Comic-Con: Retailers/Publishers Decide Maybe Digital Distribution ISN’T The Devil

That woman is the DEVIL!Before I begin, make sure to click the link at the bottom of this post to read the full article. It includes lots of details that I won’t go into here, but is well worth the read.

It’s not hard to see why some retailers and/or publishers might be reticent about jumping into the digital distribution craze that’s sweeping through the comics industry. The money stream completely changes and, in most cases, shrinks, and no one wants less money for their product. However, a panel went down at Comic-Con this year where that very real conundrum was discussed, with Scott Kurtz and Mark Waid (representing the Web and paper comic book communities, respectively) heading up the rundown.

Whether they’re laughing and skipping or kicking and screaming, retailers are seeing the revenue being missed in the digital stream and are largely ready to get their share. But with the big two (Marvel and DC) putting more and more content online, there is too much money to be missed by not offering some sort of service to that end, not to mention the squelching of the pirating movement, which is a big problem for nearly any form of entertainment these days. DC is even launching an initiative this Fall, to coincide with their line-wide relaunch of nearly every title they put out, which will see all of their comics coming to the digital marketplace day-and-date with the paper editions. While prices will keep many people from picking up the digital copy in its first month (when the price will be the same as the shelf copy), I know I can certainly wait a month to read the stories I want to read without having to mess with storing a physical copy afterwards.

Also of note in this discussion is the idea of formatting content for reading on digital devices, mostly made up of the growing iPad contingent. Notably, Love and Capes creator Thom Zahler keeps this in mind when laying things out and adjusts accordingly. The more the digital thought process permeates the comics industry, the more this kind of thinking will have to become second nature. Of course, oddballs that must be read in a certain context and fashion will still exist because as long as people care about comics as a storytelling device, there will exist a niche of creative, mind-expanding content.

Comic-Con embraces the iPad era, Jason Snell (


9 thoughts on “Comic-Con: Retailers/Publishers Decide Maybe Digital Distribution ISN’T The Devil

  1. Also, is Earthworm Jim Steve’s only other experience with Doug Tenapel? Dude needs to read Creaturetech. And maybe play The Neverhood…

  2. Comments, as rare as they are in these parts, are welcome regardless of the context or post. Also, you are correct, Emperor’s New Groove was amazing, I find it hard to believe it came from Disney it was so good. And David Spade, too! *sigh*

  3. It sort of had to be made by Disney though. If it wasn’t it would have been Shrek.

    The team behind ENG had enough respect for the storytelling style that while they poked fun at the tropes, they also made a really interesting story in an engaging world, so it didn’t seem like a parody.

  4. You want to know the real reason Emperor’s New Groove was so friggin great (besides Patrick Walburn)?

    No love story on the side. It told one story, for the whole movie. Nobody, Disney or otherwise, has the balls to do that anymore.

  5. I can agree with both of you on this one, though Steve screwing up the name (Patrick Warburton) puts me in Robin’s camp. Sad, because him speaking squirrel is easily my favorite part of that movie.

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