Posts Tagged ‘intellectual property’

‘Captain America’ Cries the Red, White and Blues

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

Anyone out there who has remotely cared about how comic creators have been screwed out of even the tiniest morsel of the tremendous profits  generated by Hollywood’s superhero bonanza had to let out a huge guffaw after reading a recent Variety  interview with Chris Evans, who will star as Captain America throughout a contracted six film run for Marvel Entertainment. His commitment is now half completed with this past weekend’s blockbuster release of Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

The star spangled actor seems fairly constrained when talking about the trials and tribulations of portraying the famed First Avenger, careful not to raise the ire of Marvel studio execs but can’t help himself from peaking the nerves of their stingy bean counters with a little help from Avenger cast ring leader, Robert Downey, Jr.

Evans says Marvel will often send him pictures of “Captain America” action figures that are molded after his likeness, but that he doesn’t profit from the merchandising. “I see my nephew wearing underwear with my face on it,” says Evans. “I’m like ‘what’s going on?’ But for some reason, (no money comes) my way.” Adds Downey: “Nobody gets anything from the toys, and nobody ever will.” Then he promises: “I’m working on it.”

What if?

It’s a hoot seeing these mega-stars crying over the money they are not making especially after they all made such a big scene about renegotiating their contacts going into Avengers 2 after the original Avengers film grossed over $1.5 billion world-wide, ranking it number three in all-time box office sales. Adding fuel to the fire was the huge discrepancy of pay between stars. Downey made $50 million for his role as Iron Man while other Avengers  made as little as $200,000 for their silver-screen super-heroics generating comments like, “On what planet is that fair!”

True to form, Marvel continues to “strong-arm and bully” the talent, wether it is an aging comic book creator or a celebrated Hollywood actor, with threats of law suits and dismissal of service held against detractors. Marvel considers talent to be expendable so long as they control the Intellectual Property of their vast library which they protect with the might of Odin to the point that even Disney power suits stand clear.

As each new Marvel film exceeds expectations and rings up record revenue it becomes more apparent that Marvel is as mythic as its heroes and villains when it comes to sheer greed. Soon their brand will be synonymous with companies like Walmart and McDonalds whose employees require government assistance to survive because they are paid and treated so poorly.

Maybe the high profile whining of celebrities like Chris Evans, Robert Downey, Jr, Scarlet Johansson, Chris Hemsworth and others will bring attention to Marvel’s unscrupulously tight fisted business ethics. Maybe the stars and the public will finally gain sympathy for the Kirby family who do not see one red cent from all of the characters that Jack Kirby co-created, without which none of these actors would have a role to play or complain about in the first place.

Unions in Hollywood are powerful, they have the ability to freeze the industry. Should the writers and actors become sympathetic to the plight of comic creators and their heirs, some justice could still come to those that have been denied fair compensation for their contribution to both the Marvel and DC Universes for decades. Maybe the courts will finally recognize the injustices that they’ve been catering to as they suckled the teats of big business.

Let’s root for the Marvel films to be so successful that  the stars can’t stand watching the vast amounts of money that is sure to elude them. Put them in the shoes of Jack Kirby, Joe Simon, Steve Ditko, Jerry Siegle, Joe Shuster and a long parade of other comic creators that worked for a lousy page rate under the shackles of a work-for-hire agreement and never saw royalties when their creations became films, toys or underwear.

The stars representing beloved heroes will put an unmistakable face on the unfair practices of Marvel and DC that a comic creator hunched over a drawing board or typewriter never could. Maybe then the world will appreciate the injustices that many of us have known about for decades and some things will change in the comics industry.

A perturbed Chris Evans is a great start. His character, Captain America, represents the American Dream and has stood for all that is fair and good in this country since his creation by Jack Kirby and Joe Simon in 1941.

It is only right that Captain America should now lead this charge against the corporate greed and bullying that grips our nation, exemplified by Marvel, the self proclaimed builders of our modern mythology. There is more than a man behind that shield he carries, there is the heart of a nation that cannot be taken away. It is time we all stand behind that red, white and blue shield together to defend what we know  is morally right. It is time for a battle cry! America, Assemble!

Gerry Giovinco

Shia LaBeouf is Dangerous

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

Many of us have watched in amazement as Shia LaBeouf has exposed himself as the pretentious, self-absorbed, entitled, plagiarist that he is ever since he has been publicly called out for his direct swipe of Dan Clowes comic Justin M. Damiano which LaBeauf  adapted, uncredited and unauthorized into a short film titled

Further scrutiny has proven that there is little that LaBeouf has ever created that was not lifted from somewhere else. Even his apologies were swiped!

