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True Story: Japan Outlaws Child Pornography, Leaves Loophole for Manga and Anime

Written by Jude Terror on Thursday, June 19 2014 and posted in News with Benefits

True Story: Japan Outlaws Child Pornography, Leaves Loophole for Manga and Anime

This was an actual story reported in the New York Times yesterday, so don't go getting mad at us.

Source: New York Times

In what we swear, really, was a real story reported on the prestigious New York Times, Japan passed a law this week outlawing the possession of child pornography. Apparently, according to the Times, they didn't have one before, but now they do.  Though a law passed in 1999 outlawed the production and distribution of child porn, actually possessing it was, again, apparently, not technically illegal. The law banning its possession passed by "an overwhelming margin," meaning there were at least a few politicians who voted against it.

But fear not, fans of... child porn manga. It seems that, thanks to the power and influence of the Japanese manga publishing industry, an exemption was built into the law for manga and anime to depict all the all the child porn it feels like - which, if I'm reading this right, is something that I guess they feel like doing pretty often. The Times also points out that the law "also leaves untouched a vast gray area in which young girls are depicted in sexually suggestive ways. This includes everything from images of the all-girl bands of Japanese pop music posing in lingerie and bikinis, to fantasy illustrations with the faces of prepubescent girls atop the scantily clad bodies of voluptuous adults."

Holy shit, Japan. Holy shit.

I mean, technically, these are drawings, and art shouldn't be censored and all that, but jeeze, is all I'm saying, you know? Man.

It seems that the police in Japan have been pushing for this legislation for years, but manga publishers have been blocking it for fear that the law would ban - and again, these are the words of the New York Times, not mine - "illustrated depictions of naked or nearly naked prepubescent girls, sometimes engaged in explicit sexual acts."

Politicians explained the exemptions by pointing out, rightly, that artistic depictions are imaginary, and also that they are opposed to curtailing artistic expression, which, you know, fair enough. But still, really, uh, wow, Japan. If nothing else, I'm impressed with how much influence the comics business has in Japan. Here in America, we can't even get 7-Eleven to stock a spinner rack anymore.

Anyone caught with explicit pictures of children - just to be clear, actual photographs - drawings are okay, so don't worry if you've got some of those - could face a year in prison and a $10,000 fine.


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About the Author - Jude Terror

Jude Terror is the Webmaster Supreme of The Outhouse and a sarcastic ace reporter dedicated to delivering irreverent comics and entertainment news to The Outhouse's dozens of loyal readers. Driven by a quest for vengeance, Jude Terror taught himself to program and joined The Outhouse. He instantly began working toward his goal of forcing the internet comics community to take itself less seriously and failing miserably. A certified trash eater ruining the pristine field of comics journalism with his sarcasm and goofiness, Jude Terror is secretly friendly and congenial, so if you've got a complaint, why not just bring it up to him instead of subtweeting like a jackass, jackass? You can find him on Twitter or try your luck with an email, but keep in mind that he is notoriously unreliable and may not get back to you right away. Unless you want to send him free stuff, in which case he'll get back to you immediately.

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