How NFTs Fit Into the Comic Book Creator Economy - The Solihull Observer

How NFTs Fit Into the Comic Book Creator Economy

Solihull Editorial 26th Sep, 2022 Updated: 27th Sep, 2022   0

WHILE internet comic strips and digital comic books have been published in large numbers for years, there is still plenty of room to grow for these publications.

Blockchain and NFT technologies can be very useful for exploring a new form of consumption in this segment, but they can also present great obstacles and challenges.

According to the annual survey Comichron-ICv2, there was a growth in the consumption of the digital format of stories of 6.25% between 2020 and 2021, a period in which there was a significant expansion of 61% in sales of comics, combining physical and digital formats.

In total, digital comics currently account for about 8.2% of all industry sales in North America. Although downloading for consumption is a growing trend, it is still far from reaching a dizzying pace.

Even the most popular comic book app in the United States, Comixology, which is controlled by Amazon and distributes products from major publishers like Marvel and DC, doesn’t even bring in 5% of these companies revenue from its sales. Thus, it is still possible to observe a great prestige for the physical format of the comics there.


Crafting platforms and collectibles


The popularity of NFTs soared in the year 2020, fueled by rocambolesque auctions of very expensive items as varied as virtual artwork and certificates of ownership over the first tweet in history.

However, this is the least fascinating aspect of technology. NFT is the acronym for “non-fungible token” – “token” in the sense of something that can be exchanged for money, such as a fairground token; “non-fungible” means that it has a unique value (a dime can be exchanged for an equal one without prejudice and this makes it a fungible token).

NFTs are a way to quickly and conveniently differentiate digital items in a way that was not possible before. The creation and distribution of this type of item are feasible only because of the decentralized system of blockchains.

In the world of comics, NFTs would be an automated way to create and sell limited edition magazines and graphic novels, using smart contracts and assuring the public of the quality and authenticity of the product.

Several platforms for auctioning and trading NFTs have appeared on the internet. Their specialization is a natural path due to the appeal to creators from the most varied segments – this is the case of Zest World in the world of comics.


The Zestworld case


Zestworld is a North American service designed with blockchain technology in mind. There is space for comic book writers and designers to distribute their creations through subscriptions. In addition, the company also enables the sale of originals (the infamous “commissions”) and the management of intellectual property rights.

For comic book creators, it is now possible to offer both subscriptions to a publication and personalized originals and collectibles in limited series. Sales are already integrated, and control over them is also detailed and does not depend on intermediaries – smart contracts can be direct.

For fans and consumers, access is simplified, and authenticity is guaranteed with a favorite artist. It is also possible to digitally collect desired items as it was not possible until recently – which is possibly one of the obstacles to the expansion of digital comics sales.


Digital risks and challenges


However, like any virtual novelty, NFT trading platforms have been targeted by cybercriminals.

The main threat in these enclosures is hackers targeting cryptocurrency wallets. Therefore, it is always useful to download malware removal and other security software to prevent attacks, ensuring privacy and security.

With the wide range of NFT trading platforms on offer, decentralization and anonymity can allow the criminal(s) to unduly profit from the efforts of others. In them, they can eventually sell not only the originals in digital form but also the certification of ownership over them.


Article written by Ulrike Neumann

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