Who Will Think of the Children? 誰が子供達のことを考えてくれるのか?

December 13th, 2010

日本語で

This morning, the Tokyo Assembly passed the Healthy Youth Development Ordinance, a set of laws that requires the regulation of drawn materials that show explicit or “unhealthful” (quotes are mine) behaviors. This ordinance includes sex scenes with minors, incest and, while it is not specifically stated, I believe that materials with homosexual content will be targeted as well. Unsurprisingly, the Japanese mangaka are up in arms about it and a few of us in the industry also are not too pleased.

With the caveat that I am not a lawyer or politician, I know nothing about Japanese law and I’m basically making this up as a I go along, here are some thoughts I, speaking as as President of Yuricon and ALC Publishing – and as a writer – have on the topic.  These thoughts are unordered and unfocused, as I struggle to understand the motivations behind this law, the repercussions of it passing and what, if anything, we can do about it.

I don’t think this ordinance is the end of the world, but I do think it will hasten the end of the printed manga industry. Readers all over the world have been waiting for the push that will provide them with online versions of their favorite comics. I believe that this law will be that push. It will force publishing companies to move more explicit work underground – the online world is eminently suited for that. Less questionable materials will follow, because printing on paper costs more than not printing on paper and distribution costs less for digital material.

There is a provision for the industry to self-regulate and, like most obscenity laws, this one may be hard to enforce, except for when someone is running for office and picks some scapegoat to make an example of. (As happened with Christopher Handley, who was sacrificed to a campaign strategy.)

I worry a bit about group shows like Comiket. Like Tokyo Anime Fair, it is held in Tokyo, where the ordinance has been passed. If you were a creator of materials that are regulatable, would you bring them to a public show right now? Consider that the law goes into effect on July 1, but in the half million people at Winter Comiket, there may be people who will be tasked with rounding up the creators next summer. Sure, it could go underground, become “a hydra,” but what does that do for an already tenuous industry? It pushes extreme fetishists under the table to continue doing what they are doing, and leaves all the other creators sort of out there to be harassed. Probable? No. Possible? Yes.

What bothers me most about this is that it is exactly the kind of stunt that people who have stashes of child porn pull instead of actually trying to do anything to make actual children safer. Real child porn is not covered under this act – only drawn stuff. And, based on bill sponsor and Governor of Tokyo Ishihara Shintarou’s recent statements about LGBT people being genetically deficient and pathetic,  I can see that an easy target can be made of LGBT-themed content.  Ishihara has recently made some very controversial comments about women, the LGBT community, foreign influence and “protecting” children. Stepping back from the issue of manga at all, it seems apparent to me that he has begun to wage a war against gays, women and children. This cannot be a good trend.

Ultimately, I believe children need to be protected from *actual* neglect, abuse and violence….not ideas.What this law does do is require me to speak up in support for materials that I personally find offensive, because I believe in freedom of expression. (I wonder how many of the lolicon out there would do the same for me, because I bet not a whole lot would, if LGBT content, especially Boy’s Love – for which the audience is mostly women – were to be targeted. I’d like to be wrong about that.)

Now, if you’re reading about this law, frothing at the mouth, I’d like you to think – when was the last time you wrote your own governing representatives and asked them to support freedoms for everyone? (For instance US folks, the US Senate was discussing repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell – did you call your Senator and let them know that you support repeal?)  Because right now there are a lot of people running your own governments that are pulling stuff like this every day, and if you’re not policing your own back yard, you don’t have the right to comment on your neighbor’s. Freedom of expression and civil rights are issues we all must fight for, not just in regards to manga from Japan.

I am not a proponent of  outrage. It accomplishes nothing. What we need to do is figure out how to protect our (and our children’s) rights to thinking and expressing our/themselves freely. Then do it.

I don’t know what we can do to support the Japanese manga industry other than to buy books. Money goes a long way to helping fix things and it shows your support in a concrete way. If the Japanese manga industry publishes a statement detailing any way we can support them other than that, I will be sure to pass it along.

Here in the US, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund was created to support, protect and fight for the rights of comics creators and vendors. If you haven’t yet joined them, now is a good time. And the ACLU – who does indeed fight for the rights of people you may not agree with or care about, to say things that may upset you, was created exactly for that very reason – to defend freedom of expression.