An incriminating list of LaBeouf’s transgressions can be found here.

LaBeouf went on the defensive in this interview with Rich Johnston declaring that, Authorship is Censorship seemingly championing the perspective of Creative Commons.

Now he has gone on the offensive by antagonizing Dan Clowes with more blatant plagiarism of his work.

LaBeouf’s actions are so extreme they reek of publicity stunt and have even been compared to performance art, but could they be something much more subversive?

While he mocks and trivializes plagiarism, piracy and copyright law, infuriating  copyright owners and creators, everywhere he is galvanizing a pro-copyright , anti-piracy sentiment that will empower the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), “a secretive, multi-national trade agreement that threatens to extend restrictive intellectual property (IP) laws across the globe and rewrite international rules on its enforcement.”

The TPP will crush the internet by restricting users’ freedom of speech and right to privacy and due process. It will limit creative innovation by stalling public domain transitions. Worst of all, it is a non-transparent manipulation by corporations to control intellectual property and end users in an effort to protect their own bottom line at the expense of personal and creative freedoms.

Shia LaBeouf is a very public and extreme example of what the TPP wants us all to believe they are protecting against. His actions and words play into their hands every time he is demonized by the press or by any one of us blogging or commenting against him.

It is time to maintain a rational perspective and pay close attention to the ramifications of the TPP. This agreement needs to be shut down the same way SOPA was and for the same reasons. Take the time to learn about and understand copyright law and its history. Learn about the virtues of public domain. Be concerned about your rights as an internet user. Above all maintain,  a perspective of moderation to avoid becoming an irrational extremist like LaBeouf.

Shia LeBeouf is dangerous if his ridiculous antics create an atmosphere that cost us all what we have come to enjoy and use as the greatest tool of expression in the history of the planet: the internet as we know it.  Don’t be fooled! His actions may be “more than meets the eye.”

Making Comics Because We Want to,

Gerry Giovinco

Warning: Comics May Cause Amnesia

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

Warning: Comics May Cause Amnesia

There seems to be plenty of evidence that comics may cause amnesia.

Apparently anyone who reads, collects, buys, sells, or creates comics is prone to complete memory loss especially regarding the subject of creator rights. people associated with comics in any way shape or form are in desperate need of an old-fashioned FLASHBACK!

How can this be? It has long been assumed that comic enthusiasts excel at the ability to retain the most trivial detail regarding their favorite characters, story arcs and comic creators. They are able to recognize fine nuances in artwork that identify pencilers and inkers, idiosyncrasies in writing that denote authors, and can distinguish the differences between lettering and coloring styles and techniques.

The true comic fan can recite, verbatim, from their favorite comics, panel by panel page by page issue by issue. Yet, regarding the long fought battle over  of creators rights,  the brains of most people associated with comics today are a clean slate.

This explains why artists continue to work for page rates that are the same as or less than they were thirty years ago. This explains why creators are willing to continue to be exploited by work-for-hire contracts with little or no expectation of royalties.
This explains why contracts for digital content are as archaic as those that sucked the souls from creators and robbed them blind since the dawn of the comics industry.

Comics are like rufies, you know, the date rape drug. They must be because they make comic creators forget how they have been screwed, over and over again by the corporate publishers that demand complete control over all Intellectual Property and are unwilling to share all but the tiniest crumbs left by the billions of dollars of profit that is generated by the hard labor of those that create it.

Some are immune to this peculiar neurological allergen. They stand out as rebels and spin their craft in the far reaches of the marketplace: small press, self publishing, web comics and commission work. They carry the torch for a war still fought but rarely noticed; a fight for principle and fairness. They remember the victims of the scrupulous publishers. They remember those that fought: the few that won and the many that lost.

This rag-tag band of comic rebels have their supporters: enlightened fans that sing their praise and defend their stance but in total they are a rare breed that struggles to perpetually rekindle the flame of an apparently, easily forgettable fight.

Thank goodness for history books. If not for them many a war would be left forgotten. Fortunately, the chronicles of this battle for creators rights was recorded directly from the mouths of those that first led the charge. Their words were captured for perpetuity in the pages of a magazine in the form of interviews.

David Anthony Kraft’s COMICS INTERVIEW was the voice of comics industry from 1983 to 1995. It was the forum where everyone and anyone associated with comics was able to speak their mind. The matter of creators rights was at the forefront of many of those discussions as a heated affront to the unjust norms of the industry was erupting in the form of the first wave of independent publishers who, along with the formation of the Direct Market, created an alternative venue for comic creators to reach their audience and own their work.

