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Fansubs


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#1
Granz00

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Basically, anime that airs in Japan can take awhile to be licensed in America, and sometimes never makes it over here. So in this time gap, fans make fansubs so that others may be able to watch something that they may otherwise not be able to. Once they become licensed then the fansubs cease.

My question is is it legal to watch these during their unlicensed time period?

If this is wrong to ask, them I'm sorry and feel free to delete this post. I'm not trying to break any rules, or start a debate. I'm just trying to find a truthful answer to this question, rather then an opinion based one that seems to be spread across the internet.
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#2
The Admiral

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It depends on where they are based. US Law states that copywritten material can not be hosted online without the copyright holder's consent. Japan has different laws, however, which is why sites like surfthechannel.com exist: the content is actually hosted in Japan, where it is not illegal to post copywritten material.
EDIT: SurfTheChannel is actually operated out of Sweden, but you get the point.

Edited by The Admiral, 31 July 2008 - 11:07 PM.

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#3
Granz00

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Thanks for that reply, but how about on the side of the viewers? If its hosted in Japan, then is it legal for Americans to view it?
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#4
The Admiral

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Yes. Content hosting is the issue. Who has what information? Technically, the fansub is stored in your RAM when you view it, but that's an argument that has failed in court. (google when you get the chance) But because it isn't illegal to host copywritten material in some countries, viewing that content that is hosted in those countries is also not illegal.
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