ComiXology Allows Publishers to Provide DRM-Free Digital Comics

We knew, when Amazon acquired ComiXology, that changes would be in order. However, I wouldn’t have guessed that this particular, much-requested one would come so quickly.

ComiXology announced yesterday that, for selected publishers, you could download DRM-free versions (either PDF or CBZ) of their comics. That means that your “purchases” (which previously could be more accurately described as “rentals”, since if anything happened to ComiXology’s servers, you’d be out of luck) can now be backed up locally or transferred to other readers.

According to ComiXology, “Participating publishers include Image Comics, Dynamite Entertainment, Zenescope Entertainment, MonkeyBrain Comics, Thrillbent, and Top Shelf Productions. In addition, our Submit creators and small publishers are now able to choose to make their books available DRM-free.” So this doesn’t cover DC or Marvel, which isn’t surprising — the biggest companies are usually the ones who most want to lock down and reduce customer choice. Image has sold its own DRM-free comics directly for a while now, by the way, as does Top Shelf.

ComiXology DRM-Free

If you want to know whether a book is available for you to download, look for the icon. You can check out which titles are available from your past purchases in the new My Backups tab once you’re logged into the site, or find out more on their FAQ page, where they encourage customers to let non-participating publishers “know you want them!”

Industry commenter Rob Salkowitz thinks this is no big deal since the company has no real legal competition and cloud-based content is more usual, while Sean Kleefeld supports the change.


6 Responses to “ComiXology Allows Publishers to Provide DRM-Free Digital Comics”

  1. James Schee Says:

    Yeah I checked mine last night when I got the e-mail. Mine are just some of the Image creator owned singles. Though not the longer tpbs/GNs at least so far.

  2. Johanna Says:

    Oh, interesting. The Image and Monkeybrain I had were just single issues; I hadn’t thought about how the longer items would work.

  3. James Schee Says:

    I haven’t really bought that many tpbs/GNs, and most of them I did where with free codes off the back of books. I did just notice that Ravine V.1(Image Comics, Ron Marz and Stephen Sejic) is on there now, don’t know if it was just added or I overlooked it last night.

    Though I had a few more will have to go through ap and see if anything else is missing. One thing I will like about downloading them is using a separate ap to keep things neater.

  4. Anthony Says:

    Being a near-monopoly and not owning what one paid full-price for is “no big deal”? Uh-huh.

  5. Why DRM-Free Comics Matter » Comics Worth Reading Says:

    […] Bogart has posted a great summary of why it’s a good thing that ComiXology added DRM-free functionality. He called it “ComiXology isn’t going anywhere yet DRM free downloads are great […]

  6. ComiXology Announces Second Wave of DRM-Free Comics » Comics Worth Reading Says:

    […] July, ComiXology announced that certain publishers would provide DRM-free backups of the digital comics you rented through their service, moving them closer to being […]




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