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Ideas for Future Issue Themes

We're heading into our fourth year of publishing Comixpedia in 2006. So what do you want us to cover next year in the magazine? Throw out some ideas for future issues here.

Ideas for Future Issue Themes

Xaviar Xerexes's picture

We're heading into our fourth year of publishing Comixpedia in 2006. So what do you want us to cover next year in the magazine? Throw out some ideas for future issues here.

I run this place! Tip the piano player on the way out.

Absolutely!

Xaviar Xerexes's picture

I really tried to organize a series of region-specific articles to cover the rest of the world this year but it just never came together. Right now I'm tentatively hoping to have at least one whole issue devoted to "the rest of the world" and I hope we can pull it off this year. Email me (xerexes AT comixpedia DOT com) if you're actually interested in writing about any potential topics.

I run this place! Tip the piano player on the way out.

This is a brillant idea!

Xaviar Xerexes's picture

[quote:338892b161="LineItemVito"]Perhaps somebody will start a translation service like the transcription service found at http://www.ohnorobot.com/

That's actually an interesting idea that seems entirely do-able. Once a comic is transcribed you could have a button that runs it through bableizer (or whatever that service is called) and returns it under the original webcomic. Like subtitles basically. I bet Ryan North could even code it so that webcomics could just include buttons under their comics for different languages.

I run this place! Tip the piano player on the way out.

Xaviar Xerexes's picture

[quote:5745b51bb9="zortic"]While I agree that an automated translator is not the ideal solution, it would at least have the advantage of potentially opening up an awareness of more foreign comics much faster. Then as the technology progressed, the nuances of the writing can be adjusted by bilingual fans (in a program like Oh-No-Robot).

I understand that the automated translation is less then perfect but it seems to me you use the automatic translation to create a first draft and then you allow for individuals to improve the transcription. Having the automatic translation in place first might even help to draw in fans with the linguistic skills to improve the translation.

Leaving it purely to individual effort is never going to scale properly if you want the vast majority of webcomics to be available in many languages (which is a good goal). I think webcomics have great potential to become a more unified global medium but massive translation between languages is a key part of making that happen.

I run this place! Tip the piano player on the way out.

Mark Mekkes's picture

While I agree that an automated translator is not the ideal solution, it would at least have the advantage of potentially opening up an awareness of more foreign comics much faster. Then as the technology progressed, the nuances of the writing can be adjusted by bilingual fans (in a program like Oh-No-Robot).

[quote:543e445da4="Dea"]
There's a huge and thriving Japanese webcomic community. I desperately wish a fan manga translation group would pick up Hanemusu, say, or maybe Home. Not good enough myself yet to read more than a handful of words, but the art's pretty.

I've had Hanemusu bookmarked for a while. I was browsing that list one day and that was the only one I decided to look at later and never really got around to it

I just started reading Home though. That really tiny girl is 17, apparently, and the other girl(18 ) seems to have a thing for young boys.

But yeah, covering all of the not english comics'd be interesting!

William G mentioned professional Korean artists were moving to the web too. There are quite a few things to talk about. It's just a matter of finding people that are able to do it, I guess.

<a xhref="http://www.kiwisbybeat.com" target=blank>Kiwis by beat!</a>

Yeah, boundaries are based more o&shy;n language than region. But they're still out there and it'd be nice to see what the non english speakers are up to. Maybe something will get noticed and translated like some of the more popular english strips are. elftor is in french and stuff etc.<br> <br>

<a xhref="http://www.kiwisbybeat.com" target=blank>Kiwis by beat!</a>

There're also these Webcomics in spanish.
This one had a neat city illustration. I spent a few minutes looking on google, and found one site which linked to the group. Surely there are quite a few more that aren't part of that group. Just gotta look for them.

<a xhref="http://www.kiwisbybeat.com" target=blank>Kiwis by beat!</a>

Attack of the WebBlog Reviews! :D

Hey, why not? There are quite a few review sites forming out there, it might be advantageous to take a serious look at the various sites out there and determine what form each one takes, its update schedule, the general area of content (what comics they cover), and so forth.

