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55 Rutgers L. Rev. 155 (2002-2003)
Copyright and Comics in Japan: Does Law Explain Why All the Cartoons My Kid Watches are Japanese Imports

handle is hein.journals/rutlr55 and id is 165 raw text is: COPYRIGHT AND COMICS IN JAPAN: DOES LAW EXPLAIN WHY
ALL THE CARTOONS MY KID WATCHES ARE JAPANESE
IMPORTS?
Salil Mehra*
If Disney took hints from 'The Jungle Emperor' [by the
cartoonist Osamu Tezuka in making Disney's The Lion King,]
our founder, the late Osamu Tezuka, would be very pleased by
it... Rather than filing a claim, we would be very happy to
know that Disney people saw Tezuka's work.
-Takayuki Matsutani, President, Tezuka Productions'
Imagine this: one hundred fifty thousand people per day
exchanging their own personal copies of the copyrighted works of
others with impunity. The exchanges are facilitated by a killer app
of a forum, which makes it obvious to everyone interested where such
exchanges can be made. Moreover, the copyright holders appear
either powerless or unwilling to stop these activities.2
The last days of Napster?3 Well, possibly. But this description
* Salil Mehra, Assistant Professor, Temple University Law School, Beasley
School of Law. Funding from the Temple University Law School summer grant
program helped make this research possible. Thanks to Etsuo Doi, Sarah Dyer, Eric
Feldman, Tom Ginsburg, Yuichiro Ishii, Sharon Kinsella, Raymond Ku, Ryu Kojima,
Larry Lessig, Phil McConnaughay, Kenneth Port, Richard Posner, Eugene Quinn, and
Mark Ramseyer for their comments and suggestions. Thanks also to Sarah Beth
Mehra for her editing skills and loving support. All errors and omissions are of course
the author's.
1. Charles Burress, Uproar Over 'The Lion King': Disney Film Similar to Work
from Japan, S. F. CHRON., July 11, 1994, at Al.
2. See Takako Shimizu, Shonichi jya-gd bannin ga raijyd shita komiketto [150,000
People Attend Comiket on First Day], MAINICHI SHIMBUN, Aug. 10, 2001, available at
http://www.mainichi.co.jp/life/hobby/game/news/news/2001/0S/l0-l.html (last visited
on June 1, 2002) (mentioning that 11,000 displayed their works). The largest of such
events is held twice a year at the Tokyo Big Sight, Japan's largest dedicated
convention center. See Tokyo International Exhibition Center Tokyo Big Sight, at
http://www.bigsight.or.jp/english/facility-e/index.html (last visited on Oct. 1, 2002);
Official Comic Market Site, at http://www.comiket.co.jp/ (last visited on June 10, 2002).
The association that organizes the event estimated the number of attendees at 480,000
over three days. KOMIKETTO 61 CATALOG, 27 [Comic Market Catalog 61] (Komiket
2001) [hereinafter KoMIKErOl.
3. See, e.g., A & M Records, Inc. v. Napster, Inc., No. C99-5183 MHP, 2000 WL

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