- Posted by Johanna on May 4, 2009 at 10:10 pm
- Category: Comic News
Brian Hibbs explains how the direct market works these days, examining changes in consumer, retailer, publisher, and distributor behavior. If you’re going to talk about what any of these groups “should” do, you’d better take into account the factors he points out.
CONSUMERS: Honestly, a fair chunk of the issue is your own fault — you, collectively, have decided that you aren’t as interested in buying serialized comics as you once were. That’s fair enough, and I Get It. …
RETAILERS: Yes, some suck. Maybe even “many”. Potentially (though, really, I don’t think so, but let’s grant the possibility) “Most”. Also: there aren’t enough retailers, not by half. …
PUBLISHERS: “I published it” is not a marketing plan.
He goes on to talk about particular issues faced by Diamond.
The Big Four are probably eating up most of Diamond’s “mercy f**k” budget by overproducing a bunch of marginal s**t that no one really wants. In a way, I feel like Diamond’s policies are nearly aimed at Marvel and DC, but they contractually CAN’T dictate shit to Marvel and DC, so they have to do it where they’re contractually able to do so.
LOTS more at the link, including a breakdown of in what ways Diamond could stop being a monopoly and his plan for a better future for everyone involved. It mostly puts the call for action onto the publishers, but at least he’s making a concrete suggestion for something to be done.