With all the talk of Marvel, DC and apparently now Top Cow asking Z-Cult FM to remove their books from their listings, Glenn Hauman at ComicMix shares a story about meeting with the higher ups at DC about comic scanning a couple of years ago:
I met with DC’s vice president of legal affairs, Lillian Laserson, and her assistants, Paula Lowitt and Jay Kogen, about the issue of scans available online back in April 2005– over two and a half years ago.
At the two hour meeting which covered legal issues, business cases, media ecology, and public relations, I delivered a spreadsheet to them that was current as of April 1, 2005, showing them how many DC comics had been scanned in and were available online. This wasn’t a spread sheet I created, mind you, it was created by the scanning community showing their progress. And they had made some serious progress: I pointed out that of all the comics published by DC in their (at the time) 70 year history, over 75% of them had already been scanned in and were available online. The numbers were closer to 90% post-Crisis. In short, the genie was already pretty much out of the bottle.
I laid out a full online strategy for them, suggesting that the best thing for them to do would be to get in front and pretend they were leading the parade. Partner with their corporate parent, AOL, and make their content available either freely online or behind AOL’s wall, so that they could expand the brand and readership for their products, and get their comics in front of a much wider audience.
Of course, nothing happened, as Glenn shares in his post.