Vertical Survey Hints at Patreon Subscription Plan

Vertical, the manga publisher of unusual works, has published a reader survey to find out more about their customers’ buying habits and license requests. I found this question particularly interesting:

Would you consider participating in a Vertical subscription program supported through Patreon? (For a monthly amount, patrons could receive the Vertical catalog as it comes out for a year. Patron plans could be made for the novels, the cookbooks, the manga, or the entire Vertical catalog. Promotional goodies would also be provided to patrons.)

Earlier this afternoon, Vertical marketing guru Ed Chavez tweeted

Manga publishers have been at the forefront of exploring alternative publishing plans, from the first Digital Manga Kickstarter to Tokyopop’s print-on-demand plans. Patreon, which is a crowdfunding site like Kickstarter, but for subscription plans (continuing monthly funding), has recently been discovered by comic creators, particularly webcomic makers.

Vertical has been much more reliable in its releases than some of the other manga companies I’ve mentioned, so if they did a plan like this, the likelihood of getting what you pay for is high. (Digital Manga tried a yaoi prepay plan similar to this in 2009, but that was before these kinds of funding tools were widely known. I don’t know how well it worked out, or if everyone got what they paid for.) The question would be whether readers of some of Vertical’s manga would like all of it enough to commit to buying it all.


  1. It’s a bit confusing though, no? You’re getting the catalog “as it comes out for a year”. Does that mean that only one calendar year’s new titles will be available? That you can only keep titles for one year after downloading them? What’s the difference between the monthly charge and the year’s whatever-it-is?

    I wouldn’t be interested in paying a monthly fee for the calendar year’s titles, because new volumes from series whose earlier books I hadn’t read would be worthless to me (unless I bought the whole backlist).

  2. This would be a print book program (not digital), I think, since digital rights for manga tend not to be as easy to get. Good point, though, about it being difficult to jump in. The Vertical titles I’ve been most excited about lately have been standalone volumes, but they do publish continuing series as well.

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