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Save our beloved Monar! =An AA character is facing danger=
Saturday, 29 October 2005
Too busy these days......
Lately my business has been extremely busy that I can not
catch up with information along Noma Neko issue.

Thus, here I sorrily have to declare that I can not
update this blog as often as before....

When my situation gets settled I will summrise this issue.

I do wish it will end happily to everyone,
not only to us, internet users especially those
who are called 2-channellers but AVEX and
all the companies concerned.......

Posted by monseurmonar at 10:06 PM JST
Updated: Saturday, 29 October 2005 10:09 PM JST
Post Comment | View Comments (1) | Permalink
Friday, 30 September 2005
Ayumi Hamasaki facing crisis? Musical composition supplier of Ayu is planning to leave AVEX.
Ayumi Hamasaki facing crisis? Musical composition supplier of Ayu
is planning to leave AVEX. (From : goo news September 19, 2005)

Ayumi Hamasaki(26 yrs old), a singer regarded as Japanese diva
is facing crisis.
A composer who also belongs to AVEX, who is a member of a popular band
"Do As Infinity" that belongs to AVEX as well, Dai Nagao (34 yrs old)
is willing to leave AVEX.
D.A.I(=Dai Nagao) has supplied compositions to Ayumi Hamasaki.

A person concerned in musical production says "D.A.I is tired of being a
sked by AVEX to compose songs gathering good parts of ex-hit songs.
D.A.I wants to seek a brand new artist by himself."

D.A.I has made his debut as a member of "Do As Infinity" 6 years ago.
He shifted to work as a composer rather than a performer, performing
less at stage.
He has been supplying songs to Ayumi(=Ayumi Hamasaki), hitomi(29 yrs old), and Every little Thing.
Ayu, hitomi, and E.L.T. all belong to AVEX and they are very popular in
Japanese Pop music scene. One of his work titled "Voyage" won the annual
grand prize awarded to the best musician at 2002 which was colaborated with Ayu.
D.A.I is a real hit maker that even paid his tax of 20 million yen,
earning 61 million yen.

If D.A.I leaves, AVEX should be damaged hard.

The person concerned in musical production also says
"AVEX has offered a condition that D.A.I can quit AVEX
if he signs on a contract of handing
over
all the rights of songs he has created to AVEX.
I also heard that D.A.I has already determined with whom to work after quitting AVEX.
It seems to be hard to carry it out...... There should be
certain situation that AVEX can not let him go....."

Is AVEX persuading D.A.I by any means in secret?

AVEX denied "How did you get such an idea? There is no situation like that."

Issei Tomizawa, a musical critic, who is well familiar with J-POP scene analyzes :
"It is not rare that a composer taken care of by a company takes up his arm against the company to think that the composer is well skilled enough, he/she can feel secure to be guarded under the name of company,
in the other hand. There is, however, a risk of being abandoned by company. Financial negotiation should be held from now on. "


Ayu who has lately been composing songs by herself is suffering from discourage of her recent works.

"Ayu lately has asked to produce Hip Hop or Reggae tasted songs. She seems that she wants to shift her style. She might want to be Namie Amuro." indicates the person shown above.....
*Namie Amuro is also an AVEX singer who broke out mid 1990s.
Monseur Monar added.

Posted by monseurmonar at 5:36 AM KDT
Updated: Friday, 30 September 2005 5:39 AM KDT
Post Comment | View Comments (2) | Permalink
Thursday, 29 September 2005
ASCII ART fans sent an open letter of inquiry to AVEX.
On September 20, 2005, an open letter of inquiry has been sent to
the a representative director of AVEX group holdings with the name
of "all Ascii Art fans concerned".
Reply due date is limited by September 30, 2005.
Please wait for the update here.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
An open letter about NomaNeko issue.

We saw your statement "About copyright of NomaNeko" on your official webpage.
Now it is getting attention from many people on goods regarding NomaNeko which h
as been sold from September 1, 2005. Also it is spoken that the character NomaNe
ko closely resembles to common Ascii Art (AA after forth) whose name is "Mona" a
nd "Molalar" broadly in internet community.
Many apprehensions for restriction of using AA and AA characters are coming up.

