Online Comics

By | Monday, October 23, 2006 Leave a Comment
I've talked before about pulling comics down from the Internet. At the time, though, I was speaking about relatively new comics that were well within the copyright of the original owner being shared through a Torrent-type service.

Recently, though, I was looking for some information about Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and -- quite by accident -- stumbled on a couple of comics that were simply posted to a web sit as a series of image files. One of the issues was Santa Claus Funnies #2 and it features a story in which Alice takes Santa Claus to Wonderland. It's a relatively banal story, especially given the source material, but I thought it was curious that it could be posted online. The publisher has long gone out of business and no one has tried securing the copyrights to the original art. Since the characters themselves are in the public domain, there's nothing to stop anyone from posting this material online.

That got me thinking. There must be hundreds of comics that fall into that same legal area. Wouldn't it be cool if people who happened to have copies of those issues were able to scan them and put them online for everyone to see? Think of how many more comics you could read yourself. Think of how much more comic history fans would know about just by being able to read some of those old books.

Now, if only I could up with a viable business model behind that!
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