I’m not a really good political leader, I rarely have good rallying cries. But I remember my own childhood – the kinds of things I read, drew and wrote and I can only think that I’m terribly glad my parents did not “protect” me from anything. Censorship does not solve any real problems, it just masks them.

Comments are open, but please avoid teeth-gnashing, froth-spewing tirades against “Them.” I’d love to see creative thoughts on expressions of support for the Japanese manga and anime industry.

***

アメリカ時間の今朝、性的あるいは「不健全な」(括弧は筆者による)行為を含むマンガなどの規制を課する一連の法案の、東京都青少年健全育成条例改正案が、都議会総務委員会で可決されました。この条例による規制には未成年者との性行為、近親相姦が含まれていて、また明確には規定されていないものの、同性愛を描く作品についても同じように対象にされていると、私は考えています。驚くべきことではありませんが、日本のマンガ家さん達はこれについて憤慨しており、業界にいる私達の幾人かも、決して喜ばしいものではないと思っています。

私は弁護士でも政治家でもありませんし、日本の法律についての知識も持ち合わせてはおらず、単に思いついたことを述べていくだけであることを、まず申し上げておきますけれど、YuriconとALC Publishingの代表(そして一人の作家)として、この話題に関していくつか発言しておきたいことがあります。うまく整理も、まとめられてもいませんが、この条例の背後にある意図や、可決されてしまったことへの反響を理解しようと努力し、もし可能なら、私達に何が出来るかを考えてみました。

この条例によって全てが終わってしまうわけではないでしょうけれど、印刷マンガ業界の終わりを早めていくだろうとは思っています。世界中の読者達が、お気に入りの作品がオンライン版で供給されるための後押しをずっと待ち望んでいます。おそらくはこの条例がそのきっかけになるでしょう。出版社達はより性的な作品をアンダーグラウンドへ移行させることを強いられていくでしょうし、ネット世界はそのためにふさわしい場所です。それほど問題視されないだろう作品もそれに続くでしょう。というのも、印刷しない方が当然コストはかかりませんし、デジタル配信の方がその費用も安く済むからです。 業界の自主規制についての条項もありますが、ほとんどの猥褻物に対する法律と同様に、うまく施行されるのは難しいかもしれません。政権の座にある誰かが、見せしめのためのスケープゴートを選び出そうとする時以外は、ですけど(選挙対策の犠牲となった、クリストファー・ハンドレーの身に起きたように)。

コミケのようなグループ展についても不安が少しあります。東京アニメフェアと同じく、条例が可決される東京で開催されるからです。もしあなたが規制されてしまうような内容の作品の作者だったら、いまその作品を、一般に公開されているイベントに持ち込みますか? 新しい条例が施行されるのは来年の7月1日からですけれど、コミケに集まる50万人もの人々の中には、次の夏のコミケに向けてクリエイター達を集めている人達もいるでしょう。確かにそういった作品はアンダーグラウンドに潜り、「決して解決出来ない問題」になっていくかもしれません。けれど、既に傾きつつある業界に対する影響はどうでしょうか。過激なフェティシスト達は影に潜み、同じような作品を作り続ける一方で、他の全てのクリエイター達が苦しまされ続けていくようなことになるのでしょうか。現実にはありえなさそうでも、理屈ではそう考えられます。

私が最も気に入らないは、これが、チャイルドポルノを隠し持っている人達が、現実に存在する子供達をより安全にするための、実際の様々な努力の代わりに行おうとしている、まさに注目を引くためだけの行為に過ぎないことです。現実の子供達によるチャイルドポルノは、この条例では対象にはされておらず、描かれたものだけです。さらに、条例の支持者や、LGBT(レズビアン・ゲイ・バイセクシュアル・トランスジェンダー)の人達は遺伝的に足りなくて可哀相であるという、石原慎太郎東京都知事による最近の発言からすれば、LGBTをテーマにした作品がたやすい標的になってしまうことを想像してしまいます。石原都知事は近年、女性やLGBTコミュニティ、外国からの影響、そして子供達の「保護」についての、かなり議論を呼ぶ発言をしています。マンガについての問題を全く別にしても、彼はゲイや女性、子供達に対する戦いを始めようとしているのが明白なように、私には思えます。これは決して、よい傾向ではありません。

