The webcomics blog about webcomics

Semi-Syndication, Take Two

Those of you who make a habit of checking your favorites even on (US) national holidays perhaps noticed this bit of news from Chris Baldwin:

I will tell you though, in brief, the news I hinted at last week. Soon Little Dee will be moving to I have entered a web-site agreement with United Feature Syndicate in this regard. This does not mean I’m syndicated, but it is the next step in that potential. They’ve been kind and generous to me, and I am excited at this development.

Regular readers of Fleen will recall our previous conversations with Dave Kellett, and his dealings with United Features Syndicate‘s web-only syndication model.

Fleen will be continuing the discussion on [semi-]syndication, as Baldwin has graciously agreed to an interview on this very topic; watch for it shortly. In the meantime, since we all know that nothing brings eyeballs like controversy, let us all hope that Messers Baldwin and Kellett violently disagree about everything, giving Fleen the opportunity to sponsor the first San Diego Comic-Con Steel Cage Deathmatch (with the winner taking on Bil Keane, who will in all likelihood hand the youngster his ass).

Wow. As I am a pretty new reader- let me say that again- as I am a relatively new reader of Fleen, I am also new to the present day realities of syndicates and syndication. Thanks for the eye-opener! I am one of said thousands holding onto that childhood dream of being syndicated. My grip is loosening now and it feels… well… liberating actually.

I’d be the last one in the world to fault Chris Baldwin’s decision. We’re all, collectively, in a liminal state between sure-fire economic models in print and the web. One is undeniably dying, and one is undeniably growing. But neither promise the land of milk and honey if you can just accomplish “steps 1,2,3”. And that’s where the decision-making gets dicey.

And on a separate note that bears repeating: hot-damn, Little Dee is drawn beautifully.

[…] Does this mean that webcomics are becoming more mainstream? We are talking about serious syndication, we are talking about books and merchandise. But do webcomics have what it takes to become Homestar Runner? I’ve seen more Homestar  Runner shirts than anything else. Everyone I knew threatened to turn in an Englilsh Paper. […]

[…] The tenuous relationship between syndication and webcomics became more involved this year, as Dave Kellett left an arrangement virtually identical to one that Chris Baldwin accepted, and both of them found it an improvement on their previous situations. […]

[…] To clarify things, Cloud and UFS have been in discussion for a web-only syndication deal (the sort of thing we’ve seen before), but no final agreement has yet been reached. […]

[…] Gary Who would have thought it would finally come at the hands of a mild-mannered strip about mild-mannered librarians, created in part by a real-life mild-mannered librarian? Gonna be somebody’s ass gets whooped on this one. And as we all know, when webcomics creators fight, it gets ugly. […]

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