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Aug 29, 2018 12:30 AM
Anime Moderator
The Idol Master

Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 1601
Earlier this month, MyAnimeList published an in-depth story on the work of animation studio Fukushima Gainax (now known as Studio Gaina) as they aid reconstruction efforts in regions of northeastern Japan affected by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Reception to the story on this website and on social media alike exceeded initial expectations, with users praising its original content.

Despite anime becoming a global media content, audiences around the world continue to know very little about Japan's animation industry. Behind-the-scenes stories like Fukushima Gainax's origins are difficult to come by given that many such stories are published by Japanese-language sources. On top of this landscape, audiences may not know which sources to trust given the unpredictable nature of social media, occasionally resulting in conflicting rumors about the state of an anime production or trends in the anime business.

It is against this background that last year MyAnimeList decided to embark on a new experiment in news reporting: long-form journalism.

To be clear, long-form content is not new to the anime and manga community. Following acquisition by DeNA in 2015, MyAnimeList launched a Featured Articles section for the website. Elsewhere around the world, an anime community website in Indonesia dove into long-form journalism that same year with the opening of The Indonesian Anime Times, an English-language news website separate from its original Indonesian-language platform. When anime news websites could not fill the void in in-depth reporting, private blogs often rose to the occasion.

Two years ago, Anime News Network began partnering with Anime Now!, a website operated by Anime Consortium Japan (ACJ), for long-form content to "share the beauty of anime with all." That partnership ended in the beginning of 2018 after ACJ's operations were folded into Bandai Namco Holdings. Throughout its existence, Anime Now! was sometimes criticized by readers for writing what they considered to be "fluff" pieces. When the website finally announced its demise, some observers questioned the sustainability of the long-form content business in anime and manga reporting.

But the demise of one website should not bring into doubt the potential of long-form journalism in bringing knowledge to anime and manga fans around the world. This is why last year MyAnimeList made the decision to recruit long-form news writers into the News Team. A few setbacks delayed the formal launch of long-form news articles, but the publication of the Fukushima Gainax story two weeks ago was the start of a new experience for MyAnimeList News readers.

Long-form news articles on MyAnimeList shall focus on unbiased expository writing which detail various aspects of the anime and manga business in Japan. They differ from this website's existing featured articles, which provide a platform for opinion columns, advertorial pieces, and evergreen content such as interviews with creators. With this new endeavor, the objective is to provide valuable content which deepen the knowledge of the website's users and readers.

These articles will also seek to explore how anime and manga are building a following around the world through unique local experiences. One title which is popular in Europe may not be popular in North America, or vice versa. This has been evident in past stories such as Mazinger Z Movie's premiere in Italy and manga publisher Shogakukan's expansion in Southeast Asia. To that extent, the News Team welcomes suggestions from its readers on topics that should be explored.
On Moderating: Building a more complete anime database.
Spica: Anime, manga, idols.
Aug 29, 2018 12:35 AM
Ready to Ruffle

Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 425

Greatly looking forward to the future of what you put out!
Aug 29, 2018 1:10 AM

Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 976
Now this is a good news. I always like behind the scene kind of news. And maybe this long-form news will evolve to video content? Because that would be cool.

One thing I want to suggest, you should improve your short-form news. Because MAL always late on reporting anything. And the news about Fukushima Gainax changing to Gaina, it's reported almost a week after other news source reported it. A new record, in a bad way.
Aug 29, 2018 1:20 AM
Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 737
Guys, just hire that dude from sakuga blog, his articles are pretty interesting.
Aug 29, 2018 1:28 AM

Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 14400
And here i thought MAL is ded.

Aug 29, 2018 1:43 AM

Joined: Feb 2012
Posts: 5750
Great stuff, looking forward to hear more from and about the industry by MAL itself.
Aug 29, 2018 2:18 AM

Joined: Aug 2016
Posts: 3046
Long-form journalism is the best form of journalism, I'm quite happy to see MyAnimeList finally doing this. I was stuck reading Comic Natalie for too long.

Now, the only thing that needs to happen is to get the frequency of these up.

Maybe you could try hiring professional free-lance writers who are closely involved with Japan's anime and manga industry. I don't think that it would be such a bad idea if the costs do not outweigh the benefits.
Aug 29, 2018 4:10 AM

Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 1682
This is great. I look forward to reading them.

"Le vent se lève!... Il faut tenter de vivre!"
- Paul Valéry, Le Cimetière Marin -

Aug 29, 2018 5:02 AM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 47792
nice one and some articles you can make about the anime industry are
- the high budget myth of good animation like seen on ufotable and kyoto animation works
- why long running anime seems to suffer from bad animation
- average cost of 3DCG vs traditional 2D animation
- the impending animator shortage crisis

thats on top of my head right now
Aug 29, 2018 5:05 AM
Review Moderator

Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 1821
Woah, can't wait for this! It's great to know we have interesting featured articles AND now cool editorials like this! :D I hope it goes well <3
Aug 29, 2018 5:05 AM

Joined: Sep 2013
Posts: 41
Nice! That's the kind of media coverage the community really needs.
Fantastic news guys, wish you the best of luck.
Aug 29, 2018 5:18 AM

Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 3575
Great news, I'm really looking forward to this!
"He's already special. Because he was... born into this world."

Aug 29, 2018 6:21 AM

Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 5915
"Anime Now! was sometimes criticized by readers for writing what they considered to be "fluff" pieces"

Really? I often found interesting articles there before its fall into a streaming commentary (well, AnimeNewsNetwork suffers from this too, but at least they still offer other things).
Aug 29, 2018 8:07 AM

Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 615
Will there be an special RSS feed for these articles, or will they just be lumped into the standard RSS feed?
Aug 29, 2018 10:58 AM

Joined: Jun 2015
Posts: 2155
Interesting news.
While news related to new seasonal anime, manga, LN and news about seiyuu's should be the main focus of the news team this new expansion is also one thing that i would welcome.

Giving us fans of anime and manga the opportunity to see how the animation and the manga industry works i believe would allow fans to get a better insight into just how much happens behind the scenes.
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Aug 29, 2018 1:23 PM

Joined: Feb 2017
Posts: 241
I think this is a wonderful way to help grow this site and am looking forward to reading whatever is put out.

Is there going to be a new tag for this type?
Aug 29, 2018 5:07 PM
Joined: Jun 2014
Posts: 259
Maffy said:
Woah, can't wait for this! It's great to know we have interesting featured articles AND now cool editorials like this! :D I hope it goes well <3

maybe not editorials. i think they specified that they'd rather go for expository pieces with this venture.
Aug 30, 2018 8:13 AM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 34
What a great and amazing news!
Looking forward to read more articles
Keep up the good work MAL!
Modified by Melonknight, Aug 30, 2018 8:17 AM
Aug 30, 2018 8:32 PM

Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 1289
Aug 31, 2018 4:38 AM

Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 24804
It's a warm welcome from me. I hope it would be unbiased expository writing just as you claim it will be.
Aug 31, 2018 12:14 PM
Supreme Tsundere

Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 2583
Interesting, will definitly look forward to read these interviews.
Nicely done.
Sep 8, 2018 8:46 AM
Sovereign Prince

Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 271
Really exciting to see this site continuing to grow. This is a great idea!
Sep 8, 2018 2:24 PM

Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 5094
Hopefully we're on a track where in 5 or so years we'll have better understanding of the industry. Good to hear everyone is coming together for this effort.