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Misused: Webcomics Long Runners get usage counts

 1 Ookamikun, Mon, 13th Aug '12 9:57:21 AM from the lupine den
Wolves, wolves, wolves!
So... why is it using number of strips instead of date? Regardless on how you view it, number of strips doesn't imply it's old at all - if anything it just means it's active.
Lone wolf? Hah! "Lone" wolves die out of hunger and loneliness. The wolf needs the pack, and the pack needs the wolf.
Most likely because when the trope had begun, the medium of webcomics was barely old enough to qualify as a longrunner itself. Now it's been around so long that webcomics can be counted as traditional longrunners—they've been active for 10+ years.

This makes Sabrina Online an interesting variation: well over 10 years old—but is only around 500 strips.

EDIT: That being said, perhaps a roll-call of 10-year-old webcomics SHOULD be made.

edited 13th Aug '12 11:39:36 PM by MrInitialMan

 3 Another Duck, Tue, 14th Aug '12 7:37:18 AM from Stockholm Relationship Status: In season
No, the other one.
Converting to time to make it follow the same criteria as the other Long Runner pages would probably help. As it is, it just seems like those Archive Panic tropes. There's no need to have this and those.

If there are too few examples above ten years, it would be possible to have one lower limit as well as that would still count as long runners relative to the medium.

edited 14th Aug '12 7:39:19 AM by AnotherDuck

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 4 ccoa, Tue, 14th Aug '12 7:43:22 AM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
We have lots of examples of still-running webcomics over 10 years old, I think. Off the top of my head: Sluggy Freelance, Dominic Deegan, Penny Arcade, Megatokyo, User Friendly, Schlock Mercenary, General Protection Fault...

EDIT: If we separate the example list by year started (with a note of when it ended, if it ran for at least 10 years) then it will be easier to add new examples each year.

edited 14th Aug '12 7:49:50 AM by ccoa

Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
Yeah, I guess I'll throw my vote in the bucket.

Dragon Writer
I agree that number of strips is not related to how long a webcomic has been in production. xkcd has more strips than The Order of the Stick, but it's actually younger by two full years.
 7 Ookamikun, Tue, 14th Aug '12 12:35:42 PM from the lupine den
Wolves, wolves, wolves!
Yeah, if you guys want to keep number of strips, at least indicate another separate date (I'm sticking solely for date).
Lone wolf? Hah! "Lone" wolves die out of hunger and loneliness. The wolf needs the pack, and the pack needs the wolf.
Adding to the list: Sabrina Online, Kevin & Kell, The Whiteboard.

edited 14th Aug '12 1:39:52 PM by MrInitialMan

 9 ccoa, Tue, 14th Aug '12 2:23:08 PM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
I don't think number of strips should be a consideration unless it's as trivia only.
Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
World's Toughest Milkman
Some of the other long-runner pages have both years and quantity requirements. For example, Long-Running Book Series says ten years and ten books. (This helps avoid the case where there's a decade-long hiatus between volumes in a trilogy, for example.)

A similar restriction here might help us avoid comics that have had huge hiatuses. But I'm not sure what it should be. A strip-a-week comic that's gone on for ten years will only have about 520 strips, but a daily strip that's had a seven year hiatus in its ten year run will still have over 1000 strips.

(Also, ten years is still going to leave us with very few examples; I like the idea of a date requirement, but since this is still a relatively new medium, a shorter period might still be appropriate.)
"Existential Despair" is an oxymoron.
 11 ccoa, Tue, 14th Aug '12 3:58:30 PM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
The solution may be to not count a hiatus towards the time the comic has been running, but it might be difficult to know which comics have had a hiatus and how long it was, even for fans.
Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
even older skool
The problem with considering only dates and not number of installments is that it ignores the widely differing update schedules common among webcomics. Comparing Schlock Mercenary (12 years, ~4000 strips) with VG Cats (11 years, ~300 strips plus 41 Super Effective and maybe a few dozen Adventure Log) solely by the dates would not be quite fair.

Perhaps if the page had one list of long 'continuously active' numbers and another for large update counts?

 13 ccoa, Tue, 14th Aug '12 8:08:45 PM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
That's not really a good comparison, since VG Cats is more or less on a indefinite hiatus at any given point in the recent past. Saying it's been going for 11 years is... iffy.

But your post assumes that quantity = more work put in. A webcomic that only updates once a week, but updates with full color professional quality art on a large, comic book sized or bigger page would be as much work or more to produce as a daily strip with only three panels drawn with black and white stick figures.

