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Manga & Child Pornography Debated in Japan

Tokyo governor Shintaro Ishihara has targeted manga comic books with a new ordinance, creating stricter regulations for both live action and manga products. Other regional governments in Japan are considering similar policies.

The New York Times reports: “One particularly big target is manga comic books that depict pubescent girls in sexual acts. It a lucrative segment of the $5.5 billion industry for manga … The new Tokyo law, which applies to anyone under 18, bans the sale of comics and other works — including novels, DVDs and video games — that depict sexual or violent acts that would violate Japan’s national penal code, as well as sex involving anyone under age 18. ”

Japanese publishers, lawyers, and manga artists will fight the ordinance. Ten publishers, including Japan’s largest publishing company Kodansha, intend to boycott the Tokyo International Anime Fair in protest–arguing that the law hinders free speech. What do you think?

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