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Allegory Comics
09-25-2009, 03:25 PM
I haven't been to the shop in a few months. The economy (and other factors) has hit me pretty hard. I only make about 2/3 what I made 6 months ago. Apparently the economy has hit the comic book industry also, because I went in today and grabbed the 20 books that were being held for me all this time and saw that most of my Superman books had gone up to $3.99.

I knew they were talking about doing that, and I didn't really care; but when you go to the shop and find more than $80 in books waiting on you ... you start to care really quickly! I bought what I could afford (about $30 worth), put a few back in my save box, and had to set a few back on the shelf.

That's money DC will not be getting from me.

I've never understood why businesses raise prices when they are selling lower than expected numbers and want to increase its profits. Why not drop the price slightly as an incentive to customers and see what happens?

Seems to me you can make more money by selling 15,000 units for $2.50 than you will by selling 10,000 units for $2.99; and especially more than selling 8,000 for $3.99. The more prices go up, the fewer people are going to buy it. Plus, by lowering prices only slightly you'll gain fans respect and loyalty, and they just might spend more in the shop while they're there.

When everyone is strapped for cash, people begin thinking what they can cut from their budget. And if comics are only going up, that increases their impact on your budget, and you begin to wonder if it's worth it (and let's face it ... it's not).

I can't cut back my comics any further. I only follow one character as it is. I've had to miss Blackest Night and Reborn entirely. I could do trades, but I don't like waiting for them. I always feel left behind.

The next thing would only be to stop comics entirely, and I'd hate to kiss off this 20 year habit.

KidIntense
09-25-2009, 03:28 PM
That is so alot of money. But i will still buy Superman since the economy has gone up now.

Phatman
09-25-2009, 03:33 PM
That is so alot of money. But i will still buy Superman since the economy has gone up now.

You're high.

RonaldMontgomery
09-25-2009, 03:35 PM
I haven't been to the shop in a few months. The economy (and other factors) has hit me pretty hard. I only make about 2/3 what I made 6 months ago. Apparently the economy has hit the comic book industry also, because I went in today and grabbed the 20 books that were being held for me all this time and saw that most of my Superman books had gone up to $3.99.

I knew they were talking about doing that, and I didn't really care; but when you go to the shop and find more than $80 in books waiting on you ... you start to care really quickly! I bought what I could afford (about $30 worth), put a few back in my save box, and had to set a few back on the shelf.

That's money DC will not be getting from me.

I've never understood why businesses raise prices when they are selling lower than expected numbers and want to increase its profits. Why not drop the price slightly as an incentive to customers and see what happens?

Seems to me you can make more money by selling 15,000 units for $2.50 than you will by selling 10,000 units for $2.99; and especially more than selling 8,000 for $3.99. The more prices go up, the fewer people are going to buy it. Plus, by lowering prices only slightly you'll gain fans respect and loyalty, and they just might spend more in the shop while they're there.

When everyone is strapped for cash, people begin thinking what they can cut from their budget. And if comics are only going up, that increases their share of your budget, and you begin to wonder if it's worth it (and let's face it ... it's not).

I can't cut back my comics any further. I only follow one character as it is. I've had to miss Blackest Night and Reborn entirely. I could do trades, but I don't like waiting for them. I always feel left behind.

The next thing would only be to stop comics entirely, and I'd hate to kiss off this 20 year habit.

Elasticity of demand.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Price_elasticity_of_demand

If I had to guess, consumer demand for comics through the direct market is pretty inelastic at up to $3.99

L Jamal
09-25-2009, 03:46 PM
Elasticity of demand.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Price_elasticity_of_demand

If I had to guess, consumer demand for comics through the direct market is pretty inelastic at up to $3.99
Exactly.
The price went up 33%, but sales have not dropped 33%, so more money in DC's pocket.

Allegory Comics
09-25-2009, 03:50 PM
Well, they've lost some of MY money, and I'm sure I'm not the only one. Sadly, richer people than us continue to shell out for these increases and that just encourages them further. Fans need to say "enough"!

I want to keep reading comics. I just can't afford it anymore.

RonaldMontgomery
09-25-2009, 03:54 PM
I want to keep reading comics. I just can't afford it anymore.

I agree. My only monthly is Detective, and that's for the art. I get TPBs from the library and buy books used off Amazon.

I have a (half-) joke test for buying a comic book. I call it The Subway Sandwich test. If buying a comic book will give me the same or more pleasure as eating a six inch Subway sandwich, then I'll consider it. (They're roughly the same price...)
If not, it's clearly not a good deal.

