It looks like a pretty big shakeup is about to happen in Shonen Jump over in Japan, the effects of which will no doubt affect the digital English-language Weekly Shonen Jump. As some of you might know from my regular coverage of WSJ, the English version runs a set of new series as "Jump Starts" when deciding what to serialize outside of Japan in the translated editions. But many of the series involved in the "Jump Start" process outside of Japan are already in the process of serialization in Japan. Among the series involved in "Jump Starts" that have not been serialized in WSJ but see regular release in Japan are Cyborg Roggy, Takujou no Ageha, Ultra Battle Satellite, and Kagamigami (the last of which actually does pretty okay in Japan).
The main reason for this is that Jump in Japan is a much bigger anthology, as well as one which has a brutal and established process of vetting newcomers. That process is essentially a mix of stringent editorial practice and a survey of the readers' favorite titles that week. The survey has a huge impact on the success of a title, and the editors' main role is often in deciding whether or not to try and stick with a title that has a low rank for several weeks. WSJ has a similar survey, but I imagine that unless a series has awful performance for months on end, the survey largely functions to pick "Jump Start" candidates, and not much else.
As I mentioned earlier this week, School Judgment (Gakkyu Houtei) has been wearing thin for the last few weeks. Apparently people in Japan agree, and its poor performance is consistent with the type of survey results that usually lead to a series being canceled. I also mentioned that WSJ felt a little empty, with next week's issue missing both One Piece and Bleach. The following week will see the return of One Piece and the debut of a Naruto spin-off which will begin the expansion of the future Naruto universe in preparation for the movie later this year.
After that, Jump will be premiering three new series. There is a very good chance that this will mean a new set of "Jump Starts" for readers outside of Japan, one which is sorely needed and will be even more sorely needed with the loss of School Judgment. Because monthly series are currently doing better than a lot of the new weekly series, I would also not be shocked to see either a former "Jump Start" loser like Kagamigami join the lineup, or for the new "Jump Start" to possibly pick up more than one new series.
Next week's WSJ will likely be a bit of a downer, but the week after and following Golden Week, things will start to pick up: we have Luffy's fourth gear, Naruto as Hokage, and new manga to look forward to.