Monkey Business – Counterattack on Bill 156, Doujin Style

[Breaking News: Exclusive Preview of An Idiot’s Guide to Tokyo’s Harmful Books Regulation is now on ANN]

Here is a long awaited update to what’s going on in Japan. If you want to skip ahead to the meat of the news in this blog, skip down to where the artwork appears.

Bill 156 passed the Tokyo Assembly on December 15th of 2010 and the Office of Youth Affairs and Public Safety, the department responsible for implementing the new policy stated recently that they have no intent on getting any input from neither the industry people nor even Tokyo Youth Healthy Development Evaluation Panel, the body that is delegated to decide a book is harmful or not. It would appear that Tokyo’s enforcement wants to cast the widest possible net using the new powers that have been granted to them.

To recap, even prior to passage of Bill 156, Tokyo already has the power to designate anything too sexually stimulating for minors OR too sadistic for minors OR too likely to cause criminal acts among minors OR cause suicide among minors as “harmful material”, and force such material to be treated as adult only material.

With the passage of Bill 156, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government will have the additional power to restrict any manga, anime and video games (but not live photography works) that feature any sexual acts that would violate criminal codes or Tokyo ordinances OR sexual depictions between close relatives who could not legally get married to be treated as adult material IF they are presented in “unjustifiably glorified or exaggerated manner.”

Note that criminal acts not only include rape and molestation, but certain relationships between minors and adults, all forms of prostitution, indecent exposure, and other sex-related crimes as well. The text of Bill 156 does not recognize differences in the setting of the story (sci-fi, fantasy, and / or alternate reality) nor if the story takes place in a different historical period nor different geographical location. From now on, authors of general audience fiction of manga, anime and video games must keep in mind all the codes, ordinances, and laws specified by Tokyo and Japan’s law books if they wish to depict any sexual acts. The degree of sexual stimulation will not be a factor for the provisions added by Bill 156.

To see complete details of the bill, go here.

Publishers have long instituted self-regulator policies designed to keep hard core sexually explicit material out of the hands of minors by using adult only labels on the covers of such books(most commonly recognized as the yellow ellipse with the word 成年コミック meaning “adult comics” written inside it). With regarding some manga magazines that are considered to be “mildly sexually stimulating” that are sold in convenience stores, while the magazine itself does not have an adult only warning, the magazines are sealed closed using tape to make sure children do not have access to its contents unmonitored. The provisions of Bill 156 will not target material specified in the provisions described above. Bill 156 provisions are aimed toward general audience publications.

While Tokyo Governor Ishihara and Tokyo’s Office of Youth Affairs and Public Safety seem to feel that the debate is over and its now just a matter of dismissing the alarmists and implementing policy, many of us Japan beg to differ.

Takeshi Nogami, Takaaki Suzuki, and myself have launched our first attempt to counter Bill 156 through a medium that many fans of anime and manga are familiar with–doujinshi manga.


『サルでもわかる都条例都条例対策 ~Monkey Business~』 or An Idiot’s Guide to Tokyo’s Harmful Books Regulation will be released on the 3rd day of the winter session of the Comic Market, taking place on December 31st of 2010 at the Tokyo Big Site in Ariake, Tokyo.

Takeshi Nogami’s doujinshi publishing circle is “Firstspear” and the booth will be at the Comic Market on the 3rd day (Friday) at booth number M-12a in the East Hall.

Please note that this is an all ages doujinshi. There are no overt sexual depictions in the book. Bill 156 can’t touch us.

Takeshi Nogami is a manga author with over a dozen commercial books published and some of his more recent books include Sailor Suits and Heavy Tanks, Lua of the Seas Under the Moon and he is also the co-author of Moeyo! Sensha Gakkou (“Moe Tank School“), one of the first books that started the military moe boom of recent years.

Takaaki Suzuki is a veteran in the animation production scene in Japan and he’s worked on numerous anime series such as Strike Witches, Last Exile and Gun Sword, as well as writing novels and articles regarding military history.

If you want to know what Dan Kanemitsu’s being doing these dozen or so years, go to the bottom of the page here. Yes, I’ve done a few things in the past as well.

The manga has been translated into English by yours truly and I have also written three Japanese articles in the publication. English versions of the articles will be available in this blog for all to read once the book is released in Japan.

The three articles are:
- Political Activism as a form of Fan Activity
- Why did the Nonexistent Sex Crimes Bill pass while the Nonexistent Youth Bill was defeated.
- Overseas Perspectives on Japanese Manga and Anime

The manga is a parody of Even a Moneky Can Draw Manga created by Koji Aihara and Kentaro Takekuma, but you won’t miss much even if you don’t anything about the original manga. We just take the format that Aihara and Takekuma established and ran with it. The whole premise of the book is how you can rework the individuals that were instrumental in passing Bill 156 into amazing and entertaining stories.

We’ve adapted moe storylines, BL storylines and even shonen manga storylines in the style of Fist of the North Star to creatively interpret the motivations behind why Bill 156 was so adamantly advocated by the Governor and his allies.

And since we really didn’t like having our ugly faces showing up in the manga all the time, we’ve replaced ourselves with female renditions to make it easier on your eyes. Yes, that’s me with long blond hair and huge boobs. No, I don’t look like that at all. I wouldn’t mind if I did, of course.

The book will be available through Amazon.co.jp! This should make it easier for fans overseas to purchase the book. Here is the short link, and this should be the English version of the same page.

The book will also be available through doujinshi consignment shops such as Torano no Ana, Comic Zin and Takeshi Nogami’s official mail order service, but none of these outlets accept overseas mail order requests.

We’ve poured a lot of effort into the book, and we have even included a provision that says you have our permission to share our efforts with your friends, but please, don’t make money off of what we’ve worked hard to provide to you. If you wish to reward us for this effort, please buy this book at Amazon.co.jp. It should be fairly easy to do.

We would like to think of ourselves as the Primus Pilus, the vanguard formation of a military force in the field of battle, in the conflict over Bill 156. How well a counterattack can be carried out is entirely dependent on how others will back us up and follow up with their own efforts, so keep it going! Governor Ishihara’s press conference on Dec. 24th mentioned how he was frustrated at how much letters he was getting from teens who he felt misunderstood the purpose of Bill 156. I don’t think there would be any major misunderstandings if you’ve been reading my blog.

