SDCC: A Retailer Revolt?
There’s been plenty of talk about how Comic-Con isn’t really about comic books anymore, with the influx of marketing about upcoming movies and TV shows (a few of which are at least based on comics).
That discussion typically revolves around how the movie booths and panels draw more attention than the ones dedicated to comics, but there’s another angle to the story.
Comic-Con began all those years ago as a smaller affair, dedicated to readers and retailers, and the star of the show was boxes and boxes of comics. Now? With the con’s huge growth, retailers are unhappy with their marginalized role, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.
They complain about rising fees for exhibit hall booths. “We are being priced out of existence,” said Richard Muchin of Tomorrow’s Treasures, a Long Island, N.Y., dealer.
They complain about the cost of traveling to, and staying in, San Diego. “It’s too expensive to be here,” said Lee Hester, owner of Lee’s Comics in San Mateo.
Most of all, they complain that they’ve been shoved aside by the Hollywood studios, whose enormous displays dominate the exhibition hall. “If we’re that important,” asked Jamie Graham, who runs nine comic shops in the Chicago area, “why aren’t we in the middle of the room, where more people can see us?”
Hester and Al Stoltz, of Maryland’s Basement Comics, said they will not return to the Con next year. Rozanski, one of the biggest vendors here with 25,000 books, said he may join them. “There’s actually a movement afoot to pull all the comic-book dealers out of Comic-Con and move to a separate venue,” he said.
The show should really try to do something to strike a balance for the people who 'made' the con popular.
A balance does need to be reached, but the large retailers still have prime floor space. The small/specialty retailers and the artists alley are the ones being squeezed out. If a retailer thinks that San Diego is too crowded or expensive, please stay home. More attention needs to be given to the needs and comforts of the FANS. You know, the people who go there to spend the money that the complaining retailers want to take.
“There's actually a movement afoot to pull all the comic-book dealers out of Comic-Con and move to a separate venue,”Yeah? Who's talking? I'd like to keep track of what they come up with.
Yow!Isn't bad enough these guys have to compete with eBay?The business might as well just cut their legs off at the knees.
Funniest comment of the piece:“There's actually a movement afoot to pull all the comic-book dealers out of Comic-Con and move to a separate venue,”Yes, which damn near no one will go to. Here's the formula you use to determine if you should come back next year. Amount made at the con – money spent to get to the con (+ self-defined value of fun had at the con).If this is a positive number of an acceptable size, you did well, and should come back next year.If not, don't come back, or try harder to market yourself and get people to come to your booth.This is another one of those cases of people not treating the business like a business. The Con does not OWE you anything. It's your job to make your booth attractive to the casual buyer. Unless you have a customer (or customers) who make a point of coming to your booth, all you're gonna get is walk-by business. So make yourself attractive. Have a sale, play music, hire a booth babe, anything you have to do. This is The Big Game. There's hundreds of cons across the country that haven't been overrun with media stuff. San Diego has become something more than a comic-con; resign yourself to that.
It is no longer a comic book convention. It is a media convention and as you say if comic book retailers aren't making enough money to justify going to the convention then they shouldn't go. How long was "the star of the show … boxes and boxes of comics"? When it was mostly a comic convention, I thought the "the star of the show" was the comic book creators.
this is how i see it. Being my first SDCC, my thoughts are that the big guys should be more spread out. that way it's more of a merge than a take over.
That would be great Mark if there were any place to spread out to but the whole hall is booked solid with a 3 year waiting list and no more room to grow. It's become almost impossible to move on the floor at any time (even preview night which was tolerable last year) except for occasionally at the dealers end of the room (mostly near the ones selling older comics and artwork- lord help you if you want to get near any one selling stuff related to anime or manga) or artist's alley if you are not near today's "hot" artist (who probably doesn't sit in artist's alley any more anyway). I can understand the frustration of some of the dealer's who have been at the show for years and see the comics end of things getting more and more removed. Why did Dexter (which I love) and The Office have booths at the show? What do they have even remotely to do with comics? If it is now a pop culture show stop calling it Comic-Con and stop telling us it's a comics convention.
No, I meant that all the studios shouldnt be together making it a human wall. WB should be over there and then Sci-fi should be waaaaay over there. in between there should be smaller stuff. As for the panels, howsabout a closed circuit television in some of the other halls? that way there wont be so much crowding in some of the rooms
I got what you meant but I wonder if it wouldn't just make the entire building a wall of humanity, but I'm willing for anything that might keep me from a few less backpacks to the face!As for the cctv, if people didn't want to be in the room they'd just stay home and watch it on their xboxes
I think I read there is going to be a Dexter comic book.