The social networking site Facebook is once again in the spotlight on the technology scene, as well as mainstream news, because of the ever-popular Facebook Live platform.

Entertainment news website Variety reported in October last year that the usage of the live streaming functionality has seen 400 percent growth since it was opened to all users in January 2016.

But recently, the platform is under scrutiny with the authorities because of recent cases of murder and suicide being streamed on the Facebook Live platform, including the senseless murder of an elderly man in Cleveland, Ohio. The perpetrator eventually killed himself after the police had caught-up on him two days later, but it took hours before the video was taken down on the platform.

If you have a problem and you need someone to talk to, Please contact HOPELINE 24/7, Philippines’ Emotional Crisis Intervention & Suicide Prevention Hotline.

You can call them at (02) 804-4673, 0917 558-4673, or 2919 toll-free number for Globe and TM Subscribers.


Aside from that, there is one more issue that Facebook should tackle on its live streaming service, but for some reason doesn’t really getting a lot of attention. Copyrighted Content, specifically Japanese anime content.

We are not talking about those short video clips that goes viral or even moving GIF images, but instead, full episode of an anime series or even the full feature film on Facebook.


We admit, there was a time that we had scour the internet to look for streams of important sports events because it is much more cheaper to do it than paying hundreds, or even thousands of pesos to buy Pay-per-view events on our pay TV provider.

Looking for pirated content became much easier when Facebook Live and Twitter’s streaming app Periscope was launched, infuriating broadcasters and content providers. People flocked to Periscope during the Pacquiao-Mayweather fight, as well as the fifth-season premiere of the hugely-popular HBO series Game of Thrones.

To be fair, Facebook is making an effort to curb pirated content on their live streaming platform. Last February, two men were threatened legal action by the social media giant and Australian Pay TV service Foxtel for live streaming the Danny Green versus Anthony Mundine boxing fight.


No wonder these pirates would definitely feel that they could get away with anything, which they do.


How about Japanese content? For the past couple of weeks, we have observed several Filipino otaku groups and what we have seen are should be a concern to the content providers, and even to people who support the anime industry legally.


At first, it seems that these pages streaming anime shows and movies would automatically be in the chopping block by Facebook over their illegal acts. Turns out, that is not the case actually.

If an individual uploads the video outright, like YouTube or Vimeo, then it can be flagged automatically due to copyright infringement through their algorithms, but if the video is being streamed through Facebook Live, then the video cannot be easily detected. A loophole.

If you broadcast an American show or movie through the live streaming platform, the live broadcast would automatically be stopped. Japanese content, on the other hand, does not since the overseas market are not their priority. Another loophole.

No wonder these pirates would definitely feel that they could get away with anything, which they do.


On top of that, the social networking site seems to be making it difficult for everyone to report illegally streaming content.

Anyone could try reporting the post through all the hoops and the whole nine-yards, only to find out that the content holders should be the one who flag the content.

Facebook mentioned before that another option is to mass-report the illegal content so that their human content monitoring team could review the video and delete it, but why would “otakus” report something that they would enjoy for free?

We’re basically saying that all options that Facebook has brought would simply result in hitting a brick wall. Right now, it does feel that Facebook is turning a blind-eye.


As a result, these pages are getting more brazen with their actions and even broadcasting Japanese films that were recently screened in the local cinemas, as well as anime shows that are available on legal streaming services.


Just look at the views and shares on those videos, they are all opportunities lost because of these illegal broadcasts though Facebook Live.

We believe that what they are doing is a blatant display of infringement that not only dupes legitimate rights holders the opportunity to showcase legitimately these movies and series, it also undermines the position of anime in a global scale.


They are all opportunities lost because of these illegal broadcasts though Facebook Live.


But the question is, How to deal with it? Yes, the fans should be the ones who choose to support the official ways to watch anime, but for a country like the Philippines, that is absolutely unrealistic.

We don’t have the likes of FunimationNow, while Crunchyroll and Daisuki barely have any good titles to watch for Southeast Asian internet users. ANIPLUS Asia’s line-up definitely helps, since their titles are available everywhere, but of course different people have different preferences. If they are not available anywhere, then people have no other choice but to go underground.

The content providers should make the anime shows available to more people, but of course, money talks. Just because the titles looks good means it will be watched by everyone, which is why they usually tread the waters lightly, especially to foreign markets. The Japanese market are still the primary target audience of the anime shows, which is why they focus more on the likes of Nico Nico Douga or Twitter, but very little on foreign social media sites.


Which is probably why the first line of defense against illegal content should be Facebook. They have the technology, they can use some algorithms, in order to stop the damage causing by piracy.

If there is any concerned individual who want to report illegal content on the live streaming platform can flag the video, then their human content review team can check the video if it’s copyrighted content or not and take action.


But seriously, if content providers made an effort to bring anime movies or shows in the country, why would you still continue to watch illegally?

If it is a great movie like A Silent Voice, why not pay for the experience of watching it with your friends on a big screen, instead of your small cellphone screen alone?

It’s unbelievably stupid that we still have to discuss this topic of piracy at this very moment, when popular anime movies are now being seen worldwide and shows can now be seen the same day as Japan.

We’re sure that there will be people who will say something like “Masyadong mahal ang presyo ng tiket sa sinehan!” (The ticket price in cinemas is just too expensive!) or “Mahirap lang kami, kaya hindi kami makakanood sa sinehan!” (We cannot watch in cinemas because we are poor!), but that would discuss that at a later time.


Facebook is definitely having some existential dilemma, because from a social networking site, they now have become a multimedia company that offers different things, from news, information to pictures and video.

If they are evolving, the should keep in check the things that would not be good for everyone, whether it is for content providers or even supporters of Japanese content. If not, expect more idiots to take advantage of the situation.

No, you are not a hero. You are a parasite.

DISCLAIMER: This editorial expressed the views of Anime Pilipinas, but it does not reflect the views of all the members of the Editorial Team, its friends & partners. If you have any reactions, please use the feedback form by clicking here, or on our social networking accounts.