From ManagCast comes an article titled "Jump & Fujoshi - The Mangacast Special" that looks at the relationship between the fujoshi culture and Shueisha's Weekly Shounen Jump.

ICv2 has released the February 2008 top 100 graphic novel sales estimates and the top 300 comics sales estimates based on Diamond Indexes and Publisher Title Data. Also from ICv2 is an analysis of the trends in December based on the graphic novel sales chart, and an analysis of Diamond Comic Distributors' October sales.

Also, MangaBlog provides its own look at the data, as well as a list of manga from the Top 100 Graphic Novels chart.

From ITP AlumniBlender comes an article titled "Character facelifts," manga style, which looks at how DC Comics and other publishing companies are trying to create manga versions of their properties.

Matt Thorn ponders why all manga characters look Caucasian in "The Face of the Other." looks at the works of Yoshihiro Tatsumi in "Yoshihiro Tatsumi's Good-Bye."

topThe French association of comics, critics and journalists, Association des Critiques et des journalistes de Bande Dessinée, has released its annual report on the state of the comics industry in France. Below is a partial translation of the report by guest translator Loup Solitaire:

A year of comic books in the European French-speaking territory

by Gilles Ratier, secretary-general of the ACBD
French to English translation by Loup Solitaire, mangavore
Adapted by Anthony Andora

I. Production: growth continues for the 12th consecutive year: 4,313 comic books were published in 2007 (of which 3,312 strict novelties), a growth of 4.4 %.
II. Publishing: more players on the market, which is a sign of vitality: 254 publishers published comic books in 2007, while only 17 groups account for 74 % of the production.
III. Optimization: 90 series enjoyed enormous mises en place and continued to rank among the best sellers, all book genres included.
IV. Translation: 1,787 foreign comic books (of which 1,371 from Asia and 253 from USA) were translated: a slight decline of 0.67 % from last year.
V. Adaptation and media influence: comics continued to adapt literary works (96 books in 2007), while inspiring other means of expression more and more.
VI. Magazines: presence of 77 specialized magazines in kiosks and bookstores while comics found a new creative field in internet publishing.
VII. Deceases and accolades: 13 French-speaking creators died in 2007 and some 128 works dating from more than 20 years have been republished.
VIII. Gratification: despite everything, 1,357 comic book authors continue, all the same, to make a living from their occupation.

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From IGN comes an article that looks at Japan's current independent manga scene:

The doujinshi market has gotten big enough in recent years that it serves as a sort of "minor league" for the professional manga ranks. Many well-known creators nowadays got their start doing amateur productions.

The Associated Press looks at the popularity of mobile commerce in Japan. reports that Devil's Due Publishing is collaborating with uclick to make their comics available to mobile phone users.

Finally, the Manchester Evening News has an article titled "How did Manga take over the world?" that looks at the popularity of manga around the world.

According to an article from the Associated Press, Borders announced on Thursday that it may put itself up for sale:

Shares in Borders tumbled more than 39 percent as the nation's second-largest bookseller said it was considering options including the sale of the company or certain divisions, and that it had lined up $42.5 million in financing to help it keep running through the year.

Borders cut back on its graphic novel division early last year after the departure of Kurt Hassler.

According Mainichi Daily News, McDonald in Japan is conducting a campaign from March 17 to April 3 (to promote its upcoming line of "over-sized burgers") that will have customers appear in the manga Dokaben by Shinji Mizushima:

Those who access a special site from their mobile phones or PC can play a game, with winners entitled to enter the draw to become a character in a "Dokaben" story drawn by Shinji Mizushima for Shukan Shonen Champion manga magazine.

Via: MangaBlog

Leading Industry Experts Speak on the U.S. Anime/Manga Industries and the Announcement of the SPJA Award Finalists

Anaheim, California (March 18, 2008) ‹ The Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation (SPJA), the overseeing body of the nation¹s largest anime/manga convention (Anime Expo®), will be presenting a symposium presentation/discussion about the history, current status and future of the U.S. Anime/Manga Industries at Tokyo International Anime Fair held within Tokyo Big Sight's Special Theatre 2(Thursday; March 27, 2008; 16:30-18:00-Tokyo time). In addition, announcements of the finalists of the highly recognized and coveted SPJA Industry Awards will also be made. More information can be found on the website

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Reuters is reporting that UNICEF, the Japan branch of the United Nations Children's Fund, is not satisfied with Japan's recent move to to ban possession of child pornography, and urges Tokyo to include child pornography in manga, anime and games in the ban:

[...] the Japan branch of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) urged Tokyo to beef up its laws by banning child pornography in manga comics, animated films and computer games as well as individual possession.

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