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Comics A.M. | The comics Internet in two minutes

The Walking Dead #77

Publishing | Image Comics Publisher Eric Stephenson talks at length about market share, the economics of creator-owned comics, fallout from the prolonged legal battle between Todd McFarlane and Neil Gaiman, and retailer concerns about simultaneous print and digital release of The Walking Dead: “… I was honestly a little thrown by the sheer amount of invective generated by the day-and-date release of a single Image digital title, sold at exactly the same price point as the print version of the book. Nobody was undercut, nobody had an unfair advantage, and I don’t see how it’s any different from offering the book for sale through any other storefront. Virtually every comic is available digitally on the same day it’s released to comic book shops — for free — and that has been the case for several years at this point. Publishers have slowly begun to establish a foothold in digital publishing, but I would be willing to bet more people downloaded The Walking Dead #77 for free than paid for it through our app. In fact, I’ll even go one better and speculate that more people downloaded The Walking Dead #77 illegally than bought the print comic. And you know what? The book’s sold out — we have more reorders than we can fill and we both know those reorders wouldn’t be coming in if retailers weren’t selling out of the books.” [Bleeding Cool]

Viz Media

Publishing | Viz Media has been teasing “HUGE news” that “changes everything,” leading some to speculate the manga publisher will announce digital distribution. [Kuriousity, via MangaBlog]

Publishing | Tokyopop’s Mike Kiley wades into the often-thorny issue of what qualifies as manga: “In my humble opinion, while my roots are in Japan and my first love of ‘comics’ really comes from Japan, I think a lot of these distinctions have become meaningless.” [The New York Times]

Retailing | Amazon’s sales rose 39 percent in the third quarter to $7.6 billion, helped in part by the debut of the Kindle 3 in June. [The Wrap]

Retailing | Hi De Ho Comics & Books in Santa Monica, Calif., one of the oldest comics-specialty stores in the United States, is moving to a larger location. [Hi De Ho Comics & Books]

Passings | An obituary and tribute appear in the Medford, Oregon, newspaper for colorist Jonny Rench, who passed away Saturday. [Main Tribune]

Creators | Laura Hudson chats with Kate Beaton about Marvel’s Strange Tales II, the evolution of her work, reader reactions, Wonder Woman, The New Yorker and more. [Comics Alliance]

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