Comic Market's Ideals and Vision

The text featured below is an excerpt from the circle application form to Comiket. For more information regarding the original Japanese document, please refer to the following PDF file:

Ideals of Comic Market

Comic Market is a "space" that functions to expand the possibilities of self expression, where the aim is to accept creators of doujinshi and all other types of creative endeavors and maintain continuity.

  • Comic Market defines itself as a "space" operated cooperatively through the involvement of all participants including circle participants, general participants, Comic Market staff participants, corporate participants and all other parties involved, and it will be Comic Market’s mission to commit itself toward fulfilling this definition.

  • Comic Market's goal is to, without violating any laws and ordinances, accept the maximum number of participants possible while enforcing a minimum set of rules needed for administrative purposes.

  • Comic Market hopes all participants will enjoy partaking in Comic Market as a "Day of Hare" and will continue Comic Market.

The Comic Market Committee is an organization administered toward maintaining and enhancing creative and doujinshi culture under the previously stated ideals. Furthermore, Comiket Ltd., Co. is a legal entity that exists to support the Comic Market Committee. Note to English readers. Hare (sunshine or special moment) is a Japanese cultural concept where people can transcend the ke (mundane) and celebrate a radiant spirit fit for an extraordinary occasion.

Comic Market's Vision

What is Comic Market?

Comic Market (referred to herein as Comiket*1) is a doujinshi (self-published non-commercial publication) exhibition marketplace (referred to herein as doujinshi marketplace) that started in 1975 as a "space" reserved for people to pursue new possibilities in creative expression in the realm of manga and to act as a forum for communication between fans. When Comic Market 1 took place in December 4th, 1975 at the Ninhon Shoubou Kaikan in Toranomon, Tokyo, there were 32 circle (publisher) participants and an estimated 700 general participants attending. In its quest to accommodate the largest number of participants possible, Comiket continually expanded in the following years. When Comic Market 84 took place in August of 2013, there were roughly 35,000 circle participants and roughly 590,000 general participants, there by expanding approximately 1000 times since its inception. Comiket is currently being held twice a year, the summer session in August and the winter session in December, utilizing the facilities of the Tokyo International Exhibition Center (a.k.a. Tokyo Big Site). In addition, a "Comiket Special" is held every five years. New formats that break from the standard mold of doujinshi marketplaces are attempted at Comiket Specials in Comiket's continual effort to challenge what doujinshi marketplaces can do and make them play an even more innovative role.

Comiket’s Achievements

Over the course of 40 years, Comiket has not only left its mark on many facets of self-creativity embodied in Japanese manga, anime and the gaming community, but has also influenced numerous individuals, organizations and even society at large. Note (*1): While the name of Comic Market is commonly abbreviated to Comike, the Comic Market Committee prefers to employ the abbreviation Comiket. Furthermore, a summer session of Comiket is referred to as a natsucomi and a winter session is referred to as a fuyucomi. Please note that the words Comic Market, Comiket, and Comike (written in both Japanese kana characters and the Roman alphabet) are registered trademarks of Comiket Inc.

Comiket's Will for Perseverance of the Space

Comiket made the proposal that there is value in the fundamental merits of doujinshi culture--that anyone, amateurs or professionals, can become producers of creative works, and thereby a wide diversity of self-expression can come about. Comiket has shared this conviction with others continually. We feel we played an important role in the development of doujinshi culture--As a space where works are distributed, as a space where mutual interaction can take place, and as a space where many individuals develop their talents.

Going into the future, Comiket would like remain intimately involved with the development of doujinshi culture, adapt to changes in the environment surrounding that culture and aim to perpetually continue its mission.

Core Concepts of Comiket

Everybody is a participant at Comiket
There are no "customers" at Comiket. Comiket is a space were circles, cosplayers and corporate participants engage in self-expression, while general attendees come seeking such works, and the operational staff form the backbone for the management of the event. All parties are equal participants that make Comic Market possible. Individuals may freely change how they participate at Comiket either by applying as a circle publisher or registering as a Comiket staff.

In order for Comiket to maintain not only the widest amount of freedom of expression, but remain a space that is free and least inhibiting, we would like to keep rules to a minimum. In order to make this possible, we ask all participants to fully read the catalog (available in print, as a DVD-ROM, or online) to understand the ideals and rules of Comic Market, exercise self-restraint, be thoughtful about the manners and morals expected at Comiket, and thus remain mindful of others whilst attending Comiket.

Self-expression at Comiket
Doujinshi was initially the central focus of self-expression at Comiket, and the vast majority of doujinshi revolved around manga and/or writings pertaining to manga, etc. But with Comiket's decision to accept the widest range of different forms of creative works, the vessel that is Comiket has grown to encompass a great variety of different types of works of self-expression.

First of all, the medium of self-expression that is doujinshi culture has grown in diversity and has adapted to different mediums are a result of subsequent technological innovations and new inventions by individuals. The term doujinshi derive from combination of the words doujin ("coterie") and shi ("publication"), and as it suggests printed publications were the norm at the start, but now doujin culture encompasses a wide variety of mediums for self-expression--e.g. traditional publications, material included on electronic storage mediums and/or digital content distributed through various networks, and even mediums that require a physical presence, such as cosplay. Because Comiket is a physical marketplace, it is bound by numerous restrictions due to the practical issues involved in its operation. However, Comiket will continue to accept new forms of self-expression as best as it can.

Furthermore, as a rule Comiket considers individuals engaged in self-expression as a hobby (not corporate entities) to be the basic building block for creative endeavors. However, in our attempt to pursue even more diversity in self-expression, Comiket invites corporations and public entities that fully understand doujinshi culture and contribute to its growth and well-being to participate. While corporate booth space is currently rather limited at Comiket, we continually consider alternate forms of participation for various legal entities.

Through envisioning a community where a wide variety of individuals and numerous different mediums of expression can intermingle and provide mutual inspiration, Comiket aims to open up new horizons for creative self-expression.

Comiket as a "space"
Comiket defines itself as a "space" with great freedom for the purposes of expanding the possibilities of self-expression. Thus Comiket aims to accommodate anyone who wishes to participate and accepts all forms of self-expression.

Comiket as a "Day of Hare"
Due to its history and size, Comiket holds special meaning for many participants who attend Comiket. Held twice a year at prearranged dates, Comiket is an occasion outside the ordinary mundane life, a place where many friends can congregate. In this respect, sessions of Comiket is like a festival.

This festive nature of Comiket could be argued as being similar to "The Day of Hare", a cultural construct part of the Japanese worldview. Being able to continue the space that is Comiket can seen as part of the perpetual human activities associated with creativity, where people celebrate with one another the birth of new creative works and rejuvenate their drive to continue creating yet new material.

Aims of the Comic Market Committee

Comiket will aim to perpetually continue its mission. To this end, the Comic Market Committee is taking important role in conducting the following actions. By taking these steps in regard to manga, anime, gaming and other cultures, Comiket aims to improve Japan's industrial and cultural standing in the world, and thereby Comiket will be able to meet the needs set upon itself by society at large and contribute back to it.

Being a "space", Comiket's nature will continually change depending on who is participating and what types of self-expressions are made available through itself. Furthermore, since the ideals of Comiket is something shared between participants, depending on the demands of the era and who is participating, the ideals and vision may change.

However, as long as Comiket remains Comiket, its self-definition of accepting any and all participants and their works of self-expression, its intended goal of remaining a space into perpetuity, and its core value of transforming itself in order to persevere should remain constants.
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[Since: Oct 13 2014]