Dilbert Creator Outsources His Work - To His Readers

How do you update a comic strip? By going Web 2.0.

In this case, this is a good thing. Dilbert’s creator, Scott Adams, and the comic’s distributor, United Media, have overhauled Dilbert.com and will allows users to fill in their own speech bubbles on comics and then share them. Or create mashups with friends. So one person would fill out the first panel and then the next person would do the second, etc. The mashups will launch in May.

The site also added animations and expanded the archives so people can eventually read the comic back to the beginning – right now the archives only go back to 2001. The archives only used to go back 1 month.

In an email to CNET, Adams explains the logic in letting readers screw around with his work — it’s going to happen anyway, and he may as well benefit from it. Smart.

“We’re accepting the realities of IP on the Internet, and trying to get ahead of the curve. People already alter Dilbert strips and distribute them. If we make it easy and legal to do so, and drive more traffic to Dilbert.com in the process, everyone wins. Plus it’s a lot of fun to see what people come up with in the mashups.”


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