If you’re interested in seeing more of the books that Takeshi Nogami and Takaaki Suzuki have worked on, visit here. Many of the books have been translated into English by myself.

For more information regarding where and when the An Idiot’s Guide to Tokyo’s Harmful Books Regulation will be available, visit the sites below:
Nogami’s Comic Maket information page
Nogami’s intro to the book
Nogami’s blog entry regarding the book

One small correction in the manga needs to be made. I noticed this just today.

Stay warm and have fun this winter!


PS: I realize many are asking for the FAQ on Bill 156, and I’ll try to get to it as soon as possible. I’ve just been busy with working on this project.

This entry was posted in censorship, doujinshi, harmful material, news, nonexistent youth, public morality and media, translation and intercultural issues. Bookmark the permalink.

112 Responses to Monkey Business – Counterattack on Bill 156, Doujin Style

  1. Ellis says:

    Well it look interesting…. thx for help to stop this =P because as me there are a lot of people that are unable to do something about it…. and will be buying your book for sure =D

    • dankanemitsu says:

      Thank you. We wanted to put this book together so even people overseas could get a piece of the action, sort of speak. I hope the mailing from Amazon.co.jp will be easy to work with.

  2. Veselina says:

    I dunno what they wanna do but surely they need a help from a doc. Prevent the kids from what is truly harmful, like violence on TV. The sex and all its orientations are a part of the real life, why kids not to know what is natural. Hiding the real life from them is what is harmful AND a crime.

  3. Veselina says:

    P.S. It is scary when a man becomes impotent. He wanna destroy everything that brings a joy to the world, especially a sex joy. But still, you can’t keep it up again, governor?

    • dankanemitsu says:

      I wouldn’ t be too harsh on him. You would be amazed at the things he said in the past regarding keeping a healthy mentality about sex and such. He’s really no different from many others in his generation with his conservative attitudes. Its just ironic that the man that destroyed so many taboos would come back around and say people these days break too many taboos.

      • Veselina says:

        Sadly, this happens in other shepers, too. I remmeber I read an article about the old rockers that broke taboos in their youth and how mellowed by time are they now. Still for me this is a regress, no progress.

  4. Fight the good fight, Dan. Progressive principles are something that people should defend, no matter what the battlefield.

    I do wonder what the government’s response would be to this. After all, you guys are part of all of those with “warped DNA” in his mind (yes, that was sarcasm).

  5. mika-chan says:

    Keep the hard work Dan and continue your effrot tt inform us fans about this matter.

  6. kusanagi says:

    lol i had nothing better 2 do.. xD

    • dankanemitsu says:

      I wouldn’t go that far. Governor Ishihara is perfectly within his rights to say what he wants. I don’t think of him as a fascist simply because he says statements that I think are misleading, inappropriate, and misguided.

      If fact, I have read his novels and I think they are pretty good, and not just for the shock value.

      I just wished he would be willing to challenge the status quo on a constructive basis, rising above the machismo mentality that he seems to subscribe to so strongly.

  7. Cho_Hakkai says:

    Here is my facebook page which I had created to go hand in hand with your website.

    http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Say-No-To-Bill-156-Tokyos-Youth-Ordinance/184066321609267

  8. Erica says:

    This fantastic expression of free speech has just been put into my Amazon JP Cart. I will buy a few extra copies for friends, as well. With my fist in the air I echo Geoff’s words – fight the good fight, Dan. If there is *anything* I can do to help you, please don’t hesitate to ask.

    • dankanemitsu says:

      Erica, you’re too kind. I really appreciate it. And remember to check out my web site as I’ll pump out English translations of the articles included inside when the book is released. There is even a chance a preview might come sooner than that, but we’ll see.

      I’m absolutely certain many more doujinshis taking aim at Bill 156 will come about this winter Comic Market, but perhaps we’ll be the first one that’s bilingual. (smile)

  9. Kurono says:

    Dan i want to ask you something…
    How are the japanese people facing this shitty bill?
    I am talking about otakus and non otakus…they care about it or they don’t?
    I read in a website that the majority of the japanese people agree with this bill, is it true?

    Thanks for your hard work.

    • dankanemitsu says:

      People’s opinion on this bill varies widely. Some people don’t even know about it. Some people are for it, some people are against it, and there’s everybody in between. Even among the otaku’s there is a lot of debate about the bill’s merits, but almost everybody in the industry and many of the fans feel that the bill is discriminatory. The fact it is singling out anime and manga is bothering many. It may be that as more time passes, popular resent of the bill could increase, but that depends a lot on how people continue fighting against it. That’s one of the reason why we did this book.

  10. Furuba-tan says:

    hm, I would buy one if the amazon.co.jp international shipping rates wouldn’t be that high… (´Д`)

    • dankanemitsu says:

      That’s too bad. Maybe you could see if you could find other books you’re interested in or share the shipping cost with others that might be interested in the book?

      We’ve lowered the price as low as we can go. Remember, making doujinshis is not cheap since we can’t have huge print runs, so the cost per book tends to be higher than most commercial books.

      • Furuba-tan says:

        is it possible for you to arrange that other japanese shops can sell this doujin? like amiami or hobby search?

        • dankanemitsu says:

          I’ve added notes regarding other outlets the book will be available. This all ages doujinshi will be available through Torano no Ana, Comic Zin and Takeshi Nogami’s official mail order service, but none of these outlets accept overseas mail order requests. We don’t have any direct contacts with Amiami and Hobby Search, so that would be much more difficult. If there’s enough interest, that could be possible.

          • omo says:

            How about doujinshi sellers oversea? I’m sure Hendane would love to get in on this (and improve their margins lol).

            http://www.hendane.com/

            They’re notable among many because they do all the big American cons, for starters.

            Well, it’s C79 time, so they’re all in line right now or something.

  11. anon says:

    that second paragraph really worries me, to have a bored that has absolute authority and is bias is scary enough, but to have the same board say that they don’t plan to get any input from the industry or the board that is specifically designed for determining if an anime or manga is harmful or not is even more terrifying. In my eyes what I get from this is that potentially everything is up for the dreaded adult only label due to this board.

