Food or Comics | A roundup of money-related news

• Marvel's license for its adaptation of Stephen King's The Stand restricts distribution of the hardcover to the direct market, so the publisher is pushing the collection's exclusivity as a way to draw new customers into comics shops.

"We plan to sell a lot of The Stand: Captain Trips HC," Marvel's David Gabriel tells PW Comics Week, "we plan to bring new faces into the direct market, and we plan to have a major book sold in a way that may never before have been done. We also plan to push this through our mighty marketing machine and make it clear plain and simple to all fans, King and comic fans alike, where they can find this book. This is a major opportunity for the Direct Market, and probably one of the most exciting challenges that we've ever faced!"

However, blogger Kevin Church doesn't quite buy Gabriel's suggestion that King fans who come into comic shops will "be introduced to a whole new world of graphic novels."

• The Oregonian is dropping 10 daily comic strips in an attempt to cuts costs, leaving the newspaper with 23.

• The Hearst Corp. says it will either sell or close The San Francisco Chronicle, which lost more than $50 million last year. (via The Daily Cartoonist)

• Discussion of retailer Brian Hibbs' analysis of the 2008 BookScan figures continues, with responses from Drawn & Quarterly's Peggy Burns and blogger Marc-Oliver Frisch.

• At PW Comics Week, Kai-Ming Cha looks at how Crunchyroll, which began as a site for fansubs and scanlations, has transformed into a legitimate social-networking site for anime and manga fans -- and a marketing platform for companies.

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