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  1. #31
    Surfing With The Alien Spike-X's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trey Strain View Post
    The only sensible things for the comics companies to do are to kill decompression and to start printing floppies on newsprint.

    If you haven't seen my poll over in the Marvel forum, here it is.

    http://community.comicbookresources....s-on-newsprint
    Yeah, making them look like shit again is definitely what's needed.

    If they can even find any presses left that can still handle newsprint.

  2. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Buried Alien View Post
    This question has been asked almost biweekly since CBR was founded nearly 22 years ago, and guess what: comics are still around.
    I remember seeing a few or so of them in the previous incarnation of these forums.
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  3. #33
    Swollen Member GOLGO 13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by My Two Cents View Post
    I stopped buying floppies a year ago and switched to hard and soft cover trades.......... I wish it was sooner.
    Have not brought a floppy in 10+ years. Digital is how I go unless something very, very special comes out like Omnibus Conan or like those hardcover collected Calvin & Hobbes or HELLBOY.

  4. #34
    Astonishing Member Powerboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MRP View Post
    When you are only sold in niche shops that are destination only and not available in the mass market, you are a niche product regardless of price. The low cost of comics is what made newsstand retailers NOT want to carry them, they did not have a large enough revenue potential to make it worth the space they took up ont he newsstands most of the time. Many newsstand dealers left them bundled and just returned them for credit rather than opening up the bundles, putting out the books to make a few pennies and then having to take the rest off, strip them and then return them. They did not provide enough return on investment for a lot of the newsstand vendors at those price points which is why DC kept experimenting with formats (80 page giants, the 60 cent and dollar giants, etc.) and Marvel experimented with the Giant Sized quarterly books, during the 70s, trying to find a format that news vendors wanted and was profitable for them. You can't sell a product at a price point that none of the retailers will carry. Ultimately, you are selling your product to vendors not customers and if the vendors won't buy them from you to resell, you cannot reach the customers.That means having a price point that makes it worthwhile for the vendor to carry the product. Basic retail theory is that a product has to generate enough revenue to pay for the square footage in your store it occupies plus the % of operating costs that square footage represents to the whole in labor, utilities, etc. plus a profit margin otherwise you lose money carrying the product. Unless you are deliberately choosing the product as a loss leader, you are not going to carry a product that loses you money even if it sells. Comics disappeared from the newsstands and became a niche product in large part because the low price point wasn't worth it to the vendors and they could sell other more profitable items in the space comics occupied.

    Remember, at the $4 price point, retailers are buying it at about $2 an issue, Diamond is buying it at a bout a $1 per issue so Marvel/DC are only getting $1 per copy sold on average, Diamond $2 and retailers $4 minus whatever discount they offer to pull customers. That's not a very big margin and cutting the prices back shrinks the margin even more, and without access to mass markets outside the niche market of the direct market, there's not enough volume of sale sot make it workable. Comics are niche products because the direct market is a niche market, not because their price point is too high, and niche products always have a higher price point than equivalent products in the mass market. So you can't compare the price point of comics when they were a mass market item to comics now which are a niche market product just by adjusting for inflation. It's an invalid comparison, like comparing apples to oranges. If you want to compare today comics to comics of that period, look at things like what undergrounds and other niche products of the time were priced at and suddenly, they are not overpriced for the time/inflation adjustment. And lowering prices now won't suddenly make comics a mass market product again because there is no infrastructure in place to sell them on the mass market (in floppy/periodical format at least).

    -M
    This is interesting. I didn't know most of this stuff. However, my comment was not really a slam on how comics are distributed or an implication that they could do it some other way. It was just a statement that the reason I don't buy more comics is the price. Then again, I really spend more on comics than I ever did as a kid. As a kid, I'd get my father to give me two bucks a week and I'd use them to buy every Marvel and DC comic that came out that week that I was interested in and usually have change left. Today, I'm more likely to spend 16 to 24 dollars either every week or every other week for a trade paperback. So it's really much more than I spent back then even taking inflation into consideration. A trade usually equals six regular issues on average so you could say I average six comics each week or each two weeks.

