Tokyo bans sales of sexually explicit comics to minors – LA Times
“The ordinance also outlaws certain images, stirring a debate about freedom of expression.”
Bill 156 does not ban anything. It does not outlaw the creation of any specific type of subject matter. It attempts to restrict anime, manga, and video games some consider inappropriate for minors, and thereby impacts what subject matter can be debated in a general audience setting. Japan already has restrictions on minor’s access to sexually explicit material. Bill 156 goes beyond that.
Japanese manga publishers threaten to boycott festival – The Telegraph
“The 10 largest publishers of comic books in Japan have vowed to boycott next year’s Tokyo International Anime Fair in protest at the city government passing a law that bans the sale of sexually explicit manga to minors.”
This article actually does a pretty good job, but it would be better if it would address the fact that selling “highly sexually stimulating material” is already restricted in Japan. Bill 156 inviting so much criticism from creators and publishers because it goes way beyond that and because they had so little input.
Tokyo cracks down on sexually explicit comics – FT.com
“Under new regulations passed this month, Tokyo authorities are seeking to block the sale to anyone under 18 of comics or animated films that “improperly laud or exaggerate” incest, rape and other sexual activity that contravenes “social norms”.
The rules – which also seek to promote internet filtering for minors and crack down on child pornography – highlight efforts by politicians, parents and teachers’ groups to tame an industry known for its explicit exploration of sexual taboos. But critics say the capital’s attempt to tighten censorship could have a chilling effect on a comic and animation sector seen as one of Japan’s most successful cultural exports.”
Remarkably, the article is actually fairly balanced. I’ve read far worse articles come out of Japan. It’s too bad that they didn’t mention how Akisora actually has a decent plotline. (Added 2010-12-25)
Extreme sexual ‘anime’ face curb – Kyodo News
“A Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly panel Monday passed a controversial bill to toughen regulations on the sale of comics and animation containing depictions of “extreme” sexual acts.”
“Subject to curbs under the bill will be depictions of rapes and other penal offenses and those “unduly lauding or exaggerating” incestuous affairs”
Another example where Bill 156 is characterized as being an anti-pornography ordinance. This is really typical and misleading since the article does not mention anything about pre-existing regulations. (Added 2010-12-27)
Cool Japan chilled: Censorship rules Japan – The Comic Journal
“While restrictions on sexually stimulating and/or harmful depictions have long been in place in Japan, the new revisions specifically target “manga and anime,” while exempting real-life photography (explain that one), and focus on materials that may be “disrupting of social order”–much like Ishihara’s own decades’ old taboo-breaking novels and plays, and his more recent nationalist, racist and homophobic blather.”
“…Japan’s real youth are thin on the ground: The nation’s notoriously declining birth rate is among the lowest in developed economies, and jobs for those youth who actually do exist in the form of university graduates have grown scarce. What’s more, government officials are not doing much to help them.”
Very good article, but I helped out with writing it, so I am biased. But I recommend this article a lot because it helps describe the context within which Bill 156 appeared. Tokyo, and Japan overall, has some really serious social and demographic issues, and Bill 156 probably won’t do much to address those issues even within Tokyo. (Added 2010-12-27)
Tokyo introduces manga restrictions – BBC
“Tokyo has banned the sale and lease of anime films and manga comics depicting rape, incest and other sex crimes to under-18s.”
“A bill, introduced by the metropolitan assembly, calls on the industry to self regulate by toning down graphic comics and films on general release.”
“Manga comics, popular with both adults and children in Japan, deal with themes including high school romance and literary classics as well as sometimes hardcore and violent pornography.”
While the BBC manages to point out that manga is a near universal medium, they also fail to point out that there are numerous pre-existing safeguards already in place prior to Bill 156. (Added 2010-12-27)