Other articles could include taking a look at the history of the blogs, maybe an article on what makes a good blog and a bad one, a discussion on the debate about creator-based and reader-based blogs (whether webcomic creators have a right to do reviews with the apparent risk of "bias" or if reader-based reviews are limited in scope due to the readers not knowing what goes into a comic, and other such arguments), and so forth. Eric Burns could do a Feeding Snarky parody post where Snarky accidently grows to be 80 feet tall and starts wandering through Webcomic Land, devouring the other Webblog Review Sites, and Kris Straub can do a cartoon lampooning everyone out there in the name of satire and parody. :)

Hey, just because we're talking about review sites doesn't mean everything has to be serious in it. :D

-----------

Another idea is other themes, such as Horror comics, Science Fiction comics, Slice-of-life comics, and so forth.

Take care!

m_estrugo's picture

If I wanted to talk about webcomics in Spanish, I could do it with two words: "non existant".

One of the purposes I had for this year was trying to promote webcomics in Spanish. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to do it due to very serious causes. Anyway, I do remember I went to a board about 'comics on the web' in a Spanish comics convention to find they considered the web as a nice way to promote and review paper-based comics on blogs, and didn't have the slightest idea about what we know as 'webcomics'. Imagine, the folks at the table never heard about Penny Arcade!

That's the panorama on webcomics in Spanish. I'm not sure if the same applies to other languages, though.


Greg Carter's picture

I agree with Abby that auto-transtalion is a bad idea. Manual translation via an Ohnorobot-type mechanism would be awesome.

Greg Carter - Abandon: First Vampire - Online Graphic Novel

I wouldn't say it's a generalisation. They were direct messages concerning the work, not the genres or whatnot.

I do believe that there is a perspective of this kind running through sections of the population though. This isn't a grizzle, just an observation. :)

Cheers.

LineItemVito's picture

Perhaps somebody will start a translation service like the transcription service found at http://www.ohnorobot.com/

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Vote Vito: Line Item Vito

AbbyL's picture

I was coming here with the fully self-absorbed idea of suggesting superhero webcomics as a genre to look at. But I love the idea of writing something on foreign webcomics, and I would be happy to be given the opportunity, as long as I can be given the assignment before March. (I'm going abroad)

The William G's picture

Well, if I could read Korean, I'd happily do a fluff piece for it. But since my Korean is limited to asking the waitress for more samgyupsal, I'm afraid I can't help.

Interesting how, like print, two seperate webcomic worlds have been created due to language and culture.


Re: Absolutely!

[quote:8f9683e483="xerexes"]I really tried to organize a series of region-specific articles to cover the rest of the world this year but it just never came together. Right now I'm tentatively hoping to have at least one whole issue devoted to "the rest of the world" and I hope we can pull it off this year.I'd certainly be willing to write a feature about non-American webcomics, although I do have the problem of not being able to think of anything about it. Thanks to the internet, whether or not someone is from a particular country really makes no difference in how the webcomic is accepted.

Oh sure it might make a little difference in spelling or if someone's english isn't completely fluent, but for the most part (with the comics I read anyway, I don't really read any webcomics that are read fairly widely in asian countries (such as Korea and Japan, I believe)) there's little to no difference. The only comic I can think of that is distinctly non-American and is done by someone not from America (besides my own of course) is School Spirit.

So yeah, I wouldn't mind writing an article for a non-America month, now if only I could actually think of a topic.

Now a not-English article might be more interesting, but I know even less about that :P What with only speaking English and all.

J-Sun's picture

Cool ideas! I really dig the ideas regarding foreign language or Non-English webcomics - yeah!

I'll add a suggestion for a theme to the mix -
How about an issue devoted to a "Technical Behind the Scenes" - so to speak - of webcomics. Examining the many different approaches to presentation, comic and news publishing, auto updating, rss, etc... all of the essential yet subtle intricacies that are a real part of webcomics today. A real bare bones examination of how different webcomics and webcomic sites are put together.

It can take a closer look at a variety of approaches and see how people achieve the same or similar end through different means, and also how they achieve different end through different means would be pretty interesting. ;)

:)

[url=http://www.cybertropolis.com/comics/index.html][img]http://www.cybertropolis.com/downloads/banners/cyber366x50.gif[/img][/url]

J-Sun's picture

[quote:3989f35480="GregC"]I second, J-Sun's idea on the "backroom" tech stuff. There have been some articles but a whole issue devoted to how-to would be loverly. I did a panel on DIY Webcomic Site at a con and the people ate it up. My opening speech was at the here's what you need to find out how to do level. The in the Q&A I filled in how-to specifics as needed.

