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J-Comi manga site completes trial run of crowd funding project

Manga website J-Comi's new crowd funding project wrapped up its trial run in lightning speed, a hopeful sign for manga artists looking for new ways to make money as comic book sales continue to slump.

The "J-Comi FANding" project offered limited-edition e-book versions of manga series bundled with exclusive items such as previously unpublished works and author autographs.

Fan response was so overwhelming that the digital sets sold out about 20 minutes after going online at noon, with a total of 206 fans purchasing one of four titles up for grabs, including the complete "Love Hina" series by Ken Akamatsu.

The project was launched to celebrate the 10 million page views J-Comi has received in about a year and a half.

Akamatsu established the J-Comi website in 2011 to distribute out-of-print manga titles as DRM-free e-books with the permission of the authors and supported by advertising.

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