Twisted Triangle- Apple vs. Saga vs. ComiXology

Apple vs. Saga. vs. ComiXology

This past Tuesday the internet went into an uproar over Saga #12.  Brian K. Vaughn issued a press release stating Apple would not be carrying Saga #12 on any of its iOS devices due to “two postage stamp sized images of gay sex.”  After that many websites put up articles stating this, including us here at Comic Booked.  I was, in fact, the staff writer that put our piece together.  I did my research and all signs pointed to what Brian K. Vaughn was stating.  Then, later on Tuesday many thought of going straight through ComiXology for the purchase of Saga #12 and skipping right over Apple’s head.  They (ComiXology) even stated via Twitter that they would have it on their website for purchase which then can be transferred to any iOS system if need be.

Okay, let us fast forward to Wednesday evening.  All of this has changed in 24 hours.  I was away doing work during the day so I didn’t hear this latest news until the evening from a comic book store owner.  He didn’t give me the details, just told me something new has come out to this whole story.  So I threw on my cape and cowl and went all Batman on the internet and investigated what was going on.  The latest news was that ComiXology was the one who was NOT letting Saga #12 to be sold, not Apple.  Wait…what the f#$@#!?!?  That is right, ComiXology 24 hours later releases a statement saying it was them and NOT Apple who was behind the “No selling of Saga #12.”

Here is their press release on the matter:

To our customers –

In the last 24 hours there has been a lot of chatter about Apple banning Saga #12 from our Comics App on the Apple App Store due to depictions of gay sex. This is simply not true, and we’d like to clarify.

As a partner of Apple, we have an obligation to respect its policies for apps and the books offered in apps.  Based on our understanding of those policies, we believed that Saga #12 could not be made available in our app, and so we did not release it today.

We did not interpret the content in question as involving any particular sexual orientation, and frankly that would have been a completely irrelevant consideration under any circumstance.

Given this, it should be clear that Apple did not reject Saga #12.

After hearing from Apple this morning, we can say that our interpretation of its policies was mistaken. You’ll be glad to know that Saga #12 will be available on our App Store app soon.

We apologize to Saga creator Brian K. Vaughan, Fiona Staples and Image Comics for any confusion this may have caused.

All the best,

David Steinberger
CEO and co-founder


All of this sounds like some really great fuckery going on here.  My first thought when I read this was – Why did ComiXology wait a whole 24 hours to release this statement and why did they state on Tuesday to just buy it from them and not Apple?  And to my first answer to this question-Money.. ding.. ding.. ding!!!

What a great way to get more money in your pocket by cutting out the middle man!  Now, I’m not saying this is why this happened, I’m just saying that is the first thing I thought of.  To me, all the blame of this falls directly onto ComiXology.  They are the ones who look very foolish right now.  Yes, I know many on the internet will blame places like Comic Booked and other comic book news site for reporting this, but let me tell you all now.  WE all thought the news from Tuesday was TRUE, but we came to find out it wasn’t TRUE a full 24 hours later.

I don’t want to make ComiXology sound like this horrible group, because I don’t believe they are.  In fact I think they are doing something good for the digital community of comic book readers.  Plus they are really helping out people like me who are indie comic book creators.  So let’s not throw them into the bloody seas of piranhas just yet.

This whole thing has just turn into one big cluster fuck.  That is a real shame because Saga is such a great new comic book series.  I for one don’t think this will hurt their sales on the book.  Hell, I hope it helps.  The main thing I will take from this is one thing – BUY your comics from a local comic book store!!!  Yes I know I’m sounding like some ‘Comic book hippie’, but you can avoid issues like these.  Many local comic books stores will let you buy comics online and ship them right to you, problem solved.  I get that some of you are only reading comics now via your smartphones or tablets.  Well my only suggestion to you is to buy directly from the publishers.  Heck, even continuing using ComiXology.  I think they learned a great lesson from this mistake and I hope they move forward in the right direction so they can keep bringing these great comics to YOU, the digital consumer.

Now let’s all hug this out and go back to reading Saga and other great comic books.

PS- Fiona or Brian, if you need someone to head up the Saga army, I am your man.  NO ONE will stop Saga on my watch!!!


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Comments (5)


Another reason to not go 100% digital.
The whole thing is stupid. It was only two very small parts of two panels and for someone like me context is key.

Maybe it was all a marketing ploy. I mean the guys that read it here in the shop didnt even notice until I asked them if they had seen the hubbub about the issue, which they had not. So the average reader might very well of missed the whole thing anyhow.


My thoughts exactly.


Why mess with something that already sells at the cost of possibly alienating already existing readers? That sounds like something Marvel or DC would do, not Image. Hmm…


This whole thing is ridiculous. Somebody dropped the ball. They should just issue an apology and move on.

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