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Is there a pastebin or blog or something where I can learn the ABCs of anime fansubbing? Like, the process of it, names and a little info on sub groups, encoders, uploaders of raws, muxing and anything else relevant to the scene? Or could you give me a rundown on some of the more prominent groups? For example, what is the deal with horriblesubs? How come they are the only sub group around nowadays that isn't hyperspecific to a single anime? And why are they called horriblesubs? Is it in jest or are they actually bad? Because it seems like they do a lot of 480p tv encodes and rush them out pretty quickly while others like FFF wait for BDs and take their time with styling subs and making good translations. When I've watched HS translayions, they always seem really dry and stiff, and from what I know of Japanese, they go for dictionary accuracy over any kind of naturality. But I'm not knowledgable enough to be fluent, those are just my observations.

tl;dr please tell me about fansubbing
Horriblesubs doesn't actually translate anything. They rip everything from crunchyroll.
Information about fansubbing process can be found via Google, it's not rocket science anon. HR doesn't translate anything, they just rip releases from CR or Funi and since official releases are pretty much the fastest out there and translations have went from absolute doghsit to bearable, most fansubs don't bother with doing seasonal TV releases anymore since people will prefer HR due to speed or if they're going to bother, they'll just official TL and make some changes over it. Official releases probably don't really give a fuck about typesetting and neither does your average viewer, they just want to watch the latest episode and go discuss. I highly doubt you will start seeing typesetting since they'd need to adjust their online viewer for able to play TS and shit like that. Lurking /a/ for a while or simply checking out archives would answer most of your questions.
You can get actual, academic books on translating and subbing if you want to (you probably should, to be entirely honest). I'd recommend pirating stuff on libgen.io .
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Like the others said, HorribleSubs just steals from Crunchyroll and other anime streaming sites. Because of nearly every anime being picked up by Crunchyroll and others, that's also why HorribleSubs is usually the only "subgroup" that shows up.

Anyway, I suggest downloading Aegisub, which I'd gather all fansubbers use to subtitle anime. It has a nice feature that lets you directly input the .mkv file into the program and also get the audio, so you can get exact frames and stuff for when the subs should appear and disappear. Can also change the font and other such things. You should read through the readme or the website it comes from for the full details, 'cause it's got quite a lot of other features.


Maybe there's actually a better subtitling program now, but this is the one I know of and it seems pretty good.
Fansubbing's golden age was the mid 00s. In those days simulcasts were rare and the majority of shows were only subbed by fans. The English fansubbing scene was dominated by a group that based itself on Nyaa.eu and organized out of various IRC channels, but mainly #info on Rizon. /a/ dubbed this group "the fansubbing cartel" as a joke, but the name stuck and that's now what they are known as semi-officially. This group is actually several different fansub groups (Commie, FFF, Underwater, Vivid, etc) but they all share staff with one another and really each group is just a slightly different configuration of the same people operating under different arbitrary style guides for their releases while all adhering to the same core practices.

It was this group that pushed for anime to be released in mkv and later in 10bit encoding, they had several moderators on the only NyaaTorrents website so they had tremendous influence in what was deemed a quality release.

Now as to how this group fell from power, it was due to competition with Crunchyroll in the late 00s and early '10s. See back in the golden age there was a kind of arms race between the various groups, both cartel and non-cartel, to release subs the fastest. Because, invariably, whoever got subs out first got the most downloads and thus got the most epeen sucking off from the community, and on /a/ especially. So began the speedsub wars, which CR inevitably won due to their official connections allowing them to have extremely reliable same-day releases only hours after the Japanese broadcast. Fansubbers couldn't keep up, the shows where people had to rely on fansubs to watch became fewer and fewer in number, until we reach today where maybe 1 or 2 shows actually need fansubs and everything else is simulcast by CR or Hulu or Funimation or whoever.

So fansubbers adapted. Most don't bother with seasonal shows, they do BDs, specials, movies, or Netflix shows that have their subs delayed.
Oh yeah, as others have mentioned, HorribleSubs is not a fansubbing group. It's one person who has a bot that rips streams off of CrunchyRoll, Funimation, Hulu, etc. He's not even irreplaceable, there are several competitors that you probably haven't heard of but are nonetheless fairly active and sometimes faster than him. Fact is that even though fansubbing is in its twilight era, it's never been easier to be an anime pirate than today.
>it's never been easier to be an anime pirate than today.
I feel that. I recently got into animebytes but I'm overwhelmed by the selection of torrents for a single series, and want to learn how to tell which ones aren't worth downloading without having to download and compare all of them. The mediainfo doesn't tell enough about the quality of the torrent, like which subs are good and which aren't, and I'd eventually like to learn how to mux stuff.
On AB you can't really go wrong sticking to freeleech options. I like having my AB account as a reserve in case I can't find something in good quality anywhere else, but I still mostly download off Nyaa or BakaBT.

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