    This is only speculation on my part so please correct me if I’m wrong in my thinking, and keep up the hard work

    • dankanemitsu says:

      Mr. Nagaoka has been carefully covering how Tokyo’s ordinances regarding harmful books have been changing over the years, and he was the one that provided the tip I linked to. He notes that in the previous revision of 2001, where suicide was added as a critiria, the enforcement agency (OYAPS didn’t exist back then and it was a different office) spent months on talking about how to implement the policy. This time, there was none of that, so I would be scared as well.

  12. DocWatson says:

    “How well a counterattack can be carried out is entirely dependent on how

    “If you’re interested in seeing more[...]”

    I think something is missing from the end of the first paragraph I quote above. ^_^;

  13. Koori says:

    So, Dan-san, what is the job of the Office o Youth Affairs and Public Safety and why they refuse to get any input even from the body that decides wether a book is harmful or not? I don’t understand.

    • dankanemitsu says:

      Hello there. Just call me Dan.

      As I described to another comment, when the wording of the ordinance is vague, the office responsible with enforcement usually works with the industry to reach a consensus, or at least understand better this new definition should be employed. Government agencies in Japan don’t like suing companies unless they have to, since those costs would have to come from taxpayer money and it just plainly doesn’t look good.

      It appears that OYAPS is being very confrontational, and that’s not going to be good idea if they want to sell the idea that Bill 156 won’t be radical and far-reaching, like its critics claim.

  14. Nobody says:

    Who exactly writes the actual criteria (as opposed to the incredibly vague wording of the law itself) for determining if a book is harmful?

    Does OYAPS write the criteria and the Tokyo Youth Healthy Development Evaluation Panel just apply it? Or does the panel have more leeway?

    With the incredibly vague wording of the law, it in itself is meaningless. It is all up to the interpretation – ie. what exactly is “unjustifiably glorified”?. A liberal interpretation would only restrict something like (as an example) Rapeman, the manga about a superhero who gains powers by raping people. Whereas a harsher interpretation would restrict any depiction of rape, even when obvious that it’s there as a plot point, as glorified.

    If the panel has leeway, and uses the same standard for determining things that they’ve been using all alone (extremely liberal -ie. softcore porn is fine), then I can see nothing changing. But if OYAPS – who appear to be all gung ho to restrict all sorts of stuff – is writing it, then there could be trouble.

    • dankanemitsu says:

      I don’t know all the details, but as I understand it, OYAPS writes the basic guideline and TYHDEP uses the guideline to determine if the material in question should be judged to be harmful or not. TYHDEP is required by law to include publishing industry people on the board, so they will fight on some subjects that others wouldn’t.

      I’ll try to find out more about the specific guideline, but OYAPS so far has not been very cooperative to the industry people. This is a far cry from how things were just 3 years ago.

      • Nobody says:

        If OYAPS wants to be uncooperative, the industry should respond in kind. I can think of many things they could try – I’ll write them here in the hope that somebody in the industry sees / hears of them, in case they can’t think of how to be combative enough:

        1) Challenge the law itself in court.
        2) Start publishing their opposing opinion in everything from now on – ie. a couple of pages inside the monthly manga magazines, put a page in front of the cover of new books (inside of cellophane, or just replace the obi’s with it)
        3) Ignore the new restrictions entirely. Refuse any voluntary aspect of it. Force the government to sue them at every turn.

        …and, for the particularly fun approaches:
        4) Start labelling everything as 18+. Combine with #2 – warn about it before hand, on the books with the new 18+ label, etc. And by everything, I mean everything – even that which technically isn’t affected. Manga, anime, books, magazines, TV – essentially everything that they publish.
        5) If #4 isn’t enough, cease publishing within Tokyo entirely while the law exists. As before, everything. Tell the retailers to post up their reasons for doing so in the now empty shelves.

        #4 and #5 will result in everyone learning of the issue. Of course, an information campaign would have to be waged, in order to prevent the pro-censorship people from trying to use it against them – ie. “They can’t peddle smut to children so they won’t publish at all!”

        Of course, all of these would require that the publishers work together – ie. the big 10 or something. From reading their statements on their websites, they sound enraged enough to actually try it.

  15. TangBR says:

    I tried to buy it but in amazon.jp I can´t change the shipping method and it would cost for me 5,395 JPY a book shipped by express international… Ç3Ç
    So expensive shipping method, if only there was another shipping method… OTL

    • dankanemitsu says:

      That’s too bad. You might want to see if there are others that would be willing to buy books together with you, or see if there are other books that you might be interested in buying. Amazon.co.jp does have a huge selection of figures and model kits, and some of them are dirt cheap.

    • Anon says:

      For international shipping from Amazon.co.jp, it’s usually far cheaper to use a mail forwarding company in Japan. These companies accept packages for you at a Japanese address (thus shipping from Amazon is cheap or free), charge a fee around 1000JPY or so, and then charge you the shipping cost from your desired method.

      Usually 1000JPY + EMS or SAL shipping costs comes way under whatever Amazon itself charges.

  16. James in Nara says:

    Hey Dan,

    What booth will you be at on the 31st? I’ll swing by to pick up a copy.

    • dankanemitsu says:

      Thanks for the question. I’ve updated the post to reflect your question.

      Takeshi Nogami’s doujinshi publishing circle is “Firstspear” and the booth will be at the Comic Market on the 3rd day (Friday) at booth number M-12a in the East Hall.

  17. Surrealism says:

    This looks hillarious Dan, awesome work. I like how the artist has Ishihara drawn like Raoh from Hokuto no Ken in one panel.

    But this doujin wont get any backfire right? I heard some guy in animesuki saying Ishihara can take this as slander and try something w/ a lawyer. Or is that just paranoia I’m reading?

    • Anon says:

      Apparently civil lawsuits in Japan (ie. slander) have no teeth whatsoever. Even if you lose and get a judgement against you, you can just ignore it, as nobody can enforce it.

      This is apparently how the guy who runs 2chan, who has been sued and repeatedly lost (by just not showing up for trial), keeps going.

