Comics A.M. | 'Shonen Jump' offers up issue that launched 'One Piece'

Digital comics | To celebrate One Piece's new Guinness World Record, Shueisha's Shonen Jump+ digital manga app has released the entire July 1997 issue of Weekly Shonen Jump for free. That's the issue that launched Eiichiro Oda’s wildly successful fantasy adventure. The publisher has also unveiled a One Piece app (in Japanese only) that updates daily with a new chapter in color, starting from the very beginning of the series. [Anime News Network]

Digital comics | The online sales platform Selz has informed creator Dale Lazarov that it won't sell his gay comics (despite previous assurances that it would) because its banking partner won't permit the sale of adult materials. Lazarov reproduces the company's letter and his response on his Facebook. ComiXology, Gumroad and Ribbon have also declined to carry his comics. [Bleeding Cool]

Publishing | “The answer to fighting Marvel and DC is to not fight Marvel and DC,” says Dinesh Shamdasani, CEO and chief creative officer of Valiant Entertainment, in a piece about the superhero universe that Valiant has built with their comics and is about to bring to movies. “We aim to tell stories that, surprisingly, aren’t superhero stories, but that have elements of the superhero genre." [International Business Times]

Creators | Artist Patrick Gleason talks about how he built up his career, and how artist Doug Mahnke served as a valuable mentor. [Forest Lake Times]

Political cartoons | Newly announced presidential candidate Donald Trump provides plenty of fodder for political cartoonists; Michael Cavna rounds up some of his favorites. [Comic Riffs]

Political cartoons | Sudanese cartoonist Khalid Albaih, who now lives in Qatar, talks about his cartoons, which he publishes on his Facebook page because they are too strong for newspapers. However, his work reached a wider audience during the Arab Spring, when activists painted his stencil-like cartoons on walls: "When I knew I was being stenciled by activists, I really felt like I was a part of the creative dissent. The Arab Spring connected creatives together to work toward a certain thing we all felt and suffered from. And the explosion of street art and cartoons came from the fact that we didn’t have anywhere to talk." His work is on display at the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, Michigan. [PBS Newshour]

Comics | A nature preserve in the Far East Kamchatka region of Russia has produced an informational comic explaining how to avoid bears and what to do if you do meet one. [The Moscow Times]

Manga | Casey Baseel introduces us to Steves, a dramatic retelling of the story of the founding of Apple Computer, starring Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak as well as Bill Gates, who plays the bespectacled antagonist familiar to most manga readers. The manga hasn't been translated into English yet, but Baseel provides links to some online previews in Japanese. [Rocket News24]

Manga | Costco is opening 20 stores in Japan, and is also producing a manga explaining how the stores work in terms of membership, prices, etc. [Japanator]

Festivals | The first-ever Benguela Comics Festiva kicks off this weekend in Benguela, Angola. The participants are a mix of professional and emerging artists, and the two-week event is designed to encourage young artists and raise awareness of their work. [AllAfrica]

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