Tagged: Comixology

We Don’t Know How Big DC’s September Sales Victory Over Marvel Is

We Don’t Know How Big DC’s September Sales Victory Over Marvel Is

While DC triumphed over Marvel in September’s charts — if they hadn’t, it would have been the greatest shock of the year — but some folks, like Warren Ellis were unimpressed with the margins:

But all those units DC sold are returnable.

Thank god all those DC execs told everyone they weren’t interested in market share. Otherwise someone might have come away with the notion that DC really intended to give Marvel a fight in the marketplace and make Marvel sort their own shit out. What a stroke of luck for everybody.

However, one thing that these figures Diamond released today don’t take into account is that when comics are returnable, they are automatically downgraded by around 10%.

via DC’s victory over Marvel was bigger than Diamond figures show — UPDATED.


The only numbers we have to work with are Diamond’s numbers. In addition to not knowing newsstand and overseas sales, we do not know what the sales figures are for digital. Since the digital editions will be available forever (or close enough as makes no difference) with infinite copies available, sales will continue on these books for weeks and months afterwards.

And we have no idea what the market looks like for digital editions, or how it will expand in the upcoming months and reach people who have not stepped in a comics store in years, if ever.

We have now reached the reverse of the original Phil Seuling days. When he first started selling books, publishers would not include them in their calculations because they only sold to a narrow fan market. Now, we aren’t counting sales that don’t sell to that narrow fan market. We have no idea what the market share is in the brand new markets.

And it will be this way going forward, unless Comixology and Graphicly start releasing their numbers. Don’t hold your breath waiting for them.

MARTHA THOMASES: Confessions of an iPad Comics Virgin

Is that all there is?

I finally downloaded a few comics onto my iPad using the updated Comixology app. I mean, I’m on record as being a lover of comics on paper, as well as the comic book shops that sell them. However, I’m also a big fan of prose on paper, as well as the bookstores that sell them, and I love my Kindle, so I thought I should give the new delivery system a try.

Previously, I’d noticed a flaw in the iPad design as far as visual entertainment goes. The screen is too shiny. Reading a book on the iBook app is more difficult for me than reading a book on the Kindle because of the glare (the Kindle has a matte finish). It’s even more distracting when watching a movie. However, I enjoy having a movie downloaded if I’m flying somewhere, and I might also enjoy having a virtual stack of comics.

I started by scouting out the free comics, because what if I didn’t like it? And I wanted something I hadn’t read already, so my previous opinion wouldn’t influence me. My son loves Robert Kirkman, and I was a fan of the TV show, so I downloaded the first issue of The Walking Dead.

It was a good choice. The app was easy to use, even for an old fart like myself, and I enjoyed my experience.

So last week, when there was a shipment glitch at New York comic shops, and I couldn’t get two of the books I wanted at any of my local stores by Saturday, I went online and paid for content. Reading Detective Comics and Stormwatch was, oddly, more difficult than reading the indie comic with lower production values. The lettering was hard to read, too small, and when I made the image bigger, I lost the flow of the page.

Did I lose some strength in my optic nerves? I went back to read Walking Dead again (and why can’t you go back to the beginning with one touch?), and that still worked well for me.

Still the color of the DC books was brilliant, and there were no ads. There were also no letters pages or other DC editorial material. For my $2.99, I got my story, and that’s it.

As it happens those two books have a reasonable amount of story. If I’d read Justice League #1 in that format, I would have been irked.

Will I buy more? Maybe back issues, because I’d rather have the stuff on my computer than in storage. Or if I’m away on a long trip, where I’m unfamiliar with the local comic book shops. Or if it’s the middle of the night and I don’t want to get dressed and go walking the streets, looking for Superman (or, I suppose, Mr. Goodbar).

But otherwise? I’m sticking with paper, at least for the near term. I like my comics with some social interaction. I like folding back the cover – and watching the true collectors freak out.

There aren’t that many occasions when I can feel eight years old again, and reading comics lets me do it once a week. So I’ll stay with the format from last century for as long as I can.

Martha Thomases, Dominoed Daredoll, really really really liked the new Animal Man.

SATURDAY: Marc Alan Fishman