The Value of Print Comics

In the age of Digital Media what happens to the value of Print Comics?

Follow nhalden:
By nhalden - 5/30/2012
I posted an article about my preference for print comics vs. digital download. A few people responded and the majority stated they preferred print as well. The few that like digital better, made some good arguments as well. For example; the availability or proximity of comic shops, and shear storage of several hundred or thousands of comics.

I also posted a poll, which could have been worded better, and included more options, but the gist of it was; if you could view a comic online for a fraction of the cost, without owning it, would you? Or do you want to own the comic...digital or otherwise? The majority of folks wanted "ownership". I get that. However, I don't think many people really understand what "digital" ownership means. As far as I know you can not sell or trade digital comics that you have bought. Therefore, you don't actually "own" the property. Comixology for example hosts my digital comics and I just use my devices to access them.

On the Poll page of my previous article on this topic marknjoanna asked a very good question that got me thinking. The question is:

If they quit printing comic books and go all digital,what would this do the value of say the silver age comics?



What I think happens that that values and collectibility goes WAY UP. not just for first issues, or first appearances, or other choice event issues, but also for the current lesser valued titles. Imagine if you can't buy a print comic, and the only way you can access and view them is digitally. To a comic book fan, print comics would be as good as gold. Especially if the only way you can view them otherwise it to buy or look over a friends shoulder. There is no more going to a friends house and sharing comics. I suppose that friend could "log you in" to his or her collection that is stored on some site, but then you're friend will never have to buy their own comics...lol.

I think there is a place for digital comics...but print will always be around. I don't think markjoanna will have to worry about digital being the only way to get comics. Maybe I'm wrong about that and in 10 or 15 years most print media is dead. If so and or you think that is the case...My advice is to stock up on print comics while you can. Get the new 52 and X men vs Avengers and whatever titles you like. Search the bargain bins, heck buy them out. If only digital is the future...Print will be like "the spice".

DISCLAIMER: This article was submitted by a volunteer contributor who has agreed to our code of conduct. ComicBookMovie.com is protected from liability under the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA) and "safe harbor" provisions. CBM will disable users who knowingly commit plagiarism, piracy, trademark or copyright infringement. Please contact us for expeditious removal of copyrighted/trademarked content. You may also learn more about our copyright and trademark policies HERE.
2
LIKE!
16 Comments
DukeAcureds - 5/30/2012, 6:06 PM
"Print is dead" Egon Spengler, 1984.
marvel72 - 5/30/2012, 6:28 PM
i prefer printed comics,i read a few comics on download its good but i'm old school & i want printed comics to around forever!

unless everything becomes availble on download from action comics 1 - avengers vs x-men,then i still think printed comic books will still be valuable.

i think hardcore collectors will still want the original comics.
thedudeabides - 5/30/2012, 6:49 PM
Turn the page... Wash your hands
ISleepNow - 5/30/2012, 7:44 PM
Comics are a highly illustrated graphic art form. They are not the original artwork but they are still an art medium all their own. Good books with low print runs will continue to retain their values. Mass printed items will sell for a discount. This disparity will increase.
My advice: collected the rarities and golden age lovelies, get digital versions of the rest.

Boogie138 - 5/30/2012, 7:44 PM
@DukeAcureds: thank you. ghostbusters quotes always welcome.

print media can live on. if it will is anyones guess.
i have seen vhs, audio cassests and beta max all die in my time. watching dvd die its slow death now just like before

cycle continues
nhalden - 5/30/2012, 9:48 PM
@Boogie128...I think there is a difference between VHS, DVD, etc...and books. Books comic or otherwise are a physical, tangible representation of an author/artists thoughts, feelings, knowledge, imagination etc...whose purpose is to be read, shared, researched, etc...

TV/Movies...DVD/VHS...is secondary external storage after initial delivery. It could be said that that is what a book is in the digital age as well, but I think there is a distinct difference.

