Emerging Tech

Marvel to bring comics online

Marvel Entertainment will start a Web site that will feature access to thousands of its comic books and the famous heroes who populate them. To prepare for the launch of the offering, Marvel has recolored and redigitized some of its offerings to present the titles in a quality format.

Marvel Entertainment will start a Web site that will feature access to thousands of its comic books and the famous heroes who populate them. To prepare for the launch of the offering, Marvel has recolored and redigitized some of its offerings to present the titles in a quality format.

In an interview, Dan Buckley, president of Marvel Publishing said, "This is a major new piece of my overall publishing plan. It's a different entertainment experience, online versus reading a book."

According to ZDNet:

Marvel plans to offer access to 2,500 comics, Buckley said. It will make 250 available for free to entice people to pay up, but for a limited time, a company statement explained.

The Digital Comics Unlimited site then will add 20 additional books a week, including a mix of new and vintage comics.

Marvel plans to charge subscription fees of $4.99 a month if people sign up for a year, or $9.99 per month. Titles must be in print for at least six months before they will go online though.

By Buckley's admission, its comic book business has been contracting in the past 10 years. Hence, it is clear that Marvel needs to do something to shore up its business.

The question, though, is whether bringing its comics online is a stroke of genius or an act of desperation.

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

6 comments
majorbrack
majorbrack

It's a great idea but I'm not sure that I would pay that much, if anything, for it.

Gary.Cooper
Gary.Cooper

It's a great idea, but I don't know if I want to wait 6 months before I get a new issue. A printed version of a comic is an investment plus entertainment. Digitized issues are for entertainment only. If I could get access to all my favorite titles for $9.99 or less per month, I'm in. I just don't understand the 6 month wait. It should be quicker to port the issues to a digital distribution over the hand delivered, placed on the self, go pick one up method. I think this is great, so I will keep my eyes open for it.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

If you're serious about reading the story but don't feel the need to build an investment portfolio, you'll have to bite the bullet for half a year. Then you can fall into a regular monthly cycle again.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

Considering printed comics are $2.50 or $3.00 each, even the monthly rate is a bargain if you read several. I may have to take a look. Genius or desperation? They already have the content anyway, this is just a new method of distribution. I'd say closer to genius.

paulmah
paulmah

The question though is whether bringing its comics online is a stroke of genius, or an act of desperation.

fjgiii
fjgiii

Call me a comic-geek, but i'll try it for a year. I agree with a previous poster, that the artwork is already finished so it's not going to cost Marvel much more than band width, so it's a good business move. The service time of six months will shrink with increase in subscriptions. ~ FJG III

Editor's Picks