Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Paper and ink shortage

We in Tokyo are not really inconvenienced that much anymore by the after effects of the big quake. (Just unnerved, like all east Japan, by the continued earthquakes and aftershocks – two bigger than magnitude 6 today, a magnitude 7 yesterday, 28 above magnitude 4 in the past 24 hours. All a month after the big one). But minor inconveniences have knock on effects – no yoghurt is no inconvenience (it takes continuous electrical supply to make), unless you're a yoghurt maker. No cinema in the evening is a minor inconvenience, but a bigger one to those whose business it is. Another serious change affecting business is a number of restaurants closing down in central Tokyo after people just head home while they know trains are running and don't linger for eating out.

Danny Choo – otaku and popular documenter of anime/manga/character design – reports on his blog about the shortage of ink and paper affecting Japan's magazine industry. Just one of the knock-on effects. Also interesting is his online vote-submission for whether his readers prefer paper or pixels – with 60% prefering paper to only 10% pixels (with 30% going either way). So much for any huge swing to the digital for manga.

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