Steve Gerber

Page after page of COMICS INTERVIEW emboldened the movement, inspiring, and engaging the ranks of comic creators and fans alike who were able to empathize with each other. Readers were able to experience and appreciate the perspective of creator rights pioneers like Steve Gerber who threw his mantle down in the first issue, establishing a code of honor that would endure for the full 150 issue run of the magazine.

Fortunately, COMICS INTERVIEW is not destined to be a faded memory, lost to the world in the forgotten long boxes of aging comic enthusiasts of a bygone era. It is being digitally restored and collected in its entirety by CO2 Comics who are packaging the massive collection in an eleven volume set. Each volume contains over 600 pages of riveting history of the comic book industry. Currently the first two volumes are available featuring the first 28 issues of the magazine. Volume three is currently in production.

Many of the subjects whose interviews grace the pages had careers that dated back to the dawn of the industry itself, while others continue to work in the industry today. This portal to a window in time at the center of the history of comic books makes David Anthony Kraft’s COMICS INTERVIEW The Complete Collection an invaluable historical treasure. It is in fact the greatest collection of interviews in the history of comic books.

David Anthony Kraft’s COMICS INTERVIEW The Complete Collection is the perfect cure for any amnesia regarding creators rights in the comic industry. It is a history book that uniquely depicts a war as it was happening and directly told by the participants and witnesses themselves.

It is a history book that belongs in the library of anyone with any interest in understanding the comic industry today as it is as relevant now as as it ever has been.

It is a history book that belongs in every school or public library for its intimate perspective of an industry that has had a dynamic impact on the popular culture of the world as we know it today.

David Anthony Kraft’s COMICS INTERVIEW The Complete Collection is the ultimate FLASHBACK to remind us that the war over creators rights is not, and can never be, over.

Never forget. Never give up.

Making Comics Because We Want to,

Gerry Giovinco

Corporate Comics, the Exodus…Again

Monday, June 25th, 2012

There has been a lot of buzz lately about creators walking away from cushy contracts at Marvel and DC to strike out on their own, the most recent being Paolo Rivera whose eloquent blog post on the subject offers wonderful insight to his personal motivation.

The reaction from fans and comic related news media would make you think that these creators are venturing to the dark side of the moon on the first experimental space vessel not built and commandeered by NASA. This reaction mystifies me because it shows a disregard of the history of comics and the vibrant atmosphere of the current comics marketplace.

People that are surprised that top rated talent are leaving the Big Two should rather be asking, “why has it taken so long?”

The pros and cons of working for corporate comic companies have been established for decades.

Sure, you get to work on characters you know and love, there’s a steady check so long as you are a hot commodity, maybe some benefits, maybe some royalties, oh and the exposure to Marvel and DC‘s huge fan base can elevate you to star status. But in the end you own nothing, you had to be careful to create only within the parameters of the existing universes or run the risk of watching a character you created make beaucoup bucks for the corporation while you get nothing in return and, when you are no longer hot or are out of favor with the editing staff, there is no work and you live as a pariah.

There was a time when working in comics was the most loathsome career path for a writer or artist. Lousy page rates, no royalties, rights or recognition. You worked in comics merely as a stepping stone into advertising, television or film. This was true until the sixties when Marvel, or more accurately Stan Lee, made working in comics seem almost glamorous. The money got a bit better and creators began imagining actual careers in the field. By the late seventies creators began to realize that even though their names were plastered all over the books, they were still not getting much in return for their efforts and especially their unique creations which were now wholly owned by the corporation they worked for.

Creator’s eyes were fully opened in 1978 when the first Superman movie was released and they watched Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster battle for morsels of the enormous profit generated by the character they had created and sold for $130 nearly forty years earlier.

It became clear that there was a deficiency in the business model of the comics industry. Why was it necessary for the comics publishers to fully own the copyrights and trademarks of all the intellectual property they published? Other book publishers do not operate this way and neither do other forms of entertainment where royalties and residuals support creators long after their work is created. Don’t get me wrong, there are good and bad contracts  everywhere necessitating the need for lawyers and agents but it sure is nice to have the opportunity to negotiate your terms.

