Greg August 2009
Greg is the founder and administrator of the forum of OneManga, an online reading site started by Zabi in late 2006 that has since become one of the largest sites of its kind.
Greg: Hi, I'm Greg, an administrator at OneManga.com who specializes in the forums. I got involved with the site a little bit over 2 years ago, when I saw that OM really needed a forum and created one on a free host. I'm a moderately secretive person who strongly believes in Internet anonymity, a bibliophile, a NY Rangers fan, and a classic rock enthusiast.
Greg: OneManga is a site that hosts scanlations so that they can be read online. It was started around 2.5 years ago with a similar purpose to StopTazmo—to provide an alternative to NarutoFan. The intentions of the creators was to make a site that allows people who cannot download manga (for whatever reason) to have access to it.
Greg: After much speculation on the subject about a year and a half ago, I believe that the conclusion was that it sounded like a good name. Honestly, no one is really sure.
Greg: Well, it was originally launched to give an alternative to NarutoFan. StopTazmo was a pretty big downloading site at the time, although to be honest I didn't pay much attention to DL sites. MangaVolume was the big online reader at the time, but it had been stale. MangaShare was the dominant group for a while.
Greg: It's always been moderately well-received by the fans—at least those that aren't hardcore. Some dislike the site because of the lower quality of the scans when uploaded on the website, however, most people don't care so much about quality. We've received mixed reactions from the scanlation groups. Some groups have really liked the site and sent scans early. Others disapprove for multiple reasons such as quality, we didn't ask before redistributing (we blame that on their lack of policy, few go after DL sites), and honest mistakes on our own part. For instance, we've accidentally put up releases too early. Most groups just let us exist.
Greg: It comes with the territory. When the scans are hosted online, to make sure they load within the year, they get converted to JPEG and are compressed a bit. It's a downfall of reading online. We have considered replacing speed scans with HQ'er ones, but as of now, with only one uploader who is maintaining 900 series and adding new ones, it's not feasible right now.
When groups complain, we talk to them. It works out slowly, because we're a slow moving site in every area but uploads, but we try to find common ground as well as respecting their wishes. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn't.
Greg: OM rarely hosts RAWs. In the past, for popular series RAWs have been uploaded before the scanlations became available, in which case they were replaced, but it's an uncommon occurrence.
Greg: OM is managed internally with everyone pretty much having their own thing to do and doing it, and emailing each other about whatever is necessary. I used to be the forum master, now I'm in a state of semi-inactivity. RhyssaFireHeart does most of the admining; my main responsibility on OMF is overseeing the staff. I also keep in contact with Hyko and Rhyssa a decent amount. But nowadays I'm not that active on the forums.
Greg: We try to respect the wishes of publishers. When they've contacted us asking to remove their stuff, we've acceded to their wishes and tried to work out arrangements with them. As far as ad-hunts, OM is a really, really big site. In order to keep it up, we need ads. Unfortunately, sometimes our ad partners include ads that don't have a place on our site. Some roadblocks are we have a smaller staff, and get things done slowly.
Greg: Speedscans exist to fill the wants of the community, namely instant gratification and the desire to know more now. It's a trend that won't go away as long as people care more about the story than the art. Not that I'm judging this, because I participate in it too. I don't see the need for such HQ scans when a good speed scan is readable and you get the whole story out of it. I also know that this is frustrating to the scanlators who do HQ. Spending hours on redraws only to have no one read it is not something you want to happen. The only way I really see LQ speed scans going away is if the technology gets better.
Greg: Right now, we're just sustaining how we are: adding new series when we can, uploading chapters, etc. As far as future plans, hopefully something that's been in the works for a while will be released soon, but that's secret ;)
Greg: I feel the need to bring up Uglypuff, unofficial mascot of OMF. A member (Useless) discovered him somewhere a few years ago, and it just caught on a bit.
Greg: I honestly respect just about all scanlators, because it is not an easy job (I've tried it :\) and it takes time and you gain nothing out of it. Hours go into a chapter that people read in two minutes... As far as people I've been friendly with, a bunch of people from #franky-house and #mangashare in the past. Outside that, I don't know many people in the scanlation community.
Greg: First, I'm going to admit that I came to the manga community somewhat recently, and don't have an idea of what the world of scanlating was like before DDL and online reader sites. Still, I think that it's mainly consolidated the information, making it easier for the reader to find where to get the manga. As far as the future of scanlation, I think that we're moving steps closer to a more unified community.