The Chibi Project

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Date: 2003-06-29
From: "Darkstone"
Subject: Your Views

Your views on the poor are very harsh and unrealistic you should get a clue before you spout off what they should or should not do remember most often its not their fault they are underage to work and their parents are laid off especially now when half the US is out of work. Heres some brainfood ask the leaders in the industry what their companies have done for the community and consumers in this time of need. You will be very shocked by their silence or refusale to answer. I know. I already asked the question. The industry gets what it deserves for turning its back on the consumers and the community.

Our Response

I almost filed your message in the trash bin, but the fact that you are clearly young made me take it back out again. I will answer, and hope it gives you food for thought.

My dear, I know exactly what it is like to be poor. Trust me. And that is why I roll my eyes when teens whine about not being able to earn money. Get a paper route. Mow lawns. Babysit. Walk dogs. Be a counselor at a summer camp. Etc. There ARE jobs out there for you (irrespective of the economy, which is primarily affecting salaried jobs, not jobs like this). If you lack money to spend, it is not because the world is against you, it is because you won't accept the jobs that are available to you.

On a related note, if child has parents who are laid off of work, then there are MUCH larger concerns to be dealt with than how to steal anime. That child needs to be spending their effort to help the family, not scrambling for bootleg entertainment.

That being said, the poor argument is still worthless. (And remember, I am not speaking from inexperience. I have been more poor than you can possibly imagine.) There are millions of poor people in the world -- ones, I might add, that are so poor they can't even afford Internet access and a computer, like you -- and they understand that poverty is not an excuse to steal luxury goods. That is the key issue here. We are not talking about food, water, medical care, and other necessities for life. The stealing of the things needed to survive is understandable and forgivable. But we are talking about ANIME for goodness' sake. It is not needed to survive, no matter how big of a fan one is. Do you think you have a right to steal, say, cars, VCRs, jewelry, toys, bicycles, and other luxury items? I bet you do not. Why, then, do you think you have a right to steal anime? You are being hypocritical because you are being denied something that you desperately want. And hence we return to the job argument above. If you REALLY want it, you will be willing to work for it. Criminal activity for the benefit of luxury goods is an option only for selfish, lazy losers.

Is that a harsh statement? Sure. It is a harsh TRUTH. Have you REALLY tried to earn the money to buy your anime, or have you just gone to Internet because it was easy and cheap? Dollars to donuts it is the latter.

And now we come to my favorite part of your letter, the part about the anime companies not having done anything for society. You claim to have asked them -- a vague THEM, I might add, exactly WHO did you ask? -- and say they did not reply. Let me ask you this -- if you are working 10-15 hours a day to earn a paycheck and then you get an email from a stranger demanding to know what you've done for society lately, do you think YOU would answer? I sure as hell wouldn't.

The fact that you even thought to ask this question is laughable. What, pray tell, does "doing something for society" have to do with the right to be paid for one's work? Are you saying that if you worked for Burger King and they refused to give you your paycheck until you proved that you had done 10 hours of community volunteer service that week, you would be OK with that? Of course not. Community service and charity are wonderful things, they really are, but they are not and should not be connected to earning a living. The people that work at anime companies are flesh and blood PEOPLE, not amorphous entities from whom you can steal without damage. These people have families to support. And they are doing the work every day to make the anime you want to see. Designing, writing, animating, producing, translating, acting, distributing.... What makes you think that they should have to prove their worth to you in order to be paid for the work they have done? If you want access to the toil of their efforts, you pay for it. That is the only way they, in turn, can afford to put food on the table. Whether or not they volunteer their time helping the mentally retarded or terminally ill is not your concern.

But hey. You apparently find this such a major concern, we'll address the charity issue ANYWAY. My dear, I really HAVE talked to the anime companies. And that is why I can laugh till I cry at your statement. I will just use one company as an example -- ADV. In addition to providing paychecks and medical insurance to hundreds of employees (and that is a form of community service in and of itself in this day and age), ADV runs a program to try and keep city kids in school. This is their own program, started and managed by them. ADV also donates company funds to the American Cancer Society and various breast cancer research programs. But that's not all. ADV takes part in multiple annual convention charity events, donating goods, money, and volunteer time to help the truly poor, sick, and needy. (One recipient of this charity that you may have heard of is the Make-A-Wish Foundation.) Then there is the community service performed by the individual employees at ADV -- community volunteer work, private donations to charities, etc. And that is just ONE anime company. The others are no different.

So, punk, what have YOU done for society lately?

Cut the crap. Buy your anime.

-Chief Scientist Lizzard