    But my remark was just to the sheer number of comics I would be buying at old prices. Then again, I realize the increase in quality (sometimes). But the whole thing about vendors is interesting and the fact that most of us don't truly understand the business process of it.
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  5. #35
    Astonishing Member Powerboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trey Strain View Post
    The only sensible things for the comics companies to do are to kill decompression and to start printing floppies on newsprint.

    If you haven't seen my poll over in the Marvel forum, here it is.

    http://community.comicbookresources....s-on-newsprint
    Just to support your comment a ways back that most of what people say on comic book boards screams "We're old", even $1.99 for a comic seems steep when you can remember them being 12 cents. But then again, $1.99 still beats $3.99.

    However, in reality, what I find is that I'd rather have the physical comic in my hands even though I'm perfectly okay with novels and most other stuff being on my tablet. What really happens, at least for me, is that I narrow my comic book reading down to one character or one subject and then only buy the trades, not individual comics. I've got quite the Green Lantern collection which works great because it's not always the same character.
    Superman was a beacon to the world.

  6. #36
    Extraordinary Member Trey Strain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spike-X View Post
    Yeah, making them look like shit again is definitely what's needed.

    If they can even find any presses left that can still handle newsprint.
    Newspapers and shoppers get printed on newsprint in every city, every day.

    This thread is about the decline of comics. But then again, if you don't acknowledge there's a problem, then of course you're going to balk at any solution to it.

  7. #37
    Astonishing Member Powerboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by My Two Cents View Post
    I remember back in the sixties being able to go to many stores around my small town
    and there would be comics mixed in with the magazines and than in the seventies I
    had to walk across town to the one store carrying comics and than the eighties
    and only my local small book store carried comics and only Marvel and than the nineties
    and only comic book specialty shops carried comics and than they raised the prices and
    I had to travel across the Hudson River into New York to get my comics at a discount with
    out having to pre-order in advance on line for a discount and than Marvel and D C
    started to unravel and I was able to abandon all seeking and purchasing of comics
    on a weekly schedule
    I remember also convenience/ "rip-off" stores were where I got comics. I was also in a small town. Well, I was in the country near small towns including one convenience store that was also a malt shop although this was in a time when a Malt shop was already an anachronism.

    By the time I was in college, it was getting to be book stores that also carried a comics rack.

    Then in the late 1980s this new thing called a comic book store came along.

    Then I stopped buying comics for a few years and started again in the 1990s. I remember walking into a comics store, looking at the covers and thinking, "Cool. So it's a comics store AND an adult book store".

    Nowadays, it's a local comic book store although I sometimes just note the price on something and, rather than buy it there, wait until I can check what the price is on ebay.
    Superman was a beacon to the world.

  8. #38
    Spectacular Member mrbrklyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kjn View Post
    Too expensive, that's part of the breakdown of the old distribution chains. When comics were available everywhere, you could depend on selling cheap comics with lots of people buying an issue a month (or every two weeks). With the breakdown of them (which has been a long and on-going process, and started even before the rise of mainstream Internet; at least it did for the book market which I'm more familiar with, but I doubt comics is that different here[1]), publishers rather became dependant on selling more expensive comics to the small group of people buying several issues each month.

    [1] The rise of the trade market for comics is part of this, and mirrors what has happened on the book market with a delay of a few years.


    Comic Books was an offshoot of the News Paper business. Newspaper stands are almost all gone now, and so the end point distribution access local for retail Comic Books is gone. That leaves us with Comic Books, books stores and retail store racks (like Wallgreens) for magazines alone to try to sell Comic Books and that is tough. Impulse buys are gone. The sales pitch for comics used to be eyes on the cover to sell a potential buyer. You went from access to 100's of millions, to access to a few 100 thousand dedicated readers.

    Until they fix this, the Comics Books trade is going to remain in decline.

