Comic prices

Discussion in 'Comic Books and Graphic Novels' started by -Mainframe-, Jul 21, 2012.

  1. -Mainframe-

    -Mainframe- Well-Known Member

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    If comic companies started printing on cheaper paper and lowered the price would you buy more?

    Would you still buy TPB's?

    Even if TPB's were on better paper and the price was a little more?
    (glossy paper)
     
  2. RabidYak

    RabidYak Go Ninja Go Ninja Go

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    No, because paper stock isn't the problem with American floppy pricing nor is pricing one of the main reasons that I don't buy them.

    Misuse of glossy paper stock in reprints of old comics definately puts me off buying those volumes thougth.
     
  3. -Mainframe-

    -Mainframe- Well-Known Member

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    Paper costs do push up prices. So, it is part of the problem.

    Which comics do you buy?
     
  4. RabidYak

    RabidYak Go Ninja Go Ninja Go

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    Cost of paper is pretty negligable part of the problem compared to the distribution monopoly, low economies of scale, bad business models and the sheer fact that many of the publishers are just out to chisel as much money as possible out of whats left of the DM customer base. Changing to cheaper paper to marginally reduce prices would be like putting a plaster on a brain tumor.


    Nothing in floppies anymore, largely because buying that stuff in collections is substantially more practical and drastically reduces the likelyhood of buying shit. Also, currentish Direct Market stuff is about 10% of what i'm reading thesedays anyway and I don't want to put money into the DM in its current form on principle.
     
  5. chaosMonkeyPoo

    chaosMonkeyPoo Well-Known Member

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    This, 100% this. The sheer amount of greed and bad management in comics is pretty ridiculous considering the relatively small size of the market. Changing to cheaper paper would not only not effect prices but would drive most of us still reading them in physical form crazy.

    That said, I'm still reading about 20-25 books at this time (mostly Marvel). I would consider going 100% digital, but I disagree with the current pricing model for digital comics. Especially when i get my books 35%-50% off by ordering my books online (from dcbservice.com). I get my books a few days later than if I bought them in store, but the discount is the only thing keeping the books reasonably priced enough for me to even buy comics anymore, so I suck it up.
     
  6. just1nj

    just1nj NERD GAZETTE

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    I'd buy more modern comics if the stories were actually good.
     
  7. SouthtownKid

    SouthtownKid Headmaster

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    :rock 

    The problem isn't the paper. It's the adherence to an outdated format and distribution system.

    The monthly floppy format just doesn't work anymore, and the problem is compounded by increasingly decompressed storytelling. Paying $3-$4 for the tiniest sliver of a story, then waiting a month for the next tiny story sliver is ludicrous. It's like watching your favorite tv drama from one commercial break to the next, then waiting a full month for the next 7 minutes of the episode. 7 months later, you've finally managed to watch ONE episode. Hooray. Is there anyone who would watch tv that way? Of course not.
     
  8. RabidYak

    RabidYak Go Ninja Go Ninja Go

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    Just to put in context how utterly fucking rediculous and out of touch the direct market comics business is, have you seen whats at the top of the NYT Graphic Novel chart at the moment?

    A 220 page OGN for young teenage girls that costs $10.99.
     
  9. -Mainframe-

    -Mainframe- Well-Known Member

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    Which comics do you like?

    I don't have a problem with the format. You can wait for the Trade.
     
  10. SouthtownKid

    SouthtownKid Headmaster

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    You not having a problem with the format is fine -- for YOU.

    Meanwhile the industry is dying all around you and the audience constantly shrinking. People today don't consume media the same way our grandparents and great-grandparents did. People don't use home projectors and 22mm film anymore; they use dvd and blu-ray. With music, never mind vinyl record albums, most people don't even buy CDs anymore; they buy digital downloads of albums or individual songs. Even tv by appointment is dying out. Yet comics are still packaged and sold pretty much the exact same way they were back in the days when people listened to records, movies were black & white and only in theaters, and television didn't even exist.

    The 20-22 page floppy format does not work for modern audiences. That is evident from the sales numbers. Yet the performance of comic book movies like DKR and Avengers proves there is a gigantic appetite with the general public for material featuring these kinds of characters and these kinds of stories. So why doesn't the success of these movies translate to increased comic sales? The time for the artform to evolve is decades overdue, and the shrinking readership is the fallout of that.

    People living in the past and insisting that comics remain the vinyl record albums of their medium are dragging comics down and keeping them from ever succeeding again like they should.
     
  11. Galvatron Rage

    Galvatron Rage Question Authority

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    I'm not sure if I agree with that or not....

    When I first read it, I thought it was BS...but the more you think about it, I can understand what you mean. Comics hasn't been able to make the leap out of "vinyl" and have digital fully take off because most people (I won't say "people living in the past") still buy regular ol' comics. I can agree with that sentiment; I think you're right.


    But on the other hand, how can you say that people are "dragging comics down and keeping them from ever succeeding again like they should" by going to their LCS and buying a bunch of comics???
     
  12. SouthtownKid

    SouthtownKid Headmaster

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    Because there aren't enough of those people left to make a difference. And while publishers continue to put the majority of their focus on catering to this ever-shrinking (and already tiny) group of people, they'll never be able to cultivate the new audiences out there that would allow them to succeed.
     
