Law & Comics 2017 took place last Tuesday and all the attendees had a great time learning about the business of comics. The program began with our guests, Ryan Benjamin, Rob Salkowitz, and Stu Rees, describing their own secret origins – how they got involved in their careers. An important takeaway from all three is that you have to be ready and prepared for when opportunity happens.

The guests then discussed many characteristics of the comics business. They emphasized the importance of protecting one’s intellectual property and being careful with any contracts and negotiations. An interesting development was the change in attitude toward infringements of trademark or copyright. For example, posting or sharing digital copies without permission. They spoke about how engaging the infringers in a dialogue, rather than responding harshly, could bring benefits for the creator.

Additionally, the guests talked about the growing impact of the international market for creators. Creators in the United States have great opportunities in countries like India and China. Similarly, creators around the world can reach audiences anywhere thanks to digital production. The event finished off with a prize drawing and the winner took home a collection of books from our guests.

We want to pass along our deepest thanks to our special guests, Ryan Benjamin, Rob Salkowitz, and Stu Rees, and our moderator Alec Beyer.

Also, thank you to the San Diego Public Library for hosting us for the second year in a row. The staff was tremendously helpful. If you missed it, you can check out the library’s Facebook feed for a recording of the event.