Saga 12 and the story of the four failures

Recently a story on Image Comics claimed Apple’s App Store “banned” a comic book, Saga 12, from a comic book app, Comics by comiXology, for content reasons. An uproar followed that story so closely that it actually seemed to overtake it at times. The original story turned out to be incorrect. According to comiXology, they assumed Apple would have a problem with the content and so decided on their own not to release it. They were wrong. Apple was fine with it. They subsequently released it. Though the original story still hasn’t been updated to reflect any of that, a new story has been posted on Image Comics addressing the matter. So what does this all tell us?


  1. Apple failed to create an environment where distributors like comiXology could focus on releasing great content like Saga 12 instead of wasting time and energy fearing what might or might not get them in trouble with the App Store review team.
  2. comiXology failed to check with Apple before deciding not to release Saga 12 through their App Store apps, and to properly communicate that choice to the content creators, Brian K. Vaughan, Fiona Staples and Image Comics.
  3. Brian K. Vaughan, Fiona Staples and Image Comics failed to check with comiXolgy as to the real reason for Saga 12 not being released before posting their misinterpretation of events to the internet.
  4. Many media outlets and vocal consumers failed to check with Apple or comiXology before losing our collective online minds.

There are no pats on the back for this one. No I-told-you-sos either. There is, however, a learning opportunity, and a chance to improve the way we all do things. More certainty. More courage. More consideration. More care.

Yes, it was a collective failure, but from it could come a collective success. Let’s put just as much energy into that.