That was just on the website itself. I didn't even get into preparing the comic to put it there. I need to remember to suggest this panel to the cons I'm going to this year.... *mental note taken*.

Yeah I really think people would enjoy a how-to type of issue... I mean sure we all know how to do a lot of different things and a lot of things differently... but to amass this knowledge into one big issue = Uber-resource!

[quote:3989f35480="xmung"] i know a lot of people roll their eyes at superhero comics - but that's because of what Marevl and DC have done to them... there are some great superhero comics on the web and it could be good to look at how they might be different from the print mainstream.

There are soooo many terrific super hero webcomics - definitely not to be overlooked!!! Don't get me wrong - I like this idea as well!
:)

[url=http://www.cybertropolis.com/comics/index.html][img]http://www.cybertropolis.com/downloads/banners/cyber366x50.gif[/img][/url]

xmung's picture

i mentioned the translation thingy to T a little while back. at the moment one can copy the text of a comic from an ohno Robot search into a google translator or a bablebot and get a semi-reasonable translation.

i notice (from my own search stats) that people attempt to run my comic pages thru a bablebot (really!) so it would at least help give them an idea of what's going on, even if not wholly accurate. also, it really wows me out seeing how many people from non-English speaking countres read my various comics (or at least attempt to).

[quote:d62b3c6d81="AbbyL"]I was coming here with the fully self-absorbed idea of suggesting superhero webcomics as a genre to look at.
and there's nothing wrong with that!!!! ;) i know a lot of people roll their eyes at superhero comics - but that's because of what Marevl and DC have done to them... there are some great superhero comics on the web and it could be good to look at how they might be different from the print mainstream.

Magellan - superhero cadets... their own worst enemy is themselves!

xmung's picture

i'd be really interested in something that looked at 'cynical comics' v 'cute comics'. i notice that comics that dredge out the worst in society and people, crank it up a thousandfold and generally treat everyone like shite are often regarded (at least by some) as the pinacle of comic achievement, whilst any comic that dares to be too positive or happy is regarded as corny dross. in fact that tends to happen to comics that don't attempt any cynical view of the world. does that make sense? i'm not sure how one could get an article out of it though, it's just something on my mind lately! :D

Magellan - superhero cadets... their own worst enemy is themselves!

Greg Carter's picture

I second, J-Sun's idea on the "backroom" tech stuff. There have been some articles but a whole issue devoted to how-to would be loverly. I did a panel on DIY Webcomic Site at a con and the people ate it up. My opening speech was at the here's what you need to find out how to do level. The in the Q&A I filled in how-to specifics as needed.

That was just on the website itself. I didn't even get into preparing the comic to put it there. I need to remember to suggest this panel to the cons I'm going to this year.... *mental note taken*.

Greg Carter - Abandon: First Vampire - Online Graphic Novel

I'd really like to see something about foreign language webcomics.

I started trying to track down Japanese comics online because I'm trying to learn the language. Then I started looking for French comics, because I used to speak French, and figured it might be a good way to get back in practice. And that just got me thinking and hunting around and finding all kinds of neat stuff.

It's weird. Comics like Sluggy and Megatokyo are getting translated into German and French and Portuguese, but there don't seem to be that many running the other way. Though a few multilingual creators take it upon themselves to put their own stuff into English. Diane Sasse is translating her own French/German series into English on Graphic Smash and Webcomics Nation right now, that's one, and glory and power to her, 'cause the Kennedy Tales ROCK.

Lots of people speak French, at least a little, so why aren't more of us browsing Coconino World? There's some GORGEOUS stuff on there. I love Bankizland.

There's a huge and thriving Japanese webcomic community. I desperately wish a fan manga translation group would pick up Hanemusu, say, or maybe Home. Not good enough myself yet to read more than a handful of words, but the art's pretty.

Did you know the Netherlands has their own webcomic convention? Well, now you do!

I know that this would probably be a hard issue to write, as not many people are bilingual. But, there's this whole other world of webcomics out there. People should know more about it.

Dani Atkinson, wandering artist.

[quote:8ead0c3195="jdalton"]...but I haven't seen any webcomics in Chinese nor do I know where to look.