We, AA fans, sent this letter of inquiry so that we could refer on creating AAs
or using AAs to clarify indistinct informations at this moment.

Thus, hereby we ask you AVEX group holdings to answer these open inquries shown
below with supposed date and details of correspondence and return the answer to
whom it should be returned.
To your referrence, we herein enclose some examples of AA characters.
Please use it to help your referrence and reply. Here we enclose an envelope of
return with this letter.

Please allow us to limit the deadline of reply at September 30, 2005.
Please be informed that when no reply comes by the due date, we will take it
that no answer is your will, and make it open.

This letter has no legal power which forces you to answer as a duty,
according to law of contract of consumers, however, it is determined that
companies should effort to show an appropreate information to consumers,
please give us answer with your eagerness.
And even if your reply becomes the same as you have already answered sometime so
mewhere, please make it clear in the statutory form.
Please reply being aware enough that this letter of inquiry is OPEN to puclic.


*Questions*
1. Can we take AA characters such as "Mona" a totally different
character from "NomaNeko"?

2. Let us know what "NomaNeko" exactly means. If it is hard to describe,
pictures or drawings are acceptable.

3. Please distinguish the FIRST Flash Movie that your employee saw first
from PV and character goods that AVEX is putting on sale now.
If it is hard to describe, pictures or drawings are acceptable.

4. Please cite the name of characters corresponds to AA characters such
as "Mona ". When the name is not clear for you, pictures or drawings
are acceptable.

5. Please define existing "AA characters such as "Mona"." concretely.

6. Please let us know what "new originality" was added?
Please answer with comparison between NomaNeko and existing characters,
characters answerd at question 4. If it is indescribable, pictures are
acceptable.

7. Is there any restriction to existing AA and AA characters if illustrated
or three dimentionally shaped?

8. Are you going to restrict AAs or AA characters which will be created
in the future? Please answer concretely.

9. Are there any other characters concerning in promotion of
"Dragostea Din Tei" than NomaNeko?
If there are, please let us know what it is called and what it
indicates. If it is hard to describe, pictures and drawings are
acceptable.

10. Can we take your reply to this open letter as the colletive opinion of
AVEX group holdings?

Questions finished.
Thank you.

Posted by monseurmonar at 5:28 AM KDT
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Sunday, 25 September 2005
Hiroyuki, webmaster of mega BBS 2-channel has sent an e-mail with inquriy to AVEX.
Hiroyuki Nishimura, webmaster of 2-channel has sent an inquiry to AVEX as shown below:

*Hiroyuki's message*
Well, I sent an e-mail of inquiry shown below to AVEX.

If NomaNeko and NomaTako issue is not a familiar topic or if you do not have any idea of it, please see this website,
What is NomaNeko problem? . This should be very helpful.
(All in Japanese. Monseur Monar added.)
**As the website shown above is all in Japanese, please see articles that Monseur Monar wrote below or visit Comprehend NomaNeko problem in 5 minutes.

If AVEX reacts to my inquiry, I will update here.

Hiroyuki


******************
*Open letter of inquiry about NomaTako*
My name is Nishimura and I am webmaster of a BBS website 2-channel.

I now am thinking of promoting a character whose name is "NomaTako",
I want to assure that there is not any problem with you at all on registering
NomaTako as a trademark.
When no reply comes in seven days, I will sorrily take it as a tacit permission.
Looking forward to your reply.

Design of NomaTako.

What NomaTako is :
"NomaTako" was born in VIP thread in 2-channel.
NomaTako has been created with inspiration from a waterbag traditionally placed on horse saddle.
It has been created to criticize NomaNeko problem with originality added
and characterized which does not restrict AVEX of using a logomark using "A" .

As we are doing it as business, we always are eager to promote certain goods
more and more following reaction of the market. This trademark, however, works only in NomaTako which is planned to be promoted as our charcter.
This registeretion is not to ristrict your rights to use "A" logomark of course.
Hereby we repeatedly emphasize, this registeration was made only on NomaTako which namely means that it does not ristrict any use of logomark of Ayumi Hamasaki.

