When many are expecting this year to be a good year for the world of otaku-dom all over the world with the release of many VN translations, it turns out this year marks the worst record of history for this niche market. As you might all know, hell started to break lose with the news of the famous H-game, RapeLay, getting banned and forced to be pulled away from the market by some Western feminist group. Things started to get from bad to worse when EOCS finally put a ban to many categories of hardcore H-games. And now the worst finally hit us, overseas fans, by having an eroge company blocking foreign IP addresses from accessing their websites. The famous company of minori (the creator of ef series) is the one that starts this trend and I hope this doesn’t go widespread. They blocked all non-Japanese internet connection from connecting to their website and gave us this message.
That’s not all; minori also blames foreigners for all the mess that struck their market. They even ask us to negotiate with their government if we want this treatment to end. What makes it worse is how majority of Japanese otaku agrees with that decision and it doesn’t take long for them to start raging on us for what happened. They started to forget how the situation they got into right now mostly is the result of Japanese media portrayal and their politicians and activists trying to push this niche market down. In fact throughout history, Japanese animation entertainment business has received many critics and harsh treatments from around the world (remember that accusation of Pokemon being demonic? Critics regarding vulgar elements in children show? And numerous other bad memories that I just can’t remember right now) and they managed to survive. If we compare to how fellow Japanese themselves treat their minor community, the pressure from overseas can be considered as small. However apparently they gave in to their weak stereotype and prefer to push the blames to someone else. Of course I cannot say that those feminist groups behind the ban and pressure to eroge industry is completely guiltless, but at least this small minority must stand united and try to save the industry they love most with their own effort. Then again, I know it’s hard to convince them for doing so remembering their position in public, the bad stigma that sticks to them and the overall mindset of Japanese people in general.
But we can be grateful that aside from the sentiment that struck us, some people (like Ryuukishi07 bro, the people at mangagamer and numerous other doujin creators that actually care about overseas fans) are actually trying to break down the giant wall between Japanese fans and non-Japanese fans. We can hope that someday this little hobby of ours can actually help people from various countries to sit around one table and discuss about it rather than actually separating us like this. Of course this sounds like a cheesy dream but this is actually what we actually expect to happen compared to shitstorm that takes place. At last let me quote something from Ryuukishi’s letter of encouragement to the Witch-Hunt staffs
Eastern and Western world-views mix together, a world-view where reality and illusions are mixed together.
Source: Suzacu Late Show
PS: There’s a shitsorm happening at above site thanks to a mistranslation resulted from machine translation.