I am curious to know who the copyright holder to a manga is: is it the mangaka, or the publisher (such as Kodansha, Shonen Jump, etc)?

Who do you have to contact to obtain a license for streaming it?

  • 4
    Usually the publisher owns the rights for distributions. When you say license, do you mean to stream (as in read online), sell (as in publish and distribute [digital or paperback]), or to use their content (i.e. Character likeness)? The distinction here is important, otherwise your question is too broad.
    – кяαzєя
    Oct 31, 2015 at 22:24
  • @Krazer thank you for your comment. I've updated the question, I've meant a license for streaming it.
    – Iazel
    Nov 1, 2015 at 0:18

1 Answer 1


As I mentioned in my answer over at How is an anime based on western-literature made?

Usually if somebody wishes to obtain said rights, they would hire a lawyer, as obtaining the rights, setting the terms and options, and the costs that come with it are surrounded by a lot of legal rump slump

But this depends quite a bit on what your 'end goal' is.

I would advise the above in almost any scenario, as the lawyer can keep you 'save' can help you set up the license, prevent loopholes, etc.

However, if you prefer not to use a lawyer, or find it too much of a hassle/ expensive (in which case you might just stop here, a license does not come cheap) you can use the following steps to obtain it:

Determine the copyright licensing company

LoganM's answer on finding reliable information regarding licenses for anime/manga is a good starting point to determine this.

Call the copyright owner to order the copyrights

Take note that it might take a few calls, as the 'mentioned' authority may not be the authority to give you a license in the country you wish to stream from/live in.

Complete payment, and store your license somewhere safe

Retain paperwork from your copyright licensing in your files to enable you to prove that you purchased a license for the public showing.

For some more 'detailed' insight in these actual steps, you can take a look at the Anime News Network post which covers the above points quite in-depth.

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