The success of the Underground Market in the sixties and the rise of the Direct Market in the late seventies created opportunities for comic creators to work outside of the traditional corporate confines of the comic industry. Creators, disgruntled by the usual terms with which they worked at corporate comic companies, turned to the successes in these markets and began to strike out on their own. Many targeted the Direct Market that had established a secure venue for such properties as Jack Katz’ s First Kingdom, Dave Sim’s Cerebus the Aardvark, and Richard and Wendy Pini’s Elfquest. This defined a new model where creator’s could find success owning their own characters and marketing direct to the distributers with the benefit of minimal risk provided by guaranteed pre-orders and a no-return policy.

Alternative publishers took note and began contracting creators defecting from the corporate comic companies, offering creator owned contracts that included fair page rates, and royalties. The eighties opened the door for true creators rights and as the alternative competition gained a foothold in the industry, the corporations  began offering publications that were vehicles for creator owned properties and they structured some type royalty arrangements.

Since the inception of the Direct Market there has always been an opportunity for creators to have alternative options. Marvel and DC, however, have maintained  a strangle hold on the Direct Market which they control by sporadically flooding the market with superfluous content in an effort to successfully drive out or contain alternative publishers. There have, however, been a few exceptions where talent has been able to break free with enormous success and plenty of other instances where independent creators have had comfortable, rewarding careers by most standards.

The Direct Market is no longer the panacea it once was for comic creators who now realize how easily the market can be manipulated by the Big Two and the near monopoly of its primary distributor.

Fortunately the internet has provided a wide open space for creators to play and have direct access to the customers themselves. Print on Demand providers and affordable, minimum-quantity print runs has eliminated most of the upfront risk of comic production and crowd funding has created an avenue for advance orders establishing revenue streams.

Competition is brisk and there are more comic creators than ever before, presenting a huge variety of unique creations that go well beyond the constrictions of the superhero genre. The distribution of digital content for mobile devices is giving comic creators the opportunity to reach new markets that just a year or two ago may have seemed impossible.

This is possibly the best and most challenging time to be a comic creator ever.  Working for a corporate comic company is now a choice, not the only viable option if you intend to have a career in comics. Corporate creators have a better understanding of their role as  cog in the corporate wheel and are more careful as they juggle being creative without abandoning rights to personal creations.

Corporate comics are once again a stepping stone to a respected career but creators no longer need to leave the comics industry. They just need to declare their independence and take control of their destiny as comic creators.

The revolution to establish these freedoms for comic creators has spanned decades. There have been many victories and many casualties. Alternative companies have come and gone, creators have basked in the limelight then vanished from the radar. Some have celebrated success while others have anguished over failure. Through it all it has been the audience that has benefited the most, paying witness to a variety of comics that would never exist if they were limited only to the corporately owned IP of two publishers.Next week, as a nation, we celebrate the independence of the United States of America, a country that established freedoms and inalienable rights that did not exist prior to the signing of the Constitution. Those same rights grant us the opportunity as comic creators to freely express ourselves through our work and to pursue a free and open market. As a comic creator, take a stand  and be independent. As a comics fan, support independent, creators and publishers.

As a comic community declare every Independence Day as Independent’s Day and applaud a bright future for the art of creating comics.

Thirty years ago as two of the co-founders of the alternative comics publisher Comico the Comic Company, Bill Cucinotta and I were focused on these same ideals. Through Comico we had many triumphs yet succumbed to tragic failures.

We never lost the dream.

This Fourth of July weekend we will celebrate our third year in our new publishing incarnation as CO2 Comics. We will be rejoicing our continued freedoms as Independent Publishers, armed with technology that did not exist thirty years ago, experience, and a continued love for comics. Our Declaration of Independence will be the announcement of three new print publications that will be immediately available to our readers.

We know how exciting it is to publish comics beyond the walls of the corporate comic companies!

So next time you hear about a comic creator’s exodus from the corporate comic world just remember, “it ain’t anything new.” It is an opportunity created by the efforts of many over many years.  Show your support, buy their comics and celebrate their independence!

Celebrating Thirty Years of Comics History!

Gerry Giovinco

Copyrights, Trademarks and Comics, Oh My!

Monday, February 20th, 2012

The legal forrest that the Yellow Brick Road travels through on the way to success as an independent comic creator or publisher just became a scarier place.

Gary Friedrich

It is probably fitting that the demonized Ghost Rider character has lit the torch with his blazing skull.

Regardless of your opinion as to wether Gary Friedrich should be compensated for his contribution to the creation of the character of Ghost Rider and the unfairness of the court’s ruling against him, it is Marvel’s victory in a countersuit against him that has turned the hourglass on end and the sand is running out.

