Online manga provider One Manga is one of the first big sites to voluntarily shut down operations following a joint statement released by Japanese publishers and their foreign licensees that they aim to stamp out scanlations and the illegal distribution of manga on the internet.
Manga publishers and their overseas partners have been plagued with sluggish sales for two years in a row, and they blame the phenomenon on the easy and free accessibility of their oftentimes illegally uploaded material on the web.
There are literally thousands of free manga servers and scanlation sites operating on the internet, with many of the largest sites getting up to millions of hits per day. The high volume of internet traffic converts into a significant ad revenue for some of these sites, which make them prime targets for Cease and Desist orders by the copyright holders of the content they are distributing without a license.
The coalition’s next target is scanlation circles — groups of fans who scan, translate, and distribute manga without a license, although some publishers like DMP would like to work with these circles as subcontractors for creating and distributing licensed titles. DMP hopes to create a new distribution channel that promotes profit-sharing between the official overseas license holders, the scanlation circles who will be working on the titles, and the original authors and publishers in Japan.
Thanks to Wildquaker for the heads-up.