    In response to this we now have glossy paper, big art focused, super hyped books seemlingly on steroids. As a promoter of social movements, comics was a leader and now it is largely dead. You can talk about the Movies, but the movies are all off of very old storylines. Without the "day in day out" process that comic writers and producers were able to depend on, it is hard to develope real following. If even the sales of a single non-descript golden-age issue was to hit the market today, it would be a megahit making lead stories on the 6 oclock news.
    Last edited by mrbrklyn; 06-18-2018 at 11:45 AM.
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  9. #39
    Mighty Member Dark-Flux's Avatar
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    ComicChron shows comic industry revenue as rising year by year since the crash in the mid-90s. Comics became a billion dollar industry in 2016.
    We've also seen the rise of the bookstore/scholastic and digital markets in that time which has brought comics to a whole different audience and by all reports is rivaling the direct market.
    Sales on individual titles might be down but theres also way more product these days and its being accessed through different means.
    Last edited by Dark-Flux; 06-18-2018 at 12:51 PM.
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  10. #40
    Mighty Member MRP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark-Flux View Post
    ComicChron shows comic industry revenue as rising year by year since the crash in the mid-90s. Comics became a billion dollar industry in 2016.
    We've also seen the rise of the bookstore/scholastic and digital markets in that time which has brought comics to a whole different audience and by all reports is rivaling the direct market.
    Sales on individual titles might be down but theres also way more product these days and its being accessed through different means.
    Just curious-does the Comichron revenue numbers reflect sales of comics and trades only or the industry as a whole i.e. all goods sold through Diamond including revenue from statues, toys, Funko Pops, trading cards, apparel, and other items in the Previews catalog that aren't actual comics or comic collections?

    If they are included, it is quite possible that industry revenue is rising while actual revenue from comic and trade sales is not. All of those are higher MSRP products meaning they generate a lot of revenue with fewer units sold. If they are not included then the ComiChron numbers say one thing, if they are not included, it is quite possible those numbers are saying something quite different, so the question is what do those ComiChron numbers actually reflect when they say industry revenue?

    -M
    Comic fans get the comics their buying habits deserve.

  11. #41
    Incredible Member Skedatz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chocolate Starmie View Post
    Comics are changing, not dying. Same as music, television, internet etc. Comics are a medium, not necessarily a format and will need to adapt to continue
    Pretty much this. There will always be a place for comics, but the only thing that will change is how and where we read them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Buried Alien View Post
    This question has been asked almost biweekly since CBR was founded nearly 22 years ago, and guess what: comics are still around.

    Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)
    And 22 years from now people will be asking this same question.

  12. #42
    Mighty Member Dark-Flux's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MRP View Post
    Just curious-does the Comichron revenue numbers reflect sales of comics and trades only or the industry as a whole i.e. all goods sold through Diamond including revenue from statues, toys, Funko Pops, trading cards, apparel, and other items in the Previews catalog that aren't actual comics or comic collections?

    If they are included, it is quite possible that industry revenue is rising while actual revenue from comic and trade sales is not. All of those are higher MSRP products meaning they generate a lot of revenue with fewer units sold. If they are not included then the ComiChron numbers say one thing, if they are not included, it is quite possible those numbers are saying something quite different, so the question is what do those ComiChron numbers actually reflect when they say industry revenue?

    -M
    Going off their info, its comics, trades and magazines.

    The billion is including newstand and estimated bookstore TPB sales.


    Comicsbeat have also started getting direct sales figures from Bookscan in 2017 and it makes for an interesting read;http://www.comicsbeat.com/tilting-at...its-certified/

    A point which stood out to me is that 2017 saw the highest units sales via Bookscan ever - who supply Amazon, Barnes & Noble etc.
    Last edited by Dark-Flux; 06-18-2018 at 01:45 PM.
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  13. #43
    Spectacular Member mrbrklyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skedatz View Post
    Pretty much this. There will always be a place for comics, but the only thing that will change is how and where we read them.



    And 22 years from now people will be asking this same question.
    it is pretty hard to find Comics now...
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  14. #44
    Spectacular Member jb681131's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrbrklyn View Post
    it is pretty hard to find Comics now...
    !? on the contrairie, with internet (on specialised web sites, market websites or illegally) you can find almost every comics ever published. So I don't see how it's hard.
    On paper editors are publishing more and more omnibus and collected editions of old comics.
    So no, comics are easy to find.

  15. #45
    Incredible Member Skedatz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrbrklyn View Post
    it is pretty hard to find Comics now...
    I've never really had problems finding comics. You can order them for delivery, digital, or some of the remaining local shops.

    If anything, I find it easier now more than ever to get comics.

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