We, 2-channel are looking forward to communicating with Music Industry so that we both will promote entertaining contents which can be enjoyed with more people.
Thank you.

Explanation of NomaTako was referred from your statement.


September 24, 2005
Hiroyuki Nishumura

Posted by monseurmonar at 12:04 PM KDT
Updated: Sunday, 25 September 2005 12:08 PM KDT
Post Comment | View Comments (1) | Permalink
Saturday, 24 September 2005
Even retailers are confused......

Please see these 2 pictures.
Both pictures were taken at an amusement arcade.
You will see the NomaNeko drawing in Pic.1.
But the cushions placed in the box are not NomaNeko....
They are Toro, a famous cat in PS(Play Station) game.


Pic.1









Now please see Pict.2




















Pic.2
This picture looks like introducing NomaNeko goods but in fact,
this picture was brought from a Flash Movie created by
another person. It instantly means that for those who are not
interested in 2-ch or AA, or not familiar with 2-ch,
"Mona","NomaNeko" and Pic.2 all look the same, doesn't it?

Also, what AVEX has relied on for excuse of faking Mona in NomaNeko
"(Answering a question from an anonymous person called Nanashi-San)
To look two subjects the same or different depends upon subjectivity."
now totally makes no sense.

This might be a very small thing happened, but this could be the first example of
breaking through AVEX's "subjectivity" issue.
I hope, I really do, these evidences will be gathered and this problem gets finished
as soon as possible. AVEX has been doing dirty business, but AVEX went beyond the line,
2-channel. They underestimated the potential power of internet inhabitants.
(Sep. 23 2005 Monseur Monar. Pictures given 257 and 259 in 2-ch thread. Thx!!)

Posted by monseurmonar at 2:08 AM KDT
Updated: Saturday, 24 September 2005 2:14 AM KDT
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Friday, 23 September 2005
AVEX has annouced an official statement about NomaNeko issue.
We deeply apologize for causing confusion and misunderstanding on registeration of
a trademark of NomaNeko which actual registeration has been made by ZEN.
We did not explain our situation with details enough.

As we are doing it as business, we always are eager to promote certain goods
more and more following reaction of the market. This trademark, however, works only
in NomaNeko which is planned to be promoted as our charcter.
This registeretion is not to ristrict your rights to use Mona or other AAs of course.
Hereby we repeatedly emphasize, this registeration was made only on NomaNeko which namely
means that it does not ristrict any use of other AAs such as Mona, Shii etc.

Let us apologize for those who love AA characters and who have brought them up
that our business on NomaNeko was not considered well enough. We, AVEX group, are
deeply repentant.

Sigh......
Great job, folk. Nothing to say such an excuse (it does not even look like an excuse to
me, thuogh.....) Let me shout, ITTE YOSHI!!

How could a big coorporation like AVEX do such a terrible thing?
I want to ask AVEX on it for about an hour.....
Seeing this statement reminded me of AVEX that they have no ethics on business again.
Too tired to see it.

Posted by monseurmonar at 11:38 AM KDT
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Monday, 19 September 2005
INTERNET Watch, a newscasting webpage released an article.
A newscasting webpage released an article as follows :

Is HMV "inspired" by Onigiri?
In HMV website, Onigiri was introduced in advertisement of O-Zone new release information.

"Dragostea din Tei" or "Koi no Mai a hi" prevailed broadly with "Noma-Neko" problem.
Now it is said that O-Zone's new single which is supposed to be released at the beginning
of November "Fiesta de la noche" or "Ai-no de la noche" is pointed out that another
AA character is featured being "inspired" in its PV.

The picture of character featured was placed on the topic of "Dance & Soul" as a new
release info. in HMV Japan official webpage .
With pharase "Now Ai no de la noche is ready to come!", an AA character known as Onigiri
(*=Riceball. Webmaster added.)which is popular especially among 2-channellers
or too closely ressembled character dancing was shown.
(*2-channellers means the users of gigantic BBS website 2(ni)-channel. Webmaster added)
This picture is deleted few days after it was noticed and informed in a 2-ch thread,
it has been placed on September 12 for a while.


