A Thought

I’m aware of several occasions when a publisher has been dishonest with the talent working for them, and has been publicly shamed for it. Not paying or using artwork in additional ways not covered in their agreement, etc. The talent, their friends, and everyone else makes this crooked publisher’s behavior known. It’s to 1. Warn other talent, and 2. Pressure the crooked publisher into doing what’s right.

I am an honest publisher. I don’t have any fear about people exposing things I’ve done, because I don’t do things that I would be ashamed of. Most of the publishers I associate with are the same way. We’re trying to make a go of it in a cash poor business, and aren’t out to screw anyone.

As a publisher I see things from a different perspective. What I mean is, TALENT doing things dishonest and crooked to me, the publisher.

Now I’d like to pose a question. When an individual ‘flakes’ on a publisher, damaging or ruining projects, should the publisher be able to shame them publicly? I mean this by the same token that a creator would go public about a publisher screwing them. Now an individual has screwed the publisher. Do we have the same right to 1. Warn other publishers 2. Pressure the crooked person into doing the right thing.

I’m using the word flake to mean when a creator falls off the face of the planet. Stops turning in work. Stops answering emails. I don’t consider a ‘flake’ to be someone who abandons a project after having a dispute with the publisher. A flake is a flake. They flaked out for no legitimate reason.

I have a feeling that people would cry foul if I started identifying flakes. I can’t help but wish that there was some sort of recourse when things like his happen. I wish that talent would have in the back of their mind that they could be publicly shamed if they ‘flake’, the same way publishers know they will be if they are dishonest.


4 Responses to “A Thought”

  1. April 5, 2007 at 1:09 pm

    As a company, I think it would be in your best interests not to air it publicly. But you could definitely warn fellow publishers about the problems you’ve had with certain freelancers, as long as your goal is to warn them and not just to get revenge on the freelancer. Keep to the facts, and share them with your colleagues.

  2. April 5, 2007 at 7:35 pm

    Erica Friedman from ALC Publishing here. On the one hand, we *ought* to be able to make a statement, but on the other hand, there’s really nothing to be gained by it. The publisher would probably look worse than the artist anyway, and appear whiny *and* out of control. Being the publisher means we have to be the grownups. 🙂

    Maybe it’s time to set up a manga publisher’s mailing list to have a place to communicate with each other about just these kinds of things? If anyone else is interested, I’d be glad to set one up.



    Hungry for Yuri? Have some Okazu: http://okazu.blogspot.com

  3. April 17, 2007 at 5:17 pm

    I like the idea of a publishers’ mailing list. It’s terribly frustrating to have a project that seems to be going well, only to have the artist/writer/colorist/whatever suddenly vanish with no explanation.

    The idea of a list set up just so we can point fingers at flakes sounds pretty negative, though–I’d be far more interested in the positive aspects of such a list…networking, chatting about convention experiences, sharing tips about printers and suchlike. I’d be more than willing to help set up/maintain such a list.

  4. April 20, 2007 at 5:34 am

    All good comments. I’m all for a mailing list. We all need to collaborate and conspire in this business. I think some kind of private bulletin board on comic space would do the trick. ?_?

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