Japan Cartoonists Association issues statement on expansion of Japan’s copyright law

Trade organization urges government to make sure that the proposed measure “does not impede civil rights”.

The Japan Cartoonists Association has issued a formal response last Wednesday to the proposal by the country’s Agency for Cultural Affairs to expand the scope of its copyright law to include manga, video games and literary writings.

In its statement, the trade organization “(asks) that due deliberation is taken to ensure that the expansion (of copyright law) does not impede civil rights such as research and freedom of expression.”

The Association also suggests that the proposed measure should primarily target repeat offenders, address the illegal uploading of manga where no changes are made to its content, and focus on cases where there is a negative financial impact to the rights holder.


Prior to the release of the statement, several manga artists have voiced their concerns on social media about the proposed amendments to the copyright law. They particularly cited the vagueness of the law and how it may unfairly target fan-made content such as doujinshi and cosplay.

Negima! artist Ken Akamatsu expressed his hope that the Agency for Cultural Affairs will listen to the dissenting views of manga artists, among others.