Changes in the Detroit Free Press

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Neil Robinson

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Apr 10, 2006, 8:12:31 AM4/10/06
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Big house cleaning - they dumped a page of comics. I'll compare last
Friday's paper to today's when I get home, but for now, here are the three
additions.

Bliss / Henry Bliss
A lawyer, a doctor & a cop / Kieran Meehan
Cow & boy / Mark Leiknes

The changes are part of a general overhaul of the features pages. I'd
imagine this is related to the recent acquisition of the paper by Gannet
and the coming uncoupling of the weekend editions of the News and Freep.

When this happens (May 7), the Freep will publish seven days a week, and
the News will be Mon-Sat only. The Freep Sunday pages apparently will
include comics that run in the News.

Neil Robinson

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Apr 10, 2006, 4:53:03 PM4/10/06
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Here are the changes:

In:

Bliss / Henry Bliss


Cow & boy / Mark Leiknes
A lawyer, a doctor & a cop / Kieran Meehan

Out:

Big top / Rob Harrell
Brewster Rockit, space guy! / Tim Rickard
Clear blue water / Karen Montague-Reyes
Close to home / John McPherson
Elderberries / Phil Frank and Joe Troise
Herb & Jamaal / Steven Bentley
Housebroken / Steve Watkins
Humble stumble / Roy Schneider
La Cucaracha / Lalo Alcaraz
Pardon my planet / Vic Lee
Preteena / Allison Barrows
Real life adventures / Wise and Aldrich
Sherman's Lagoon / Jim Toomey
Sunshine club / Howie Schneider
Triple take / Todd Clark and Scott Nickel

Staying:

Arlo 'n' Janis / Jimmy Johnson
Beetle Bailey / Mort and Greg Walker
Blondie / Dean Young
Candorville / Darrin Bell
Cathy / Cathy Guisewite
A college girl named Joe / Aaron Warner
For better or for worse / Lynn Johnston
Foxtrot / Bill Amend
Frazz / Jef Mallett
Garfield / Jim Davis
Get fuzzy / Darby Conley
Hagar the Horrible / Chris Browne
Heart of the city / Mark Tatulli
Ink pen / Phil Dunlap
Judge Parker / Paul Nichols
Jump start / Robb Armstrong
The Lockhorns / Hoest and Reiner
Luann / Greg Evans
Mother Goose & Grimm / Mike Peters
Mr. Boffo / Joe Martin
Non sequitur / Wiley Miller
Overboard / Chip Dunham
Pearls before swine / Stephan Pastis
Rhymes with orange / Hilary Price
Sally Forth / Francesco Marciuliano
Speed bump / Dave Coverly
Zits / Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman

J.D. Baldwin

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Apr 10, 2006, 6:01:23 PM4/10/06
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In the previous article, Neil Robinson <kn...@nos.pam.bitstream.net>
wrote:

> Out:
>
> Big top / Rob Harrell
> [...]
> Housebroken / Steve Watkins
> [...]

> Sherman's Lagoon / Jim Toomey

I'm writing a letter about these! This is appalling, particularly
considering some of the crapola they're hanging onto! (Some of the
other cuts are stupid, too, but they don't raise my outrage-meter
quite as high as these.) I don't know what kind of moron would cut
"Big Top" and leave ... well, take your pick of the "Staying" list, I
guess. I count ten strips that I consider *clearly* more drop-worthy
than the clever and excellent "Big Top."

I missed getting a Freep/News yesterday 'cuz I got out late and the
store was out of them, but that's my usual Sunday comics source. Or
it was, anyway. We get three decent Sunday papers here, though the
Chicago Tribune is one of them, so that doesn't really count. I mean,
your comics section would really REALLY have to suck before the
Tribune started looking good as an alternative. (Pretty good paper
otherwise, though.)
--
_+_ From the catapult of |If anyone disagrees with any statement I make, I
_|70|___:)=}- J.D. Baldwin |am quite prepared not only to retract it, but also
\ / bal...@panix.com|to deny under oath that I ever made it. -T. Lehrer
***~~~~-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Default User

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Apr 10, 2006, 6:55:08 PM4/10/06
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J.D. Baldwin wrote:


> I don't know what kind of moron would cut
> "Big Top" and leave ... well, take your pick of the "Staying" list, I

> guess. I count ten strips that I consider clearly more drop-worthy


> than the clever and excellent "Big Top."

"Big Top" never seems to get no love. It was in the Post-Dispatch, but
didn't even have time to unpack before getting the door, victim of the
groundswell of indignation over dropping Funky.

Brian

--
If televison's a babysitter, the Internet is a drunk librarian who
won't shut up.
-- Dorothy Gambrell (http://catandgirl.com)

ameijers

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Apr 10, 2006, 8:04:40 PM4/10/06
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"J.D. Baldwin" <INVALID...@example.com.invalid> wrote in message
news:e1ekjj$rd5$1...@reader1.panix.com...

>
> In the previous article, Neil Robinson <kn...@nos.pam.bitstream.net>
> wrote:
> > Out:
> >
> > Big top / Rob Harrell
> > [...]
> > Housebroken / Steve Watkins
> > [...]
> > Sherman's Lagoon / Jim Toomey
>
> I'm writing a letter about these!

I already wrote my bitch letter, and urge everyone in RACS who reads the
Freep to do the same. It didn't make any difference when they downsized the
Sunday funnies, but maybe it will for the dailies.

aem sends....

Scott Nickel

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Apr 10, 2006, 8:18:42 PM4/10/06
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Neil Robinson wrote:
> Here are the changes:

> Out:

> Triple take / Todd Clark and Scott Nickel

Well, that stinks. :(

But at least I'm in good company. BIG TOP and CLEAR BLUE WATER are two
of my favorite strips.

