Amid Comixology's Decline, Vets Launching New Comics Publisher
Comixology veterans David Steinberger and Chip Mosher launch DSTLRY.
Comixology co-founder and former CEO David Steinberger and former Comixology Head of Content Chip Mosher have unveiled their new company, DSTLRY. The new publisher will offer customers a mix of limited physical and digital item drops, available online or in-store at local comic shops while providing creators with fairer deals alongside company ownership. The co-founders have been working on the platform since departing Comixology/Amazon in the summer of 2022.
DSTLRY’s Founding Creators include a who's who of comic book heavyweights:
- Scott Snyder (Batman, Wytches)
- Tula Lotay (Barnstormers)
- James Tynion IV (Something Is Killing the Children, Wynd)
- Junko Mizuno (Pure Trance, Ravina the Witch?)
- Ram V (Detective Comics, The Many Deaths of Laila Starr)
- Mirka Andolfo (Sweet Paprika, Mercy)
- Joëlle Jones (Lady Killer, Catwoman)
- Jock (Batman: One Dark Knight, Wytches)
- Becky Cloonan (Wonder Woman, Batgirls)
- Brian Azzarello (100 Bullets, Joker)
- Elsa Charretier (Love Everlasting, November)
- Stephanie Phillips (Grim, Harley Quinn)
- Lee Garbett (Spider-Man, Skyward)
- Marc Bernardin (Adora and the Distance, Star Trek: Picard)
- Jamie McKelvie (The Wicked + The Divine, Captain Carter)
The creators will be spearheaded with help from Founding Editor Will Dennis (Y: The Last Man, Snow Angels), with more creative teams and a publishing rollout to be announced later this year. After the full merge with Comixology and Amazon, the user experience has worsened, prompting many complaints about the service's deterioration.
"Comic creators have historically received the short end of the stick when they create great characters and storylines for traditional publishers," said co-founders David Steinberger and Chip Mosher in a joint statement. "DSTLRY is truly a creator-owned endeavor, with creators co-owning the company their creations fuel. It just makes sense that as creators help build the brand, they receive equity."
DSTLRY's oversized, premium-format single-issues will be available at local comic shops while digital single-issues will be available for purchase for up to one week after release on dstlry.co. The company boasts that these "eco-friendly digital issues will be fully owned and resealable" on DSTLRY's marketplace. These digital comics are also purchased with no crypto or NFT hassle. Each purchase comes with benefits like special discounts, exclusive drops, and even meetups with the creators, depending on the item.
"Chip and David have a rare pairing of skills, the ability to recognize true artistry and the technological wherewithal to elevate it," said Lorenzo di Bonaventura, film producer, and advisor/investor in DSTLRY. "Artistic growth is spurred when its creators are nurtured and properly compensated for their achievements. This new system and its shared equity model will provide an invigorating environment which will foster great storytelling."
"I'm really excited to be working with DSTLRY to move comics in an entirely new direction, and honored to be among the founding lineup that features some of the best creators in the industry," added Jamie McKelvie. "Chip and David have created something unique with DSTLRY and I can't wait to see where we all take it."
Similar models have been offered to customers in the past, but none have been able to compete with the name brand power of Comixology. It'll be interesting to see how long this can stay in the conversation but with both Mosher and Steinberger's collective resumes, this could have some staying power.
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