In a brilliant facebook entry written by the esteemed Stephen Bissette he raises the alarm for artists in artist alley that sell sketches of trademarked characters without consent. In the blog he explains the legal necessity of Marvel’s enforcement. They have a responsibility to actively protect their trademarks or risk losing them.

From the cover of Comico Primer #2

This practice of due diligence is nothing new. When we had just published our second issue of Comico Primer back in 1982 we received a Cease and Desist letter from Will Eisner referring to a character featured in the comic whose name was Spirit. Spirit was a female robot that had absolutely no similarities whatsoever to Eisner’s character The Spirit.  We had never even considered that there would or could be a conflict.

Will Eisner appreciated that we were young and naive and explained that he paid lawyers to protect his properties. Their job was  to seek out potential conflicts and he had a responsibility to follow through on their findings to protect his interests. Needless to say we were embarrassed and humbled by the graciousness of this man that we already had great respect and admiration for. We were sure to honor his simple request that we not use the name Spirit especially not on a cover of one of our comic books.

It strikes me that it was a lot easier for a comic artist like Will Eisner to police the comic industry for copyright and trademark infringement in 1982 than it would be today. Thirty years ago there were just a few publishers in the market and a handful of fanzines. There was no internet with a seemingly endless selection of web comics and there were surely not the tremendous number of comic creators that exist today.

The Friedrich vs. Marvel case has magnified the necessity of protecting one’s trademark. If a huge corporation like Marvel/Disney finds it necessary to hassle Gary Friedrich over $17,000  because those sales of prints he sold in artist alley at comic book conventions could jeopardize their claim to trademark, how safe can the trademarks of smaller companies be?

Should every small publisher, self publisher and comic artist be canvasing comic conventions and the internet, prepared to rifle out a C&D letter to every potential infringer? How can small publishers and creators afford to do it without the funds or the time to execute such an endeavor? How vulnerable are our intellectual properties?

Imagine if some guy is a big fan of your character and goes to every convention getting every artist he finds to draw a picture of your character. Proud of his collection he displays it all over facebook, and his website. Another company likes your character and discovers all these images that were created by unlicensed vendors, in this case artists in artist alley, and feel that they have deep enough pockets to argue that the trademark has been left exposed.

Marvel’s victory over their assertion that Friedrich’s sales in artist alley were a credible threat to their trademark establishes a precedent that will influence future rulings. Make no mistake, the big boys will go after the competition and will do whatever it takes to win.

The Forgettable's

Marvel took a shot at the insanely popular Rocketeer back in the 80’s claiming it infringed on characters that they had that were also called Rocketeers. Their characters were minor characters buried in a forgettable story. Dave Steven’s had to fight for years to defend his property tying up capital that could have been used more productively.

This may all seem like paranoia until it actually happens but who wants to be the first victim. The industry has been buzzing over piracy now for some time. The threat of piracy is nothing compared to the threat of trademarked properties being totally hijacked by unscrupulous competitors.

Comic creators, please get educated on copyright and trademark laws. They can be your friends or your enemies. Don’t let your ignorance on the subject make your property a hostage as you travel that long, arduous Yellow Brick Road to success.

Celebrating Thirty Years of Comics History!

Gerry Giovinco

Reinvention: The Stepchild of Necessity

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

The Comics industry is all too familiar with having to reinvent itself in an effort to survive changing times.

Comics made the jump from newspapers to comic books addressing a new publishing trend in the late thirties.

The forties watched Superman be reinvented over and over as a whole genre of superheroes was created.

The comic book industry rescued itself from oblivion in the fifties by adopting the Comics Code Authority to placate the Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency though it placed a stranglehold on much of what made comics interesting and exciting at that time.

Stan Lee

Stan Lee reinvented the superhero genre in the sixties making it viable and relevant to a new generation of readers.

Phil Seuling

The Direct Market pioneered by Phil Seuling in the seventies gave comics the opportunity to be liberated from the Comic Code Authority.

The eighties gave rise to alternative, independent publishers and the concept of creators rights.


The nineties showed the vulnerability of the Direct Market and the power of Manga in the US market.

The new millennium ushered in the the development of new formats in the wake of Manga’s popularity and the graphic novel matured as a format that began to dominate the market.

The “oughts” also ushered in an entirely new venue for comics in the internet and web comics came on the scene.

Now, as we enter the eighth decade of comic history since the invention of the comic book, (I know I am rounding it off by a few years, we’ll throw a party in 2014 to make up for it) we all have to figure out what to make of the advent of digital comics.

