A recent comment thread on GRSI, plus this bit of news and my experience with this site, has led me to ask myself a question so bleeding obvious that I feel stupid asking it. I’ll stress right now that I’m not a professional computer programmer (why else would I be using a stock WP theme?) and I don’t follow the industry too closely (Omo does some very insightful and in-depth analysis on the subject though) but even so, I do wonder: I’ve noticed a potential solution that would help fans AND make money for the industry…two facts that ought to mean it should’ve been done already. Only it hasn’t.
The current attempt at a solution to the fansub/piracy problem is through the streaming with region-locking and paid subscriptions, i.e. Crunchyroll’s model. I’m not aiming to criticise what CR are doing here: they did great things in giving Eve no Jikan exposure, made last year’s Global Shinkai Day even more special and are so far the only independent site that has made a high-profile attempt to seek the middle ground.
My first thought on the notorious Endless Eight portion of the new series of Haruhi Suzumiya was “thank God I’m not watching this too!” and proceeded to skim-read the blog posts, which is probably more fun than actually watching the episodes themselves. It reminded me how something that’s popular can divide the fans so strongly and produce the old shitstorm of hype, bitching and RAEG that springs up every time. In some ways it’s as predictable as the “The new season sucks!” posts that ironically crop up every season but the observations are interesting.
What do you mean “the first season was better…”?!
Haruhi Suzumiya is a texbook example of how these things happen although I’m a bit spoilt for choice of other examples. Naruto is an obvious one although it’s the stereotypical Narutard that upsets most people, probably even more so than the filler episodes. To a lesser degree you get a mirror image of this carry-on with notoriously bad shows but the general pattern is the same: a wave of opinion for A New Thing creates a reflex reaction in the opposite direction, forming another retort of the initial enthusiasm and so on. Like the old fave “Toilet Tennis: look left” and “Toilet Tennis: look right” scrawled on the opposite walls of a toilet cubicle, this is Backlash Tennis.
I didn’t want to write this post; I don’t like meta-blogging at the best of times. I prefer to write about interesting things rather than writing about writing about interesting things but even so, I can’t not clarify a point that I was faced with this morning, which is somewhat related to the recent discussions on Twitter and Google Reader about ANN’s current standards of reviewing.
Source: xkcd.xom, a site I love
It started with this unfortunate incident that’s an example of (on this blog at least) a mercifully rare side-effect of the user-comment feature: the Annoying Unconstructive Comment. The anime blogging community is a pretty closed one but every now and then, alongside the usual discussion with your blog’s regulars, you get a comment from a stranger who in all probability is ‘just passing through’. I try to reply to these but when it’s a one-line or incomprehensible comment I don’t normally bother – they’ll probably never read my reply anyway. This time I took the bait and was, well, a bit abrupt; in retrospect I was in the wrong but that’s beside the point. Nor am I taking back what I said. Here’s why.