AVEX, a music giant promoting "Dragostea din Tei" and "Fiesta de la noche" annouced that
it is no concern with AVEX about the characters featured in the picture shown in HMV
webpage. HMV Japan, meanwhile, has answered to an individual who asked about the picture
that "To launch a news on releasing O-Zone new single, we found this picture to retrieve
any picture suitable from computer search." Onigiri picture was deleted little while later.

According to HMV Japan, HMV Japan produces pictures to be placed in new release info. not
only receiving pictures from music label.
"As producing advertisement by ourselves, we normally are careful enough with matters of
copyright, we were too careless to upload the picture without making sure nor getting
permission from AVEX. "
HMV Japan has admitted that picture of Onigiri inspired characters was released as a part of
advertisement of O-Zone's new single without being permitted by AVEX
nor assuring the copyright.

HMV also announced, however, "We are not sure if the data of picture was retrieved via
internet or our own database.", which does not make clear where the picture itself come from.

AVEX has announced "No Comment" about new character "Noma Tako" born as a critisizm
against "Noma-Neko" problem which resembles logo of Ayumi Hamasaki, an AVEX singer.
(September 16, 2006 INTERNET Watch)

Posted by monseurmonar at 10:22 AM KDT
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Sunday, 18 September 2005
Wa? Did avex commit plagiarism to 2-channnel based character?
A homepage campaigning against AVEX's pirating character
introduces an article.
(In this article , there are some indications of pictures.
But only one picture is shown. Please be Informed.
You can see all the pictures explained in Italic letters by clicking the webpage shown at the bottom of this article.)

*On September 18, 2005 JST, the author of this article has started a mirror webpage of this article. There you can see whole article with complete pictures of it. Please visit the webpage shown at the bottom of this article or click here.

=Comprehend "Noma-Neko" case in 5 minutes.

You know "Dragostea din Tei" or "O-Zone Koi-no-Maiahi"
known with the phrase "Mai a hi, Mai a hu", dont'you?
You also probably should have seen a flash movie
(cartoon works streaming through internet.) showing a
catlike character dancing.

Characters known as Monar and Mo-lala which AVEX calls Noma-Neko
*Character AVEX calls "Noma-Neko"

What? Doesn't this character remind you of something?
Yes. You're most surely right. They closely ressemble
to Monar and Mo-lala having been beloved in a gigantic
BBS website 2-channel.



*Monar and Mo-lala, long beloved characters in 2-channel.
(Picture not shown)

There should be some people who thought these charcters
in flash movie along Dragostea din Tei were Monar, Mo-lala.
AVEX, a music giant in Japan emphasizes
"THEY ARE NOT MONAR NOR MO-LALA!!"
Well, it is ovbiously necessary to know how characters in
this flash were created and history on it.
Let's move forward.

??Suspicion to "Noma-Neko" of AVEX plagiarize 2-channel character.
-history-

End of September, 2004.
Wata, an inhabitant of 2-channel thread (onwards : 2-channeller) has created
a FLASH movie .

You can see it here.
(Flash not shown here)

End of September-October, 2204. Wata unveiled it in 2-channel.
Most of 2-channeller preferably enjoyed this movie in which shows
Monar and his friends dancing.

A little while later, March, 2005 AVEX a music giant in Japan has released
O-Zone CD entitled of Dragostea din Tei.
This CD contained the flash movie as a bonus truck with some correction.
Wata's flash movie called enough attention to let AVEX ask Wata to renew
some part making suitable for O-Zone CD.

You will find some slight difference comparing to the original,
But still characters shown and parodied words were constructed
basically the same. (This is what you should often see now.)

Many of 2-channellers found it good to achieve to be used as a main character
in AVEX products, some found not as a profit making company uses character from
public domain.

One day, however, the situation suddenly changed! On September 5, 2005
AVEX announced to promote these characters as their "original" characters
on a large scale in goods sales. Especially the principal character named
"Noma-Neko".

(Picture of Noma-Neko goods. Not shown in this page.)