      • dankanemitsu says:

        I’m not a lawyer, but as I understand it, in Japanese law, you need to have an actual prosecution take place using the powers granted by the passage of Bill 156 to be able to challenge its constitutionality.

        I wish there was a better way to sell the books overseas, but there’s only so much we can do on such a short notice.

        The 2chan thing is bit wacky. Usually civil lawsuits have more teeth, but in his case, his assets are very hard for the courts to secure. I don’t know much more than that.

    • dankanemitsu says:

      Thank you. I really enjoyed working on this book. It’s been a long while since I’ve come across some good ‘ol political satire in manga. I’m glad I could translate it and help build on it.

      I would like to see them try suing us. No sane person would see this as slander, especially since he’s a public figure. It would be like saying you can’t make fun of President Obama or Governor Schwarzenegger by depicting them as babies. And we made it very clear that these are fictitious conjectures. We aren’t alleging Governor Ishihara is actually a loli girl or a post-apocalyptic overlord.

      If anything I could sue Nogami for drawing me as a cute blond with huge boobs, but since I’m a writer and translator, the courts would probably treat me as a public figure as well, so I’m fair game.

      I have to laugh at my female rendition. It’s too funny. I do worry if some doujin artist might take liberties with my female image.
      Ah, the price of fame.

  18. Anon says:

    Dan – have you heard anything about mounting a court challenge to the law? With the vague wording of it, it seems a constitutional challenge on the basis of violating freedom of expression would be in order. I know that in other countries, a vaguely worded, discriminatory law that is written in a manner clearly different than how it was sold would get tossed quite easily.

    What’s the criteria for such a challenge? Is it one of those bothersome cases where the law has to do something before it can be challenged?

    Didn’t the Tokyo Bar association oppose it?

  19. ChocoSnipe says:

    You know Dan, why not try to advertise the book at most anime sites like MyAnimeList.net… there’s a huge number of people there that resents the bill, I think you’ll be able to pull in many people to at least get a copy of the book…

    • dankanemitsu says:

      We don’t have any experience in advertising in US web sites, so we don’t even know where to begin. We’re all creators and do this on the side, so we can’t concentrate on this as much as we’d like.

      Please understand that we have to take time away from our regular work to do this kind of stuff.

      But you’re more than welcome to pass the news around if you’d like. We’d really appreciate it!

  20. Koori says:

    Regarding the controversy of the bill, I find something there that is quite interesting, and funny, and that in turn would make of the bill completely pointless or to put it bluntly, unenforceable. There’re lots of manga and anime, and it’s just plain impossible deem wether a work is harmful or not just with a single book of… who knows, maybe more than 50 volumes, to put an example. So far the Evaluation Panel has been doing an excellent job, and I think they will continue this way.
    The thing is, since the already published material won’t be affected, this pretty much means any ongoing work won’t be put in the evaluation panel as well, because there’s just no point when the previous volumes of these works have already been sold to the general public.
    I believe the Evaluation Panel will continue working like they have always regardless of the wording of the guidelines. Luckyly, the publishers are required in the board too.

    And Dan, what the hell means the governor when he says he’s frustrated because the publishers and the public misunderstood the purpose of the bill?

    • dankanemitsu says:

      I’m running out of time so I’ll keep this short.

      Any new book that’s published will be covered by Bill 156, so while vol. 5 might be fine, if vol. 6 is published after July of next year, it would be in trouble.

      OYAPS may pressure the Evaluation Panel. We’ll see how things go with their next meeting scheduled to take place in Jan.11th of next year.

      Governor Ishihara feels people are making too much fuss over Bill 156. He keeps saying (and perhaps acutally believes) the bill only targets hard core material, such as rape of 7 year old in manga. You and I know better.

      • Surrealism says:

        Well, if this is the case Dan…wouldn’t that mean Ishihara just supported a law based on his fallacies towards the Industry? He literally believes that rape/hardcore manga are being sold to minors or being often made in the industry than it really is. The evaluation panel under the OYAPS could be a problem but still…If Ishihara really believes that many mangaka are making rape mangas outside the doujinshi/adult-only scope, than wouldn’t that mean he passed a law based on a lot of things that are actually false? This Bill could still muzzle a lot of other publications if left with no sort of opposition, considering this targets illegal relationships. But one thing many people know in the industry is this: Nobody’s selling or easily placing “rape manga” into minors’ reach. So it’ll be like he passed a Bill enforcing something that’s “already enforced”. The real threat I see in this Bill is how it cites “Illegal relationships”, otherwise…as you’ve said in a previous blog entry: “People have never seen somebody selling rape manga to a minor.”

      • anon says:

        just out of curiosity how would OYAPS pressure the evaluation panel, because from my understanding TYHDEP still has the final say so in determining if a book is harmful or not

      • Surrealism says:

        In addition Dan, sorry but I got another question. You’ve said in the comments’ section in your previous blog entry that there have been “past regulations” and that didn’t stop the industry, right? Can you cite/name the “past regulations” you speak of? Thanks.

  21. Koori says:

    I have one last question for you, Dan. Wich do you think are the type of manga/anime the bill is after?

    The Evaluation Panel will have to be very careful, coz something that can’t be sold to 12 year customers can be sold to 14, 15, 16 year customers… I can see why the industry keeps saying they will continue doing things like they’ve always.

  22. Veselina says:

    I’m sorry for my dumb question, but it is still vague (at least for me and most non-Japanese fans that rely on info from sites like ANN and MU) – does the law bans whole genres or the law bans “hard” mangas to be sold to kids (which the present law does too)? And then again why new law is needed if the working law regulates this? I was shocked to read sentence like (gasp) Ban On Yaoi. You could imagine how my fangirl heart felt! But I doubt he could ban something describing relationships that aren’t illegal. He may forbid yaoi/yuri/shota/loli/hentai to be sold to kids (and they are forbidden now) but how he could forbid adult manga to be sold to adults (if it doesn’t contain minor characters, rape, incest and other “illegal” stuff)? Banning adult materias for adults is simply ridiculous!

    • Surrealism says:

      This is just from my entire knowledge on this Bill, based on how much I’ve read in this blog.

