Date: 2005 January 02 19:37
Posted by Joe
The end of 2004 marked the end of another year, and it also marked another landmark for anime fandom, the most accurate and complete dedicated unofficial resource for Studio Ghibli fans - The Miyazaki Web celebrates it's 10th Birthday on December 31st 2004.
The site is really better known as a part of Nausicaa.net and has often been mistaken as the Official Studio Ghibli Website, because of it's professional finish and level of detail. Many have used it for research on Studio Ghibli and it's founder Oscar winning director Hayao Miyazaki. The Miyazaki web is more than a website it also has it's own mailing list, the Miyazaki Mailing List, which has grown steadily each year for the last 13 years, the majority of it's subscribers are American, but for a first time the UK is now the second most subscribed country, beating Japan to third place.
Here's wishing the Miyazaki Web a Happy Birthday, and good luck with the next 10 years!
E-mail as follows:
Ten years ago today, the first incarnation of the Miyazaki Web became available to the public at www.tcp.com/~miyazaki. I went into the archives to find previous birthday posts, and came up with these quotes:
"Originally hosted with the kind permission of James Lick at http://www.tcp.com/~miyazaki/, it was a one-man operation that taught me a lot about HTML and the limitations of my skills in site design. ^_^"
"There's no way I alone could have made the site what it is today, so I would like to publicly acknowledge Team Ghiblink's infinitely valuable contributions to the site and thank them for their help. Please join me in wishing them all the best in the New Year!"
"Don't forget, however, that Team Ghiblink itself collects a lot of information with the help of this mailing list, so everyone here should also feel some measure of pride in helping to make the site as good as it is today. Staying on-topic, avoiding overquoting, writing with careful and standard use of the English language, and generally setting a good example of responsible net.behavior have all contributed to the insightful discussions this list was designed to encourage. My sincerest thanks to all of you for your cooperation!"
"This high standard of respect for each other's opinions has also attracted and kept the attention of various personalities in the anime fandom community and the animation and press industries, and not just in North America. We have heard how Japanese fandom and their press are taking notice of North American fandom, and the Nausicaa.net web site. For example, Japanese subscribers are the second largest community of subscribers to this mailing list after American subscribers."
To add to this list, we have seen various authors and educators tackle the subject of Studio Ghibli's work in their books and classes. Dr. SusanNapier and Dr. Marc Hairston have found Nausicaa.net and subscribers of this mailing list to be helpful in their research. Helen McCarthy was once, and more recently Patrick Drazen and Brian Ruh currently are, subscribers who have published works relevant to the topics of this list.
Speaking of the Japanese press, Nausicaa.net was recently contacted by Windows100% magazine, http://www.shinyusha.co.jp/~top/win100.html. They want Team Ghiblink to fill out a survey for their column titled "100 Questions Asked of Overseas Otaku" (Kaigai OTAKU ni 100 no shitsumon), to appear in their February 2005 issue.
Near the bottom of this message, I have included a table of countries where our subscribers currently are distributed as comparison for the table included in the 5th anniversary message quoted above. You'll find that the Japanese community has been passed by another for second-largest.
Can you guess which one?
"I believe that the next five years will be just as exciting and rewarding, with Nausicaa.net continuing to carry timely and accurate coverage of future North American and worldwide releases of Studio Ghibli's films, with greater collaboration between fans and industry, and with greater acceptance of Studio Ghibli's works in those parts of the world not yet accustomed to it."
Nausicaa.net has certainly kept up with Studio Ghibli release coverage, reporting about the _Ghiblies_ shorts, _Delicious Tea_ TV commercials, _Spirited Away_, _The Cat Returns_, _Lasseter-san, Arigato_, and _Howl's Moving Castle_.
As far as collaboration between fans and industry, though, our relationship with Disney hasn't been rosy from the start, with requests for information and forwarded requests from fans for screening permission going ignored or getting misrouted. Part of this problem is that the staff who are responsible for the distribution rights of Ghibli films has changed two or three times over the years. It is not always clear who the correct contacts are within Disney, and rebuilding a working relationship with the each new group of people in charge is time-consuming and awkward.
...for more, see my 1999 post "Happy 5th Birthday", at
"From its original humble beginnings on tcp.com as a small collection of fan summaries and reviews of Miyazaki's films, and an FAQ for the mailing list, we've grown to the point where Nausicaa.net handles 300,000 URL impressions per week, or roughly 50,000 web 'hits', and transfers roughly 2 gigabytes of data (on web traffic alone) per day.
