Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

April 11, 2014

Oh Yeah, That Other Story Yesterday: The One With The Hotels

News that was in the process of acquiring digital comics heavyweight comiXology kind of blew everything off the top of most comics sites yesterday afternoon. It was a pretty slow day save for word going back to creators and other potential attendees from Comic-Con International as to whether or not efforts on Tuesday to secure a room through the convention's ostensibly discounted hotel offerings worked out or not. There were prominent creators on both sides of that news. They, like any number of attendees, will now be working to find accomodations through alternate means and working various connections. Like a lot of things related to the San Diego convention, this was fairly easy even a half-decade ago as rooms pretty routinely came open, particuarly if you were willing to shift hotels mid-weekend. Now, I have no idea, but I imagine it's much tougher.

San Diego is always going to present a rooms-to-demand problem for as long as fever for the show continues to build, particularly from non-comics quadrants -- people there to see TV show panels or buy gaming stuff or pick up on the general vibe take up as much hotel space as a guy there to drop $700 on what Peter Maresca is offering. I'm also not sure what the convention can do about it except kind of ride it out, and let some of these factors perhaps drive future decision-making. Things like this really do change the nature of the show for comics people -- and not just in that blustery way where some guy gets mad on a hotel balcony at 2 AM and grouses about how the show isn't the same as it was during whatever perceived golden age they prefer. The expense of going and the difficulty in securing a room, these are starting to become structural impediments for some folks, where you can't really outfox or outwork the situation in front of you. Another solution frequently offered up, to refocus some of those efforts ambitions on a show closer to home or a smaller show of the same type like this month's WonderCon from the very same people, it seems to me that this is something that comics people already do for the most part. San Diego is a very successful show, and this comes out of that success, but I do have a lot of sympathy for those that are frustrated.

As noted by those focused on the show, the hotel part of the Comic-Con site will re-open on April 23, but with what -- more rooms, a different set of rooms, news of a secondary lottery -- has yet to be established. There may also be an opportunity to secure cancelled rooms at some point, although restrictions designed to keep people from abusing that system (I used to put in for like 20 rooms) limit the number of returns. I imagine some folks will explore regional commuting options, some will explore local rentals and others will network like mad. Good luck to you all.
posted 2:05 am PST | Permalink

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