The future of digital manga

If like me, you regualry following anime news network [ you will have notice this recent news item:

37 Japanese publishers are collaborating to set up a joint portal site for North American anime fans this year. The tentatively named J Manga Portal Site will digitally distribute manga whose rights are held by each of the companies. Shueisha Managing Director Kazuhiko Torishima outlined the plans for the site during a talk at the Denshi Shoseki Comic Summit in Tokyo’s Akihabara UDX building on Friday.

The publishers involved include Akita Shoten, Kadokawa Shoten, Kodansha, Shueisha, and Shogakukan. Other publishers include Akaneshinsha, ASCII Media Works, East Press, Ichijinsha, Enterbrain, Inc., Oakla Publishing Co., Ltd., Ohzora Publishing Co. , Gakken, Kasakura Shuppansha, Gentosha Comics, Inc., Jitsugyo no Nihon Sha, Ltd., June-Net, Shogakukan-Shueisha Production, Shodensha, Shonen Gahosha Co., Shinshokan Publishing, Shinchosha, Takeshobo, Tatsumi Publishing Co., Ltd. , Tokuma Shoten, Nihonbungeisha, Hakusensha, Fujimi Shobo, Fusosha, Futabasha, France Shoin, Bunkasha Publishing Co., Ltd., Houbunsha, Magazine House, Media Factory, LEED Publishing Co., Ltd., and Libre Publishing Co., Ltd.
The publishers aim to open a beta version of the site within the year, and the site is slated to start full distribution next March. The publisher cannot announce which titles and how many titles they will put on the site yet.

quite an impressive number of publishers, including some [Kodansha, Shueisha, and Shogakukan] who already have US ties [ Delray manga and VUIZ media repsectively]

I do hope that this project does take off and [ providing that they dont region lock this portal to the US] they least put more than just their pet manga titles on the site.

And as to either this will this lead to the end of scanlations as we know it? time as always, will tell…….