ともあれ私自身、子供達は、「現実の」無関心や虐待・暴力から守られるべきだと信じていますが、頭の中の「考え」からではないと思います。この条例が行おうとしていることによって、私は、私自身が過激だと思うような作品を守るために発言することを求められています。なぜなら、私は表現の自由を信じているからです(世にいるロリコンの方々のどれだけが私のために発言してくれるでしょうか。LGBT作品、特に読者のほとんどが女性であるボーイズラブ作品が標的にされるのなら、そんなに多くではないのだろうと思います。これについては間違っていて欲しいですけど)

口から泡をふいて、この条例についての文章を読んでいるなら、ちょっと考えてみて欲しいのです。あなたが最後に、政府の代表に手紙を書いて、全ての人への自由の支持を訴えたのはいつのことですか?(例えばアメリカの方々、アメリカ上院は”Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”政策の撤回について議論していましたけれど、あなたの州の議員に手紙を出して、撤回を支持していることを伝えたりしましたか?) いまはあなたの政府にいる多くの人達がこのような施策を行おうと常にしています、まずあなたが自分自身の裏庭についてきちんと主張を示していない限り、他人の家の庭について意見する権利はないのです。表現の自由と人権は、日本からやってくるマンガについてだけではなく、私達全てが戦っていかなくてはならない問題なのです。

私は激しく怒ることを支持している者ではありません。それではなにも成し遂げられないからです。私達がすべきことは、自分達自身について自由に思い、表現する私達(そして私達の子供達)の権利を、どうやって守るのか、考えていくことです。そしてそれを実行しましょう。実際にマンガを購入すること以外に、日本のマンガ業界をどう助けられるのか、私にはわかりません。利益があれば色々な物事の助けになりますし、あなた自身の支持を、はっきりとした形で示すことが出来ます。もし日本のマンガ業界が、それ以外にサポート出来る方法について表明してくれるなら、必ずそれを広めていきます。

ここアメリカでは、Comic Book Legal Defense Fundという団体が、コミックの作者や業者達の権利をサポートし、守り、そして戦っていくために設立されました。もしまだ参加していないのなら、良い機会です。それからACLU(アメリカ自由人権協会)-賛成出来ないかもしれないし関心もないかもしれない人々の権利や、あなたを怒らせるかもしれない意見を表明する権利のために戦っています-も、まさに同じ理由、表現の自由を守るために設立されています。

私は優れた政治的リーダーというわけではありませんし、うまいスローガンを思いつけたこともほとんどありません。でも、私は子供の頃を思い出すのです-読んだものや、描き、書いたものなどを。そして私の両親がどんなことからも私を「保護」しなかったことを本当に嬉しいと、ただ思うのです。検閲は現実に存在する問題を解決することは決して出来ません。ただ、隠すだけなのです。

(小松さんによる翻訳)

***
Update: For much more coherent thoughts on the topic, please read Dan Kanemitsu’s blog post.

2nd Update: Brian Ruh on Twitter has pointed out that this Ordinance focuses on companies and their access to distribution, not creators, so at least for the moment, Comiket and other markets are not targeted. Creators of doujinshi already are required to label anything explicit with 18+ warnings, so there is unlikely to be an immediate backlash there. He does note – and I agree – that this law may disproportionately affect shoujo and josei (and I would also add BL) manga. 

3rd Update: Thanks very much to Komatsu-san for the translation into Japanese!

4th Update: The Bill has passed the full assembly. Please read the following commentary for a better understanding of why I believe this Bill will be used to wage war on shoujo, BL and GL materials:

http://dankanemitsu.wordpress.com/2010/12/15/tokyo-assembly-passes-bill-156-anti-anime-and-manga-bill-is-now-law/  – Dan Kanemitsu

http://www.tcj.com/history/26720/  – Roland Kelts

These two gentlemen  are far, far more versed in the Japanese industry than I am.

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17 Responses

  1. kaei says:

    I don’t think this is the same initiative as the one that was pushing for a blanket child porn ban. From the article that you linked to in this blog post –

    “The bill calls on publishers to impose self-regulation on the sale of comics and animations containing depictions of rape and other penal offenses and those ‘‘unduly lauding or exaggerating’’ incestuous affairs so that people under the age of 18 cannot purchase or access them.”