(Believe me, you DON'T want to see the size of our webserver logs. I clear them out every two weeks or so for a REASON.) At one point before their website design, Studio Ghibli themselves apparently used to have a link to us on their website, and most of the US anime media doesn't even think of looking anywhere else for information on Studio Ghibli news and films."
"Here's hoping - no, knowing - that with the support of the community, Nausicaa.net will celebrate many more birthdays after this. :)"
...for more, including a long "Thank you" list, see Rachel's 1999 post "Re: Nausicaa.net's 2nd birthday (4/26/1997)", at
As promised, here's the table showing the mailing list's current
subscribership compared to the post from five years ago:
* Country Subscribers 5 years ago Difference %
* ------- ----------- ----------- ---------- -----
* Argentina 2 3 - 1 - 33%
* Australia 20 6 + 14 +230%
* Austria 3 2 + 1 + 50%
* Belgium 2 + 2 +100%
* Brazil 4 6 - 2 - 33%
* Canada 19 14 + 5 + 36%
* Chile 1 + 1 +100%
* Croatia/Hrvatska 2 + 2 +100%
* Czech Republic 2 + 2 +100%
* Denmark 4 + 4 +100%
* Finland 9 2 + 7 +350%
* France 25 7 + 18 +257%
* Germany 36 8 + 28 +350%
* Great Britain 42 8 + 36 +450%
* Greece 1 + 1 +100%
* Hong Kong 1 1
* Hungary 2 + 2 +100%
* Italy 14 9 + 5 + 56%
* Japan 38 20 + 18 + 90%
* Malaysia 1 1
* Mexico 3 + 3 +100%
* Micronesia, Federal States of 1 + 1 +100%
* Netherlands 4 1 + 3 +300%
* New Zealand 2 + 2 +100%
* Norway 4 1 + 3 +300%
* Peru 1 2 - 1 - 50%
* Philippines 1 + 1 +100%
* Poland 5 2 + 3 +150%
* Russian Federation 10 + 10 +100%
* Singapore 8 2 + 6 +300%
* Slovakia 1 + 1 +100%
* South Africa 2 + 2 +100%
* Spain 9 8 + 1 + 13%
* Sweden 12 6 + 6 +100%
* Switzerland 7 1 + 6 +600%
* Taiwan 1 + 1 +100%
* Tonga 1 + 1 +100%
* USA 865 431 +434 +101%
* .NAME 1 + 1 +100%
* Total number of users subscribed to the list: 1166 (non-"concealed")
* Total number of countries represented: 39 (non-"concealed")
NOTE ABOUT THE ACCURACY OF THESE FIGURES:
These figures assume that all addresses such as .COM, .NET, .ORG,
.MIL, .EDU, .GOV which do not end in a two-letter country code
such as .JP are in the United States. This also doesn't take into
account foreign nationals with e-mail addresses in other
countries such as an American living in Japan having a .JP
address. Yes, this skews the results, but let's make the best
of incomplete information.
Wow. The list almost doubled in size over the second five years! This is mostly due to the US subscribership more than doubling (acknowledging that the boom in freemail accounts at Yahoo!, Hotmail, GMail, etc. artificially boost the US number).
By number By percentage
1. +434: USA +inf.: Belgium, Chile, Croatia/Hrvatska, Czech
Republic, Denmark, Greece, Hungary,
Mexico, Micronesia, New Zealand,
Philippines, Russian Federation,
Slovakia, South Africa, Taiwan, and
2. + 36: Great Britain +600%: Switzerland
3. + 28: Germany +450%: Great Britain
4. + 18: France and Japan +350%: Germany and Finland
5. + 14: Australia +300%: Netherlands, Norway, and Singapore
It looks like the word is spreading around the USA, with new subscribers reporting most often that they've joined as a result of seeing the Disney distributed films on TV or video rather than fan-subs or other sources.
Historically, France has enjoyed greater exposure to foreign animation, anime and Ghibli's works among them. In the past five years, however, have seen theatrical releases of _Princess Mononoke_ exploding across the rest of Europe, with Disney following up with video releases.
Australia was recently treated to several Ghibli films as a result of the efforts of local anime distributor Madman Entertainment. We're happy that they've decided to join us here, and hope that they will continue to enjoy past and future Ghibli releases in the coming years.
Akemashite omedetou gozaimasu! (Happy New Year!)
Michael S.B. Johnson Owner, Nausicaa.net and Miyazaki Mailing List
P.S. A summary of relevant calendar dates:
* January 5th: Hayao Miyazaki was born in 1941; now he's 63 years old
* April 11th: The Miyazaki Mailing List was founded in 1991; now 13
* April 26th: The Nausicaa.net site went on line in 1997; now 7
* December 31st: The Miyazaki Web started in 1994; 10 years ago