The first major public domain video-sharing project in Japan, by Research Institute of Digital Media and Contents, Keoi University (Keio DMC), in collaboration with Kawasaki City Museum, is now open to public.
The site, "History of Showa, reflected upon Japanese dinner table", is a neat collection from the long-standing animated commercial series by a processed food company Momoya, broadcasted on television between 1953 and 1993. The main character, a big-nose guy with round glasses, is Norihei Miki, one of the great comedians in Showa era. Momoya contributed its entire CM video archive, 218 pieces in total, to Kawasaki City Museum to be used for the purpose of study and education. Half of the collection have already made available on Keio DMC's own video sharing platform "Volume One" since last October on trial basis, and at this time, the team has selected 20 of them that show the historical background of the time it was broadcasted, with explanation of these backgrounds both in Japanese and English. For foreign visitors, the site has a separate page to explain the food items in subject, as well as some of Japanese-specific CM characters that Norihei inpersonates, such as Sumo wrestler and ninja.
The project is significant, not only because it is the first case of comprehensive collection of TV CM video in Japan, but also because it is open to public for free, for academic purposes. In Japan, the video copyrights holders has much stronger control than in the U.S., and the debate over the legitimacy of video sharing on the Internet has much harsher tone against free sharing.
The project leader and my long-term friend, Junko Iwabuchi of Keio DMC, says she wants to make it an example of the public domain effort on the net, and let people know that the museum contents can be shared with much ease and low cost through the net.
(You need the latest version of Flash Player.)
Anyway, the videos are quite fun to watch, and you can see the early days of Japanese animation. Enjoy!!
Originally posted on enotech.vox.com