I’ve spent a good portion of tonight, between other things, reading all of the posts on Scott Kurtz’s board regarding the new animations that he’s trying to put out. It’s kind of sad to see just how many people are causing such a stink about paying the twenty bucks for a year’s worth of episodes (12 total – 1 / month) of production-quality animated content from a strip that they claim to love. I’ve got a feeling that ultimately he’ll be ok, and I hope to be able to subscribe myself when the launch date gets closer, but it’s just rough to see such mixed support from your community like that when it comes down to the almighty dollar…
Granted, he’s on a much higher scale, but I know the line between liking something you read online and helping to fund something you read online, primarily because I’ve still got a stack of Ink, Paint & Tears… 2006 Wall Calendars here that went unsold and even those we did were in the 2-digits … LOW 2-digits, at that. I wish I knew where I’d found it, but I remember reading somewhere that if an online artist gets feedback from their readers to the tune of 1% – be it financial or verbal – then they’re doing better than most, basically showing that only a remote few will ever support you or even just tell you how you’re doing. Now Kurtz has a sizable army – arguably one of the biggest in his field – and so far they’ve got a 26+ page debate going on in the forums whether people are willing to support him on this latest venture of his. The post that threw me was one calling Kurtz a jerk (paraphrasing) because he frankly said, “Wow. How can some of you guys afford the internet. If 20 bucks makes the difference between your children being fed and going hungry this week…maybe you guys should switch to dial-up or net zero or something. I’m sorry you can’t…pay for things?”
I probably don’t do it as much as I should, but I have supported various efforts on the Internet over the years, whether it be by purchasing a book or a sketch or just making a small donation – every little bit helps and most people take forgranted the idea that when people create something, they’re usually doing it in their free time at their own cost. The next step up – doing what you enjoy doing for a living – requires MONEY and that has to come from somewhere. Advertising only cuts it for very specific scenarios anymore these days and the rest are left doing it as a hobby, which is fine as long as they’re willing to do it. I don’t know – maybe it’s just hard for me to read that kind of stuff because the bulk of the Internet community has always seemed so “cheap” to me, for lack of a better reason. College students and younger adults, all who want their entertainment for free and yet don’t mind dropping similar cash on booze or DVDs later on that weekend. Sometimes I wish everything just went by a tip jar solution, and that would be enough. I enjoyed Penny Aracde today, so I kick them a buck or two. PVP sucked this time, so I’ll find somebody else that makes me laugh that time – no biggie.
Good luck to Mr. Kurtz on his new venture. If anything, it’s something that’s only been done once before, so hopefully he does better than his predecessor and shows us just exactly what the next step is like! I’m jealous – I’d love to see our characters animated.
Then again, there’s still plenty of time…
(Get drawing, Lori!)