      1) No, it is not a ban, but a sale regulation. An actual ban would be something much worse. Since a ban would = outlaw its material as a whole. Ishihara constantly rants and believes minors are being sold “hardcore” material, although this is false.

      2) IIRC, adult-only material (doujin, hentai, ect) have been stated by Dan to be already exempted out from this bill from the start.

      3) Reason the industry is worried about this Bill is NOT because its a ban. Its NOT even a ban from the start, its a sale regulation law… HOWEVER it would constantly encourage/force creators to CONSIDER the legal status’ of relationships portrayed in their manga. This isn’t a yaoi/yuri/BL/incest ban but its chilling because IF a panel were to find a title (say a yaoi manga) too much for minors, it’ll be shaft to higher shelves from minors’ reach, or sometimes a store overreacts altogether and gets rid of all its copies and many of them would be shifted to adult stores.

      4) This isn’t a “banning adult material for adults” sort of thing. News sites like MSN or Google have taken this out of proportion as a “Hardcore sex / yaoi / yuri” ban, even though anything adult related’s already regulated from sales from the start and is excluded from Bill 156.

      • Koori says:

        So tu put it bluntly, this bill is likely to target yaoi, yuri, BL, josei, manga & anime with lot of sexual content.

        • Veselina says:

          Target but not a ban? I’m confused from that last sentence, maybe my English is not as good to undertsand it.

          Thank to both of you for replying me! Surrealism, your reply kinda relieved me because some sites was like “This is the end of whole genres!!!”. It seems that everything adult-only (which is already in the adult sections/stores) cannot be affected from the law?

          So then in the worst condition are titles that aren’t adult oriented but could be considered they are? Their publishers lost the group of readers which they target. That sux.:/ Some mild BL/GL could fall under that label too.

          • Koori says:

            But you know, as stupid the bill sounds, it’s not worse than other past regulations, like Dan stated. If it were to target nudism, partial nudism, panty-shots, breast exposure and such, now that would be problematic but at the same time it would be impossible. Thanks goodness it doesn’t target this kind of content.

            And publishers and retailers are no idiots, they know better than anyone what kind of material is harmful and what not.

            • Veselina says:

              But it target eromanga with a lot of sexual content as you said and I’m huge yaoi fan(atic).:/ As long as all explicit manga are regulated by the present law I’m afraid what the new law target in them.

              Yep, Ishihara knows he can’t fight the porn! Noone can fight it, no matter how the impotents wants this.

      • Veselina says:

        One of the articles in MU even stated that some kind of eromanga (hardcore sex, yaoi/yuri, incest, rape) will already be illegal to create, sale and own since April 2011.:/

        • Surrealism says:

          The source seems rocky/out-of-place, sort of like how MSN/Google badly gave news of this. Dan’s already told us “adult only / hentai” works were excluded from the Bill by default.

          • Veselina says:

            Thank you for the explanation! I read news even from LA Times and some other American sites, a buddy even posted a newspaper from an Asian country where GLTB people are banned by law. So I think these news sources refract the news from Japan from the point of view of their country/social laws. We need news from the same Japan. That is why I see Dan’s blog as one of the best sources.
            *sighs* Sankakucomplex was so passionate, I think the biggest misleading started from there. In some forums people warned its articles to be avoided.

            • Anon says:

              Sankaku Complex is worthless from a news point of view. As I stated in a different topic, 10% fact, 20% wild speculation stated as fact, and 70% hyperbole.

              The owner of that site does English speaking fans a great disservice by posting the way he does.

              And yes, it is most likely the source for most of the misinformation regarding Bill 156. It is very sad that it has so many readers that believe the grossly distorted “news” posted there.

              • Surrealism says:

                This is the only real gripe I truly have of what’s resulted from the Bill: mass hysteria and misinformation its caused.

                I mean this Bill still isn’t anime/manga-friendly but plenty of sources have blown it out of proportion to the point people believe it to be way more severe than it actually is.

                There are people who even think Mitsudomoe s2 is only getting 8 episodes solely because of this new Bill. Even though supporters want the Bill in effect after July 2011 and even though 8 episodes was most likely planned from the start.

                • Koori says:

                  The damage is done. Both Sankaku and 4chan among others should never have voice authority, the amount of misunderstanding there is brutal.

                  Dan with his new project made a good of example of what’s not regulated: nudism, partial nudism, showing underwear…

                  But I’m afraid many will ignore his statements and keep relying on these websites. A shame, but in a context it will be better leave them suffer and keep the same misguided thoughts.

                  • Surrealism says:

                    I’ve read some online forums with people thinking AKIHABARA will close down entirely because of this Bill.

                    Opinion-based editorials I’ve seen from other writers in ANN didn’t help either (Although I believe out of all the info editorials I’ve read, Dan’s recent one in ANN and his posts here are way more accurate). Especially with another editorial writer publishing statements like, “At this rate, anime will truly be only unquestionable content for kiddies.”

                    This Bill is something the industry/citizens of Japan will have to keep fighting depending on what they do, according to Dan…but I still believe the biggest factor that resulted in this mess is simply just the reaction its getting overseas.

  23. Koori says:

    Perhaps the OYAPS may pressure them, but the TYHDEP has the final saying, not to mention industry publishing is required on the board, wich means they will fight over anything.

    Though I can easily see the industry ignoring everything stated in the bill for the sake of letting their authors draw whatever they want with no worries.

  24. Shance says:

    I know I might go above myself on this (I mean really), but since I dearly support the cause of the hardcore fans of visual media, I’d like to ask if an artist such as myself can contribute anything to the doujinshi’s cause.

    Like adding a few pages or something like that.

  25. Lucida says:

    Dan, You are amazing! This Doujinshi really speaks out loud! I do believe that if people could read this doujinshi then they would have the opportunity to keep Ishihara out of office by actually voting and preventing something like this to happen. I hope the English Version of the full doujinshi be up so I can read some more of this masterpiece.

  26. Futanari says:

    Any chance we could purchase the doujinshi directly via this website, Dan? :)

    • dankanemitsu says:

      I’m sorry, but I can’t handle doing sales.
      I am already juggling far too many things that I can handle. I could not possibly take up something major as web retailing without shutting down some other commercial projects I am already engaged in.