  13. Galvatron Rage

    Galvatron Rage Question Authority

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    Man...I never debate anything around here, but why not...

    What do you mean "Because there aren't enough of those people left to make a difference"? First off, I'm not sure that even makes any sense, but whatever.

    LCS sales are the backbone of this industry. Comic sales have been strong and steady going all the way back to 1999, with yearly sales around 72 million issues - and that's just the Top 300 comics....and that doesn't even include TPB! That equates to $250 million in just comic sales dollars, and $400 million+ in overall sales. I'd say that's nothing to scoff at.

    Are comics at 1990's levels? Hell no. They probably never will be again.


    You act like traditional comics are DEAD, and that they're somehow holding the industry back. I just don't see it.

    Will they be dead someday? Yeah, probably - but not right now. They're still going strong, from what I can see. My nearby comic shop is doing well, and is pretty-well packed every Wednesday.


    Here's the stats to back up what I just said.

    Yearly Rankings for Comic Book Sales



    ....alright. That's enough of that. Too much serious posting.:D 
     
  14. SouthtownKid

    SouthtownKid Headmaster

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    1990s levels are nothing. We should be aiming for 1940s numbers.

    And why the defeatist attitude that comics can never reach those levels again? Comics in some other countries do. There are comics in Japan that sell in the hundreds of thousands and millions WEEKLY. And have been doing so for decades.

    People in charge here really need to be asking themselves why we aren't achieving that. I mean really asking. Comics is an artform created in the United States. Along with Jazz, it is one of only a few the US can lay claim to. Why is our comics industry so much less healthy than some other nations'? Why aren't the physical books being produced connecting with the huge audience out there that is clearly super-hungry for this type of material?
     
  15. WidowMaker91

    WidowMaker91 Well-Known Member

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    So are you saying the market should go 100% digital? Or something else?
     
  16. Tekkaman Blade

    Tekkaman Blade Professor of Animation

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    That's because Japan caters to their audiences. They actually read the letters to the editors and make changes and adjustments. They don't say your stupid we are going to keep doing this stuff you don't like instead, or the keep doing 1 thing and publish another series spin off to appeal to the other audience. Their manga is Telephone book sized, weekly and dirt cheap,(the collected editions not as much) It's something you can read and pick the stories you like. And it's so cheap after your done reading you can disgard it if you want to. I also don't need to read the Bleach manga to know what is happening in Naruto or One Piece, those stories work on their own, have their own mythologies, and the characters grow and change over time. Also you'll find any movie or TV show is very close to the source material. So one can view or read the other and not be confused. And if the audience likes one they may pick up the other or vice versa.

    During the 90's comics became about art, crossovers and stunts, and the industry has never recovered. The idea of long term plans, and issues that can be read in one issue went away. The staus quo was thrown out the window, and continuity was considered lame and unimportant.

    They keep wanting to go back to what it used to be and by doing so lose the audience who actually liked the stories they had just been telling.
     
  17. Tekkaman Blade

    Tekkaman Blade Professor of Animation

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    THe problem with digital is the prices are basically the same as the physical. So most people just buy the physical. The price isn't realistic either. What they should do is go for 50 cent back issues for old series, they'd make a fortune. You can imagine kids buying old issues of spider-man or Batman by the truck load that way, then moving on to another comic series. It's cheaper than the real version and it costs far less to make, so the companies don't really lose money, it's not like they have to print it. Then you sneak in free issues here and there to generate interest. They have over 50 years of stories from both companies waiting for people to read them, make them cheap and make them easy to afford and your audience will do the rest.

    10,000 physical at 3.99 = 39,900 - artist fees, printer costs, shipping, retailers returning unsold copies= say 1/3 to 1/2 so $19,500 to 27,930
    100,000 digital at 50 cents on old series you only have occasional trades of =$50,000 - minus any residuals to artist or writers say $45,000
    In the end you get more money and a bigger audience.
     
  18. -Mainframe-

    -Mainframe- Well-Known Member

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    What he said. Comic shops have many people still buying from them and Comic Conventions are packed.

    Not at all. Nothing should be all digital.

    Are people so lazy that all they can do is sit in front of the computer?

    You can't read a physical book or put a CD in the player? Lazy people. :p 

    Why not buy a hoveround so you do not have to walk any more?

    :D 
     
  19. Seeker

    Seeker Time Lord

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    Amen brother!!:rock 
     
  20. SouthtownKid

    SouthtownKid Headmaster

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    I don't get how reading something one way is "lazier" than reading it another. Reading is reading.

    But publishers need to find a way to get comic books in front of kids so they can develop the comic-reading habit. And comic shops aren't the answer to that. Most kids of the age comics publishers should be trying to grab (say, 7-10 years old) aren't even aware there is such a thing as a comic shop, unless they happen to have a parent who already reads comics.

    They also need to focus on comics in a format kids today can connect with and that makes sense. If storytelling has become too decompressed to fit a story into a single issue, then the single issue no longer makes sense. Or the single issues need to come out more frequently.
     

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