The popular online streaming website ‘4anime’ has been taken offline, but why was the platform shut down and what alternatives are out there?

Anime fans around the world probably number the hundreds of millions and with that, comes a variety of different mediums to watch anime online.

Whilst there is a plethora of paid subscription plans available, many fans have watched series through ‘loophole’ sites.

However, users of the anime streaming site ‘4anime’ will be disappointed when they next click on the platform, with confirmation of its permeant removal of content.

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Why was 4anime shut down?

  • According to the statement by the 4anime team, the streaming site was shut down due to “certain circumstances” and whilst a more exact reason was not given, fans are predicting the copyright laws in Japan have caught up to the platform.

When trying to access the website, some users are being redirected to a message by the 4anime staff.

“Sorry for ending things this way. Due to certain circumstances we have to close the site. All the bookmarks will be available via login in the next week or two so don’t worry. However, all the videos and content is deleted…” – 4anime, via social media.

The message ends with, “We encourage you to support the industry by viewing on legal alternatives or something” – a message echoed by users on social media.

The 4anime Reddit page also had an update on the website shutting down, stating that they “haven’t received any specifics from the owner” but that the platform has been “shut down for good.”

According to the Reddit post, both the discord server and subreddit will remain active, but will move to become “fully separated from the 4anime site.”

Catching up to streaming websites…

It appears that these ‘loophole’ streaming services, that have existed online for years, are now being taken down at an increasing rate.

Most recently and notably, KissAnime was officially taken offline in late-2020 due to the copyright owners removing the files from the online platform.

It is worth noting that copy websites and fake domains were quickly available, with both KissAnime and 4anime clarifying that users should not access these pages.

Whilst there are countless platforms similar to 4anime and KissAnime out there, it appears that the rate that these sites are taken down will only increase.

The best legal streaming services…

Thankfully, there are plenty of alternatives available online for a variety of prices – paying for anime means that the money will go back into the industry and to the people who produce the titles we adore.

The most obvious alternatives include Crunchyroll, Funimation, Hulu, Netflix and Amazon Prime. All these platforms release the latest series, subbed and dubbed, and even release original titles that are exclusive to each site.

Some lesser-known sites include various official distribution YouTube pages, Anime Planet, D Anime Store and U-Next, but remember that individual sites such as Tubi or Sony Crackle are not available in all territories.

By Tom Llewellyn – [email protected]

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