The Japanese government is taking matters into its own hands by spending 15.5 billion yen ($14.7 million) to launch its own TV network with an eye to foreign distribution. The rollout includes Thailand, Indonesia and Cambodia, but hope to spread to North America, Europe and Africa. The channel will host a variety of programs, including anime, dramas, music programs, and travel programs. It’s all part of an ongoing program to spread Japanese culture, which pirate scanlation sites have been doing the heavy lifting on for a while. It’s also part of a move to improve Japan’s reputation abroad.

In 2002 the Japanese government launched its intellectual property policy outline, with a goal of becoming “a nation built on intellectual property.” Included in that plan was to transmit Japanese culture to the foreign countries, but the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has noted that so far any support for this has been sporadic because “there has been no leadership in the government.”


  1. This will just make the content anime fans want more available to upload online. The genie has long been out of the bottle, has started a family, and is putting its last kid through college.

  2. Interesting.
    Governments have been doing this for decades via cultural centers and libraries (Goethe Institut, Amerika Haus), as well as radio broadcasting.

  3. Interesting. I wonder how online sites like Crunchyroll will be affected. Currently Crunchyroll has agreements directly with anime studios and TV networks in Japan to stream new (and old) content online (anime, live action, manga, etc.) Subscribing to the site sends money back to the networks in Japan.

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