    This new bill targets extreme sexual content and is designed to protect minors and prevent access of such material to minors. Personally I don’t mind more regulation of extreme content for minors. In Hong Kong for instance, for many years there has already been a similar attempt at protection in which comics with extreme violence and sexual content are shrinkwrapped (so children can’t flip through it casually) though I am not sure of the current regulation on sales to minors.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Consider that the law goes into effect on July 1, but in the half million people at Winter Comiket, there may be people who will be tasked with rounding up the creators next summer.

    This, at least, couldn’t happen. Or rather it could happen but there isn’t a legal system in the world that would consider that a legitimate use of power no matter what the law says. It would be the same as banning smoking and then arresting everyone who’s ever smoked the next day. Of course if they publish something after the ban comes into effect it would be a different matter.

    Ultimately, I believe children need to be protected from *actual* neglect, abuse and violence….not ideas

    This. A thousand times this.

    Just uh… three quick things.

    Firstly, as far as I’m aware the vote isn’t until Wednesday.

    Secondly, the ban affects Tokyo only. It seems to me that production would move to some other city who would welcome the revenue. Tokyo would become a creative wasteland and the people would take to the streets – although I could be wrong and that last bit is wishful thinking (I don’t know how involved Japanese people would get).

    Thirdly, I’ve been told, although haven’t personally been able to confirm this either way, that one or more of Ishihara Shintarou’s novels have the gang rape and murder of schoolgirls as their subject matter. So… yeah.

  3. Anonymous says:

    It sounds vaguely reminiscent of the 1925 Peace Preservation Law, which if you were found in violation of would subject you to a 10 year prison sentence. Your “crime” would have been threatening the national character of Japan! This is one of the laws which set Japan on the road to totalitarianism. Its aim was have writers, artists and any other persons the goverment deemed suspicious to toe the line or face the consequences. Does any of this sound familiar?

    Ishihara Shintarou is a far right of center politician who seems to want to return to “good old days” as old men are wont to do.

    It seem peculiar to me that the law exempts actual child pornography and only targets drawn images. Is thinking and conveying that thought to paper a greater crime than having that thought actually performed by a living person?

    In closing I would ask Okazu what was the position of the ACLU in the Christopher Handley case? From everything I read about hte case the ACLU was remarkably silent. If he had decent legal representation he might not of had to accept a 6 month suspended sentence for postal gestapo tactics. If you don’t believe it can’t happen here you’re mistaken because it already has.

  4. @Anonymous – Both the ACLU and the CBLDF offered their services to Handley in defense (Matt Thorn had a post on his blog – which has now been redacted – about his involvement with the defense) but were both taken off the case by Handley’s defense lawyer as prelude to a plea bargain. Both organizations were right there offering assistance, but were denied the chance to do anything.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Everyone is going to be targeted. It’s only a matter of time.

  6. Pocky says:

    I hate to brings politics into this; but I really have. Social conservatism is a cancer on the developed world.

    In each generation, it seeks some way to regress mankind’s social behavior back to the draconian laws and backwards logic. They make no attempts at finding truth, but instead use fear tactics and cultural-based bias to build hate for whatever they want gone.

    when I read that real child porn wasn’t going to be affected by this ban, I pretty much knew why the ban was created. The people involved have no interest in protecting your children, no, instead; they want to put an end to whatever they consider immoral (this being pretty much everything from open homosexuality to any form of violence, and putting them in the same category).

    they want to push manga/games/anime into a corner that would drain the profits they could be making, and severely limit actual buyers from purchasing what they want. they wish to disrupt the industry and if this ban is passed into law, we will see a new era of ignorance dawn, as other right-wing groups will push for similar, if not heavier bans.

  7. Cryssoberyl says:

    Erica, please convey the English-speaking Yuri community’s fondest thoughts and wishes to the Yuri manga-ka and other Japanese industry workers that you’re in contact with. I know that many of them must be terribly upset with these proceedings. Let them know that our hearts (and credit cards) are with them.

  8. Anonymous says:

    “This ordinance includes sex scenes with minors, incest and, while it is not specifically stated, I believe that materials with homosexual content will be targeted as well.

