When manga were listed on 42 of the 50 slots on Apples 50 top-selling books list in their U.S. iTunes Store, a red flag was raised. Thuat Nguyen, a Vietnamese, was found to be the culprit whose app contains scans of scanlations; how ironic – illegal scans of illegal scanlations; of manga from Dragon Ball Z to Boys Over Flowers, a shoujo manga. Nguyen’s app is available in the US, Canada, France, Germany, South Korea, Taiwan, Norway, Hong Kong, and other regions.
What sunk Nguyen was an increase in reports of hacked iTunes accounts that mysteriously coincided with the popularity of the manga’s in the Top 50 list. “According to the reports, an unknown person or persons accessed these accounts and purchased anywhere from US$100 to US$1,400 worth of apps. Accounts have been hacked to purchased large quantities of apps with iTunes in the past.”
As expected, Nguyen’s app has been removed from the Apple Store and hopefully, his supposed earnings dried up as well. The question that everyone should be asking, though, is why was his app approved in the first place? I thought Apple had a much stricter developer police to counter apps that violate their terms and conditions. And where were the manga companies? I’m surprised they didn’t pick up on it to protect their property. Maybe they should borrow the Nintendo or Tetris legal team to crack down on illegal pirates and those who infringe their trademarks.
For the full article and some pretty pictures, check out ANN.