Digital Comics – The Death of Print Comics?

I hate reading digital comics! Okay maybe hate is a little strong, but I do find them fairly annoying most of the time.

This revelation came to me recently and has given me a different perspective about the changes in the comic book industry. Actually, it has given me a new opinion about any attempts to forgo printed products in favor of digital publishing. I like the idea of digital books, but I find them a bit cumbersome and worry about what going digital will mean for comics and gaming.

Sure it seems like a great idea to lower costs, make the products more readily available and allows you to take them anywhere without risk of damaging them. After all nearly all of us own a computer, or similar device capable of viewing digital comics and magazines, so in theory it should be the greatest idea any publishing company has ever had. Right?

For the companies that put out digital comics I’m sure it is a fantastic idea, but for some of us it is a royal pain. Whenever I want to read a comic book, magazine, or even a regular book, I don’t want to be tied to a computer, even if it is a lap top or pda, to enjoy my reading material. Plus with the cost of printer cartridges, of which I go through more than my share already, I have no plans of printing all of the digital content that keeps popping up.

A while back I mentioned the site WOWIO and how you can download tons of digital comics. Like any good comic book fanboy I went nuts and downloaded a bunch of books, but after a few weeks I realized I wasn’t reading them anymore. I just got tired of having to sit and read them on my computer. I have boxes of comics that I can actually hold in my hands and, with the exception of needing some kind of light source (which the sun is a very good at providing), I can enjoy them anywhere and anyway that I want, I don’t need electricity, wires, screens or batteries.

Sure digital comics are easier to store, but it just isn’t the same as actually holding a real book in your hands. Besides if comics all go digital, as some are predicting and hoping, I won’t be able to make the trek to my favorite comic shop anymore to get the new releases. I look forward to that. There is nothing in the world like walking into your favorite comic book or game store, talking about your favorite geeky things with the people there and going home with an armload of new books. Some things just aren’t meant to be digital and comics are one of those things.

Some may say that I am old fashioned and that I’m trying to hang on to the past instead of moving ahead with the rest of the world, and maybe that’s true. I honestly believe that as a whole we spend too much time tied to technology and we need to do things the “old way” to keep our sanity. I’m a geek after all; I embrace technology and the changes that come with it, as is our nature. I’m not saying we shouldn’t have digital comics or digital gaming material, I think both are very good ideas. But I don’t want to give up my printed materials just yet, I’m sure there is a place in our lives for both of them.

Now that I have gotten that off my chest I thought I would share a couple of places I have found to get digital comics books and gaming books. So check them out and make up your own mind.

o This is the site of Marvel’s new online, digital comic book subscription service. The comics that are currently available to view range from Avengers #1 to fairly recent issues of X-men. With your subscription you will have access to view, no downloading, any and all Marvel comics that are available on the site. I’m not sure that I would want to pay a monthly subscription for comics that I can’t keep, but you could use this site to catch up on some titles that you may have missed.

o I have never actually bought anything from this site, but I have done a quick look at some of the digital comics they have available in the past. A lot of the books can be found for free on other sites, but the prices on drivethru comics

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