  27. ray says:

    look forward to the English version of the guidebook soon!

  28. Nando says:

    Forgive me, but I don’t think I fully understand exactly what doing this accomplishes?

  29. ray84421 says:

    Don’t you think it would draw as much attention of fans around the world while many governments are just seeking ways to take a stricter position against the animation in the name of child welfare?

  30. Shake says:

    >>western perspectives

    I hope you mentioned how many Westerners (myself included) loathe MOE and absolutely adore JOJO because of it’s un-wussified men.

    I mean, I don’t want GEARS OF WAR MANLY, but I can’t stand Shinji.

  31. cheese ninja says:

    So I’m assuming you are the reason “A Century of the Ocean” has English alongside the Japanese on some of the dialog bubbles. I was wondering what was up with that doujin when I came across its scans online. Too bad I can’t read Japanese, I still couldn’t quite figure out the story in that one.

  32. akuma_river says:

    First of all, I want to say that I can understand where the ‘spirit’ of the bill comes from in that they wish to keep adult materials out of children’s hands. That being said, that ship has long passed. We live in a digital age in which as long you know how to work a computer and navigate the internet then nothing can be censored to you. Look at how China and Iran’s censorwall falls to proxy servers.

    Does Japan have organizations like CBLDF (Wiki on CBLDF they’ve also expanded to protect video games against a law in California on free speech) & the ACLU to combat Bill 156?

    The reason I mention this is because the doujinshi idea is quite similar to what CBLDF does to raise awareness and funds for legal cases they fight. They have had some very notable wins as well.

    If I might be so bold I have some ideas that I think might help you. I am not sure if you have had these brought to you before or if you have decided against them for whatever reason, this is the first post I’ve read of your blog so please excuse my ignorance.

    The number one issue you have is apathy. A lot of people don’t care about the bill for various reasons whether it be because they don’t like yaoi or generational pairings or violence or they don’t care about this new bill because they think there is nothing wrong with it…or they don’t care because they don’t think it will negatively affect them. (See here & here)

    The second issue you have is misinformation. Manga, anime, and video games is an international enterprise. Tens of thousands of people from multiple nations have heard about this bill or heard about what it might be. But in the long run they have no real idea what it is, what it does, how it will affect them, and what they can do about it.

    The base audience to target is the people who will be affected by this. A good idea to do is a promo during popular anime shows or in manga magazines that will display a url to a single website in which all the information they need to know about the bill, what it does, how it will affect them, and what they can do can found in one place. A single uniform message is the best plan of action when trying to spread awareness and activism against a law. It helps to unify those who oppose it into one uniform voice.
    Another idea is to have the website be in multiple languages since the idea behind the opposition to the bill is not just censorship but economic in how it will affect the exportation of manga, anime, and video games to other nations.

    I am involved in a lot of activist organizations and when we are opposing something we have the website but we also have a petition in which we are able to put in our information and comments and it is sent either as an e-mail or fax or both. There is also the option to have people add their names as a signature and then when enough signatures have been collected print it off and hand deliver it or mail it to the people the petition is addressing.

    A very good idea would be to have a petition on the website so that people from all over the world can sign the petition to show that this is not just a Tokyo issue or a censorship issue but a potential massive economic issue in which people from all over the globe are showing they are quite upset about Bill 156 and will be willing to boycott Tokyo over it. If that is the goal, if not you can put something else in the stated goals of the petition.

    I mention boycott because that is typically the most effective way for the population to show money wise how upset they and it will negatively affect the ones they are upset with. When Arizona passed its new immigration law a boycott was issued against the state. Numerous corporations canceled conventions that were to take place there and while it was mostly within the United States it did go international when Mexico’s President called for the state to be boycotted as well. In November it was announced that the boycott cost for Arizona was $140 million in lost profits. While not enough to cripple the state it is still a sizable amount of money. A lot of tourism is done in Tokyo and I am sure that will gain people’s attention.

    Another aspect you might look into is contacting CBLDF. They already have a system set up to sell items to raise money for legal funds. People have mentioned in the comments that they wish to buy a copy of the doujinshi in order to support your group. You have mentioned that you do not wish to sell it from your blog due to previous commitments. It might be a good idea to outsource this. I know of many people who would like to donate to help your cause. Even those of us who are having dire economic situations of our own and are unemployed.

    2010 has been a year in which the freedom of speech has been impeded against by multiple nations and political organizations, but the people have also risen up to find ways to circumvent the bans as seen in the WikiLeaks Cablegate issue. Right now, the internet is your friend and it is best to use the audience of the internet to fight back against Bill 156 by spreading awareness of the bill, correcting misinformation, and finally by instructing those of us who wish to help in how to help.

    Good luck.

    • Anon says:

      Looking at that first mangaupdates post – good lord, how does one get something so completely and utterly wrong? It’s even incorrect with regards to the source of Sankaku Complex (which is in itself incorrect).

      This is the biggest problem -gross misinformation. And that battle has pretty much been lost in the international world – particularly when mainstream news are calling it “restrictions on extreme sex manga sales to children”.

      That also affects your boycott plan. Good luck trying to convince a critical mass of people to boycott Tokyo over what in their minds is a restriction of sales of extreme porn to children. The amount of people who a) care about anime/manga, b) know the truth about what is going on, and c) are in a position to actually boycott something from Tokyo (effectively tourism only), is probably insignificant. Certainly not enough to make Ishihara care, since he’s already shown he doesn’t care about protests from the mangaka, the entire publishing industry, fans, etc. And those were from the Japanese side – the international side will have even less influence.

      The idea of putting notices during anime showings / manga magazines is excellent though. It would probably be best to put it in everything they publish – that would have a far greater reach. And certainly justifiable – once a government has decided that it will censor a portion of media, it’s only a matter of time before it tries it on everything.

      • Nando says:

        Ishihara has won. Just let go of the insane idea anything will stop it.

        • Anon says:

          Out of curiosity, what are you hoping to accomplish with your pessimistic messages? Sympathy? Camaraderie as you sit around and do nothing?

          So you say Ishihara has won. Then fine – give up. Go home, and fine a new hobby. Hopefully one that you’ll care more sufficiently about than to simply abandon it at the slightest hint of trouble.