For the first time in history, comics have total access to a global market direct from the hands of creators free from censorship, and the burden of high production costs.

Digital comics, whether they are posted on the web, offered as a downloadable files or banked on a cloud can be read on devices as small as the palm of your hand or as large as the biggest television monitor you can imagine.

Digital spells freedom for creators and freedom of choice for readers. Digital offers a free world of possibility. Now how do we handle all of that potential. More importantly, how do we handle that four letter word: F-R-E-E.

We all love to have the freedom to create as we please but face it, we all need to make a buck, especially in these terrible economic times.

My suggestion is that now is not the time to get greedy. As much as we as creators want to get what we deserve, consumers are looking for the best deal possible.

I for one, as a consumer, will look at all the free content I can get before spending a dime on digital content. I will look at every free website and I know that there is a ton of great stuff that would take me years to read. Just look at the hundreds of pages of dynamite material right here at CO2 Comics. Hey, I’m in all my glory because guess what…it’s FREE! FREE! FREE!

Now, on the outside chance that I’m an unusual cheapskate, tightwad I have to wonder how the folks selling digital content for prices that resemble regular comic prices are making out.

I’ve seen the reports that brag sales of digital content for mobile devices that are ten times that of last year and I have to be impressed but what does that really mean? First I have to remember that this technology is only about a year old. How many downloads did they sell that first year? Ten times what?

Captain Visual's big Book of Balloon Art

Since July my first book for the iPad Captain Visual’s Big Book of Balloon Art, which as an e-book sells for $11.99 as opposed to a $24.95 book in print, has increased in sales by 1500%! That is an incredible increase especially in a ridiculously slow market. I bet you want to run out and see what all the fuss is about don’t you?

Well I’m happy to brag about those numbers all day but the truth is I sold one e-book in July. Go ahead, do the math. That’s right. I’ve sold 15 copies in the last six months. At the same time my print copy has sold only six times as many copies as I sold in July but that is six times three at more than twice the price.

You can see how a positive spin can influence a consumer and even a producer interested in digital content.

Publishers will often compare the success of digital content to the slacking sales of a hardback edition but neglect to tell you how the paperback is outselling both.

Digital content is a new toy for the comics industry. Don’t rush in ill informed. Don’t tie up your digital distribution rights based on clouded numbers. Don’t become a statistic in a digital bookstore with an app provider that promises you a gateway to an exciting new market that is yet to be defined.

Don’t throw away your freedoms yet.

My opinion is that digital content should be considered disposable content and should be priced accordingly.

I can’t see selling a digital comic for more than the price of a can of soda or a candy bar. I want to be ravenous about what I want to read regarding comics. I want to read as much as I can and I am not excited about storing the content the way I am excited about collecting a comic book. Sell me the comic for 99¢ or a subscription of 12 for $10 and I’ll be happy.

This is our time to reach a wider audience than we could have ever imagined. We want the world to see our comics. Our intellectual property. A hundred thousand people might be willing to spend a buck on a digital comic like they do on music but raise the price and you will see those numbers fall dramatically. Would you rather sell a hundred thousand e-comics at a dollar or one thousand e-comics at two or three dollars?

Be willing to wholesale your comics and you will find a greater audience. If you don’t believe me look at the Walmarts of the world. They find their success in selling large quantities at the lowest possible price and they are making dinosaurs out of their competition.

Marvel and DC will continue to dictate the market and control the IP of the comic world if everyone is enticed to follow their lead into overpriced content. The market for independent comic publishers will always remain constricted if we continue to price our product where only the hardcore fan is willing to pay for it.

Reach the masses by selling to their pocket change and you will have a property that everyone wants and is eventually willing to pay top dollar for.

At CO2 Comics our comics are free as I mentioned earlier. They are free because we want you to read them and we have faith that you will respect the properties and want to support the creators by buying their works or services that are or may be available for sale.

We expect that if you enjoy the material you will share it with your friends offering greater exposure for the creators and their property. You look all smart, cultured and influential and we reach more readers. Win! Win!

We also know that if you can get the work for free right here you are less likely to download from some torrent site where the creators have no control or benefit at all from the piracy of their works. Thank You!

This decade will be less about reinventing comics as it is about reinventing how comics get to the consumer. We plan to reach as many of you as possible. In the process we will make great comics that will generate revenue in creative ways for the creators.

What do we want from you? Just some respect and your willingness to spread the word. I think it’s a great deal. Don’t you?

Enjoy the next decade! We plan to!

Making comics because I want to.

Gerry Giovinco

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