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iOS app

 
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thirdprize



Joined: 17 May 2012
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 3:37 pm    Post subject: iOS app Reply with quote

Ordinary comics seem quite popular on the 'phone and 'pad but there doesn't seem many decent web comic apps out there. Most of them only get the latest episode or just plain don't work. So, I thought I'd write my own.

Please don't consider this spam as I am genuinely looking for feedback and possibly the odd beta tester. So far I have got 20+ big comics in there. It is quite clever as it knows what the latest episode is, which was the last one you read which gives you the choice of where to start. There is a toolbar with first/last/prev/next buttons that work with all the comics and an option of hilighting your favourite comics. I have even got the alt text out of XKCD.

Sort of feedback I'm after is how does it look, what comics should it have (users can't add their own but should be easy enough to host the config on the net for easy updating), usability and all that stuff.

You can see it here http://www.thirdprize.org/WBCX/. If any one is interested the drop us a line. I have several apps on the store and have one attempted web comic to my name. http://www.thirdprize.org/Nurbs/

Cheers.

Shaun
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 2928
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 3:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mightn't repackaging webcomics as you are, presumably without their permission, lead to legal issues at some point?
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thirdprize



Joined: 17 May 2012
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, its finally been released.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/webcomix/id549811592?mt=8

It tells you if there are new episodes and remembers you place in story lines. It runs on iPad and iPhone.



and



It's free, so give it a try.

Shaun
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Zoe Robinson
Resident Diet Lawyer


Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 1867
Location: Manchester, UK

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

smbhax.com wrote:
Mightn't repackaging webcomics as you are, presumably without their permission, lead to legal issues at some point?


Yes. It will. Repackaging other people's content without their permission is, essentially, violating their copyright. Repackaging that content and sticking an advert on it in the process, is violating their copyright for profit; and will get you sued.
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ewomack
Grand prize winner!


Joined: 05 Jun 2007
Posts: 468

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think everyone here is correct - expect only cease and desist orders if you're lucky... expect much worse if you're not... be very very careful with other people's work... in fact, when in doubt don't even go there. Always seek permission from the creators or legal counsel before even considering using other people's work in any potentially infringing manner...
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wendyw
The Bomb-diggity


Joined: 10 Jul 2008
Posts: 4121
Location: North-East England

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 5:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ewomack wrote:
Always seek permission from the creators or legal counsel before even considering using other people's work in any potentially infringing manner...


Yep. Stating that you will remove something if the copyright holder objects is not a suitable approach. Expecting the copyright holders to find you first is not acceptable.

You could simply ask people.
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Casual Notice
Spambot Extraordinaire


Joined: 18 Mar 2005
Posts: 2960
Location: Oh my God, It's full of stars!

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But putting personal effort and consideration into something is counter to the philosophy that drives one to develop technology to perform acts best done in a stable, non-motive environment (reading comics, catapulting fat birds at pig bastions, typing 180-word updates on the minutiae that even our ownmothers don't care about)...
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thirdprize



Joined: 17 May 2012
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 6:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, if you look at the other apps out there, they do just that. They scrape the comic itself from the home page and show that. No credits or anything. I at least pop up the original web page so the comic gets its ad revenue. They have nothing to lose being in the app and the user gets access to a bunch of good titles.

This is really all about user interface. It is the year 2012, so why can't all the story web comics remember where I left off reading? I don't want to have to read the story backward to where I left off. A few let you bookmark but only a handful. Add to that inconsistent placed buttons, etc.

Imagine if an app could do for webcomics what Comixology did for ordinary comics. I bet millions of people who would never go into a comic shop happily download titles. By coming up in a search for "free comics" in the app store, I will hopefully bring more readers to the table.

I wrote this app as it was the sort of app I would love to download myself.
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wendyw
The Bomb-diggity


Joined: 10 Jul 2008
Posts: 4121
Location: North-East England

PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 6:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thirdprize wrote:
Well, if you look at the other apps out there, they do just that. They scrape the comic itself from the home page and show that. No credits or anything. I at least pop up the original web page so the comic gets its ad revenue. They have nothing to lose being in the app and the user gets access to a bunch of good titles.


Pointing out that other people have done worse never makes something acceptable.

As for what people have to lose, well what if Randall Munroe, Fred Gallagher, Dan Shive or one of the others were planning their own app? A free rival would certainly be a problem there. You might not think you're treading on anyone's toes with this, but unless you contact them to find out you have no way of knowing whether or not you are.
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Traegorn



Joined: 16 Feb 2010
Posts: 157

PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I think he's in the clear only because he's displaying the full website - making it no different than things like comic rocket. I don't know how useful the app is, but content creators will still have all of their ads displayed... So the normal scammy part is gone.

That said, it's likely going to make some creators feel jumpy, as you're marketing your app off of their IP... Asking for permission might have made your life easier.

My only feedback is that for XKCD I'd display m.xkcd.com instead of the regular site -- since that would let readers see the alt text
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