Anime Vice News

Amazon JP Drops Loli, Fetish Titles; More On The Way

And I'll bet you anything their stock is going to plummet.

It's not pornographic, but theoretically even Kodomo no Jikan could be in trouble.
It's not pornographic, but theoretically even Kodomo no Jikan could be in trouble.
So, I just recently talked a bit about how big an impact hentai has on the anime industry-- and, I've known some to argue, the entire Japanese economy. But the tides may be turning: in recent years, we've received a number of reports about the government attempting to ban lolicon manga, and now Amazon.co.jp has announced that it's dropping all lolicon and fetish manga-- and that they'll be dropping even more soon.


Sankaku Complex reports that Amazon will soon no longer carry “themes of illegality”, or “brutality”, “rape”, “drugs”. “coprophagia” and “bestiality.” Now, lolicon I can understand-- and maybe even certain fetish manga, including bestiality and corpophagia (if you must look that one up, at LEAST take my advice and don't do it as an image search).


But themes of illegality or brutality? Do you have any idea how much manga that could mean? Titles like Hellsing, Kaiji, Blade of the Immortal, hell, maybe even Bleach could fit into those categories (hey, those battles could be considered "brutal"). Sankaku says that some reports claim that thus far the ban has been used pretty inconsistantly. We'll see what happens...

Bertmastaon Dec. 9, 2008 at 3:13 p.m.
i hope this doesnt mean i now have no way to keep purchasing Gantz and Berserk :(
LordAndrewon Dec. 9, 2008 at 3:17 p.m.
Amazon was selling these and NO ONE TOLD ME?!
Void_Wizardon Dec. 9, 2008 at 3:40 p.m.
This will just strengthen sales of other online retailers especially ones that specialize in the products.
ethan staff on Dec. 9, 2008 at 3:40 p.m.
"Sankaku Complex reports that Amazon will soon no longer carry “themes of illegality”, or “brutality”, “rape”, “drugs”. “coprophagia” and “bestiality.”"

I think that makes sense.
giaon Dec. 9, 2008 at 3:55 p.m.
Ethan, if they actually removed anything that carried themes of illegality and brutality, that would include everything from Pulp Fiction down to, well, Superman-- those bad guys commit crimes all the time! It's WAY too broad, IMO.
Bertmastaon Dec. 9, 2008 at 3:56 p.m.
i think that it means illegality and brutality relating to sexual theme's
giaon Dec. 9, 2008 at 4:07 p.m.
Bertmasta, but where do you draw the line? The thing about some of the darkest sides of sexuality is that they often pop up in some of the world's best media. How about a film or novel like Lolita, in which an older man sleeps with a younger girl? The film may not be sexually explicit but it's very sexual. What about films that contain (non-explicit) rape in them, like in Streetcar Named Desire-- non-explicit, but still brutal, illegal, and sexual?

It's a slippery-slope argument, really, but valid nonetheless.
CalAggieon Dec. 9, 2008 at 4:21 p.m.

It could be made a little more clear that this story involves Amazon Japan and not the overall brand of Amazon sites.

giaon Dec. 9, 2008 at 5:44 p.m.
CalAggie: I realized that a while ago, do you still feel that way even after I added the "JP" into the headline and first paragraph?
HeeroYuyon Dec. 9, 2008 at 6:38 p.m.
Great....another step toward a politically correct world run by culturally-challenged fools...
The way I see it, the vagueness of their description of brutal and illegal is just going to be an excuse for dropping numerous titles in the future.
Kuroon Dec. 9, 2008 at 7:10 p.m.
That's really shitty.
GMan staff on Dec. 9, 2008 at 9:52 p.m.
I gotta say that hentai just seems weird to me.  I'll also say that I don't wanna see a book dipicting rape.  Unfortunately some impressionable youths might think that stuff like that's okay.  Anyways stuff that is inappropriate should be restricted to adults.  It's not like kids are buying stuff online without their parents consent.   Unless I'm being naive and the youth of today have access to their own credit cards. Maybe the really creepy stuff should just be in the 'specialty' stores.
CalAggieon Dec. 10, 2008 at 2:05 a.m.
gia: Uh, not so much. I need to carefully read every word of subsequent news stories.

I guess my take on the acutal story is that Amazon Japan likely felt pressured by the building unease about loli and fetish titles among the general Japanese public & related government actions and decided to take action. I doubt they will take similar sweeping action against themes of illegality and brutality but I wouldn't completely rule it out case-by-case evaluations of extreme. If Amazon JP hadn't delisted the particular titles they did, they may have been viewed in some customers' eyes as being fine with their content. Taking an artistic stand and keeping them listed on principle might have been noble but if there was a potential significant loss of overall sales, they would have a fiduciary interest to preserve their public reputation at the expense of a smaller base of customers.

Besides, there are other places, both online and in physical locations, where interested customers can buy copies of such materials.
Chibi_Kajion Dec. 10, 2008 at 7:30 a.m.
I can't say I'm a fan of any of those genres. But I would be lying if I didn't find this a little disturbing.
DocHauson Dec. 10, 2008 at 8:14 p.m.
You mean people actually paid money for this stuff rather than let the the internet take care of their needs?
Ruby_Alexandrineon Dec. 11, 2008 at 10:33 a.m.
I wonder if shota  would fall under this category since its the counterpart of lollicon.  Both subgenres are disturbing to me, so it really doesn't bother me that Amazon Japan will discontinue seeling shota and lollicon mangas and other mangas with extreme content.  Yet I have to agree with CalAggie that there are other places to purchase such content unless other Japanese online bookstores such as BK1 and JPQueen follow suit.  Will this also affect the "brick and mortar" bookstores in Japan?

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