The Comics Metadata Working Group, a group consisting of representatives from comics publishers, distributors, point of sale developers, and retailers, has established a rapid response helpline and ticketing system to quickly identify and resolve errors in product data. When an error is identified, alert emails are sent to the relevant publisher and distributors. Simultaneously, the system collects data about the type, frequency, and repair of data errors, so that improvement can be measured over time.

The Comics Metadata Working Group asks comics publishers and distributors to identify a person in their organization to receive and respond to data tickets. Please email [email protected] with the name and email address of the person who should receive the email alerts.

The Working Group also asks retailers and other users of comics metadata to email [email protected] when they notice data errors. Emails received create tickets in the system, which the Comics Metadata Working Group team tags by type of problem, publisher, and distributor, and sends an action request to the relevant contacts to address and resolve the problem.

“The objective of developing the Comics Industry COMET Standard White Paper and Implementation Guide was to create a set of metadata standards that everyone in the industry could move toward adopting,” says working group chair Katie Pryde. “But while that adoption is underway, we are in a sort of gap period: we know where we need to be, and we know where we are, but we don’t have a clear path between them. And, meanwhile, each month’s catalog data brings a new set of problems. We realized that we needed a bridge.”

For the first several months, the helpline will be staffed by Brian Garside and Django Bohren, respectively of point of sale systems Manage Comics and Comic Shop Assistant, and both on the Metadata Working Group Steering Committee. “We have been asked by publishers to help them prioritize what about their current data systems most urgently need to be updated to come into compliance with the Comics Industry COMET Standard,” says Garside. “This ticketing system will allow us to capture real data about where the problems are, how they are repaired, and how long it takes to do so.” Bohren adds: “Being able to quickly resolve issues with the help of decision-makers at publishers and distributors will help the entire industry with better data.”

For more information, contact Katie Pryde at [email protected].

The full Comics Industry COMET Standard White Paper and Implementation Guide can be downloaded from