A beloved character which has been brought up in BBS, virtual internet
world has been kidnapped as an "original" of profittal enterprise!!
2-channellers were sorrowed, confused and so on... But most of all,
the were quite much raged. There was even some who started asking AVEX on it.

September 6-7,2005 response from AVEX were as follows :
1. Noma-Neko is a completely original character. It has got nothing to do with
2-channel.

2. Do Kitty and Noma-Neko look the same? No. It is the same that 2-channel
character and Noma-Neko are not the same.

While 2-channellers were in a big confusion and anger, MUZO has announced
an official statement on their webpage.
( * MUZO is a group which promotes FLASH BOMB 2005, an event of flash movies.
Webmaster added.)
(Pitcure of statement of MUZO. Not shown in this page.)

=quotation=

"Inspired" from Monar, usually recognized as 2-channel based, is what
AVEX admits.

=quotate end=

Many could not see what this statement exactlly means.
"Nothing to say at this moment." was only reply we could
get from AVEX.

And at night on September 8, 2005, an article titled "About copyright of Noma-Neko"
was added on an official internet shopping website of AVEX.
Following is part of that article.

=extract=

"Noma-Neko" was born to be "inspired" by ASCII Art characters often seen on internet
BBS such as Monar and so on.

=omitted=

Copyright of Noma-Neko does not restrict you of using EXISTING ASCII Art characters
at all.

=extract end=

"What does "inspired" mean?"
"Isn't this a confession of copying our character after all?"
"Who does AVEX think it is? AVEX copied our characters in puclic domain!!"

Quite a few people started inquring or protesting against AVEX though what
AVEX mechanically responded was :

"Noma-Neko is completely different character from Monar and Mo-lala."

"Word in statement "inspired" means "influenced" or something similar.
Anyway it does not mean something special."

"Distinction between Noma-Neko and Monar/Mo-lala can not be commented."

(Picture comparing the difference of 1st edition and 2nd edition of
Wata's flash movie. Not shown in this page.)


So many are in deep sorrow or raging agains what AVEX has done.
Even an artist belonging to AVEX found it wrong, stating
"It's mad to insist in its copyright." on his own weblog page criticizing
AVEX.

AVEX has not (at the moment of September 12, 2005) admitted their fault.

??Suspicion to "Noma-Neko" of AVEX plagiarize 2-channel character.
-Point of problem-

1. Suspicion of plagiarism from a character whose copyright exists.
2. Suspicion that copyright of author of the AA is violated.
3. AVEX does not responsiblly do their duty to explain the
situation.
-The only answer given to those who asked what makes Noma-Neko
origial is "Cannot answer."
4. Freedom of creation and culture following is being endangered.
-AVEX commented that it does not restrict the use of EXISTING
AAs, but AVEX itself is not even sure what to do about AAs
created after the statement on September 8.
Restriction or action along law to 2-channel related or based
character goods cannot be decided at this moment, as AVEX
says "Cannot be answered. We might (restrict), maybe not."

??Suspicion to "Noma-Neko" of AVEX plagiarize 2-channel character.
-Frequentll asked questions and replies.-

Q. Does ASCII Art own a copyright?
A. The answer seems to be YES. Official judgement should be made by
judical system, of course.
-According to Copyright Research and Information Center, AA is
definately a work like papercrafts.

Q. Isn't it free to use as the author is unknown?
A. No. To use certain subject whose author of the work can not be
determined,
it is necessary to apply following law. To be permitted, it
takes a lot of efforts of determining author.

Q. What is a problem that an AA character is used. Let them do as
they like.
A. It is not such a simple question.

What if a profittal company suddenly declares that certain
ocject, like Noma-Neko, is their original characters, even
though it is a copy of some existing object with slight change.

Everyday many artistic works are unveiled in internet such as AA
characters, stories, music, and of course, FLASH movies.
All these works are introduced with author's aim for audience to
enjoy, author made it because author wanted to, and so.
No one will feel llike introducing their works if their works
can easily be pirated by a major companies.

What AVEX is doing could even destroy culture of creation in
internet, namely a barbarous act, isn't it?

