Anime & Manga News

Square Enix Rookie's Manga Award Retracted Due to Plagiarism

by dtshyk
Jul 15, 2011 5:24 AM | 24 Comments
According to Hayakawa Shobo and Square Enix, the winner of the 18th Square Enix Manga Award Special Grand Prize was found to plagiarize Ubukata Tow's short story "Mardock Scramble -104". Hayakawa Shobo, the publisher of Mardock Scrumble series, officially made a protest against the violation of copyrights. Square Enix and the author of the manga titled "Compliance" admitted plagiarisms and retracted the award. The author was a rookie mangaka and obtained a chance to serialize his manga on Shonen GanGan magazine by the award. The author announced in his blog that he will return the prize money and will self-restrain creations.

The common story line of the novel "Mardock Scramble-104" and the manga "Compliance"
The protagonist is an agent of the judiciary. He tries to save a female whistleblower, who has been chased by hitmen hired by the accused company, but he cannot open fire until permission from the judiciary is issued. He gets the permission and shelters her in a hotel. The accused company purchases up the whole building of the hotel and designates the place as a military exercise ground in order to make gun-shooting legal and disguise the assassination. The protagonist opposes to the company by attempting to purchase back one of the rooms and the two sides compete with each other over the ownership of the room The protagonist suspend the whole legal process by suing the hotel for causing the whistleblower's burn in the room. The protagonist succeeds in repelling the hitmen.

Differences between the two works
1. The three main characters of Mardock Scrumble (Boiled, Oeuf Coque, and Dr. Easter) were merged into one character in the manga.
2. In the novel, Dr. Easter ordered the whistleblower to put her hands in the hot water to cause the burn. In the manga, the whistleblower accidentally burnt her hand by cigarettes.

Sources: Hayakawa Online, Square Enix

20 of 24 Comments Recent Comments

Ouch. That's why you should first check other stuff out there before to avoid this problem.
Surely he didn't believe he was the first person to come up with a plot like that, right?

Oct 21, 2012 3:55 PM by BatoKusanagi

That's some bad luck there lol. Well that's there career down the drain now.

Oct 21, 2012 3:19 PM by -Deactivated-

It's a really good plot outline... I'd steal it too if it could make me right in the process :D

Oct 21, 2012 3:13 PM by 999

So will there be a 2nd episode ?

Aug 29, 2011 3:20 AM by pyroblage

Well....That's an utter failure on Square Enix's part.

Jul 15, 2011 6:58 PM by Sanguis

wooow...

Jul 15, 2011 6:47 PM by Lulexiaa

arif85124 said:
who still believe in originality?
I believe in pulling material from multiple different sources into one original piece. Does that count?

Jul 15, 2011 6:24 PM by RachelB

who still believe in originality?

Jul 15, 2011 6:09 PM by tembikai

Sucks for that person.

Jul 15, 2011 5:06 PM by soulless4now

Sabinlerose said:
Wouldn't that be "Heavily Influenced" not "Plagiarized"......
That's some hardcore bullshit there.

Get fucking Naruto off the shelves boys, it's "Plagiarism."
Clearly the fact it's based off a common legend and mythology isn't enough to defy the fact Far East of Eden had a character summon frogs, and had characters named Orochimaru, Jiriya, and Tsunade.
It's ok, none of that is copyrighted.

Also, copyright and plagiarism are different things. Plagiarism is when you copy directly (in part or full), without crediting the source. This is illegal, because it is fraud (plagiarism is simply a specific type of fraud). Derivatives on the other hand, would be a copyright issue, which applies to absolutely nothing before the early 1900s, or anything else that had its copyright either expired, or given up.

This was essentially the same story, with the most significant change being the author's name on the cover, so that is plagiarism. Naruto is simply based on other things, none of which are copyrighted, so there is no issue.

Jul 15, 2011 2:45 PM by RachelB

damn why do people make things hard for themselves

Jul 15, 2011 12:14 PM by Mr_Gutts

What a lame move they made.

Jul 15, 2011 11:46 AM by Wilio

Didn't they teach this guy that plagiarism is bad in elementary school? /facepalm

Jul 15, 2011 11:41 AM by guantanamobay

Yeah, this sounds like it's definitely past the "heavily influenced" line.

And regarding the Naruto example, it's fine to use elements from old works. Hence all the remakes of things like Shakespeare's plays and such out there. Or fairy tale retellings. So many anime are surely basing things off Japanese legends and mythology, but nobody will get on anyone's case as long as they're not stealing the new storyline or characters from each other.

Jul 15, 2011 11:29 AM by Cho_Desu

Sabinlerose said:
Wouldn't that be "Heavily Influenced" not "Plagiarized"......
That's some hardcore bullshit there.


The story is about 95% the same, I wouldn't call that 'heavily influenced'.

Jul 15, 2011 11:18 AM by no-thanks

Wouldn't that be "Heavily Influenced" not "Plagiarized"......
That's some hardcore bullshit there.

Get fucking Naruto off the shelves boys, it's "Plagiarism."
Clearly the fact it's based off a common legend and mythology isn't enough to defy the fact Far East of Eden had a character summon frogs, and had characters named Orochimaru, Jiriya, and Tsunade.

Jul 15, 2011 11:01 AM by Sabinlerose

Well one way of looking at creativity and originality is knowing where to hide your sources...
It seems that they had failed in doing so..

Jul 15, 2011 9:28 AM by DangoSage

Well that sucks ...
i dont even know "Compliance" ..

Jul 15, 2011 9:20 AM by Eternal_Shield

Another mangaka's life destroyed this time before it even went full circle due to plagiarism.

Jul 15, 2011 7:21 AM by Hoppy

i wonder if the ease of "borrowing" materials in the internet has made people consider "borrowing" things when coming on with what would be original work. in recent years high profile plagiarism cases have been prevalent.

Jul 15, 2011 7:19 AM by kisami

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