Random Comments, February 2022 Edition

Same as the previous series of Random Comments threads (which have each been closed to further commenting because they’ve gotten too long), this will be accessible from a link in the left sidebar (under “triple-line” icon 1st tab).

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163 Comments

  1. I’ve mentioned the Lee Enterprises standard comic lineup for its owned papers. The Post-Dispatch used to kind of cram in strips on Sunday, with one running vertically on each page. So some were kind of small to accommodate that.

    The new configuration has no top or side optional panels, and the strips run full page width. However, it seems like a few of the ones they use are meant for a side panel, because the strips are actually stretched horizontally to fit.

  2. Arcamax skipped Sunday’s “Mutts”, and when I went searching for it elsewhere, I happened upon this “mashup from 2006 in Poor Richard’s Almanac. I considered appending it to one of the “Flashbacks” posts, but decided that it would be better to leave it here:

  3. @Kilby, as I’m sure you’ll remember when reminded, “Poor Richard’s Almanac” (or perhaps “Almanack”) was the title of the original, issued by Ben Franklin. Richard Thompson’s turnaround play on that title was “Richard’s Poor Almanac”.

  4. @ Mitch – I noticed the word reversal in the name as soon as my text appeared above the image, but decided not to ask you for a correction. Richard Thompson’s comic drawings were truly excellent and never poor at all, but the circumstances of his demise were very poor indeed.

  5. Thanks for this, Grawlix.

    I’ll try to cross-post it crediting you, in the (Arlo’s) Veterans Day thread.

  6. The GoComics.com site seems to still be unresponsive as of this afternoon. Mark H brought it to our attention early this morning.

    The message on site is fairly uncommunicative. “The requested service is temporarily unavailable. It is either overloaded or under maintenance. Please try later.”

  7. Still out of service as of Sunday mid-morning.

    Also http://www.thefarside.com is unavailable, but that is reported as a DNS error. GoComics still has what looks like a custom message located on the site. “The requested service is temporarily unavailable. It is either overloaded or under maintenance. Please try later.”

  8. The Daily Cartoonist [which has been mentioned as having an extensive listing of where else to find various categories of GoComics content] also now has a report on Comics Kingdom, similarly giving alternate locations. At first I couldn’t understand what they are on about, as I thought CK looked pretty much okay today. But no, there is something about the updates — some strips (retro or vintage ones mostly) are showing the Monday November 21 content, but the current ones are still showing yesterday’s, designated Sunday November 20.

  9. I received some feedback that indicates that GoComics has been unable (or unwilling) to inform their contributors (a.k.a. cartoonists) about what is going on; they are just as much in the dark as everyone else.

  10. I made the mistake of looking for some “news” about the GC breakdown, and discovered some of the most asinine, out-of-proportion complaints from various readers. One idiot was insulted because GC had “not notified subscribers” (kind of hard to do, when the entire GC system has been compromised, rendering all their subscription data inaccessible). Then there was the champion of all morons, who felt that he should be entitled to a six-month refund on his subscription because of the temporary service interruption. I’m as frustrated as any reader, but let’s be honest: we are talking about comics, not the end of the world:

  11. Mark H comments: “GoComics is back up, but no comics there past November 18, when they went down.”

    Thanks for the update. A couple hours later now, it looks like that aspect is also solved or close to it.

    I was going to add a comment that sign-in for paid accounts was not working yet, but in the meantime that also seems improved.

  12. Moving the discussion about the GoComics service interruption from a “good” place back to a better place

    As I was catching up on the past few days of one of the strips I normally follow, for one brief, ecstatic moment, I thought GC had taken the opportunity to ditch that atrocious “featured comment” annoyance. Alas, it is still there, it just has not been any data yet.

  13. From what I’ve heard, I don’t believe this was an upgrade or scheduled maintenance, but recovery from some sort of cyberattack. I don’t know how much credence to give to the bits I’ve read about the situation.

