Author Topic: Creators' Rights 20 Yrs Later? Classic mp3s of Groth, McClou  (Read 4539 times)

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Blake Bell

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Creators' Rights 20 Yrs Later? Classic mp3s of Groth, McClou
« on: September 05, 2007, 07:56:38 AM »
It's been almost 20 years since the "Northampton Summit" that forged the Creator's Bill of Rights, spurred on by the involvement of Kevin Eastman, Peter Laird, Dave Sim, Scott McCloud, Steve Bissette and others.

It took about 20 minutes for the DC Comics web initiative, Zudacomics, to remind us of how the battle between corporation and creator still marks this industry.

Take a trip back to 1990 to listen to Fantagraphics/The Comics Journal co-publisher Gary Groth, artist and author Scott McCloud, and former Swamp Thing artist Steve Bissette discuss creators' rights coming out of the turbulent 1980s that pushed the debate back into the spotlight.

The conversation may be from 1990, but you'd think it was happening today, with questions about copyright vs. trademark, control of one's intellectual property, and whether the lack thereof has been holding back a "flood" of ideas ready to put comics on the same map as other mediums.

You can listen to the mp3s at BestOfMostOf.com here...

http://www.bestofmostof.com/07sep/index070905.htm

...as well as links to a great deal of background material.

It's fascinating to hear - at the 5-minute mark - Bissette touch on DC Comics' offers in the late 1980s to creators, and how it sounds exactly like the same concerns today with Zudacomics.

It really gets rolling at the 31-minute mark, when McCloud makes the distinction between this Bill/discussion being for "Creators," as opposed to those "technicians" (my words) working on mainstream, superhero fare (offering skills in exchange for money).

Groth strikes with his next line, "Doesn't that comprise 95% of the industry?" which really starts the fun, especially when Gary proposes that there's nothing to prove that there are reams of unseen work out there that would flourish if Marvel and DC Comics offered ownership to creators.

I'd be interested to hear people's comments on "Then vs. Now."

Blake Bell
http://www.BestOfMostOf.com/
"Blake's daily weblog looking at what should
be the Mainstream in visual entertainment."

Al Nickerson

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Re: Creators' Rights 20 Yrs Later? Classic mp3s of Groth, Mc
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2007, 08:05:33 AM »
Thanks for the links, Blake. Some years ago, I was able to download this interview from the Comics Journal website. This is a really wonderful interview between Gary Groth, Bissette and McCloud. It was also the inspiration to get me asking the guys about the Bill and itís affects on todayís comics industry. I am so sadden with the fact that not many creators care about such issues, especially when a thing like Creatorís Rights has such a powerful on our careers.

I also like your point from your blog concerning Zudacomics.com. It would be nice if the large publishers were more creator-friendly. Iím not quite sure if Zudacomics.com might be a good example for this. It sounds like (still) work-made-for-hire, but reaching out into webcomics. I wonder if Scott McCloud has commented on Zudacomics.com yet?  :)

Blake Bell

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Re: Creators' Rights 20 Yrs Later? Classic mp3s of Groth, Mc
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2007, 05:31:49 AM »
Hi Al. Good to hear from you again too.

And it appears Mr. Bissette is about to weigh in too...

http://srbissette.blogspot.com/2007/09/another-audio-blast-from-past.html

I emailed Scott Mc. and think I'll fax some of the stuff over to Dave.

Blake Bell
http://www.BestOfMostOf.com/
"Blake's daily weblog looking at what should
be the Mainstream in visual entertainment."

Al Nickerson

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Re: Creators' Rights 20 Yrs Later? Classic mp3s of Groth, Mc
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2007, 06:39:41 AM »
Itís been a while since Iíve talked with Dave Sim. I havenít mailed anything to him, nor have I talked with him since there hasnít been any movement of late concerning the talks on Creatorís Rights. Let us know if Dave has any comments.

I would assume that Dave has read Steve and Scottís interview in the Comics Journal. When the audio version of the interview became available a while back, I told Dave Iíd mail him a CD with the interview, but he said that he didnt own a CD player.

I like this comment from Mr. Bissetteís blog...

"It's the complacency of many of my peers and the generations since 1990 that has led us down this 21st Century path, where work-for-hire and Vertigo contracts are still a sorry status quo."

Al Nickerson

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Re: Creators' Rights 20 Yrs Later? Classic mp3s of Groth, Mc
« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2008, 06:58:03 AM »
Unfortunately, it doesnít look as if Blakeís links work properly anymore. I donít have updated links. Iím not quite sure what happened to Blake Bellís blog.