In a news story that we picked up from Robot 6, it seems HTMLComics.com has been forcibly shut down by a consortium of comic publishers that included DC, Marvel, Dark Horse Comics, and many more.
If you’re not aware of them (and I must be perfectly honest, I wasn’t until I read the article), HTMLComics.com is a site that is based around sharing comics for free for all to read. They operated under the pretenses that it was legal for them to do such a thing because they weren’t posting them for download, just to read.
Now, I’m not a lawyer, but that seems incorrect. Evidently the JLCPA (Justice League of Comic Publishers of America) agreed, as they hired a particularly stout law firm to shut down the coverly popular website (1.6 million hits a day with over 6.6 million pages of comics up? How have I never even heard of these guys?).
This is without a doubt an open and shut case, and one that Multiversity as a whole supports (see: Matt’s article on Comic Book Piracy). When you pirate comics and choose to not purchase a comic that you genuinely enjoy, you are taking money out of the pockets of the creators who have worked so hard to develop this comic. It’s pretty simple. By pirating comics, you lessen their life expectancy and harm the industry just so you can get your fix at a free price. Sure, they’re expensive, but you can be selective and only read the ones you love. That’s what I do and it’s a perfectly viable method for me.
This is a win for not just the publishers, but the creators in the industry as well (see: Colleen Doran’s post about it). Don’t forget that when you lament the loss of this apparently popular comic book piracy site.
At the very least pirates, be happy you never have to see their god awful logo again.