  14. The folks at Breaking Cat News are giddy with relief. They put up over 200 comments on the 11/22 strip.

  15. @ Brian – I agree; all the subtle signs point to “hackers”, there’s nothing to connect any of this to the re-launch that GC supposedly is working on.

  16. The following update was sent by GC to “creators” on Tuesday, 22-Nov-2022:

    We have been experiencing network issues which have taken
    our servers and communication channels offline.
    Apologies for the delay in responding.
    Certain systems and data have been rendered temporarily inaccessible.
    Our team is working around the clock to restore operations.
    At this time, we cannot estimate when full access and services will be restored.
    Thank you for your patience!

  17. On the other hand, Comics Kingdom has done a retool of the Comments. I hesitate to call it an upgrade, as the users don’t seem too thrilled with it. One new feature is guest posting, and I’ll be curious to see how long it lasts. Seems like an invitation to “Troll Here!”

  18. I didn’t much care for Disqus when CK was using them for comments, and the new system seems to run a little more smoothly than Disqus did.

    A problem that I saw mentioned, and then experienced for myself, is that the Comments area for a comic can be hard to get to from a Favorites list page if you are signed in with a CK account. And if you then go around Robin Hood’s barn to reach the comments, the commenting system no longer recognizes that you are signed in, and wants you to do so.

  19. A problem for me is that the alternate server that the newspaper sites use still seem to be set to use Disqus, and just show We were unable to load Disqus.

  20. Most CIDU readers probably noticed a massive flood of “tribute” strips on November 26th, in honor of what would have been Charles M. Schulz’s 100th birthday. Before I figured out the scope of the issue, I suggested that our editors might post a collection here at CIDU, but since then I discovered a comprehensive review Schulz Museum, much better than anything that we would ever be able to collect. Not all of the strips are worth reading (some are nothing more than maudlin sentiment), but there are a few definite gems (so far my favorite is Mutts). However, none of the strips I’ve seen so far comes even close to the Tank MacNamara strip that was part of a similar tribute (on 27-May-2000) to Schulz’s death:

  21. Usually on Tuesdays I expect some comments from Meryl. But now I think I didn’t see that this week. Am I overlooking something, or misrenenbering?

    Meryl I hope you are doing well.

  22. Of course, nobody has said one word about what actually caused the “glitch”, nor about how the damage was repaired. I don’t want to sound conspirative, but the lack of information seems to be at least an indirect indication that the situation was unsavory, rather than a simple technical breakdown.

  23. Here we see that the lack of color (some sort of side effect) has affected the Spanish but not the English versions of Baldo./

  24. I have seem some strips in color at one viewing then b&w at another. In my email digest, all were color.

  25. Brian,yep, I downloaded one to add to our next OY list posting, in b/w, and by the time I finished that and got back to the comics page, it had been replaced by color. (And downloaded under the same file name, confusing me for some reason)

  26. No, the announcement made no mention of the recent troubles or continuing recovery. But doesn’t it seem a bit early to be announcing changes for next fall?


    Thank you to everyone who participated in our user experience survey. We enjoyed hearing from you and learning more about which aspects you love most about GoComics.

    In our commitment to make GoComics the premier destination for comics, we are planning updates to the site to enhance the user reading experience.

    Here are a few features we will be adding:

    Pick up reading where you left off

    Ability to easily identify which strips have been read or not

    New ways to share comics with others

    Vertical scroll of multiple comics without clicking

    You can expect to see regular communication from us regarding upcoming updates. We welcome any feedback you have about the site changes here.

    We are proud to continue providing daily entertainment from over 500 comic creators and hope the time you spend on GoComics.com adds happiness to your day.

    The GoComics Team

  27. I received an email with all that. None of that seemed particularly important, and some I didn’t even understand.

  28. Speaking of changes, I mentioned somewhere that Comics Kingdom replaced Disqus with a new discussion system (which seems worse to me). When it first appeared, it allowed guest posting.I predicted that wouldn’t last long, and I noticed today that it was gone.

