the DVDs when they came out.
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Post by KitKat » Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:26 pm

Once again, actually watch the panell. All those questions are answered. (Then again, anyone who would say the argument is dumb or wont even consider the possibility of something illegal being wrong probably wont sit through someone going through all the arguments and explaining really well why the argument is irrational)

Let me explain this for you though.
A TV network buys the liscencing for a show from the production company, and then sells add space for a profit. The more popular the show/network/timeslot the more money the TV network is making off of the show. The more money any network can make off of a show give the production company rights to get more money for selling the liscencing for that show.

Now, considering the network's ratings dont go up from fansubs ripped off Japanese TV and poorly translated then made available on bittorrent- making it available for hundreds of thousands of anime fans to download for free.

The Japanese Animation market completely depends on American money in order to keep going.

If you've watched the fan subs for all of naruto, bleach, one piece, etc. You aren't going to buy the DVD sets, or even watch much of it on TV (Especially since a lot of fansubs fans hate american dubs)
Leaving the newly bought liscences of shows changed to be played in the US worth much less, because in stead of feeding into the process everyones completely content with stealing everything they watch because "I dont want to wait to watch this series, I love it so much I have to steal it!"

Excuse me, but if I love a series enough I want to see it's end.
You may NEVER see Naruto, Bleach and One Piece have their real ends air on TV, because enough "fans" have already seen the end on an illegal download or bootleg.
It's fueled by money, if a series isn't being watched it will be ended. Ever see a series that all of a sudden wraps up in one or two episodes, and leaves you going 'HUH?"
It's not because thats how the artist wanted it, it's because it stopped making money.

People need to stop seeing Anime as some sureel artform that people make for love. The companies behind it want money out of it, and cheating the system by pirating only in the end will make it not exist anymore.

Sort of like how the music companies dont make much money anymore. Artists HAVE to tour now because everyone just steals the music they used to sell to make a living off of.

(In responce to Aarana-

Japan and America are trying to work together. More and more they're working on symultanious release dates.
The problem here comes with the people who hold the lisences in Japan wanting changes for the American Market.
One Piece is a classic example of this. It had to be revamped for the 4KIDS release of it, so couldn't be released sooner.

I would go for an online streaming version of shows as well, I wouldn't mind paying monthly for quality translations. ^.^

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Post by NanamiAsagi » Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:04 pm

[quote=Michiyoyoshiku]and just what are we supposed to do about Sailor Moon and Hokoto no Ken?

Toei are notrous horders and ask all sorts of Unresonable requests where their properties are concerned.
[/quote]

Just to directly address this- in this situation, you're supposed to respect the fact that a company or creator may not want to share their materials. I honestly don't know where this idea of entitlement comes from with anime fans- just because it exists doesn't mean you have some unalienable right to see it.

I really, really wish people would start watching the Sogen Con panel/going to Stop Fansubs before they start to argue in this thread; it's really irritating to have to restate arguments like this when I spent probably two or three hours the other day compiling information on the topic. If you have new points to bring up or you want to argue with an argument made at the community or in the video, that's one thing; it's an entirely different matter to come here and keep asking things that have already been addressed in another place that's linked to many times in the thread.

I guess I should just start copy-pasting, eh?

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