YA Programming Behind the Scenes: Anime Fest

This was our third Annual Anime Fest. Our goal when planning this program was to expose the teens to aspects of Japanese culture featured in the manga and anime in our collection, as well as to get them talking about their favorite anime and manga. The teens are geektastic in their exuberance for anime and manga, but they often don’t have friends who share their passion. We bring these people together, and the results are so fun to witness. In previous years we’ve learned samurai moves from a kendo instructor, made mochi (a Japanese dessert), listened to Japanese pop music, and created kokeshi dolls.

713 Teen AnimeFest

Our event features several staple activities every year. They include eating with chopsticks, dressing in yukatas (summer kimonos), watching anime (this year we watched Legend of the Millennium Dragon), and playing Naruto Wii.

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We then bring in a few new elements to keep it fresh. Continue reading

Manga Aggregation, Copyright and your Library

A few weeks ago, Erin Daly mentioned Scanalations in her excellent article about the new manga apps from Viz and Yen Press. Below is the definition she linked to on “No Flying, No tights.”

Scanalation – In this age of internet file-sharing, one of the most important fan activities surrounding Japanese manga (or Korean manhwa or Chinese manhua) is a process called scanlation. Fans get physical copies of titles in their original language, scan in the pages, translate the text into the language they need (for us, English), and then post the results on the internet for fans to read. Scanlation is the term coined for this process, and it usually involves a number of fans working on different aspects. Officially, this is illegal under international copyright law. At this point, publishers have not attacked individuals fans or those downloading and reading the posted scanlations, but there have been some skirmishes from groups. Many groups have a kind of honor code — they will only publish scanlations of titles not yet available where they are (i.e. in the US), and once that titles becomes available, they will take their scanlations down. However, there are many sites that continue to publish series after they’ve been licensed for US distribution, and if you work with teenagers, you should know that many of them read their favorite series online, direct from Japan. For a similar process for anime, see fansubs.

Scanalations are important to teen librarians because they technically violate copyright, and there is a good chance that you are teens are viewing them on the library computers. I know they view them on ours. We are working on how to address the issue now, but it is a complicated problem.

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Trading Spaces: Visiting Each Other’s Libraries

Gretchen came up with the idea of visiting Erin when we found out that our libraries (in southern Connecticut and southwestern Massachusetts respectively) are not terribly far from one another. We were looking for a cultural exchange: to see what was new and exciting in each other’s libraries and teen programs. It’s also just fun to meet Internet friends in real life. (Thanks for introducing us, YALSA and Twitter!) Here’s what we found.

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Anime Discussion Group

Anime Discussion Group needs your participation!’  Please join us at ALA Connect.’  Share your ideas and recommendations.’ 

The purpose of this discussion is to discuss issues relating to anime and to develop and disseminate best practices in collections, programming, and related topics in the popularity of anime and its affects on teens.’  Regularly share good program practices and successful anime events as well as making anime title recommendation to the group.

Please contact me at doraho@yahoo.com if you have any questions or suggestions for the discussion group.’ ‘ Please submit your name to me’ if you are interested to be the next convenor. ‘  Thanks!

When I Get Bored, I Write Essays.

I, Otaku: Inside The New American Geekdom

“You’re just a manga artist, discharging evil into society! How dare you live in a place with a roof?!”

– Excel, Excel Saga

Index

‘·Introduction: Social Studies of a Different Sort<

‘·Otaku: Who Are They, and Why Are They Dangerous?

‘·Types of Otaku: A By-No-Means-Definitive Field Guide

‘·Q&A: Common Misconceptions About Otaku, Manga, and Fandom in General

‘·Serving Otaku: What Can You, As a Librarian, Do?

‘·Otaku-Dom: Is There Anything Really Wrong With It?

‘·Appendices

– Appendix A: Anime Every Library Needs (Seriously)

– Appendix B: Wait, Where’s This Go?

Introduction: Social Studies of a Different Sort

So I heard this great joke today: two girls walk into a library. One points at the manga section and says “That’s all pornography.”

… Yeah. I don’t get it either.

Apparently I’m supposed to find this funny. And I do, in a sort of sarcastic way. I mean, the plight of the average American otaku is rather humorous, struggling to be understood in a world that would rather have us impressionable American teens obsessing over the Jonas Brothers or the latest Hilary Duff flick. It’s more socially acceptable, after all, to indulge in these entirely mainstream things, is it not? Continue reading

Where are All the Good Female Characters Hiding? Are They Under My Bed or Something?

