Digital comic book platform ComiXology announced today that it will begin offering DRM-free downloads for some of the comics and graphic novels available for sale through its online store.
Considering that ComiXology is the leading seller of digital comics in the U.S., this is pretty big news.
Why? Well previously, many hardcore comic fans were hesitant to switch over from buying printed comics to digital versions. Part of this is because, for the majority of digital comic book stores, the comics you buy cannot be accessed outside of the platform you purchased it from. Essentially, that means when you’d buy a comic on Comixology you were actually getting unlimited access to that piece of content for as long as ComiXology was in business. And unlike digital music download purchases, you couldn’t download a DRM-free file of that comic to save on personal storage devices, third-party comic reader apps, or other mobile gadgets.
In other words, technically you didn’t own the content you bought in the same way you would with printed comic books.
As of today that’s changing, at least for a selection of comic books and graphic novels. ComiXology customers can now chose to backup past and future purchased comics from participating publishers by downloading a high-quality, DRM-free PDF or CBZ file from its website.
“For those out there who have not joined the comic reading community because of DRM – you have no excuse now,” said ComiXology cofounder John D. Roberts in a statement.
While ComiXology remained tight-lipped about the news, it did disclose that only a handful of publishers would be participating in the DRM-free digital download program. For instance the two biggest publishers — Marvel and DC Comics — probably won’t be participating any time soon. Yet, books published under ComiXology Submit, the service’s indie publishing arm, will be made available as DRM-free downloads.
Image Comics, the third largest publisher in the industry, already offers DRM-free downloads on books purchased directly from its website. That might have had something to do with ComiXology’s new stance. Either way, this is a huge win for those that want to own the digital media they buy online.
Founded in 2007 with the mission of bringing comics to people everywhere, comiXology — in just five short years — has revolutionized the comic book and graphic novel world. From creating the industry leading platform for digital co… read more »
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