Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Do-Nothing Response, courtesy of DC Comics

Retailers were all wondering what DC's announcement/action would be this week at the ComicsPRO meeting held at the Baltimore Comic Con this weekend in regard to the fiasco that was All Star Batman and Robin #10. Today told us what was said, and I am sure I'm not the only person disappointed by this do-nothing "response" given by DC.

Newsarama reports: n terms of taking steps to prevent the situation from happening again, Wayne told the assembled retailers that DC will be instituting a new review period for all of its books between printing and shipping to retailers in order to thoroughly check for and prevent such errors from happening again in the future. The new period may add time to the Final Order Cut-off (FOC) date by which orders are due in from retailers, but nothing concrete was mentioned.

Additionally, Wayne said that, in the case of blocking objectionable words with black bars, DC will no longer print the curse word underneath the black bar, opting to now make the bar roughly the length of the letters that the word would have been.

In regards to retailers who received the book, and chose to ignore DC’s request to destroy the error copies, Wayne said (and later restated for Newsarama) that no punitive steps will be taken against the retailers, even though DC knows which Diamond Comic Distribution accounts received copies of the error version of the issue, and has been monitoring the sales of the issues on eBay.

So, I guess they'll actually read comics before they ship them. They will try better to censor writing "after the fact" instead of asking writers to meet pre-specified standards, and they'll shake their heads while smiling at retailers who, instead of returning the misprints, sold them for bocu bucks. Weren't the first to already happening? And haven't they already let the time for action on the selling of the misprints gone by anyway? This "news" wasn't anything new. It is disapointing, but not surprising, to find that not only will this publisher nor the distributor take any real, corrective action in light of these events. It seems to be up to us as consumers and retailers to poliece ourselves and each other. The problem, of course, is that there will always be people who think they will profit off of these situations, regardless of the larger picture.


Ben from AZ said...

Were I Dan DiDio or any of the DC figureheads, and I knew that comic book stores were making profit on a mistake we made, I'd definitely pursue some sort of legal action. I mean, doesn't DC have the right to withhold issues to those stores if they don't comply?

Todd Sayre said...

Some sort of legal action? What about First Sale Doctrine?

ManoDogs said...

I said, when I covered it using your (and others') post a while back, that I figured this would happen. I agree it's unethical, but it's also the chance of a lifetime for some retailers and definitely for individual collectors.