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Curious to hear some opinions in the matter.

For some reason, even among those who take a passionate stance against pirating games, most don't bat an eyelash when it comes to taking comics. Which seems inconsistent to me. If you follow the same train of logic, stealing books has the potential to hurt the creators on a personal level much more than movies or games would.

 

I'm pretty open about my decision to not download (nearly) any comics anymore, for personal reasons. This may lead to some confusion as to how I feel on the matter, and I've gotten angry backlash on more than one occasion for even mentioning it (not so much here). People get very defensive when they feel they are being judged from above, or assume I made this decision solely so I could do so. I'd like to take this opportunity to make my thoughts on the matter clear.

 

If you cannot afford to buy comics, I would rather you steal them than not read them at all.

 

In the long run, I think the industry should prefer that as well. Exposure keeps people talking about them, visiting the sites, and can possibly secures future sales. Where if you never read it at all, they lose a lot more than a few bucks, they lose a potential fan.

 

I think it's safe to say that I know more people who discovered a book they loved by the relatively risk free avenues of downloading or borrowing, and later went on to purchase that title, than I do people who discovered a book by plopping down money and taking a chance.

 

Now, if you can afford to buy comics, and you download a lot of comics, and you don't buy ANY comics ever, may god have mercy on your soul. That's where I start to judge. I don't think I actually know anyone that fits that description though.

 

Most of the people I know that download shit have some pretty impressive TPB collections, or they're up-and-coming.

 

I would give these words of caution to those who avidly pirate comics: That small title you really enjoy? You should probably think about buying it, or don't get all confused or angry when it gets canceled for low sales and it's gone forever. Pirating can contribute to The Firefly Effect. People can't understand why such a great show didn't make it, but how many of you were watching FOX on friday nights in late 2002?

 

WHATCHOO GOTTA SAY, NEIL?

 

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I usta pirate comics. I still do, but I usta too.

 

ok well not anymore. Not cause I'm against pirating, but because I'm just too lazy to do it. I found that I'd download a bunch of stuff and simply never get around to reading it. same goes for movies, same goes for games. If I absolutely have to watch/read/play something right now I'll torrent, otherwise I'll wait til I get enough money. I really need to just pick a series and read it, but I think I get overwhelmed with how much stuff I haven't checked out I say fuck it and don't read at all, which I know is a damn shame. Comixology is helping rectify that problem.

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Having lost 3 impressive collections in my lifetime through actos of god, dickish former housemates and an insane matriarch who's thankfully now dead, I've torrented the stuff I lost for rereading, and until the last month or so wasn't downloading much else and stuck to monthlies(hence I'm out of the loop a lot). I'm now getting more proactive with my piracy and download the monthly stuff that's been reccomended to me or you guys talk about a lot so it's your fault now with every intention of buying the trades. And @ the firefly effect- this is why I never torrented a single issue of 100 Bullets or Powers. Any book that genuinely needs the love, I can still find $6 to drop on.

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Or if they are simply out of print and no longer available outside of used bookstores and libraries (though I would suggest getting it from the library. You'd be surprised at their comic book selections these days. Also, an underused library eventually goes away).

 

Those are the ones I download. Stuff that's impossible to find or prohibitively expensive that I wouldn't otherwise get a chance to read. I encourage everyone to go steal shit like Miracleman (cuz mine ain't leaving the house, sorry).

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Oh, I'm no stranger to the pirating. There was a period in 2004 where I was unemployed and just got highspeed internet, I must have downloaded thousands upon thousands of books, a lot of which I barely even wanted, which I archived for later reading (and didn't read).

 

But yeah, go download Miracleman anyway. And don't skip the first half of the first issue, it makes the rest of it that much sweeter.

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I pirate a lot of manga. Most of it is stuff that was never released over here. I can't say I have pirated much comics though. Frankly other than what I already like I don't know enough to know what I want to pirate, so I have ended up buying most of my collection. A lot of it is just stuff that looks interesting so I grab it. I also did the same things with the books. I have about 25,000 books on an external right now. More than I can ever hope to read in my lifetime. But what I have found helps, is when I discover a new author through other channels, I can go look through my book collection and see what else the author has out and basically get a chance to read a little of the book beforehand.

 

It is just that like Neil and a lot of other people I have heard, if you make a good product, regardless, it will sell. People are inherent collectors and most people want an "original" copy of something they enjoy greatly. I don't know many people who are comic book nerds, but I have yet to meet someone who is WAY into comics, or video games, or movies, or music who ONLY pirates them. And I doubt any of you know anyone who is like that. We all have fairly large monetary investments into our hobby of choice. Even I am not at liberty to puchase everything that I think I may enjoy. So I pirate. Call me a thief if you will, but I spend the money when I can. I just hate all the self-righteous pricks on forums who say any pirating no matter what is akin to stealing a cd or movie or game out of say Best Buy. Of course those people NEVER borrow anything from anyone or lend out anything ever.

