The use of artificial intelligence, or AI, continues to be exploited further in the anime and manga industry, much to the dismay of fans. This time, a certain beloved manga falls victim to new-age technology, and fans on Twitter went ballistics on an official account that broke the news. They simply did not care at all.
Fans are ecstatic that Kore Yamazaki’s fantasy shonen manga, The Ancient Magus’ Bride, is back after a break. However, that excitement died quickly, as the officials state that they’re using AI-generated translations to release the manga simultaneously in English and Japanese.
The new chapter of "The Ancient Magus' Bride" will be serialized simultaneously in English alongside the Japanese version! pic.twitter.com/2DHlE62xXK
— 魔法使いの嫁/ゴーストアンドウィッチ原作公式 (@magus_bride) December 21, 2023
In another tweet, they’ve explained further that this system combines their unique machine translation technology with editing and proofreading by professional translators. According to these officials, this is done to prevent piracy and scanlation websites from translating this manga unofficially.
To clarify misinformation that has been spread, I would like to provide some additional information.
Firstly, regarding "AI-assisted translation," we have implemented a system from Mantra Corporation (https://t.co/f4C8VuBYGw). This system combines their unique machine…
— 魔法使いの嫁/ゴーストアンドウィッチ原作公式 (@magus_bride) December 22, 2023
But that didn’t make the situation any better, according to fans, prompting some of them to say that the officials shouldn’t have to compromise translation quality with machine-generated translations. Sure, we’ve seen AI translations for websites, and people generally use Google Translation to read their favorite untranslated manga, but to use similar tech for official translations is unacceptable.
One English editor for Weekly Shonen Jump has affirmed that they don’t require AI to aid them in translations since they’ve been doing simultaneous publications legally for a company since 2015 and that piracy isn’t a viable excuse for taking such a decision.
Another translation argued that the “hidden” reason behind this maneuver, is cost-cutting. Translators are already being paid less, according to this person, and combining AI would just make them earn even less. Furthermore, no translator respects machine-generated translations as a viable option, so that’s why it’s stupid for such companies to almost take away their jobs.
Other fans on Twitter back them up, saying that scanlation sites provide better quality translations before the official ones drop for FREE.
About the Ancient Magus’ Bride:
The Ancient Magus’ Bride is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Kore Yamazaki. It is serialized on Bushiroad Works’ Comic Growl manga website and is licensed in North America by Seven Seas Entertainment.
In addition to an anime television series that aired from October 2017 to March 2018, Wit Studio produced a three-part prequel original animation DVD (OAD) series that was bundled with volumes of the manga from September 2016 to September 2017. The second season of the anime aired in two parts from April to July 2023 and October to December of the same year. A three-part OAD series produced by Studio Kafka was bundled with the manga from September 2021 to September 2022.
Crunchyroll describes the overall plot of the Ancient Magnus’ Bride as follows:
Hatori Chise has lived a life full of neglect and abuse, devoid of anything resembling love. Far from the warmth of family, she has had her share of troubles and pitfalls. Just when all hope seems lost, a fateful encounter awaits her. When a man with the head of a beast, wielding strange powers, obtains her through a slave auction, Chise’s life will never be the same again.
The man is a “magus,”a sorcerer of great power, who decides to free Chise from the bonds of captivity. The magus then makes a bold statement: Chise will become his apprentice–and his bride!