Weekly NewsDrop #19—February 4, 2023

Wild week for VTubing as Nijisanji EN faces concerns after concerns, plus the latest in VTubing last week.

Good day dear readers, I am curating this week's NewsDrop from the airport after a successful trip to the Cebu Litfest. In contrast to the VTuber audience in Manila, Cebu's VTuber audience is still niche.

That said, I am lucky to meet friends from miles away once again. Now, on to this week's happenings...

We cannot easily catch up with all the madness that's happened this week. Here's a brief list:

  • Japan is set to lower COVID-19 classification on May 8, according to NHK World-Japan (Jan 27)—but before this, an expert talk to the state broadcaster warning that the number of daily new cases could rise sharply after mid-January (Jan 6). It's already February and the numbers show a downward trend.
  • We mentioned this because Nijisanji EN's first AR Live, Colors, was cancelled. The abrupt announcement at 1pm Japan time (English follows) by Nijisanji's management expresses that it was not able to meet the fans' expectations. Fans and talents alike have shared their reactions. Vox Akuma said it best: "Give your oshi some love today [...]"
  • Eleven Labs opened beta testing for its AI audio platform to everyone recently, but some bad actors use it to create slander using a VTubers' voice. Actions are being taken so that bad actors won't abuse their platform further. Yes, a milestone was made through the use of this technology, but we can also be alarmists and tell all VTubers to make sure your BGMs are on.
  • ...also, please do not start a fight about unfollowing Twitter accounts.

Get ready for your dose of VTuber info overload after the jump.

The Latest on NewsDrop

  • NecroNews covers Activision Blizzard almost every week—look at that funk-up counter go.
  • Nominations for The Streamer Awards are now open, which reminds us to ask you: Have you nominated your favorite VTuber yet?
  • Anti-slander and defamation efforts: Anycolor and Yuki Chihiro will receive 1.2 million Yen in damages after taking a person to court for defamation. Hololive reveals more than 100 cases of harassment dealt with in 2022.
  • Lucid Multimedia's Origins class is set to re-debut, and they shared with us why the change is necessary.
  • The latest VTuber event appearances in Southeast Asia involves two Japanese VTubers as guests for Philippines' Cosplay Up!, and Nijisanji EN's first Malaysian appearance at Nijigen Expo.
  • How does Brave Group's recent funding round fare well with other VTuber agencies in Japan? Ted has the details.
  • We briefly round up what's happening on Twitter as users get temporarily suspended days after the platform is set to cut off free access to its API.
  • HyperX is the latest to jump into the brand VTuber foray with the debut of Himura Kuraudo in collaboration with Rosuuri and Iron Vertex.
Inside Kawa: Remember that Vocaloid song Triple Baka which made rounds 15 years ago? Pia, Xion and indie VTuber Tsurugi Nen covered the song. Is your back OK after the fact? Please tell us on Twitter.

Kawa's merch manager Muu answers questions about merch on Raelice's stream—watch the VOD and see if your merch curiosity is addressed!

Speaking of Pia, the slime alien VTuber now has a 3D body. Go watch the VOD for yourself.

In Other News...

  • Millie Parfait streamed a now-hidden "secret group chat" stream, which was meant to be satire, but she had to clarify the satire part in the end. Dot Esports reports that Mysta Rias had no idea about it, and Pomu Rainpuff did not participate.
  • Tuesday's TVS episode details what's happening at WACTOR, as the agency struggles to maintain a good image in the wider VTubing community.
  • Tessa raised a discussion on microphones, and many VTubers have their take as well.
  • A tale of two VTubers: Nijisanji ex-ID Reza Avanluna said fanmail will not reach him, as Nijisanji EN's Luca Kaneshiro received his. Fellow ex-ID Zea had to step in and clarify: "It usually reached us within a year or so, although I'm not sure about the process now."
  • Kureiji Arcade hosted by Kureiji Ollie is set to bring Apex Legends to all Hololive branches. Tokoyami Towa is set to participate as well.
  • Hololive collaborates with Aniplus Cafe to bring some of the agency's talents closer to Singaporeans.
  • Moona Hoshinova's Perisai Jitu, a song fit for radio, was played on air.
  • Voice actress Shu Uchida gets a VTuber model drawn by Takuya Fujima (Nanoha Vivid).
  • Zaion LanZa introduces her viewers to Words on Stream as she plays Genshin Impact.
  • Ibrahim got himself a well-animated video for his 3rd anniversary.
  • Idol's Yuko Yurei concludes her 48-hour donothon, raising around $34,000 and reaching the goal for the Idol EN talent to have her short visual novel game.
  • Sin Syndicate will update its brand as they move forward without members Cain and Lucks.
  • Polygon Project is set to debut its 2nd generation talents this weekend.
  • Singapore-based Project Foundation is set to debut its talents on February 11, as announced on its debut teaser.
  • In the press: OmniVR CEO Nico Alyus was interviewed by the Bisnis Indonesia broadsheet for a feature on virtual influencers.
  • Some tools for your consideration: Live speech recognition and voice synthesis using Amazon Polly, VStream's debut creation flow system, and Toontubing.

Graduations and Dissolvements

Milestones and Birthdays

Job Openings

To cap off the wild week that was, here is a photo of the only Ike Eveland cosplay at the first day of Cebu Litfest. Happy weekend!

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The Weekly NewsDrop is produced in collaboration with Kawa Entertainment. The views and opinions written on NewsDrop do not necessarily reflect those of Kawa Entertainment and its talents. Read our Editorial Policy for more details.

Banner Photo: Mysta Rias on Twitter