Scott Nickel

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Apr 10, 2006, 9:14:11 PM4/10/06
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This comics-page carnage brings up an interesting point, and something
I've been thinking about during my first year of syndication. The Freep
is canceling a lot of strips, yet all these comics are available online
-- and with the exception of the King Features strips, they're
available for FREE.

Most of my favorite strips aren't in my local paper: POOCH CAFE, BIG
TOP, CLEAR BLUE WATER, LOLA, TINA'S GROOVE, SIX CHIX, RHYMES WITH
ORANGE, MOTHER GOOSE & GRIMM, FRANKLIN FIBBS, TODD THE DINOSAUR, ARLO &
JANIS, THE MEANING OF LILA, F-MINUS, REALITY CHECK, THE DUPLEX, THE
FLYING MCCOYS, BIG NATE, REAL LIFE ADVENTURES, THE QUIGMANS., etc.

I get these strips (and others) emailed to me Monday through Sunday for
literally pennies a day. Any reader of the Freep who misses a strip
that's been cut can go online and, if it's a United Media, Universal
Press, Creators or Tribune strip, read it (and a ton of others) for
free. King Features has the Daily Ink service, which has a yearly fee
of $15. Thus, the real impact on comics-reading fans in Detroit is
actually almost nil.

Which brings us to the problem: More and more, the newspaper
syndication model seems outdated. Newspapers aren't really the place to
find strips any longer (outside of the heavyweights that are in almost
EVERY paper). Being a syndicated cartoonist dependent upon newspaper
syndication, this scares me. But there's no denying that the market has
changed immensely and, it seems, irrevocably.

I don't have the answer, but syndicates and newspapers need to figure
out how to make a new syndication model work. One step is to support
the syndicates' online comics delivery systems (ucomics, comics.com,
Daily Ink). This doesn't benefit the papers, per se, but it does help
the cartoonists.

The times they are a-changin'....Why do I feel like one of those guys
working in radio in the mid-1950s? "Television? Ha! It'll never last!"
:)

Scott

ameijers

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Apr 10, 2006, 9:28:24 PM4/10/06
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"Scott Nickel" <nicke...@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1144718051....@t31g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...

> This comics-page carnage brings up an interesting point, and something
> I've been thinking about during my first year of syndication. The Freep
> is canceling a lot of strips, yet all these comics are available online
> -- and with the exception of the King Features strips, they're
> available for FREE.
>
(snip)

> The times they are a-changin'....Why do I feel like one of those guys
> working in radio in the mid-1950s? "Television? Ha! It'll never last!"
> :)
>
I can't take my computer with me to the damn diner, which is where I read
the comics on weekends. Even if they had wi-fi, I don't wanna spill coffee
and jelly in my keyboard. Part of the comics experience is the smell of ink,
and the transitory and portable nature of the venue.

aem sends.....

Scott Nickel

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Apr 10, 2006, 11:04:15 PM4/10/06
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[snip]

can't take my computer with me to the damn diner, which is where I read

the comics on weekends. Even if they had wi-fi, I don't wanna spill
coffee
and jelly in my keyboard. Part of the comics experience is the smell of
ink,
and the transitory and portable nature of the venue.


I like my comics in the newspaper, too. But I also like variety -- and
the comics page in my local paper has remained virtually unchanged for
nearly 10 years.

Too bad most two-paper towns are gone and the papers that are left are
slashing their comics pages. With the shrinking market there will be
fewer new strips that will be picked up. And fewer that will be able to
thrive. That's a shame, but a reality. I say this with the deepest
regret, as it directly impacts me. I hope someone devises a plan that
will benefit all -- cartoonists, syndicates and news services (be they
print or online) -- before it's too late.

Scott

p.s. And I notice many who post to this group read their comics on
(free) sites like The Houston Chronicle, The Seattle P-I, and
comics.com. Without these sites, a lot of strips would never get seen.
Anyone willing to settle for just the comics in their local paper?

JC Dill

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Apr 11, 2006, 2:31:24 AM4/11/06
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I'm curious if anyone here takes the Comic News:

<http://santacruzcomicnews.com/paper/>

It was one of the best parts of living in Santa Cruz - going to Cafe
Pergolisi and reading the Comic News. Somehow it's not the same when
I read it elsewhere.

jc

--

"The nice thing about a mare is you get to ride a lot
of different horses without having to own that many."
~ Eileen Morgan of The Mare's Nest, PA

Roy

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Apr 24, 2006, 11:44:48 AM4/24/06
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Man.

I really liked having the Free Press.

It is really tough to lose a big paper like that when you're doing a
strip that's still in its infancy. How is anyone to get to really know
a brand-new strip when they give it no time to catch on?

Of course, I don't see anyone complaining about losing The Humble
Stumble, so I'll just go back to my board and draw...

Roy

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Apr 24, 2006, 11:47:24 AM4/24/06
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PS: Boo hoo, poor me, etc etc...

(Yeah, that post sounded a bit weepy. Unintentional. Life goes on,
there are still other papers)

racs...@gmail.com

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Apr 24, 2006, 12:18:52 PM4/24/06
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There are, but you're right to feel upset about losing a big paper.

It's a tough business, and those of us sitting here in the bleachers
tossing stuff out onto the field need to be reminded of that once in
awhile, so don't apologize for venting.

Mike Peterson
Glens Falls NY

Scott Nickel

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Apr 24, 2006, 2:04:28 PM4/24/06
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I feel your pain, my brother...

Scott "TRIPLE TAKE" Nickel, fellow axed cartoonist

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