Satoshi September 2009

Satoshi is the founder and leader of Viscans, also known as Visually-Impaired Scans. Viscans was formed in mid-2008, according to the group's About page:

We started off as a prank scanlation channel called Visually-Impaired scans founded by Satoshi. A sacred ground full of darknessā€¦.a place where many applicants, intent upon joining scanlation groups got 'pwned hard' to speak. However a few of us got together and decided to turn it real whilst changing the name in the process to Village Idiot.

Please introduce yourself!

Satoshi: I'm Satoshi, a translator, editor, quality checker... and anything else that needs to be done in between. I got into scanlation when some of my friends told me about IRC a few years ago, but given how I had little to almost no free time then... (something which hasn't changed since then) I could at most get on once in a month and mass translate a bunch of chapters. Groups... I've been with quite a few... NCIS, SCX-Scans, Dredshi, Franky-House, and some others but I, regrettably, don't recall them now. Oh and of course, the group that I founded, VIScans.

Tell us a bit about Viscans, what kind of group is it? When and how was it formed?

Satoshi: Well, to be honest, I formed Viscans to troll people. Given the number of groups I was once affiliated with... (11 or so), getting people to help me pull this off, was a breeze. Below, is the log showing how I got the idea to create Viscans... and indeed, its first name:

[02:17] <mchu> satoshiii.
[02:18] <mchu> I...I feel that my skills as a type setter are now at optimum level
[02:18] <mchu> to transform
[02:18] <!Euphemia> ...
[02:19] <@Satoshi> ....
[02:19] <mchu> ...well, im new here and i was being bagged out by the crew for dodgy typesetting:3
[02:20] <mchu> SATOSHI-SENSEI!
[02:20] <@Satoshi> mchu... remember... viscans
[02:20] * tel ( Quit (Ping timeout: 483 seconds_)
[02:20] <mchu> visually impared scans?-_-"

...and there you have it.

Why the name Viscans?

Satoshi: Why the name Viscans? Well, the log above should explain why we went with Visually Impaired Scanlations. Then... I did what I was (and still am) famous for—disappearing for long stretches of time. In my absence, some of the fake operators I had created for the grand trolling scheme, decided to get together and make VIScans a real group, and since most of the people in there had played IRCHighway's once-extremely popular game, mafia, they chose to adopt the name Village Idiot Scanlations, because the role of the village idiot was referred to as VI in the game.

Tell us a bit about the scanlation scene when Viscans was first formed, what was it like? How was the group received by the community?

Satoshi: When Viscans was formed, the scanlation world was in the process of shifting away from IRC... and there was a mass exodus of groups from IRC to forums... and speed scanlation was at its strongest point yet, there were several big groups on IRC, however. But as I say, most groups preferred forums to IRC. As for reception... we kept Viscans fairly low-key when we started out. We didn't want to take the new and well-beaten path of starting off with Naruto and then moving on from there... we decided to start with something that over 20 groups weren't scanlating, and have stuck with the principle of doing off-mainstream manga ever since.

What do you feel were some of the biggest roadblocks Viscans encountered since its formation? Did Viscans ever get in trouble with any publishers or organizations?

Satoshi: The biggest roadblocks Viscans has encountered would have to be the severe lack of staff and lack of dedication from the various applicants we've had. Publishers have never been a problem, because IRC provides enough anonymity for us to continue our work.

How is Viscans managed? What is it like scanlating at Viscans?

Satoshi: Viscans is managed in way no other group possible is. It's highly secretive and not even my fellow co-leaders can grasp it completely, and since this system has always worked for us... I don't plan on changing it. As they say... if it isn't broken, don't fix it. Scanlating at Viscans has been an incredible experience, thanks largely to the staff.

Any Viscans staff not currently present that you'd like to mention or talk about?

Satoshi: Here, I'd like to mention Judaki, Ilesyt, Linksys and Bamboostyx. Ilesyt kept the group going while I was frequently in down time, so Viscans owes him a lot of or keeping it in the business despite the many difficulties we faced at the time. Judaki was probably one of the best translators I've ever had the pleasure of working with; the other being pizzach. I'll stick my neck out and say this... but Linksys has got to be one of the best proofers in the scanlation field, he was so good that we used him as a yardstick to judge all future proofers... and the fact that there's a 98% failure rate should speak for itself. And Bamboostyx, he was an excellent editor and taught me quite a few things about advanced editing, so Viscans and I both owe him quite a bit.

Any memorable Viscans stories you would like to share with the readers?

Satoshi: Every day is a memorable one over at Viscans... or the Viscans staff room, and given this fact, it's not easy to discern which one is more memorable than the rest.

What are you up to these days? What's Viscans's currently status? Any future plans for the group?

Satoshi: I've been so busy in the last couple of months... I could go on and on about how it's changing everything, but this isn't about that, so I won't. Viscans, currently, is shifting to the more mature demographics in the manga world (this does NOT mean hentai), as for the future... assuming I'm still around, I plan to take the group further along the road we've just embarked upon.

Could you tell us a bit about speed scanlators and their effect on the scanlation community? How do you feel about the increasing popularity of online reading sites like OneManga and how they have influenced the scanlation scene?

Satoshi: Speed scanlation is probably the biggest waste of resources since the Iraq War. People just don't seem to get that a majority of the manga reading population will never read their releases but will wait for Franky House or Sleepy... erm... I don't recall their name correctly. In any case, there's plenty of good manga being ignored because of people preferring to scanlate Naruto. Of course, this is just my opinion. As for online reading sites... people prefer them because they're more convenient... I wouldn't know... I don't read manga, so I don't really see the difference. But as long as they don't tamper with the original release, it's all fine.

What are some of your favorite scanlation groups or projects you have followed over the years? Were there anyone or any group you looked up to in particular?

Satoshi: Groups... as I mentioned earlier, I don't really read manga... which will sound even more odd when you count that I'm Japanese. As for groups... I've looked up to SCX-Scans and Omanga.

What do you feel is the future for scanlation?

Satoshi: The future, well... nothing uniquely different from the current situation comes to mind, so I have no real answer.

Thank you for your time! Any last words?

Satoshi: Yes, a big shout out to no_comxxx, pizzach, evilcowslayer, ZeroDC, Shavi, Euregan, Kyoumaru, clonic, Sugardonut, Oren, LazyGamer and everyone else who's stuck by Viscans and have helped it grow to where it's at today.