:laugh:

KidIntense
09-25-2009, 03:56 PM
Phatman, are you saying i'm high? That is crazy.

j giar
09-25-2009, 05:03 PM
It's one of the many reasons I've turned to buying trades. I think in most cases the trades combine 4 or 5 issues. And at 3.99 a pop, that shit adds up. The other benefit for me is the story remains uninterrupted. I do, however miss the days of wondering what was going to happen next. But hell, with all the comic sites on the internet there is no such thing as surprises anymore....

Phatman, are you saying i'm high? That is crazy.

..and I absolutely love this. :laugh: ....yes Phatman is crazy.

MARS
09-25-2009, 05:59 PM
I think a thread should be started where everyone says "You're just high type of things"...

Oh wait. That's the Creator Community.

;)

M.

Ian Ascher
09-25-2009, 06:16 PM
Try being a Marvel fan....

At least when DC raised the prices of their books to $3.99 they gave us extra pages and extra content for that $1.00 and I believe a bulk of DC's books are still $2.99.

Marvel rasied a bulk of their books to $3.99 for the hell of it with nothing extra. To date, I think Incredible Hulk is the only book at $3.99 that has a back up and more pages of story/art for that price point.

Looking at the Superman books for the month of September it seems that all the standard 32 page Superman books are $2.99 and the special issues and annuals are $3.99 with the exception of Action Comics at $3.99 because it has the Captain Atom back up feature.

I agree the price jump in recent months is overwhelming, especialy if you haven't been in the shop for a while, but sadly, it's nothing new and it's not going to change. Even if the fanboys of the world united and managed to mass boycot a book, let alone a company, to take a stand against the price increases, all we would do is shoot ourselves in the foot and loose out either way.

I wish I had an answer to solve the problem but I don't think anyone does.

RonaldMontgomery
09-25-2009, 09:03 PM
I wish I had an answer to solve the problem but I don't think anyone does.

Buy stock in the company and write management a letter as a shareholder.
You have more of a voice as a shareholder than as a customer.

dlwdirector
09-25-2009, 10:08 PM
I agree with what everyone is saying. I haven't had a full time, steady 40 hours a week job, in almost two years!! Jobs I used to work for $10-$12 an hour, are now part time for $8.00 an hour.

It's ridiculous to raise prices when your sell continue to shrink. I know it's 'standard' practices, but still, in the long run, the consumer will leave.

I haven't purchased any comics regularly/monthly for over a year. I just buy WIZARD to get the lowdown and check NEWSARAMA a couple times a week.

I'm an avid movie goer as well (and married with a kid) so any entertainment is going to cost me. I choose movies (at $10.50 per ticket), $30 a movie if my wife comes. That being said, I've gone to NETFLIX and REDBOX for movie rentals.

Everyone needs escapism, but I draw the line at a $4 comic book, which I'm going to read and put into a box where it will do nothing but collect dust devalue every second of every day.

And as an aside, where does DC get off when they're owned by a muilti- national corporation with plenty of money. We know DC's a tax right off for Warner Brothers.

But hey, I'm not bitter.

RonaldMontgomery
09-25-2009, 10:23 PM
Amen to NetFlix! The wisest entertainment purchase I've ever made was buying a Roku box...!!!! I pay $8.99 a month to stream NetFlix to the TV.
Hmm....that's two comics.

Phatman
09-26-2009, 12:39 PM
Phatman, are you saying i'm high? That is crazy.

Yes... and it is.

Phatman
09-26-2009, 12:40 PM
..and I absolutely love this. :laugh: ....yes Phatman is crazy.

At last, something we can all agree about.

j giar
09-26-2009, 12:44 PM
At last, something we can all agree about.

It all those Monster power drinks.

Allegory Comics
09-26-2009, 02:57 PM
It all those Monster power drinks.
At $2 a can, they're still cheaper than most DC comics.

xIsaacx
09-27-2009, 12:54 AM
Dcbs

Eugene Selassie
09-29-2009, 02:26 PM
Look, I'm not complaining because DC is actually giving you something for that extra buck.
Hopefully it will keep alive a few characters/titles as backups that fans disappointingly neglected to support.

Paul Sanderson
09-29-2009, 07:55 PM
This is another reason why so few kids get into comics. The big publishers are continuing to price kids out of the market, to the industry's detriment.

Allegory Comics
09-29-2009, 08:17 PM
Look, I'm not complaining because DC is actually giving you something for that extra buck.
Hopefully it will keep alive a few characters/titles as backups that fans disappointingly neglected to support.
If they want fans to support other characters, they should actually TRY to make them interesting again.

Take Daredevil and Green Arrow for example. Say what you will ... they were dead weight just a few years ago. Then Marvel and DC, respectively, brought in Kevin Smith to relaunch them. Fans turned out for that, and now each of those titles do very well for their publishers.

If a book doesn't sell well, don't blame fans with low brow tastes. Blame publishers who don't give them the proper attention. There are exceptions to every rule, of course, but mostly books don't sell because fans aren't interested and publishers aren't doing enough to GET them interested. And backup stories aren't the answer.I'd wager a lot of people don't even read them. I don't.

