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Happy World Communication Design Day, and Happy Birthday Icograda!

Posted by Rebecca Blake on April 28, 2014

April 27 marked both World Communication Design Day, and Icograda’s 51st birthday. The organization marked the anniversary by soliciting graphics on “What a Designer Does,” and posting them on the event’s Facebook page. The submissions – from around the globe – speak to designers’ ability to create, connect, problem solve, amuse, and envision.

Copyright Forums and Roundtables

Posted by Rebecca Blake on April 24, 2014

The Copyright Alliance notified us that the Internet Policy Task Force (IPTF), a working group within the U.S. Department of Commerce, has scheduled a number of roundtables on copyright issues. In following up on their Green Paper on copyright issues in the digital economy, the IPTF is soliciting input from artists and creators on their concerns. On May 8, the IPTF is holding a second public meeting in Berkely, California, on problems creators face in handling online piracy as a result of the lack of standardization in the DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act) takedown process. Roundtables have been scheduled at Vanderbilt University and Harvard Law Schools, and in Los Angeles and Berkeley, throughout the summer. The public is encouraged to attend, and the discussions will be viewable via webcast.

Will the Real Superheroes Please Stand Up: Fanboys and Sexual Harassment

Posted by Rebecca Blake on April 21, 2014

In response to the vitriol directed at his colleague and ComicsAlliance contributor Janelle Asselin, senior editor Andy Khouri wrote “Fake Geek Guys: A Message to Men About Sexual Harassment.” The article is directed at both trolls who indulge in anonymous threats of sexual violence against the women with whom they disagree, and the majority of male fans to who would never contemplate engaging in such behavior. He points out that harassment, and enabling harassment by remaining silent when it occurs, is antithetical to the standards of decency and fairness promoted by superhero comics. Khouri challenges men to check trolling and harassment. In other words, Khouri is inviting fans to emulate the true superheroes.

Skip the Rage: Jessica Hische on Dealing with Ripoffs

Posted by Rebecca Blake on April 17, 2014

Lettering and illustration rockstar Jessica Hische’s recent article deals with the thorny issue of ripoffs. In describing the typical sequence of outraged reaction followed by regret and a more formal communication with the infringer, she recommends skipping the rage. She also distinguishes between an individual who is copying an artists’ style versus a designer or agency actually reusing work without permission. In the former case, Hische points out that the imitator may be inexperienced, and she advises educating them about the inadvisability of copying someone else’s style. In the case of a work being outright infringed, Hische recommends sending a stern letter to the artist or agency that produced the infringing work. However, she cautions that taking on a large company can be expensive and time consuming. Her best advice is for artists to register the copyright on their creations.

Stickman’s Tips to Displaying at a Convention

Posted by Rebecca Blake on April 11, 2014

In 2011, Seattle member Mark Monlux published “Stickman’s Advice to Having a Table at a Comic Book Convention.” The primer’s advice is borne of Monlux’s many years of experience as an illustrator, cartoonist, convention attendee. The strip covers the process of renting a table, from the initial reservation through handing booth visitors. He offers commonsensical advice, such as bring lots of business cards, prepare your pitch, and bring water (useful after exercising that well-prepared pitch).

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