Music CD tapes to mp3...just needs to be heard and streamlining its delivery is the only way to go.
Tainted87 - 5/30/2012, 11:14 PM
Where I live (Tampa), there is only Barnes and Noble after Borders folded. Because they can afford to be douches, B&N has radically reduced their in-store selection, where in fact, you will likely find more board games and toys than fictional reading material.

There are a few small bookstores, but none within the actual city limits that carry new releases or unused books, and even then, the selection is extremely limited. Literature just isn't popular here: I think it's a fair estimate to say that 2 out of 5 people actually have the inclination to pick up a book and read.

Digital media is taking over, and I hate it.
Jollem - 5/31/2012, 2:18 AM
apparently when t.v. was going to come out people said that radio would quickly fade away. turns out that did not happen. newspapers are still here.

i have never read a digital comic. i love the ink and paper.

anything that gets comics into peoples hands in whatever form is a good thing in my book tho
DukeAcureds - 5/31/2012, 2:41 AM
About the death of DVDs; They've been pushing Blu Ray for such a long time now. Longer than they pushed CDs were pushed, before Cassettes went out. Blu Rays are more successful than Mini-discs and maybe moreso than laserdiscs, but this is only because they have been shoved down our throats. And it's cost them a lot of damn money to shove them down our throats.
If they weren't so damned adamant about this Blu-Ray push, I would already be calling the time of death.
I mean, seriously, 6 years and there are still three or four times as many DVDs in shops than Blu-Rays? Kind of fail, Megacorps.
calin88 - 5/31/2012, 2:41 AM
I would loveto have printed comics, but there aren't any in my country so I'm thankfull for digital ones
jessepostal - 5/31/2012, 6:16 AM
@duke, the samething happened going from tapes to CDs and VHS to DVD.same time frame,blu ray might just take longer due to recession.Bluray is more expensive but is dropping in price drastically.Its ar superior to DVD.

Digital music sucks,huge loss of sound and quality.plus I like having the artwork. Same with movies
CorndogBurglar - 5/31/2012, 7:41 AM
The Value of Print Comics?

Anyone that knows anything about the comic industry knows that print comics nowadays are worthless, aside from personal preference.

As far as a price value? The only real way comics these days will be worth anything is if you get them signed and CGC'd. There are far too many copies of every issue that get printed, and everyone that buys them nowadays knows to take care of them, meaning there will be millions of issues in the world for years to come, meaning they won't be worth anything because the market is flooded with them.

Only older books, or unique, signed/CGC'd books with really matter as far as a dollar value goes.

CorndogBurglar - 5/31/2012, 7:46 AM
Also, the dollar value of Silver Age comics would not go up, at least I do not think so. They would still be just as rare as they always were, and that is what pricing is based most on, the rarity, and availability of the said issue.

Example: Captain America #1. If they were to stop making pring comics tomorrow, there would still be just as many copies of Cap #1 in the world as there was yesterday, when print comics were still being made. I don't see how that would effect the pricing very heavily.
nhalden - 5/31/2012, 10:56 AM
@CorndogBurglar "and that is what pricing is based most on, the rarity, and availability of the said issue."

What you said here makes my point...
IF digital was THE ONLY way yo get comics or any books for that matter...then ALL PRINT comic (for this example) would be more valuable. Due to the fact that 1. they are no longer available. 2. Become more and more rare. This senario fits what you said exactly. Therefore by your own statement...prices go up.

In this case it's not necessarily the "content" that is driving the price or collectability up...it's literally the fact that its a print version of something that is no longer made that way.

ManWhoLaughs - 6/2/2012, 7:32 AM
I like owning print but reading digital so I don't have to handle my comics. I'm a collector and know what happens to the value the more you handle them.
marknjoanna - 6/3/2012, 10:19 PM
thanks for the write up.and the opinions guys.

but like ive said before. if they ever quit making real comics i would have to sell fast.ive got so much invested in my collection thus i couldnt take the risk.

i want give a doller amount due to the haters,but ive been at it for over 40 years and just couldnt risk it.

just thinking of having to sell makes me want to cry so i gotta go but thanks again dude.



Please log in to post comments.

Don't have an account?
Please Register.