Rise of comic book piracy ‘a real problem’

Jim Zub, who writes for Marvel and IDW, tweeted that 20 times as many people read comics illegally shared online, than pay for digital or physical works.

Many other comic creators replied with their own experiences of pirated work.

For some, piracy brought personal and professional costs, while others suggested radical distribution changes.

In the thread, Zub said having work spread without being paid for initially created a “visibility boost” for the creators, but has now become the norm for an audience of “rapid consumption”.

“I don’t want pirate readers to think it’s no big deal or victimless,” he tweeted. “Content worth reading is content worth supporting.”

While some writers responded with stories of their work being replicated without credit on social media, the main worry for some is having digital comics – or scans of physical copies – wholesale re-hosted on other sites.

These sites, said Canada-based Zub, are hosted on foreign servers which “ignore legal attempts to shut them down”.

Related Articles