  33. Vincent says:

    The problem will never be the fantasy. It’s only reality that should decide how we act upon others and so on.

    These kind of laws and even the beginning oppositions from morally retarded individuals, are just mere mockeries towards our intellect as a human race. How can we say we’re smart when we attack material that isn’t real? The material’s content can’t ever affect us and never will. So why oppose it?

    I say it’s a lack of understanding. I would suggest that a great argument to bestow on these fools is their lack of responsibility to bring education to the people – about fantasy vs. reality. Rather it be the curriculum, teachers, authorities or even parents. All of them (and their ways of instructing) are responsible to why someone would ever “claim” to be influenced by fantasy material.

    Even if someone “truly” understands the difference between fantasy and reality, then we would only have a better acknowledgment. It would only show that the said “person” did it not because of fantasy privileges, but because of their own free will to choose.

    It’s a damn shame and I’ll do what I can to spread the word about the parody books. Keep up the fight for intelligence.

    • Nando says:

      Can’t win a fight that’s already over.

      • Vincent says:

        The battle is over, but not the war. Never give up, for the sake of freethought.

        • Nando says:

          The only way for the industry to fight back is to leave Tokyo, but that won’t make a difference if and when Ishihara decides to take his ideas national, and by then, who knows what else he’ll have decided to add on to it.

          Victory by intentionally getting the law tested in court is impossible too, purely because by relying on pulling the “it’s for the childrens” card, Ishihara can instantly put the opposing argument on a horribly disadvantaged defensive.

          • Kaja Rainbow says:

            Historically, there’ve been more hopeless looking causes than this that have succeeded. This effort might or might not succeed, but defeatism isn’t going to get any results. Education is one of the important strategies to fight against injustice, and this is an actual effort in that direction.

            And regardless of what you think about them, judges are capable of recognizing laws “for the children” as overreaching. It’s happened. They’ve also made some flat-out stupid decisions.

            I think you need to gain more realistic perspective. I understand the attractiveness of pessimism, but reality’s more complicated than that.

            • Nando says:

              I am not going to outright say you are wrong, but nothing is gained from continually telling yourself things are better than they are, either. That is only setting yourself up for greater disappointment when failure for your cause – the more likely outcome in almost any situation – occurs.

              Perhaps I’m not quite on the same page as you, though. I’ve just become accustomed to the victory of corruption and injustice my nation is notorious for.

              • Vincent says:

                It has nothing to deal with “telling yourself things are better than they are”. That’s acting blindly, much like the opposition does.

                Instead, it’s about knowing facts that can demonstrate why claiming A or B to be true, are just out right stupid. So we have to untie that blindfold and show them what’s real.

                • Nando says:

                  I wish things were that simple. Life would be so much easier.

                  • Surrealism says:

                    I can understand why you’re so negative about it. But I can tell you one thing, I dont think the industry or Dan were looking optomistic before the vote came up. Back in November, he mentioned chances of this Bill passing were higher than before. The industry and a bunch of others know a lot more than we do here.

                    And. “I wish things were that simple.” Nothing is simple.

                    Anything goes is how events in life take it. They go bad or good. Two possibilities. Simple as that. These efforts may look “blind” to you, but whatever the industry or the Bill’s opposition is doing, its certainly not ignorance for the benefit of “Oh it’ll be good if we ignore them.” Because personally, if it really was a hopeless case, they would stayed silent.

                    I’m no optomist either, but neither positivism or negativism will work here.

                    Nothing is simple. Life was never a bed of golden roses either. Even now the opposition doesn’t have a clue what their efforts will bring, but one thing that’s damn well known: None of us are being ignorant of the real situation.

                    Gathering the facts are way more useful than they look. Just people give up earlier.

                    Reality isn’t just “If it goes good, it goes good” or “If its bad we give up” or “We tell ourselves it’ll be okay if it goes bad.” Life isn’t that easy, friend. If it all worked like that, then nothing would get done.

                    • Nando says:

                      Tell me honestly, do you actually believe that a marginalized industry can take on A) the governor of the district they are based in, B) his allies in his political party, and C) the lack of anyone above A and B willing to do anything about it, AND win?

                      There are already reports of the more frightening possibilities raised by this bill beginning to come true. At this point, making fun of Ishihara in a comic accomplishes little. You can have all the ‘information’ you want, but if you cannot or do not do anything meaningful with it, it accomplishes nothing.

  34. Futanari says:

    Couldn’t we fight back by showing how public funds spent on this travesty would be better spent on actual crimes with victims?

    Ishihara should commit seppuku for attempting to coddle children until they’re 18 before unleashing them on the world.

    Ugh.

  35. mi says:

    some ppl saying ‘dunno why they decided to do this’,
    but

    a)christian/buddhism cults which have huge power inside Japan Government and have money forced ppl in the position at Tokyo Metropolitan Government.

    b)Tokyo Metropolitan Government wanted to establish ‘third party to check/rate those MANGA’ before being published as the place for golden parachute for the Governors.

    I agree for the rating,because there are a lot of stupid publishers trying to earn money with erotic drawings with no story and not caring about effect to the society.
    But I am upset with this issue from different point of view.
    Because Tokyo Metropolitan Government refused the offer from the publishers which to discuss about rating by themselves, then it went through,
    that means for Tokyo Metropolitan Government doesn’t really care what/how it is.
    And Government limits publication with refusing the discussion with publishers is FASCISM.
    Moreover, they were ‘saying’ it is needed because there was no rating by publishers,
    but then, what they did?
    Started having this for the video games which has already had strict rating by itself.
    (btw, in the article, it seems both MANGA and Video game’s limitation went through at the same time, but actually not. First of all, only for MANGA. I don’t think it is mentioned about Anime. Anime companies know it will come to Anime field soon and they are earning a lot with related manga products,too, so of course,standing on the side of publishers. Otherwise Ghibli wouldn’t join TAF, right?)