    He does note – and I agree – that this law may disproportionately affect shoujo and josei (and I would also add BL) manga. “

    Interestingly according to Dan, one such type of work has already been preemptively cited:

    “OYAPS has stated specifically that even the manga adaptations of Tale of Genji will be subject to restriction if the sexual relationships are described in a “unjustifiable glorified manner”.”

    In addition Genji’s escapades with many females Lady Murasaki writes of, I would also guess the portrayal of how he sleeps with one of the women’s younger adolescent brother would be scrutinized even more.

    It also makes me wonder how it would be possible to do honest exploration of Japan’s history of sexuality and various stories involving those historical themes without failing these restrictions If you portrayed the characters engaging or enjoying various acts without shame, or of any particular consequence, would that be “glorification”?

    And what about fertility festivals for example–one of the few surviving traditions of such era? The bill would seem to prevent an honest, transparent or frank portrayal of such themes in a variety of manga/anime stories or one-off illustrations, without being deemed harmful, and yet.. in real life, you have no such restrictions with men, women, young and old participating in an unabashed celebrating what is sure to irk some “modern” conservative sensibilities.

    And actually, it seems worse than being treated as porn according to Dan:
    “Also, once a book or magazine is deemed harmful by Tokyo, as a rule Amazon Japan and many other retailers won’t sell them. There are many instances where retails will overreact–When a few Boys Love book was designated harmful by Osaka, the local Kinokuniya bookstore removed ALL Boys Love books.”

    I’m sort of repeating what i’ve written on ANN but I find it ironic that the focus is purely on sexuality and relationships. I mean, what’s really, tangibly, _objectively_ harmful *IF* one were to do the same, is all the smoking and drinking. Likewise with the usual bloody violence in action titles. I guess that’s more socially acceptable to more prudish minds. Not that I think any of it should be censored; just pointing out the seemingly double standard based on the criteria of supposed “harm” or “illegal in real life” .. which makes me roll my eyes

  9. Anonymous says:

    “…If he had decent legal representation he might not of had to accept a 6 month suspended sentence for postal gestapo tactics. If you don’t believe it can’t happen here you’re mistaken because it already has…”

    It already happened even before Handley!

    That “postal” tactic is actually a customs and immigrations tactic designed to reduce the odds of invasive species entering agricultural areas of the United States. Not only does customs inspect not-so-flat packages but also questions *passengers* from abroad!

    Heck, once I myself got caught in that tactic – I had to spend an extra wait in line in the airport at customs to get my carry-on lunggage inspected sinply because I didn’t lie on the form about having picked up raw organic material in Europe (a seashell FFS!).

    Still, it’s not a Gestapo tactic because the Gestapo’s tactics sent people to slave labor and gas chambers, and I don’t want to insult Holocaust victims and their survivors by claiming to have undergone what they did.

  10. Anonymous says:

    “…Secondly, the ban affects Tokyo only. It seems to me that production would move to some other city who would welcome the revenue. Tokyo would become a creative wasteland…”

    How astonishingly bigoted against Tokyo’s millions of people and most of their creativity.

    Tokyo would not be a creative wasteland without (as kaei cited from the article) “comics and animations containing depictions of rape and other penal offenses and those ‘unduly lauding or exaggerating’ incestuous affairs” sold to people under 18. Tokyo would still have those sold to adults, and have *other* comics and animations (such as manga about older couples who have been together for decades!), and books of the non-comics variety, and live-action films, and all the other arts and crafts.

  11. I’d like to take an opportunity to link to Dan Kanemitsu’s most recent blog post on Bill 156, and add that the distinction he makes that this bill is about *morality* not *pornography* is an important one.

    http://dankanemitsu.wordpress.com/2010/12/14/something-people-overseas-can-do-fight-misconceptions-about-bill-156-and-japan/

    Child porn is already regulated. Adult materials are already regulated.

    I did bring up the issue of child porn in my article and that may have lead to some misconceptions. I apologize. What I mean to say is that this kind of tactic (regulating drawn and animated materials) is the *kind* of tactic I see from those attempting to create a McGuffin to their own behavior. Much like men who have rent boy sex on the down low, but push anti-gay legislation in public.

    I do not believe that the inability of artists to draw children having sex robs Tokyo (or anywhere) of creativity. The danger in this bill is the vague outlying areas, in which things that the Governor considers “unhealthy” could be banned. BL has a lot of incestuous themes, I know that other people like Yuricest. These fall under the regulation. How much of a step from that to “It’s bad for the kids” do you think it is in regards to BL and GL? I don’t think it’s that far a step.

