Vertical has made an announcement on their website today that their license announcement of Furiya Urusama’s No Longer Human was “prematurely disclosed”. The license was originally announced just this past weekend at New York Anime Fest.
“Due to a communication error between the company’s New York and Tokyo offices, the property was falsely presented as slated for publication. While the licensors for this series and Vertical are currently actively in contract negotiations, the North American rights have not been secured. Vertical, Inc. will continue to work with the rights holders for No Longer Human with hopes to properly acquire the license, and it apologizes to all parties involved in this unfortunate and unintentional error.”
This isn’t the first time this has happened with Vertical in particular. News of their acquisition of Osamu Tezuka’s Ayako was out to the public prior to finalizations of the contract after the listing appeared on Amazon and, in an unrelated event, was revealed by a representative at one of their Vertical Vednesday presentations.
Incidents like these always make me wonder – what kind of guidelines do companies generally follow when it comes to proper handling of yet-to-be-finalized titles? For a good while, and still to some point today, it was common place to find out new licenses some time before they were officially announced simply by searching the newest manga additions on sites such as Amazon, RightStuf and AAAAnime. But in some instances it’s even been said the revelation of said titles immediately jeopardizes the license itself. Why then do companies make the thus presumably very risking decision to submit these books to distribution channels so early?