    Also vice Tokyo Governor Mr. Inose was replying the question if Osamu Teduka’s fire bird which includes incest are going to be rated as Adult’s book on Twitter,
    he said it wouldn’t because it is wonderful production,
    if you don’t want your products to be limited, then just produce wonderful products!
    ….who can decide which one is going to be ‘wonderful product’ before being published? :s

    There is no logical explanation,
    and never listen to the opinion or allegation from other people at all.

    They just want MONEY MONEY MONEY personally,
    don’t care about profit of taxes in Tokyo or whatever,
    they are not thinking to make Tokyo better, really out of issue for them.
    That is the problem for people in Japan, not only for the company earnings,
    once it happened Tokyo, means can happen in other prefectures,too,
    (actually some prefectures’ Governor already started saying they would have similar/more strict limitation,too)
    it’s whole Japan’s problem, not only OTAKU matter.
    People in Japan should realize that…..

  36. This looks amazing and I’m planning to catch the book! This whole situation is just another case of the wrong types of people taking charge when it comes to the issue of responsibility.

    I actually wrote something about the law and how it reflects society. You can read it at: http://www.mangatherapy.com/post/2609971604/youth-ordinance-bill

    I’ve been using your information as a huge resource for my entry. I hope you enjoy reading it and share it if you like!

    Thank you and looking forward to the FAQ!

  37. Anonymous says:

    Slightly off-topic, but where did the “[rather] than lead such miserable lives” in the last picture come from?

  38. Nobody says:

    @Nando:

    Dude, what’s your problem? Why discourage people from trying to oppose things in whatever way they can? Even if whatever they try has next to no probability of success, it has a higher chance than doing nothing at all.

    And then there’s what you’re doing. You offer no suggestions on doing anything “meaningful”, and worse yet, actively try to discourage people from doing what they think might help.

    You are worse than useless. Whatever low probability of success the bill’s opponents activities have, they’re reduced even further by people like you.

    • Nando says:

      Feel free to waste your time attacking me because I pointed out what’s being done now is not enough. You will only be helping to prove me right in the end.

      If I knew what the magic answer was, I would have said it already. I don’t know the answer. What I do know is that people have been taking steps that, if they bothered to think about it for a bit first, they would realize that those actions aren’t helping either. In the US politicians do not reverse positions on policy because of political cartoons, so what logic would I have to use to find it believeable that this comic would have any real effect at all?

      That is all I am saying. Do things that actually have some significance. “Spreading information” as a strategy alone is similar to raising an army and then refusing to use it for anything. You can’t win through just organizing, there needs to be real action too. Of course, if you want me to apologize for taking an honest view of the situation, I can certainly do that.

      • dankanemitsu says:

        Thank you for your interest in what we do, but I would like to point out that this doujinshi is simply a rallying call for the opposition. It is not meant to be used as a “weapon” to convince the pro-censorship camp.

        In the commentary that I included in the book that I am translating right now, I did provide information on concrete steps Japanese citizens can do. I talked about not being afraid to interacting with local politicians, learning how politely convey concerns and grievances, and the importance of civil debates and interactions with people that do favor censorship.

        This book was never meant to be the magic bullet that solves all problems. There is no such things as a magic bullet in politics.

        Perseverance, interaction, conviction, and dedication toward providing a convincing argument that others can appreciate is the key.

        But you need to have a little fun on the way. Editorial cartoons never solve the world’s problems, but they are important in pointing out what those problems are and they can help dealing with those problems more manageable by identifying them and categorizing them.

        -Dan K.

        • Nando says:

          I appreciate your thoughtful response, good sir. I admit that perhaps my concerns have not been voiced in the best of ways, so you taking time out to entertain my blathering is quite gracious.

          In thinking upon this, I have decided that the comic could have been more effective had Ishihara not cleverly played the system by introducing the bill as a complete last-minute surprise. All the items you listed, while still excellent (and probably the best) opportunities for our side, would have still been better chances had time for fair debate on this bill been given. At the point we’re at now, ‘debate’ phase tactics are not nearly as effective, but what would work are the kinds of things most of us have no way of doing ourselves.

          Frankly, from my point of view, the best chance I see for a positive outcome is the oft-speculated departure of publishers from Tokyo to other areas. While I think that would be the best solution, however, carrying it out would not be easy on the ones who would do it, probably making it unlikely that they would.

  39. Thanks for this post. I especially agree with what you are saying. I have been talking about this subject a lot lately with my father so may perhaps this will get him to see my point of view. Fingers crossed!

  40. Nando says:

    Wow I wish I had seen those images from the book in the middle of this post sooner. I don’t know how I glossed over them. They’re absolutely hilarious, and I can tell you guys did a good job on this no matter what happens.

  41. Tanith says:

    are otakus fighting hard against the ban?? please say yes! I’m from a country which copycats whatever other countries does!! Yes, my country is banning Anime on July 2011, which is my birthday month.. == please reply! or keep up with the news and write more, because anime is my passion until to my grave.

  42. psv says:

    why don’t you publish the doujin online for all the world to see,
    or are you just monkeying out and profiteering from all that nonsense.
    You expect people to pay when you try to defend freedom of speech?
    you japanese are the real stupid & ball-less cowards, and i know how to prove it.
    your aesthetics have racist implications which have nothing to do with that said bill and more with rumors circulated around the internet. sad for assholes like you for the repression going on manga & anime, but it assholes like you are the ones who should perish along with your stupid leaders, so to hell with your nuclear families and toxic wastes! look all around you, your the one who are living such miserable lives, and someone like me from overseas can just laugh it all off about how foolish you all are.

    from the Philippines

  43. psv says:

    and last thing…
    You got to face the fact people other than you are not as stupid as you think.

  44. Bloodone says:

    This is CRAP. i DON’T WANT TO LOSE MY MOST INTERESTING THING TO DO IN FREE TIME. If I could I would take a shit on this ban. Really… it’s ridiculous. The whole point of fiction is to make you believe your something more than just an everyday Joe and no one goes around raping women just by looking at some tits bouncing here and there in an action anime.

  45. JustSarah says:

    So dan, was is the current status of the manga your working on? And how much does 730 yen translate to dollars? I’m going to try toi buy this book if I can.:D And then some.

  46. birdofthehermes says:

    I just read through the strips at the top. My god they’re so funny. My body was NOT ready for that xD. Absolutely hilarious.

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