Animator and character designer Naoyuki Onda’s manager raised concerns about anime leaks, especially teasers and other information, that appear online, in a recent chat with Twitter user Kotobuki Mitsui (@Josu_ke).
The manager said that such leaks that appear online are being investigated and that accounts posting them are bound to face legal actions in the future if they continue to do so.
“We would like the specific account to be aware that it is committing a criminal act of stealing trade secrets and, if possible, to voluntarily stop,” Onda’s manager told in the chat.
Mitsui named popular twitter handle @sugoiLite in their thread, as one of the accounts that is currently under investigation.
According to Onda’s manager, the studios and production committees of anime that he is currently working on (Urusei Yatsura, MF Ghost etc) are aware of the leaks related to their titles that are made online. They believed that these leaks were facilitated by industry insiders, which would mean that a serious breach of confidentiality was occurring in the production of anime.
Due to this, the animator was already facing a lot of restriction in his workplace, including limitations on exchanging information with co-workers. The animator was of the opinion that if such leaks continued to appear online, the studios would restrict almost all interaction with fans, resulting in the anime industry becoming even more secretive.
“For the sake of the anime industry and anime fans, we hope that people will stop getting info outside of official sources, and that fans will wait until there is an official announcement and not ask for leaks,” Onda’s manager was quoted saying.
Publishers in Japan have strengthened their measures against anime and manga piracy in the last one year. In fact, after giving piracy websites a run for their money, these publishers had recently announced to have turned their focus to spoiler sites.
Shogakukan brought their first spoiler website claim to the Tokyo District Court in March 2021, when the author of Kengan Omega, Yabako Sandrovich, had flagged a certain website that was posting information and pictures on 63 chapters that had not been released on MangaONE.