Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Questions for the Group about Reprints

I originally included reprints of comics on my list because I was keeping track for my own purposes, not doing a list for the group, and at the time I didn't really care if they were reprints or original because there were so many books out there and so few scanners that it seemed silly to think we'd ever get to the point where it mattered.

But now, of course it does matter. So the questions are as follows:

1. Should comics that have been posted only as reprints be removed from the list? When answering remember that this is not a clean solution either. If we remove issues from the list, inevitably there will be people trying to be helpful who will post the reprint scans as "not on the list" without checking to see that they are reprints.

2. If not, should we maintain a separate list of "reprint-only" books to alert folks to stuff that needs to be rescanned to get the originals?

3. If yes, does anybody have a good list of the comics that should be taken off the list? I have a couple of issues that I know about--several early Flash issues, a couple Green Lanterns, but nailing down all of them is going to be a tricky matter; there are some comics that were scanned as reprints and later scanned as originals so making sure we don't take completed comics off the list may be harder than it sounds.

Thanks for your input!


At 7:53 PM, Blogger Punkrat said...

I can help somewhat. I tried to flag books as reprints from the beginning. I'll send you some notes.

I think it's time to post a reprints need upgrade list.

At 11:01 PM, Blogger Tom said...

Is it possible to just add notations to the current database listings (with help from ABPC contributors?)?

For example,

R - Reprint
I - Incomplete (less than the whole comic is scanned, and
C - Coverless

So Action 130RIC would mean: reprint, not complete and without cover (or cover needs an upgrade).

That would be enough for someone to be able to contribute (a better cover scan, another part of the reprint, or a C2C rescan).

I know its been a real disappointment to me to track down scans of various issues (knowing they included GA reprints which is what I really wanted), just to find the scanner felt the only important part of the comic was the new story.

And there's no way to tell from the current list.

I think at this stage of the group, this would be a really important initiative.

At 10:11 AM, Blogger Pat said...

Tom, one thing that I have been encouraging is the creation of supplemental lists based on smaller projects, like the DC 1960s list. Incompletes can be difficult to define; my original definition of a complete comic was all stories and art and the front cover. Now of course, I think we consider complete to mean cover to cover, every page scanned. But a LOT (perhaps most) of the comics on the list have not been scanned CTC.

I do have a "flaws" list that I have been working on, with notations for coverless, reprints, missing pages, etc. At one point we even had a trigger in the chatroom for "!addflaw" so that people could just note a flaw they had found and periodically I would check them.

At 12:07 PM, Blogger Snard said...

I've also been thinking about this issue for some time now, for my own scan collection, and I understand the points that Pat and others have raised. Many of us have our own spreadsheets or databases or other solutions that we use to keep track of what we have (or what we don't have), and each solution has its own strengths and weaknesses, but no single method can meet everyones' needs.

Or could it?

I had an idea some time ago, to create an online database which has all of the information from BD's core database, but would include flags or columns for the other information, such as "reprint", "incomplete", "no cover", and so on. (Even "DNP", but we won't go there just now ;-) For each comic, we could have attributes such as publisher, decade, type (hero, western, war, funny animal, etc.) New columns could be added as we think of them.

Anyway, the best part about this database is that it would be on the intranet, and multiple people could be given permissions to update it real-time. People could also view the list real-time via their browser, and could filter and display the list 14 ways from Sunday (6 was never enough for me), including the familiar complete, condensed, semi-condensed and homogenized versions that we all know and love.

By now you are all asking "Does this guy know anything about setting up online databases? And if he does, why doens't he put his money where his mouth is?" Good questions. I am hereby stating that I will create a 'proof of concept' for this database, and will host it on my own web space, where I have PHP and MySQL hosting and lots of disk space. Unless everyone tells me this is the worst idea they have ever heard, in which case I will slink off into a corner and read all of the downloaded comics I haven't gotten around to reading yet. See you in a decade or so!

At 4:01 PM, Blogger Pat said...

That would be great, Snard!

At 4:17 PM, Blogger Pat said...

Err, that is the database, not the slinking off into a corner!

At 7:25 PM, Blogger Punkrat said...

Sounds helpful!
I'd like to see it.


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