Backup stories only introduce fans to the mediocre status quo of lesser known characters. It's not a matter of exposure, it's a matter of quality and interest.

Paul Sanderson
09-29-2009, 09:58 PM
Agreed. From my point of view, most of those new books weren't particularly good (eg. Blue Beetle, Firestorm). They failed for that very reason. Re-working over characters/concepts that really didn't need them and making them less interesting in the process.

Moonrider
09-30-2009, 12:24 AM
There are more reasons that factor in how good a book is selling than simply blame it on the concept. Blue Beetle was a book I very much enjoyed up until Giffen and Rogers left. After that the story seem to be stuck on status quo and they didn't explore the characters and their adventures further. Firestorm was quite mediocre from the beginning, neither the older series nor the newer series have ever sparked a real interest in the character. The concept itself was nearly untouched in the newer incarnation. Only the characters were changed.
In my own opinion, older readers just won't accept new stuff and newer readers couldn't get into it because legacy characters always carry some sort of baggage with them. Concept reworks are risky, of course, but it's a sign that at least the publisher is consciously trying to make them more interesting. What needs to be taken into account is to whom the books should be targeted at. You can't really target older and newer readers at the same time. One can't expect a guy like Frank to like the new incarnation of Blue Beetle, but I liked it for what it was. Even great stuff like Green Lantern: Rebirth alienated new readers to some degree in favor of making older readers rejoice in seeing Hal Jordan back. But it's allright, as long as it's selling. Publisher should always make their products with the user in mind.

Allegory Comics
09-30-2009, 12:51 AM
There are more reasons that factor in how good a book is selling than simply blame it on the concept.
Certainly, but that may be the largest.

It's like the old axiom says - there are no bad characters, there are only bad writers. If creators were better (and if publishers and editors would choose better creators and untie their hands to do their job) then stories would be better and books would sell better. It may not reach sales equalling books in the top 10, but good stories will always find readers.

You're right that new readers won't flock to old characters because they're bored by them, and you can't rework those characters without pissing of the existing fanbase. Bottom line: you are NEVER going to please everyone with anything. Forget it. You just have to look at the overall numbers. Are sales up or are they down? I think sales trends have proven over and over again that good creators and good stories will always produce good sales.

Sure someone is going to be pissed off. Sucks to be them *.

(* and the "them" I'm referring to sometimes includes "me")

If I can attempt to pull this back on topic ... I guess my point would be: I might not even mind paying $4 for Superman comics, if they were better. I don't want extra goodies. I want a GOOD SUPERMAN STORY! Screw Captain Atom back up stories. I don't give a shit. That's not why I'm buying it, so I have a hard time accepting that as a passible excuse to raise costs. DC should instead use that money to get better creators and produce better title-character stories.

In the meantime, you don't have to cram Capt. Atom into MY books. Or Booster Gold. Or Blue Beetle. Or Plastic Man. If I wanted to read those stories, I know where to find them ... in the dollar bin.

ponyrl
09-30-2009, 01:22 AM
Hey Moonrider, Paul, not to railroad Allegory's thread anymore.

http://www.digitalwebbing.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1616952#post1616952

thoughts?

Moonrider
09-30-2009, 06:09 AM
Was I that far off topic? Heh heh... forgive me then.

If I can attempt to pull this back on topic ... I guess my point would be: I might not even mind paying $4 for Superman comics, if they were better. I don't want extra goodies. I want a GOOD SUPERMAN STORY! Screw Captain Atom back up stories. I don't give a shit. That's not why I'm buying it, so I have a hard time accepting that as a passible excuse to raise costs. DC should instead use that money to get better creators and produce better title-character stories.

In the meantime, you don't have to cram Capt. Atom into MY books. Or Booster Gold. Or Blue Beetle. Or Plastic Man. If I wanted to read those stories, I know where to find them ... in the dollar bin.

Maybe DC should consider publishing those backup features as downloadable web comics instead?

UniverseX259
09-30-2009, 09:18 AM
I recently started buying monthlies regularly for the first time in 5 years. 5 years ago the average comic was $2.25, and I kind of figured that they would be around that same price today. Now most of the comics I buy are between $3-4 dollars.

I used to be able to go to the comic store and buy 12 comics for around $30. Last week I bought 5 comics for $19. I still buy them, but it prevents me from picking up so many titles. Now I only buy what I feel is necessary (I've also been out of the game for so long that I'm trying to find new series to regularly buy).

Critters Daddy
09-30-2009, 12:27 PM
I buy like 5 books a month now because of the price increases. I actively look at the price now where I used to just look at the book. But if it's 4 bucks 9 times out of 10 I wont bother and wont miss it.