Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Cell Phone Comics

ROK Mobile's Web site touts its comics. You can make your own comics or look at other people's comics. Samples are on their site. All of the comics are designed to be delivered on cell phones. The new issue of Comics International magazine (Web site apparently down as of now) spotlights ROK's efforts.

The Forbidden Planet blog has more about all this:

Leaving aside the aesthetic concerns there is an interesting business model at the heart of this, basically commissioning peoples work for free but sharing 50% of revenues with the creators, and perhaps it is something people have been waiting for without knowing it. Whilst I could see the technology being applicable to ‘gag’ cartoonists - something like “Non Sequiter” would be ideal - or perhaps at a stretch a four panel strip like “Doonesbury” - I can’t really see the application to other longer comics forms.

ROK Comics does not share 50% of their revenues. They share 50%, less third party delivery costs. There are some big charts on their ROK Comics Professional Contributor Agreement PDF that's available on their site that show you how much they're taking out of your half. OK, so you, the creator, are all ready fronting some fees. And the contract states that ROK can change the contract any time it wants, forever, in perpetuity. They tell you that you can opt out of the contract if you like. But what if they change that?

I like the idea of this delivery system. People love their cells. And people love comics. But I want a bigger, higher res screen to appreciate the thing. Since I am in business, I am interested in ways to turn eyeballs into dollars. With so many free comics on the Web (like Doonesbury and Non Sequitor), why would people pay to see something from ROK?

Hat tip Journalista!

UPDATE: ROK news release: ROK Comics launches with Garfield, Doonesbury and Ninja Turtles.

H/t Comics Reporter.

1 comment:

Mark Anderson said...

I'm waiting to see how viable the iPhone and its successors will be, but then I'm gonna be all over this.

but this business model? Ummm... no-go as far as I'm concerned.