    Anyway, please read Dan’s blog post on the topic and try to stay sane about the discussion.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Sorry I had too many links in my other post!

    “…What this law does do is require me to speak up in support for materials that I personally find offensive, because I believe in freedom of expression. (I wonder how many of the lolicon out there would do the same for me…”

    Remember how few of the yaoi fans out there felt required to speak up in support of your materials, during the problem you mentioned here: http://mangabookshelf.com/blog/2009/05/28/bigotry-as-bad-business/comment-page-1/#comment-7934 ?

  13. Anonymous says:

    “I hate to brings politics into this; but I really have. Social conservatism is a cancer on the developed world…

    “…we will see a new era of ignorance dawn, as other right-wing groups will push for similar, if not heavier bans.”

    Meanwhile, other socially conservative right-wingers are the target audiences for the material being banned.

    Being anti-woman and anti-girl enough to enjoy manga with rape scenes in which the mangaka tell the story with a tone like “look how cool and rebellious the main character is for raping the pop-culture-following teen” (a la Homunculus) instead of a tone like “look how cruel the stepfather and mother are for raping the preteen and forcing her to abort” (a la Bitter Virgin) is socially conservative, not socially progressive.

    Being anti-foreigner and automatically-pro-authority enough to enjoy manga with traditional scenes in which the mangaka tell the story with a tone like “look how patriotic the soldier is for raping the Korean civilian POW” (a la WWII) instead of “look how sleazy the prince is for seducing the girl he practically adopted and raised for years” (a la Tale of Genji) is also socially conservative, not socially progressive.

  14. Anonymous says:

    “…I do not believe that the inability of artists to draw children having sex robs Tokyo (or anywhere) of creativity…”

    And you never implied that! :) Some ignorant commenter did, but you know better.

    “…How much of a step from that to ‘It’s bad for the kids’ do you think it is in regards to BL and GL? I don’t think it’s that far a step.”

    BTW, what about ML and WL?

    There’s not much manga available in English about adults compared to the manga available in English that chases the adolescent-kid and/or school-uniform-fetish markets. Rica ‘tte Kanji!? and some of WORKS by Eriko Tadeno are a welcome change of pace! :)

    What’s it like in Japan? Is it that fewer titles about adults get translated into English, or that fewer mangaka give a damn about adult readers in the first place? I bet it’s the former, because when I read books translated from Japanese that aren’t manga there sure seem to be a lot of authors like Banana Yoshimoto and Haruki Murakami who are interested in adulthood! :)

  15. Anonymous says:

    “…I’d love to see creative thoughts on expressions of support for the Japanese manga and anime industry.”

    Dunno if these are creative but…

    * Voting with your yen, dollars, Euros, pounds, etc., for the titles you like, improving the odds of more titles in those veins (and less titles in worse veins) being made later.

    * Recommending the titles you like to your friends, family, local bookstores, local libraries, and web forum audiences

    * Know manga titles with well-written plots that include clear anti-abuse messages, such as Bitter Virgin (ビターバージン or 惨痛处女) by Kusoniki Kei (楠桂) and Kyokou Shinwa ~Second Rape~ in the collection 掛け値ナシのLOVE取引 by Kanan Minami (水波風南) and Ooku: The Inner Chamber (大奥) by Yoshinaga Fumi (よしなが ふみ)? Promote them that much more and help debunk the stereotypes about manga, mangaka, and manga fandom

    * If you’re in Japan, and popular enough to not accidentally invoke a reverse-psychology do-whatever-s/he-says-don’t-do reaction, then speak up about the abuse of actual children in Japan (how does this support the Japanese manga and anime industry too? The less a person is abused in childhood, the less s/he has to overcome to use opportunities in adulthood including the opportunity to join the industry!)

  16. Anonymous says:

    There is a news item from Sankaku Complex that claims that the next Tokyo Anime Fair will be cancelled due to lack of attending publishers. Its in direct response to the passed bill.

  17. @Anonymous – You’d do better to read Dan Kanemitsu’s blog, than Sankaku on this topic.

    The news of the Big 10 Publishers pulling out and many Anime companies following suit was discussed there, and on ANN at length, as well.

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