A few days ago, Australian anime publisher Madman Entertainment sent out a notification that their AnimeLab anime streaming service would be discontinued in the near future and transitioned over to an Australia and New Zealand version of Funimation’s streaming service. This came as quite the surprise, as only last year the Funimation ANZ service was discontinued in favour of more streams from Funimation and Aniplex of America being available on AnimeLab.
The transition commenced today, where active subscribers to AnimeLab can now use their current login credentials on the Funimation website.. Although AnimeLab is not going anywhere in the immediate future, there will be perks to moving across. The big one is that the July 2021 season of anime simulcasts will only be available exclusively via Funimation ANZ.
From July 2021, simulcasts will be exclusive to Funimation, so tune in for a sneak peek at the Summer Season Preview Event! Kicking off Saturday 19 June, 9am AEST, you can watch it on Funimation's YouTube channel. 👀— animelab (@AnimeLab) June 15, 2021
Find out how to watch on our blog: https://t.co/XqeBqrlZUv pic.twitter.com/skUdWn3w3e
Reception to this change has been mixed from the community. While this transition is unlikely to be put to a halt, it is clear that better communication around concerns is necessary.
My big concern is around the availability of works licensed by Madman Entertainment for ANZ markets but not held by Funimation or Aniplex in North America – which is most prominent in their back catalogue.