Q. Isn't Noma-Neko an original character? Don't 2-channellers
merely want to argue on AVEX product?
A. You could think that way.

(Picture comparing the difference between 2-channel character and
characters in Wata's movie flash. not shown in this page.)


Q. Isn't there anything we can do to be used Monar by AVEX if the
author is not determined?
A. Author of Mo-lala is determined. Mo-lala is also used in O-Zon
CD though the author was not informed nor asked for permission.

Q. AAs are made from letters and signs, Noma-Neko is not. Can not
it be the originality?
A. Point of creativitiy or originality should be judged by judical
sysytem, of course, but in the other hand, the Copyright
Research and Information Center said filling the blank of
letters and signs can hardly be admitted a new creation.

This means that illustrating(drawn in line. Webmaster added.)
Monar will not give excuse to call it "original".

Q. Anything I could do against it?
A. YES. Plenty of things you can do are shown below.
-Write about it on your own webpage.?@
-Tell your friends about it or show webpage would be nice, too.
-Call or send mail of questionaries to AVEX.

If you want to do something further, please see the content
"What we can do" in the webpage shown below.
Act against plagiarism of AVEX from 2-channel based AA character.
=Noma-Neko kidnapping case=

(All in Japanese but you'll find pictures.
Webmaster of this page has created English page.
You'll find the article with complete pictures.)

Posted by monseurmonar at 12:37 AM KDT
Updated: Monday, 19 September 2005 11:42 AM KDT
Post Comment | View Comments (6) | Permalink
Noma-Neko problem getting to spread outside Japan.
Non-Japanese internet users are reacting to the topic that a character shown in PV
of a song promoted by AVEX "Noma Neko" real closely resembles to an AA character
well known to be often seen in 2-channel.
Many of internet users in Japan are reacting against this problem to spread this
matter in BBS websites or individual weblogs which repurciussions are to spread worldwide.

On September 14, an website was created to explain this problem in English and its URL has been placed on BBS websites out of Japan.

"Getting to know this issue at first made me real sad. I also like Ayumi Hamasaki"
A computer programmer(23) an AA in 2-channel fan from Maryland, USA said.
He also said "The usage of these AA characters should be completely free to everyone.
A profittal company should never attempt to own copyright of them although they are not
their original creation." He got to know this problem from BBS website built outside Japan.
He is now eager to catch up with this matter.

A 17 year old male student from Haarlem, Netherland expressed his anger
"It's not fair! It is an obvious plagiarism. I want to take avex to court."
He also said, "I will keep in touch and updating about this problem in my blog and BBS."

AA characters, songs, and flash movies born in 2-ch have been accepted and enjoyed abroad
as well as it has been in Japan. Some personal weblogs built by non-Japanese introduce
these works. AA characters made from letters and signs, which many of them are born in
2-channel, are still used or introduced in some websites outside Japan.

On September 13, a Japanese newspaper has released an article that
"Noma-Neko that resembles to a Mona, well known from 2-channel is causing a situation."
(September 18, 2005 Website:Jiyu-tyo)

Posted by monseurmonar at 12:01 AM KDT
Updated: Monday, 19 September 2005 11:00 AM KDT
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Saturday, 17 September 2005
AVEX disturbance becoming hot topic.
A newscasting website has released an article on AVEX disturbance.
Article translated is as follows;

Where are you going, Monar.........?

Noma-neko problem dominated the 1st prize in weekyly Jiji ranking.
(*Jiji is a newscasting company. Webmaster added.)

Situation occurred by promoting character goods named Noma-neko, that look like an
AA character well known as Monar, in PV of big hit song "Dragostea din Tei" .
Opposition between AVEX group holdings, promoter of O-Zone in Japan and those who
raged to violate the copyright of a character in public domain took much attention.

As following the breakout of "Densha-Otoko" (=Train Man. A story based on posted messages
on a gigantic BBS site "2-channel" . Train Man kept posting messages about a girl he saved
in train to whom he fell in love at once. Webmaster added.), AA or Kao-Moji in Japanese
has been becoming popular called attention to many people not only heavy users of internet
but general users.

Posted by monseurmonar at 1:47 AM KDT
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