That seems to be one of the barriers to finding material outside one's own language. How do you find it? How do you search for it?

Webcomics in French wouldn't be called webcomics. Comic strips are bandes dessinées, BD for short. And in Chinese, you're not only dealing with a different language, but a different writing system. All of this makes googling really tricky, to say the least. You have to have the vocabulary.

If this issue gets off the ground, a good article to write might be a dictionary of useful webcomic terms, in as many languages as we can manage. Words like "comic," "archive," "links," stuff that'd make foreign comics easier to find and navigate. What do you think?

[quote:8ead0c3195="Xerexes"]Email me (xerexes AT comixpedia DOT com) if you're actually interested in writing about any potential topics.

Done! My feeble skills are at your service, sir.

Oh, and does anybody speak German? :)

Dani Atkinson, wandering artist.

I agree with you, Xmung. I've been told (well, in forums and whatnot) several times that I'm basically taking up space because my characters are too optimistic or light hearted or naive and don't do anything edgy or even swear. Some have even told me they didn't think it was even worth a quick read because of this content.

Mind you, that means they still took the time to go to the bother of writing a post to tell me this. :)

Although...I don't like to think of my comic as 'cute'...I'd like to think it has more substance than that :).

But yeah, I agree that the cynical internet geek type of perspective seems to be allpowerful on the net, eh?

Now for non-English webcomics...thanks John for giving me a quick plug up there for being non-American. But I fit into non-English as well. I've been told many times that it's hard to read because instead of being written in English it's written in Australian instead :).

Cheers.

Fabricari's picture

[quote:f5863c42ea="Dutch!"]I agree with you, Xmung. I've been told (well, in forums and whatnot) several times that I'm basically taking up space because my characters are too optimistic or light hearted or naive and don't do anything edgy or even swear. Some have even told me they didn't think it was even worth a quick read because of this content.

I'm sure this is a generalization. Even though I'd call my webcomic 'cynical', I actually enjoy reading the 'cute' ones. I think it has something to do with needing to take a break from all the cynicism floating around at the day job.

Steve "Fabricari" Harrison

LineItemVito's picture

Even if the comics aren't automatically translated, it would be cool if Oh No Robot could keep track of -- and coordinate the writing of -- translations as well as transcriptions. As a stopgap, ONR could potentially offer the less-than-perfect auto-translations until a human-translation is available.

Or as Babelfish would say:
* Tot een menselijk-vertaling beschikbaar is
* Jusqu'à ce qu'une humain-traduction soit disponible
* Bis eine Menschlichübersetzung vorhanden ist
* έως ότου μια ανθρώπινος-μετάφραση είναι διαθέσιμη
* Fino a che una umano-traduzione non sia disponibile
* 人間翻訳が利用できる帰宅しているまで
* 인간 번역이 유효할 까지
* Até que uma humano-tradução estiver disponível
* до тех пор пока людск-perevod не быть имеющимся
* Hasta que una humano-traduccio'n está disponible

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Vote Vito: Line Item Vito

AbbyL's picture

That is a bad idea at this point. Without even considering comics that would have to be transcribed in other character-sets, which poses a problem with automated translations, automated translation is, at best, flawed. More often than not, prospective trans-language readers would be confused and turned-off. Babelfish translations come off as lazy to most people, not to mention unintelligable.

The only way something like that would be successful is if the comic in question had a large bilingual fanbase who could do the translations themselves.

And coding the comics themselves into different languages would necessitate a lot more effort on a lot of people's parts than even Ryan North could organize.

Still, it's a worthwhile idea, and certainly a start, but I see more success with individuals translating, like Franco Bonalumi, who is extremely prolific. (someone should interview HIM)

jdalton's picture

[quote:5e20ebef46="m_estrugo"]If I wanted to talk about webcomics in Spanish, I could do it with two words: "non existant".
OnlineComics.net seems to have mostly Spanish comics in their "non-English" category. Although I can't attest to how good any of them are.

I'm willing to volunteer up my ability to read Chinese (at about a grade 2 level) if you can find a use for it, but I haven't seen any webcomics in Chinese nor do I know where to look. Nor, obviously, would I be able to handle anything too complex (like a comic written at a grade 3 level). :(

Jonathon Dalton
A Mad Tea-Party