The video does not look too deeply into why this is happening and I wanted to present my thoughts on why this happened. There are a lot of issues here that I think that are not understood and making easy and quick assertions doesn’t give a true picture of what is going on.
What is going on is rather obvious. Comics in the US are in a death spiral. A quick google of the subject will provide anyone with endless articles and videos on the subject in the last year. Also, while the pandemic may have accelerated the process, somewhat, the death spiral was well along before the pandemic and the consequences came along. Even the largest selling comics books sell about 200,000 or so a month.
Contrast that with some Manga sales where even modest selling manga sell more than the top ten comic books combined and the top selling manga sells tens of millions of tankobon copies, a month, in Japan. As opposed to the American comics industry someone in Japan is doing something right. I want to use what I have learned to explore just what I think is going right in Japan and wrong in the US. I don’t pretend to have any insider’s special knowledge and this post will just be what I have observed about the two industries.
A long time ago, I sold some things on Ebay to make some extra money. I went around to tag sales and spotted things that I thought would sell and learned quite a few things about marketing and selling. One thing I never considered was that Ebay was essentially immoral until this recently appeared. Apparently some people at the top of Ebay decided to go after a couple that produced a newsletter for online sellers. Go after in the worst possible way.
When I was young, I was a bit of a amateur Sovietologist. This was in the day that we were tirelessly told but the apologists of the Soviet Union that all our concerns about the Soviet Union were wrong. Were told the Soviet Union was morally superior to the Imperialist US in every way and that any conflict between Soviet interests were the fault of the US. In the meantime, if you looked closely, the Soviet Union was a massive clusterf**k waiting to implode. The biggest concern that many of us had was that the gullible here in the US and Europe would convince the USSR that it could take the rest of the world down with it when the end came.
Imagine if you are huge media conglomerate, say the one based in Australia, New Corp. You can see you revenue sources drying up from some of your media outlets due to the internet and you are at your wits end to change the trend. Lucky for you, you purchased the most respected business media outlet in the world and It’s fairly easy for you to weaponize that advantage so long a s you don’t really care about your outlet’s credibility. Apparently New Corp. is willing to sacrifice the Wall St Journal’s credibility on the altar of having to keep a dying business model on life support.
Why is manufacturing important? I wish that I didn’t have to point this out, but apparently many people don’t really understand the difference between service work and work that actually adds real value in goods. The problem is that services just push money around without actually producing any real assets.
I ran into this recently. It’s an article that referencing the effect of unemployment on mental health. This post might seem whiny though I’m going to try to make it as nonpersonal as possible . On the other hand I’ve been through the despair that comes with unemployment enough times to understand what’s going on and maybe what can be done to overcome it. though it doesn’t work every time.