I often find it annoying that, while I’m searching for manga at the library, I overhear other patrons talking about just how awesome and thing-I-am-not-allowed-to-say-in-polite-company-kicking their favorite male characters are. As a girl otaku (manga and anime fan, for the uninitiated) I find this rather disappointing. Now, I’m not saying that male characters are bad (you won’t find a huger Edward Elric fan in all of Pittsburgh than me. Well, probably) but where’s the gender equality? Way back in the early days of manga, Osamu Tezuka (yes, THAT Tezuka, the one they call the God of Manga?!) revolutionized the hero archetype with his comic Pricess Knight, featuring a heroine who could handle a sword just as well as any man. Where’s that spirit in today’s comics, I ask? Continue reading

Free Anime/TV Online & It’s Legal

FYIHulu.com now has a channel where anime fans can watch Naruto, Death Note, and Mushi-shi free, legally online.’ ‘ If you see someone on the internet terminals watching these shows on YouTube or other websites you can share this legal way of watching the shows.

I’m a fan of Hulu.com. Linda Braun mentioned it previously when it was still in Beta. Over the past year Hulu has grown, as have the minds of many studio executives. Hulu has worked with studios to allow anyone to watch TV episodes and movies online for free. Some of the studios limit the license to the three most recent episodes, meaning older episodes are not always available, but over all, I’m fond of this service and what it means for the future of entertainment. Continue reading

Beyond Gaming Tournaments

I had done another stenographer-on-too-much-coffee stint at this session (see Millennial Leadership), but luckily for me (and for you, dear reader) a lot of the material from Beyond Gaming Tournaments is online at the ALA Conference Materials Archive. So instead of duplicating a lot of content, allow me to direct you that-a-way and just summarize a few bits from the program for those of y’all who couldn’t attend. Continue reading

Anime and manga on teen second life

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Library student Rachel Thompson (Memetic Autopoiesis avatar name) created this anime/manga exhibit on the adult grid in second life. When your avatar touches a book or movie cover, they will be able to read the information that Rachel researched about the materials. There is also a comment box in the room with which to respond. What a great way to start an assignment or conversation about anime/manga in an immersive environment such as second life!

Rachel is also on the teen grid where she is organizing a revolving art exhibit for art created by teens in an art gallery that was built by a teen. Any art piece that fits in with the anime and manga theme will be displayed on a rotating basis, depending on the number of submissions received. The art display is open to all young adults regardless of whether they are part of the second life experience or not. Anime / manga clubs at libraries might be a great place to pass the word out if teens want to contribute. Libraries can either scan in the art work or submit computer generated artwork to the art exhibit at eye4youalliance@gmail.com.

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Posted by Kelly Czarnecki

Cons

I started a new category on the Library Success: A Best Practices wiki for Cons. While ‘cons’ usually refer to manga, anime, comic, and graphic novel conventions, tabletop and video gaming conventions are also referred to as such. There is also a lot of crossover between the two formats and at the conventions themselves. Many librarians attend out of personal as well as professional interest as presenters, participants, chaperones of a teen anime or gaming club or all of the above. Cons can be a great way for the library to connect with the community and to make the connection that libraries are involved with gaming, art, CosPlays, and more.

There are other sites that track gaming and anime cons. The LibSuccess wiki and the ALA Online Communities for the YALSA Gaming Discussion group members are other places to consider checking or adding information to. Please consider contributing your experience from attending a con as well as gathering a community of librarians to help set up a table for gaming or give a presentation on gaming in libraries at. The Gaming Discussion Group would be happy to help with ideas and materials (ask us for the ‘ask me about Gaming and Libraries’ pin!). Chair: Beth Gallaway and co-chair: Kelly Czarnecki.

Next weekend is the New York Comic Con, also called ICv2 (view their site to find out why) Graphic Novel Conference: “The New Trends Shaping Pop Culture”. What a great con for YA librarians to attend-and indeed many are! Michele Gorman, YA Librarian, Teen Services Manager and fantastic presenter will be talking about graphic novels. If you can attend, it looks like a conference not to miss!

As a bit of an aside, toy manufacturers related to anime, graphic novels, etc. will be at the New York Comic Con as well. Read this short article about toys that were part of the American International Toy Fair (same convention center as the NY Comic Con) designed to protect kids from predators.