    The alternate server that the newspaper sites use still isn’t linked to the new system. So I find myself at times, when I’ve reached my limit of free strips, having to view the strip on one site and the comments on another. It’s a good thing I only follow a few strips.

  29. Grawlix, did you mean the “”If you ever see the † dagger symbol with no unmatched footnote, it means the writer is saying the phrase while threatening you with a dagger.” ?

  30. Comment from Irv

    CSIDU (Comic Site IDU)

    Is GoComics really going to take up screen space for the next nine+ months announcing that site updates are coming? At least set a cookie so it doesn’t reappear once one has seen it or clicked through…

  31. @ Irv – Especially when none of the announced “improvements” address fundamental weaknesses of the site, such as getting rid of the moronic “featured comment” (a.k.a. “troll magnetl), or retiring the space-wasting “classic” features (a.k.a. “rerun parades”).

  32. Once I closed it, I haven’t seen the notice. I don’t know if that’s due to being a premium member or something else.

  33. Technically, the GoComics website is not in accordance with EU-regulations, which require site operators to allow users to reject most cookies. GC only offers a “Got It!” button that merely acknowledges that they are setting cookies. If the site cannot set a cookie (for whatever reason: a blocker, or compatibility, or transmission error), then the banner will never disappear.

  34. SF Fans —

    From an e-circular from The Graham School at the University of Chicago. (Formerly the Center for Continuing Education, or Extension.) This is advertising a free, 45-minute, Zoom session. Tomorrow (Tuesday 20 December) at Noon Central. Registration at https://graham.uchicago.edu/events/history-science-fiction-12-20-22

    This will be really about previewing, and selling, their 10-week online class, Saturday mornings starting January, and really very expensive. But there’s no obligation; I’ve viewed a couple of these preview “Conversations” for other classes before, and it’s really not a hard sell.

    Below here forwarded material from them:


    What is the history of science fiction—and how has this unique genre shaped the world around us?

    Join us tomorrow, Tuesday, December 20, at 12:00 p.m. CST to hear from two award-winning science fiction authors, historians, and critics of the field, Jo Walton and Ada Palmer. Together, we’ll examine the origins and evolution of sci-fi and investigate the genre’s centuries-long relationship with political movements, science, and technology.

    This event will also offer a glimpse into Walton and Palmer’s forthcoming course at Graham, which begins Saturday, January 7.

    link to tomorrow’s preview sign-up: https://graham.uchicago.edu/events/history-science-fiction-12-20-22

    link to course description and registration: https://graham.uchicago.edu/programs-courses/course/ffac10104-history-science-fiction

  35. Email Discussion on finding Reply All Lite

    Andréa asked:
    Anyone know what’s happened with Reply All Lite? It stopped being in its usual spot last week, and I can’t find it anywhere . . .

    Phil replied:
    No idea, but I was trying to find a strip myself and gave up, so I’m glad to hear it’s not just me!

    Mitch also replied:
    I think I used to see both Reply All Lite (single panel) and Reply All (4-panel strip) at ArcaMax. But now it seems to be only the strip. https://www.arcamax.com/thefunnies/replyall/s-2760855

    Washington Post does have the Lite. https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/comics/strips/?name=reply_all_lite
    It may not be free.

    The panel itself always displays “www.replyallcomic.com”
    That redirects to “the daily dee” at dailydee.com, where https://dailydee.com/cartoons/ does show both features, but not current content.

    Also, https://twitter.com/ReplyAllComic (account name dailydee) seems to have both the Lite panel and the strip, but running behind by one day. The most recent Lite posted there is 12-21

    ----- 
    

    CIDU readers: Any further info or ideas?

    .

  36. Comics Kingdom has an incorrect image for today’s Sunday Bizarro:

    Here is the correct image, as sent in newsletter and hosted at Arca Max:

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