Discussions have been initiated with these crazy pop culture-inspired costumes to achieve fairer protection for rights holders.
A professional cosplayer, followed by 1.4 million Instagram followers, Enako said she earned around $ 90,000 a month from the practice. Any occasion is good for her to publicly appear dressed as a cosplayer. Events, photo books, and other related products are all ways to grow a profitable business. If cosplay is valued in itself, by the technical skill that represents a perfect disguise, it also consists in taking advantage of the work of others, when it represents a source of income.
Also to read: The “Cosplay”: the art of manga disguise
If the Japanese government had intervened, as discussed, getting paid to wear a character costume would become a copyright infringement. The line could then become thin between amateurism and professionalism, to the chagrin of the fans. A photo posted on social networks could fall under copyright. In this case, it would be necessary to pay the rights holders of the licenses affected by the use of the characters.
Shinji Inoue, Minister of Strategy for Cool Japan, auditioned some cosplay actors, including Enako. Some cosplayers, according to Kyodo news, have asked for the creation of a framework to directly contact the rights holders and obtain their authorization. To do this, Taro Yamada, a member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s intellectual property strategy research committee, would have proposed creating a database to facilitate the identification of rights holders. “ We need a framework to protect both (creators and cosplayers) “He told Kyodo News.
Although Shinji Inoue plans to review commercial copyright rules for the use of character images, he still fears that stricter regulations will keep people away from cosplay. Awareness of copyright payment, through the example of professional cosplayers, should take priority over copyright restrictions.