The webcomics blog about webcomics

I Can Never Tell What’s Going To Resonate With You People

Seriously, what I thought would be a mild discussion of marginal interest turned into a comment-fest (albeit a mostly polite and helpful one). So here’s one that, for all I know, will either drop with a thud, or turn into the Great Flame-Fest of Aught-Six.

Over at THE ENGINE, interblag home of Warren Ellis, is a discussion of standards. Colonel Joey kicked things off with what might almost be termed a Call For Proposals: if webcomics are going to be noticed by search engines, and if they’re going to have a prayer of shifting between service providers as needs require, we ought to figure out ways to do those sorts of things as a group. The alternative is that everybody works with something different, and creators may get locked into providers because the cost of shifting is prohibitive.

‘Round about the bottom of page one, Phillip Karlsson (aka “Dumbrella Hosting Guy”, aka “Publisher of Fleen”) chimes in with some of the background of the Goats strip transcription system (which dates to early 2003), some of how Oh No Robot works, and some of the design challenges of describing something as (and this is the only word I have that works — Phillip and I have talked webcomics data schema more that I care to recount) lumpy as a webcomic.

All in all, it’s fascinating if you happen to like this sort of thing; if you’ve got some experience in data slinging, you might want to take a gander at the discussion. We’re at a unique point in the evolution of webcomics, where people are starting to think about what kinds of tools are useful in making a webcomic (any webcomic) work well, and they’re making those tools available to all and sundry. If we can get a few more people making a few more non-propietary tools, we’ll be much better off a decade from now than we would have been otherwise.

Well, what the Oh No robot uses is basically a variation of the alt tag in HTML—where you can put the dialogue in where a search engine can see it. i’ve been doing that for YEARS, without using the “oh no robot”, and it helps, so I get (even for webcomics) the most unlikely strings imaginable…by simply using the “alt” tag in HTML.

I’m still trying to figure out how to get WordPress to play nice with webcomics.

I’m still trying to figure out how to get WordPress to play nice…

I’m starting to figure out that Fleen is related to Dumbrella. As an artist, I’m worried about disinformation campaigns akin to Fox and election results.

Will Dumbrella be President of Webcomics four more years? At least their artists and Dayfree’s aren’t “the lesser of two evils” we’re so used to choosing between.

I guess I don’t mind being persuaded.


The problem there, Al, is that there is no reliable standard that Google can use to identify your page as “comic” or “not comic,” meaning that your strings of text compete with everything else on the Internet. Some people want that, but if I’m searching for a comic I prefer to get results that are only comics.

[…] Gary This page has previously spoken of standards in webcomics presentation, with prior discussion revolving around things like search text and portability of websites between service providers. […]

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