Day and date digital comics

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Day and date digital comics

Post  thecolorsblend on Fri Jun 03, 2011 11:57 am

URL- http://www.newsarama.com/comics/DC-Universe-Reboot-Announcement-110531.html

This is old news to some of you now but basically DC will begin releasing digital comics the same day as the printed counterparts. The digital versions will be initially cost $3.99 but then drop down to $2.99. Many people are criticizing this decision but they clearly don't understand that this move is designed to protect retailers (comic book stores). Given that there really is no "news stand" to speak of anymore, much of the industry's business model is situated in the direct market initially (single issues) and then, later, the general market (trade paperbacks).

Sure, DC could release digital comics for MUCH cheaper than $3.99 or even $2.99 but they'd singlehandedly kill what's left of the golden goose with the retailers.

Honestly, I'm not sure what to think of this. My suspicion is that the model is flawed because people don't/won't regard single issues of comic books the same way they regard downloading a song from iTunes. I think DC would be better served by offering up memberships for, say, $10 or $15 per month which permits downloading, say, any 15 or 20 monthly titles you want. But then we're back to that killing their retailers.

In the short term, I believe DC will protect the retailers as much as they can. But in the coming years, sooner or later DC will have to make a choice and the only option on the table will be to cut the price of the digital versions in a way that the retailers simply can't compete with. After that, the comic book shop as we've known it will effectively cease to exist.

That, I think, is the end game of this. Sooner or later.
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Re: Day and date digital comics

Post  webhead2006 on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:36 pm

Ya sounds a little messed up and would blow to see the phyiscal comicbook die. I still like to read the actual reaal book. Not some digital copy.
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Re: Day and date digital comics

Post  thecolorsblend on Thu Jun 16, 2011 5:32 pm

Feels like I should follow up on this. With any change in medium, there seems to be a fair amount of suffering that must ensue. Seems unavoidable.

But I don't see this being an easy transition. Sure, DC is (arguably) "getting out in front of it" by releasing day/date digital comics but if anyone thinks that'll attract new readers (ie, totally foreign to comics) at a $3.99 price point (guess we can't say "cover price" anymore), they're out of their friggin minds. Nobody will want to take that risk.

On the other hand, there's no choice because DC has to protect Diamond and the retailers.

Maybe the model they should experiment with is a membership approach. The customer pays, I don't know, $10 per month, which permits them to download up to seven or eight titles. $15 gets you twenty titles. $30 per months get you unlimited downloads of all current issues. From there, $80 maybe gets you unlimited downloads of all current and back issues. You could maybe even offer, say, a $5 membership which permits download of back issues from 1938 (or whenever) up through 1989.

Or something, I dunno.

From there, DC cuts Diamond a check from the digital comics proceeds. Pick a number/percentage, it really doesn't matter.

From there, Diamond distributes a portion of said proceeds to their member retailers (ie, comic book shops). This way nobody really gets left out in the cold but at the same time DC can undercut their retailers without necessarily threatening them (since it all comes back to them in the end anyway). Hell, this approach could be so lucrative as to permit DC to cut prices on their paper issues. Obviously I can't guarantee that would happen but you'd think what DC would lose in short term margin would be made up for in long term volume. Since it's ultimately DC's ass on the line, it's not like Diamond or the retailers risk anything. Hell, they stand only to profit so why would they even care about cover prices at that point?

The only thing you're really risking with the retailers is back issue sales (hence limiting the range to 1938 to 1990). But even there, those things can be obtained in other venues/formats anyway (trade paperbacks/archive collections in Barnes & Noble, for example) so the comic book shop's "losses" there are strictly theoretical.

Look, I'm not arguing the above is a perfect, flawless model. Allz I'm saying though is that there has got to be a better way.
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Re: Day and date digital comics

Post  non_amos on Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:13 am

More updates courtesy of duh Homopage:

http://www.supermanhomepage.com/news.php?readmore=9968#comments

June 30, 2011: Comic Books - Digital vs Print
Digital vs Print One of the major points coming out of the news that DC Comics will be relaunching the entire DC Universe of comic books was the fact that the new books would be released in digital format on the same day their printed versions hit stores.

The idea to "go digital" has caught the interest of many fans, and I thought I'd examine the Pros and Cons of Digital vs Print.

To read my complete article on digital comic books vs printed comic books be sure to subscribe to the "Big Blue Report" newsletter now to ensure you'll receive issue #241 which will be emailed out on July 1st.

For the typical asinine comment from an apologist:

#1 | bobmiq on June 30, 2011 12:30am EST
I've been waiting for this for a long time. I've just recently finished cataloging my physical books, and now I'm trying to sell them off. My Xoom is on order, and come September, I'll be getting all my comics digitally. Thank goodness this day has finally come.

Yeah, dude, sell your real comics off, whether they have any financial value or not. Who needs real books, right? You've got 'XOOM', whatever that is. But what if your technology ever crashes? Do you have a back-up plan? When your device wears out, are you gonna download them to another one? Whatever. I'm not currently buying comics but if I were, it'd be the real deal! Mad
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Re: Day and date digital comics

Post  webhead2006 on Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:33 am

Ya as nice as it is to have a/ obile/digital device. To read things on the go where ever. Like you said what if device breaks/looses files, etc... I rather keep/read/collect physical copies. What good would digital comics be to sell and all that. Plus I still enjoy reading the real book.
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Re: Day and date digital comics

Post  thecolorsblend on Thu Jun 30, 2011 2:14 pm

non_amos wrote:More updates courtesy of duh Homopage:

http://www.supermanhomepage.com/news.php?readmore=9968#comments

June 30, 2011: Comic Books - Digital vs Print
Digital vs Print One of the major points coming out of the news that DC Comics will be relaunching the entire DC Universe of comic books was the fact that the new books would be released in digital format on the same day their printed versions hit stores.

The idea to "go digital" has caught the interest of many fans, and I thought I'd examine the Pros and Cons of Digital vs Print.

To read my complete article on digital comic books vs printed comic books be sure to subscribe to the "Big Blue Report" newsletter now to ensure you'll receive issue #241 which will be emailed out on July 1st.

For the typical asinine comment from an apologist:

#1 | bobmiq on June 30, 2011 12:30am EST
I've been waiting for this for a long time. I've just recently finished cataloging my physical books, and now I'm trying to sell them off. My Xoom is on order, and come September, I'll be getting all my comics digitally. Thank goodness this day has finally come.

Yeah, dude, sell your real comics off, whether they have any financial value or not. Who needs real books, right? You've got 'XOOM', whatever that is. But what if your technology ever crashes? Do you have a back-up plan? When your device wears out, are you gonna download them to another one? Whatever. I'm not currently buying comics but if I were, it'd be the real deal! Mad
A XOOM seems to be yet another freakin tablet.

I can't believe I'm about to defend a freakin Apologist but here goes. Digital is the way of the future. We may not like it but there it is. It's cheaper and has the potential (if managed right) to GREATLY expand the dying comic biz's ever-shrinking market. I understand the push for it. I can even understand some people getting onboard with it early ("fuck paying for these things, the shit's out there right now on torrent sites COMPLETELY FOR FREE, I'm getting EVERYTHING") but I think it's unspeakably wrongheaded to be HAPPY about the paper issues eventually going the way of the dinosaur.

So hmm, come to think of it, I don't know if the above even counts as defending an Apologist but either way I hang my head in shame.
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