For a long time now, Japanese publishers tried their best to stem the tide of piracy and unofficial scanlations of their work and while there have been convictions, it seems like a battle of attrition that the publishers are eventually going to lose, as the scanlation community pretty much works like a hydra – cut off one head and two more take its place.
That may all change soon, as Shonen Jump is pulling out the big guns: Shonen Jump is going to try and beat the scanlators at their own game. According to Hisashi Sasaki, who has worked as editor for both the Japanese and English Shonen Jump, fans will now be able to read the newest manga on the same day as Japan. And what’s better: it’s going to be readable digitally AND free of charge via the Shonen Jump website and app. That is a pretty big deal as there will no longer be any reason to read new Jump chapters from anywhere else aside from the legit source.
As for how they are going to make money off such a model, the catch is that you can only read the latest chapters. If you want to backread through old chapters, you have to shell out for a premium account. Not that it will cost you much – the premium account only costs $1.99 per month.
For more details, you can check out the video announcements below: