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Nomaneko” (飲ま(のま)ネコ, lit. “Drinking Cat”) was the AA parody character that Avex tried to capitalize on, but quickly cancelled after the severe online backlash calling it plagiarism. This outrage lasted under two months and roughly concluded on October 13, 2005.


In 2004, the Moldovan band O-Zone released Dragostea Din Tei in their DiscO-Zone album, which became a worldwide sensation, despite its Romanian lyrics, as the “Numa Numa” or “Ma Ya Hi” song. On September 30, 2004, “Wata” (わた) uploaded a Soramimi-style Flash animation1) that used AA characters like Mona, Morala, and Onigiri, later finding its way onto 2channel by October 5, 2004.2)

At some point, the Japanese entertainment conglomerate Avex Inc. contacted “Wata” to make a promotional video for the “Koi no Maiahi” (恋のマイアヒ, lit. “Maiahi of Love”) CDs since it had made them laugh.3) Most users had no issue with this development so far, completely unaware that this new, extended animation would technically replace the characters with generic ones until later that year.

   (  *゚w゚) Nomanoma, yay!!
   (    )
   | | |

On September 1, 2005, Avex announced that they would sell Nomaneko merchandise, causing an outrage that Mona was 'plagiarized' and turned into a marketable character.4)5) During the trademark application process,6) 2channel's founder Hiroyuki Nishimura sent a humorous open letter on September 24, 2005.7)8) Within a week, the trademark application was dropped on September 30, 2005 without issue.9)10)

Following the arson threat directed at Avex President Masato Matsuura on October 3, 2005, revealed to be from a Kōtō-ku, Tokyo vocational student11) using the tripcode◆ttrof7oVIg”,12)13)14) their outrage mostly subsided after Avex announced that they would refuse any character usage fees that would've came from the merchandise on October 12, 2005.15)


In 2010, there was a stream where Avex Inc. founder Max Matsuura chatted with Hiroyuki Nishumura and reflected on the controversy, showing us that the two and their respective companies16) were generally on good terms. Then in 2018, a former Avex Inc. employee was interviewed about the controversy, recalling how stressful it was and how the company held daily debriefing meetings on their situation.17)


  • At the time, the “Koi no Maiahi” CD sold for 2,730 yen.18) You can still buy the CD.
  • During the outrage, users on /news4vip/ invented the “Nomatako” (のまタコ, lit. “Drinking Octopus”), borrowing Ayumi Hamasaki's logo as she was Avex's most profitable singer at the time.
  • In 2013, “Yūsuke Ushida” (丑田祐輔) was arrested as a suspect of the 2012 trojan horse attack,19) but he was let go as the police were looking for “Yūsuke Katayama” (片山祐輔) instead.

See also

"マイヤヒー" (September 30, 2004). Erueru.
"マイヤヒ-マイヤハッハ-" (October 5, 2004). 2channel /swf/.
The trademark was technically filed by “ZEN Co., Ltd.” (有限会社ZEN) on behalf of Avex Inc.
"【ニュース】対AVEX作戦発動決定" (October 1, 2005). 2channel /news4vip/.
It should be noted that Avex Inc. was a majority investor in Dwango, the company that was responsible for Niconico Douga which Nishimura served as a director on until 2013.
"「のまネコ間題」ってなによ" (November 1, 2005). Nikkei Business Publications.
nomaneko.txt · Last modified: 2024-05-05 12:04:02 by namelessrumia