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As am I. One of my favorite books running right now is Rotten: It's funny, smart, creepy, it's a western, it has zombies, it's political satire but not all in-your-face about it. It's a book I would say is tailor made for me and I found it through torrenting. Most comic shops don't even know who Moonstone comics is, but thanks to a torrent of the entire series I now own both Trade Paperbacks which sit proudly on my shelf and I didn't buy that shit secondhand either, I made sure my money went to the creators.

 

Inversely I just downloaded all of Spider-Man (yes) and am hacking my way through it with a machete and while I understand the charm and quite enjoy what I'm reading and realizing that it was meant to pander to kids... Stan Lee is not a good writer at all. This is basically what I did with Ultimate Marvel, I read all of it up until the reboot and with that I'm going to buy Ultimate Spider-Man and maybe Ultimate X-Men but not one goddamn other thing (Fuck the Ultimates, FUCK MARK MILLAR figuritively[/s]) but I'm far more inclined to buy a trade or a comic when it's not made by one of the big two and it's not a superhero book. Those, if I buy them, I buy them secondhand because the creators don't usually need my money. It's my stance with anything I pirate, 90% of my movie collection is movies that I found by myself on the internet through torrenting.

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Stan Lee is not a good writer at all.

 

THANK you. He's awful, always has been. I read the first decade or so of Spider-Man when I was a kid, and even then I could recognize that the writing was hacky.

 

Yeah, so far this all confirms everything I said. I don't know what you people are on about with being judged. You both have substantial collections.

Like I said, I have yet to meet a single person that solely downloads and never buys. Torrents could be the best thing that ever happened to the industry.

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I don't know what you people are on about with being judged. You both have substantial collections.

 

here's the thing, though: you clearly subscribe to a litmus test of just how wrong/evil our digital theft is. and logically, that seems sound, right? for example:

nearly 10 years ago, i sold 9 out of my 10 longboxes (largely at a profit), so i would seem to be less entitled than say, Jay, who as he's said, has had several collections destroyed.

 

but conversations with dudes like Darick Robertson kinda bring another point: the industry owes you nothing beyond what you paid for. anecdotally, i think you, me, baytor and a few here can say that we've bought way more stuff due to torrented books than we would've otherwise, but there's lots of stuff (monthly marvel shit would clearly be my biggest sin, and im not even reading at the moment anyway) we've collectively read and not supported.

 

this comes up all the time for me on gaming forums: if we're not interested in moral pejoratives, but rather supporting the industry, than renting, downloading and buying second-hand all provides the same support: zero dollars. in the case of renting (not really applicable to comics), i'm at least potentially causing more demand for the game. in the case of used (also only applicable to games), we can argue that keeping the $ moving means whoever i bought from might now go buy more new shit, but that's obviously got nothing to do with me. and when comparing comics to games, the former industry is n much worse shape, though i strongly believe both are burying themselves by staying married to outdated models.

 

but yeah - i think what you (logans) are doing is personally the best: supporting them digitally, via either subscriptions or crack-addict comixology purchases. i told myself id support marvel when i was debt-free, but i still don't like what they've got going at the moment, and have yet to check in on dark horse.

 

tl;dr = we're varying levels of hypocrites here.

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Exactly. (The first part, not Voodoo).

 

I think most people, or rather people back in the day, would just entirely skip the books they had questions about. But with downloading, people may discover they really like Mister Terrific, whereas before they may have never known.

And those people may decide to purchase a trade one day.

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Missus Terrific doesn't care for Mister Terrific.

 

While I didn't lose my entire collection. At one time about 45% of my heart had been ripped from my chest. I never pirate comics and never will. I also said I would never sell them either, but a little Filipino doctor had other plans. Seriously, I would never steal comics. I used to look down on people that did, but somewhere along the line I realized what Logan said. I'd rather people stole than not read at all. Besides, I've pirated the hell out of the music business. Steal away, everyone! While you guys steal and review on here, I spend enough for the both of us. It all works out.

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I enjoy the thrill of the hunt. Hunting down missing issues never gets old to me. In the case of old school shit (that's way too expensive), trades do the trick. There's no such thing as a "lost" Spidey story, but you knew that. As far as Miracleman, issues are impossible, but there's collected shit out there. There always is.

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