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comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

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comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby LOLtron » Thu Apr 10, 2014 3:32 pm

comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

The web giant will swallow comiXology whole, resulting in imminent doom for the comics industry (probably).



Source: comiXology

Last month, The Outhouse reported on Bleeding Cool's rumor that Amazon was planning to buy comiXology, the largest digital comics platform. Of course, we topped Bleeding Cool as usual by scoring an exclusive interview with Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, revealing that the motivation behind the purchase was comiXology's advanced technology allowing them to stupidly capitalize a letter in the middle of their company name. Well, comiXology confirmed The Outhouse's report today, and we guess Bleeding Cool's report too, by posting the following message on their website:

Dearest readers,

I’m very excited to share some big news with you: we have just announced that comiXology is becoming a part of the Amazon family!

More than seven years ago, John D. Roberts, Peter Jaffe, and I set out to connect people to comic books and graphic novels they’d love, and we’re so excited about how far we’ve come. Thanks to the books we are privileged to present and the platform we created, there’s access to more diverse content than ever, allowing all readers to enter the amazing world of comics.

We have long had the goal of making every person on the planet a comics fan. With Amazon’s help, this crazy goal is more possible than ever before. With the Kindle, Amazon has shown a passion for reinventing the reading experience, just like comiXology has shown for comics and graphic novels.

ComiXology will retain its identity as an Amazon subsidiary and we’re not anywhere near done “taking comics further.” We are confident that – with Amazon by our side, who shares our desire for innovation and a relentless focus on customers – we’ve only just begun.

We wouldn’t be here without you, our customers. Thank you. The best is yet to come!

David Steinberger
Co-founder and CEO

 

Oh man. There must be a full blown jazz concert today over at Bleeding Cool with all of the horn tooting that's going on. (UPDATE: There is.)

 

comiXology Europe President and frequent Outhouse news analyst Pepe Le Pew was unavailable for comment at this time, though his office promised to have him call us as soon as he returned from stalking a black cat that had accidentally brushed up aganst some fresh white paint earlier in the week.

When the rumor first broke last month, controversial retailer and co-founder of ruthless retailer organization COBRA, Dennis Barger Jr., had some strong words about it, which address legitimate concerns about Amazon, which is famous for its willingness to go to any lengths to undercut competition. From a facebook discussion of the first Bleeding Cool article:

So the great ComiXology who loves comics and wants to help the industry was just a big pump up to sell out to a corporate giant...TOLD YOU SO, these parasites got this industry to roll for a few measly duckets and screwed over the one TRUE friend it had, the brick and mortar comic retailers who bleed, sweat and cry for this industry daily and now they are going to cash in and get out and move onto another host to leach off of with their hundreds of millions, maybe even a billion. Are you getting a cut of that money publishers, distributors, sell out retailers that collaborated with comixology to sell out this industry? Nope, now we will get a corporate giant that has already shown a disdain for the SRP, dumped unsold books back onto publishers and buried indy books so shoppers can't find it. Is it too late to fight?

 

So what are your thoughts? Post em below!



Written or Contributed by Jude Terror


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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby Chessack » Thu Apr 10, 2014 4:41 pm

I use Amazon all the time, so I have no problem with this (although I prefer Google Books' reader to Kindle so I usually buy books from Google)... as long as I don't somehow lose access to the DC and Independent titles I have bought on ComiXology (and presumably, I won't).

One thing I like about Marvel is, I don't have to worry about whether this sale will affect my ability to read Marvel, because of the "sync" between the two accounts. Even if ComiXology vanished from the web tomorrow, I could still read all my stuff through the Marvel website. Wish the other companies had a feature like this.

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RE: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby Dennis L Barger Jr » Thu Apr 10, 2014 4:47 pm

Now more than ever this industry needs CoBRA!!!

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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby MrBlack » Thu Apr 10, 2014 4:52 pm

This is probably good for the long term viability of comiXology, i.e., it's less likely now that it's going to up and disappear and take all my IDW Transformers comics with it. So long as Amazon doesn't futz around with it too much, I'm not terribly bothered by who owns the company.

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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby syxxpakk » Thu Apr 10, 2014 5:36 pm

Here's hoping cheaper comics.

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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby GHERU » Thu Apr 10, 2014 5:58 pm

syxxpakk wrote:Here's hoping cheaper comics.

:lol:
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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby AngusH » Thu Apr 10, 2014 6:09 pm

I think potentially this could be a great thing for readers as far as pricing goes. For comic retailers, maybe not. I think Comixology's pricing was intended to keep it close with retailers and not drive them out of business, but I think that will probably change now. IMO if Amazon are smart they will look at the iTunes pricing model and not give a damn about what it does to retailers.

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Re: RE: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby Zechs » Thu Apr 10, 2014 7:17 pm

FBtron wrote:Now more than ever this industry needs CoBRA!!!


I will infiltrate your ranks and take command of it.
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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby TimH » Thu Apr 10, 2014 7:41 pm

GHERU wrote: :lol:


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Yay, Jeff Bezos now dominates not only the book market, the e-book market, but also the digital comic market.

This ratifies my decision not to go through Comixology's self-print (whatever) when I finish my comic. Amazon is the Wal-Mart of the internet. With the exception of Jeff Bezos and a few of his executives, everyone involved with Amazon gets squeezed dry--wholesalers, employees, partners, everybody except the customers (at least until we no longer have choices outside Amazon).

Those third party sellers at Amazon--what a deal they have. They aren't permitted to combine shipping, and Amazon usually price matches them such that their obligatory $3.99 shipping fee / item makes them more costly than Amazon.

You think that as a digital publisher you will reach any kind of mutually beneficial deal with Amazon?

