The webcomics blog about webcomics

News With Caveats

More book reviews in the immediate future, friends, but I wanted to take a moment to catch up on some things that have happened in the recent weeks that I had previously missed. In no particular order, then:

  • Know who’s cool? Lucy Bellwood. Like, adventuring around the world cool, has a better haircut than you cool, and teaming up with Scott McCloud to explain some tech stuff¹ cool. In this case, the tech stuff is federated learning, and the comic (story by Bellwood & McCloud, art by Bellwood) will bring you up to speed.

    In case you’re wondering about working for a giant behemoth that’s completely abandoned all pretense of having Don’t be evil as a guiding principle, may I remind you that Google has an enormous budget for things of this nature, and I sincerely hope that Bellwood and McCloud were given the equivalent of a dump truck full o’ money for their work on the comic.

  • I mentioned the winners of the NCS division awards for webcomics² on Sunday but did I mention the latest Johnny Wander Kickstart? On Twitter, yeah, but not here so let’s talk about it now. Yuko Ota and Ananth Hirsh are Kickstarting a book of previously-uncollected (and new!) comics on the theme of travel in this, the tenth year of Johnny’s wandering. It’ll be great.

    In case you’re wondering how much you want to deal with Kickstarter given the news about the company not accepting a proposed union, may I remind you this is what’s happened when unions were proposed in all cases in the history of unionization except maybe three? Yeah, I had expectations of Kickstarter-the-public-benefit-corporation being better than this, but all this means is that the next stage of labor law gets followed: there’s a vote, and if the employees vote for a union they have to recognize it.

    Honestly, I think it’s just the reflexive distrust of anything other than rugged self-made mandom³ that is the hallmark of anybody that’s temperamentally suited to be a tech executive. The vote’ll happen, my money’s on it passes, and then the entire damn industry has a reckoning to face. And even at their worst, KS not embracing a union wholeheartedly will still damage comics creators a couple order of magnitude less than the shitshow aftermath of the Oni/Lion Forge let’s be movie producers together wankfest merger.

  • Now that the Canadian {T | Van}CAFs are behind us, I’m thinking of things happening in about eight weeks in San Diego. Way too many people and way too much stuff, but I should point out that webcomicky types like Randall Munroe, Katie O’Neill, Carey Pietsch, and Ursula Vernon will be present as guests of the con.

    In case you’re wondering how I’m going to find an area of concern that balances out the news just to keep up the pattern, I’m not. These folks are great and you should read their stuff and let them know they rock.

Spam of the day:

{Well | Prince | Genoa | Lucca | arenow |justfamily | estates | Buonapartes | ButIarn | youifyou | tellme | thatthis | meanswar | ifyoustill | trytodefend | theinfamies | andhorrors | perpetrated | bythat | Antichrist | really | believe | heisAntichrist | willhave | nothing | moreto | dowith | youandyou | arenolonger | myfriend | nolongermy | faithful | slaveas | youcall | yourself | Buthow | doyoudo |

And that’s in the From: field of the email header. I leave it to your imagination how the body of the message progressed.

¹ One may recall a day ten and a half years ago when the world was introduced to the Chrome browser by McCloud.

² Requisite disclaimer: I am part of the nominating/judging process for these awards.

³ Baaaarrrrrfff.

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