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December 20, 2013

DC Comics Employees Expected To Make Burbank Decision Today

Rich Johnston seems to always have a host of reasonably reliable sources as to what's going on at DC Comics, and is using those connections to report that employee decisions about moving west to the Burbank offices are due today. One would assume that some sort of decision is due soon if not exactly today, to allow for staff departures before the New Year and to facilitate the Spring transition. Heidi MacDonald, a former DC staffer tied into the local comics community in New York City, confirms.

imageThat's a super-tough thing to have to decide; my sympathy to those that have struggled with the decision or maybe even continue to do so as day are now hours and will soon become minuters. There are probably -- probably -- more employees at a comics publisher than at most businesses that favor their job in a way that they'd want to move wherever that job went -- that's how I felt when I worked in comics more officially than I do now. That doesn't mean there aren't a ton of folks that have a connection to the city, family, a significant other, a family member or significant other's job situation of the kind that would make a decision like this extremely difficult. I would also imagine that if there are any lingering doubts about the status of one's job once the move is made -- they were promised that all jobs would be held, but that kind of promise is frequently made with a certain rate of attrition in mind, or from a perspective where what that job entails may be different from management's perspective than from the person holding it -- or worries about the general corporate culture in Burbank that will mark this next era of DC Comics, that these would come into play now. Further, I have to think the instability and potential loss of editorial talent is of a direct concern to the freelancers for whom they are the entry point into that particular, likely important, client of theirs. A tough Christmas-season circumstance for many folks today, and I hope everyone negotiates this difficult situation with as much effectiveness as they can muster.

When word of departures gets sorted out -- and that should happen fairly quickly as DC tends to be a sieve even when the people talking are still working there -- my guess is that the next step will be figuring out how DC will fit into their new home, what that means for the company in the short- and long-term, and what that ultimately means for comics. Someone told me this morning that in the broadest industry sense, away from the very real pain that comes with the life decisions being made today, that watching DC move is a bit like watching a TV show they like decamp for a different time slot, and everything that sometimes portends.
posted 1:37 am PST | Permalink

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