Tokyopop is taking some heat right now due to their new strategic effort called Manga Pilots. Tokyopop has a reputation for giving exposure to new manga artists. They created Manga Pilots to help streamline this process. According to Tokyopop,
â€¦ promising manga creators are selected and hired by our editorial team to create a 24-to-36-page â€œpilotâ€â€”a short-form manga that will be used to determine whether or not a full-length manga will be created. The Manga Pilot will be published online for TOKYOPOP community members to review, rate, and discuss. The Manga Pilot program is not a competition. Itâ€™s a proving ground that will give manga creators exposure to an enormous audience and help TOKYOPOP develop the next generation of manga superstars.
Many active members of Tokyopop’s online community have dissected the legal documents and have found vampire like clauses that basically has new artists signing over all legal rights to Tokyopop without fair compensation. One member writes,
Tokyopop screwed over one of my friends from college (they ended up with all the rights to the characters she created, she canâ€™t even buy them back to finish the story arc the way she wanted) so I am never surprised by how slimy and evil they are.
And another tells of their experience trying to negotiate with Tokyopop,
I finally contacted their legal department which allowed that yes, Tâ€™pop had received my amended contract, but that Tâ€™pop was not in the habit of negotiating with creators; their contracts, I was informed, were on a strict â€œtake it or leave itâ€ basis.
So it seems as though if you want experience to put on your resume, maybe Tokyopop’s Manga Pilot program is for you. However, if you are looking to really market your manga, and make a name for yourself in the industry, doing it for yourself without Tokyopop’s Manga Pilot program is better in the long-run. Via Comics Worth Reading