As for imposing price pressures on DC and Marvel to bring e-comics down--why bother? Comixology already corners the market on that. The only rivals with any presence are Dark Horse and Marvel (which hedged its bets with Comixology anyway). Amazon lowers prices to undercut rivals. Comixology had no rivals.

:lol:

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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby GLX » Thu Apr 10, 2014 7:50 pm

TimH wrote:
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Yay, Jeff Bezos now dominates not only the book market, the e-book market, but also the digital comic market.

This ratifies my decision not to go through Comixology's self-print (whatever) when I finish my comic. Amazon is the Wal-Mart of the internet. With the exception of Jeff Bezos and a few of his executives, everyone involved with Amazon gets squeezed dry--wholesalers, employees, partners, everybody except the customers (at least until we no longer have choices outside Amazon).

Those third party sellers at Amazon--what a deal they have. They aren't permitted to combine shipping, and Amazon usually price matches them such that their obligatory $3.99 shipping fee / item makes them more costly than Amazon.

You think that as a digital publisher you will reach any kind of mutually beneficial deal with Amazon?

As for imposing price pressures on DC and Marvel to bring e-comics down--why bother? Comixology already corners the market on that. The only rivals with any presence are Dark Horse and Marvel (which hedged its bets with Comixology anyway). Amazon lowers prices to undercut rivals. Comixology had no rivals.

:lol:


There's iVerse, but their way of "competing" is pretty poor. Why not have a strong web store, when Dark Horse and Comixology do? :?
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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby TimH » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:04 pm

AngusH wrote:I think potentially this could be a great thing for readers as far as pricing goes. For comic retailers, maybe not. I think Comixology's pricing was intended to keep it close with retailers and not drive them out of business, but I think that will probably change now. IMO if Amazon are smart they will look at the iTunes pricing model and not give a damn about what it does to retailers.


Why does Amazon want to lower prices? Oh, maybe squeeze the retailers to lower their wholesale price (while leaving the customer price the same).

See, iTunes must compete with the ease and availability of the MP3 file format. Give me a raw MP3 file, and I can listen to it in style anywhere. Comics in raw PDF aren't so terribly fun to read (thought at least tablets are now large enough to view "full screen" without needing that "panel browsing" feature Comixology's software offers). In any event, digital comic buyers have been "trained" to accept the "rental model" in which they don't receive a personal copy. With music, if the song costs too much, you'll just ask your friend for a copy. With comics, your friend's only choice is to give you his Comixology password, because he has no access to the raw format. The black market offers less pressure because raw PDF format isn't terribly fun to read (whereas I can pop the raw MP3 into any media player and enjoy it like the full priced version).

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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby The Old Doctor » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:10 pm

TimH wrote:
Why does Amazon want to lower prices? Oh, maybe squeeze the retailers to lower their wholesale price (while leaving the customer price the same).

See, iTunes must compete with the ease and availability of the MP3 file format. Give me a raw MP3 file, and I can listen to it in style anywhere. Comics in raw PDF aren't so terribly fun to read (thought at least tablets are now large enough to view "full screen" without needing that "panel browsing" feature Comixology's software offers). In any event, digital comic buyers have been "trained" to accept the "rental model" in which they don't receive a personal copy. With music, if the song costs too much, you'll just ask your friend for a copy. With comics, your friend's only choice is to give you his Comixology password, because he has no access to the raw format. The black market offers less pressure because raw PDF format isn't terribly fun to read (whereas I can pop the raw MP3 into any media player and enjoy it like the full priced version).



PDF? Is that what they put the comics out as? :lol: How fucking stupid! Worst format choice.

MP3 was more or less created by the pirates. The smart money was to follow that. With comics, it's an archive file (.rar) renamed (.cbr) or a (.zip) renamed (.cbz), filled with .jpg files, each being a page. That or as with some manga fantrans - .png files.

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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby AngusH » Thu Apr 10, 2014 11:27 pm

The Old Doctor wrote:PDF? Is that what they put the comics out as? :lol: How fucking stupid! Worst format choice.

MP3 was more or less created by the pirates. The smart money was to follow that. With comics, it's an archive file (.rar) renamed (.cbr) or a (.zip) renamed (.cbz), filled with .jpg files, each being a page. That or as with some manga fantrans - .png files.


Yeah, iTunes may get the credit for the current state digital music, but it was the pirates who basically forced it into existence. The key is finding the pricing point where the added perks of doing it the right way outweigh the savings in just pirating it, and that's what made iTunes the success it is despite it being incredibly easy for nearly every human being alive under the age of around 40 to acquire anything they could get on iTunes for free on torrent sites.

People these days, especially the younger generations, excpect things immediately at what they consider a fair price in comparison to other forms of entertainment. If those needs aren't met, then they move to the torrent sites.

Pricing comics relative to games/apps/songs/movies would be a massive boost for the industry IMO. Maybe it's Amazon that does it with Comixology, maybe it's someone else, but I think it has to happen if the format is to flourish rather than just survive.

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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby Supersoldier Washout » Fri Apr 11, 2014 8:05 am

I don't read digitial comics.

But I do order TPB from Amazon because they're cheaper.
So I guess I suck, in that regard.

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Re: comiXology Confirms Amazon Sale, Denies Selling Out

Postby RottenArsenal » Fri Apr 11, 2014 10:23 am

Am I the only one that just isn't terribly excited about digital comics?

I'm pretty pissed at Marvel for making Deadpool: The Gauntlet a web only series that tremendously impacted the print series. Sorry, but I'm just not gonna pay $39 for a comic series I can only read on an electronic device. Would've been nice if they had put a TPB or something out before Deadpool #27.
But hey... whatever. Maybe Amazon will be cool and allow Prime members unlimited not-have-to-pay-anything-extra access to the digital comics.

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