VOD website Crunchyroll.com: I stumbled upon this website a couple of months ago after I got tired of waiting for 16GB of “Nodame Cantabile” to download from a bittorrent site. Crunchyroll is best described as a portal for entertainment (anime, movies, TV shows, music, music videos, and video game content) from Asia that has not been licensed in the US yet. The site offered both raw and fan-subbed content. Content is made accessible by a combination of fees and online community participation. I found the community participation aspect intriguing. I imagine by participating in discussions, people would get viewing suggestions which would increase interest in more content which would cause people to purchase more bandwidth on the site. Anyhow, for registering you can watch low quality streaming video of content. I paid a small fee so I could watch higher quality streams. Even though I have a cable modem, I found that the streaming was still choppy, so I decided to upgrade to downloads. The downloads are straight downloads, without the involvement of file sharing. The amount of content available is impressive and since I’m able to watch the low quality streams, I can preview the content before spending my precious bandwidth to download the file.
I think crunchyroll.com has a good start on things. I like the community aspect too, even though I haven’t really been participating in it too much (I’m still timid about such things).
About the content, check some of it out! I downloaded the Live Action version of “Nodame Cantabile” and comedy from Korea called “100 Days with Mr. Arrogent.” Both were fun to watch and I plan to explore more content. We’re so used to watching our own culture’s entertainment that we forget there’s a whole world out there. It’s nice to be able to access content from other countries and cultures. I find it interesting that the themes of love, family, good, and evil are universal and I also like to see the differences between different cultures as reflected through entertainment.