- Posted by Johanna on January 24, 2012 at 12:31 pm
- Category: Digital and Webcomics
ComiXology sent out notice that they’ve added over 100 Marvel digital collected editions to their storefront.
While this is good news for readers who are more interested in reading stories than tracking issue numbers, I found myself surprised by the price levels. The first Ultimates collection, for example, contains 6 issues. You can buy those issues separately digitally for $1.99 each. The collection is $10.99, or a savings of a dollar. Meanwhile, at Amazon, the book is cover-priced $12.99, and you can get it in print for $10.39, or if you buy used, starting at $3.50 (in new condition).
I know, there are other reasons than price for purchasing digital comics, but I certainly am aware that it’s not any kind of a deal to buy digital bundles. Perhaps it’s just old-foginess, that I still have issues spending more than a buck or two on anything virtual, because I like to own (and lend and resell if I want) my comics. When you start asking $19.99 or $24.99 for locked-in files I am likely to lose access to at some point, I cringe.
Anyway, there are 19 event books, 27 Avengers, 23 X-Men, 6 Spider-Man, 5 Marvel Knights, 14 Ultimates, and 13 other (Oz, Zombies, Runaways, and cosmic-related books) available, for a total of 107. That grouping is also aimed at existing comic readers, since I’m not sure the distinction between Spider-Man and Ultimate Spider-Man will make a great deal of difference to them. I suspect they’ll also wonder why Iron Man stories are in Events, Avengers, and Ultimates.
Digital readers don’t necessarily cannibalize your print readers. They may be different audiences, but to make that possible, you also have to treat them as such and quit speaking in established jargon.