I don't think we should be making value judgements regarding the number of strips so long as the update schedule is relatively constant, because it introduces too many problems.

edited 14th Aug '12 8:13:07 PM by ccoa

Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
even older skool
[up]Exactly! We shouldn't be making value judgments at all. What my post assumes is that a spot on a long runners list is not a value judgment of much of anything, and that more quantity = more quantity. Ideally, all the Long Runners lists should merely measure account for works' durations in an objective and measurable way. With most other media it's a more straightforward matter than it is here, yet there are still cases of potentially ambiguous numbering:

that page lists Star Trek at 22 years (so that's counting the animated series but not any of the movies, and not counting twice for any of the overlapping years of The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine and Voyager), and Coronation Street at about 50 years ("since December 1960", so give or take depending on whether they missed a year somewhere in there). Their respective episode totals, however, are 725 and ~7900 (as of July 2012 according to The Other Wiki). The Long Runners page, which lists both of these, doesn't need to point that out because it's due mainly to the vast difference between the production schedules of a weekly network TV series and a daytime soap opera.

Conversely, the corresponding difference between the likes of Schlock Mercenary, User Friendly, Sinfest, etc. and pretty much any other webcomic is entirely idiosyncratic and thus should probably be reflected on the page. It's currently sort of doing so on an ad-hoc basis by mentioning start (and where applicable end) dates along with total strips.

And incidentally, VG Cats did in fact update today.

 15 Another Duck, Wed, 15th Aug '12 8:51:15 AM from Stockholm Relationship Status: In season
No, the other one.
I think there's a significant difference between Dinosaur Comics or your average Stick Figure Comic, and Derelict, Gone with the Blastwave or any other webcomic you can find on Awesome Art. If you're going to use a few webcomics to demonstrate how similar they are, don't cherry-pick ones that are decently similar to each other when there's a huge spectrum on both sides of them.

Long Runners aren't about quantity. They're about running for a long time.

edited 15th Aug '12 8:55:05 AM by AnotherDuck

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 16 ccoa, Wed, 15th Aug '12 8:58:21 AM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
What about a sliding scale based on update schedule? In addition to starting over 10 years ago, a webcomic with a daily update schedule needs at least 3000 strips to qualify as a long-runner, a weekday only needs 2500, a thrice-weekly one needs 1500, and a weekly needs 500. That allows for some Schedule Slip and hiatuses, while still insuring it was actually running for the equivalent of at least 10 years.

edited 15th Aug '12 8:59:09 AM by ccoa

Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
 17 Another Duck, Wed, 15th Aug '12 9:25:03 AM from Stockholm Relationship Status: In season
No, the other one.
[up]What about webcomics with a "when I feel like it" update schedule?

edited 15th Aug '12 9:25:18 AM by AnotherDuck

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 18 ccoa, Wed, 15th Aug '12 9:35:32 AM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
They're fuzzier, but the difference between, say, The Order of the Stick, which has been active all its run but irregular in updates, and VG Cats, which is irregular but not active, should be able to be told via judgement call.

edited 15th Aug '12 9:43:08 AM by ccoa

Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
 19 Nohbody, Wed, 15th Aug '12 10:37:59 AM from Somewhere in Dixie Relationship Status: Mu
Just zis guy
And what would you suggest for montly updates, like Sabrina Online (3-4 strips updated at the start of a month since 1996)?

Mind you, at 600+ strips, it clears the weekly hurdle, so any value assigned to monthly strips is no problem.

(Are there more monthly strips than SO? I honestly don't know, off the top of my head.)
 20 ccoa, Wed, 15th Aug '12 11:57:10 AM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
Averaging 3.5 strips per month should put it in the weekly category, I'd think.

The math I used was pretty simple - I calculated how many strips there should be if none were ever skipped, then aggressively rounded that down because I doubt there's a single webcomic over a year old that hasn't missed an update for some reason or another.
Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
even older skool
@15 I cherry-picked those very similar examples in order to show how different they were from everything else (in terms of update frequency and reliability, not content quality).

@16 That sounds like a good idea. It would preserve a measure of the current "number of strips" rankings while shifting the primary criterion to duration.

 22 Another Duck, Wed, 15th Aug '12 7:50:25 PM from Stockholm Relationship Status: In season
No, the other one.
[up]Since I don't know how often those webcomics update, it was kind of hard to understand that from your post. Assuming you meant they have widely varying update schedules. Well, I know Sinfest updates daily, but not anything about the others.

edited 15th Aug '12 7:52:33 PM by AnotherDuck

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 24 ccoa, Thu, 16th Aug '12 9:34:22 AM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
I started a sandbox page at Sandbox.Webcomics Long Runners. I've barely scratched the surface so far and have plenty of examples. I think 10 years will work fine as a cut-off date.

edited 16th Aug '12 9:34:29 AM by ccoa

Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
 25 Another Duck, Thu, 16th Aug '12 10:03:14 AM from Stockholm Relationship Status: In season
No, the other one.
Looks much better. Good job.

What does TR mean? MWF is Monday-Wednesday-Friday, I assume.

edited 16th Aug '12 10:03:33 AM by AnotherDuck

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Page Action: Webcomics Long Runners
22nd Aug '12 2:33:57 PM
What would be the best way to fix the page?
At issue:
Total posts: 100
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