colleen doran makes her case against comics piracy:
Here’s hoping the next step in combating the lack of respect for copyright includes an initiative to instill some respect for the people who create content. Real human beings live behind that work.
meanwhile, steve lieber enters the belly of the beast and finds the experience rewarding:
I just participated in a genuinely fascinating discussion, and I think it’s old dog, new tricks time.
so who's right? i think both of them are. digital piracy isn't a black-and-white issue, and we really are living in unprecedented times where the rules are being rewritten and new rules are made up as we go along.
while i applaud efforts like those described in doran's article seeking to keep adsense profits out of pirates' hands, i also agree with lieber that free is here to stay and we need to deal with that fact as well.
here in the philippines, the kind of comics literacy we have that helped give rise to and supports initiatives like komikon and the indie komiks movement wouldn't really be possible without comics scans available online. and yet those same struggling indie artists are the ones most vulnerable to lost profits due to digital piracy and copyright infringement. like i said, it's not a simple topic.
incidentally, that graphic at the top is a sales chart of steve lieber's graphic novel underground, comparing the rise in sales when his work got featured in boingboing and given away for free at 4chan. interesting, ain't it.