See "Superheroes on Demand: Marvel Goes After New Fans With Subscription Site," by Mike Musgrove, Washington Post Staff Writer, Wednesday, November 14, 2007; Page D01.
Most of this article comes out of Marvel's press release from yesterday, but author Mike Musgrove did get a comment from Joel Pollack - "Some of my fellow retailers are kind of upset, but I think you can't turn back the hands of time and it's inevitable," he said. "If it hurts the sale of Marvel Comics, it's more self-destructive of Marvel . . . than anything else. . . . I don't know if it's going to have any impact on my business or not."
This isn't going to hurt anyone because Marvel is charging $10 a month for six-month-old comics that you can't download and take with you, but only read on their website. Why would anyone pay them for this? Nobody else has been able to make this model work - not the New York Times, nobody. And most publishers don't have scanners making the material available almost immediately (which I'm not condoning, just noting. I prefer my comics as paper). And none of their comics are hard to find - certainly not the ones they listed as being available online - unless you live in Nepal maybe, and then you're going to have internet connectivity issues anyway.
Also note that Fantom Comics is opening in Union Station - I wish them the best, but I think that's a high-risk move unless they're getting a super deal in rent.