Barcodes on comic books used to mostly be seen on newsstand editions of comic books from the seventies, but not for comic store direct market editions. Often it would be that which wiuld separate them and make one more collectable… or not.
There was great resistance to the UPC bar code creeping into comic stores, seen as ugly, ruining covers and the like. However, as comic stores became more of a business and less of a way for fans to sell their comic collections, they returned with a vengeance in the nineties. However, some publishers tried to shrink them, so as not to put off buyers. There were as many barcodes types as there were publishers, it seemed.
Eventually, in the noughties, Diamond Comic Distributors insisted on a standard format. But there have been a few glitches since. One of which is a publisher reusing barcodes from one comic to another future issue. Most standard formats go up to issue 1000 before going back round to 0001 again, something only Detective Comics and Action Comics are going to have to deal with now. But some publishers have been known to cycle through them faster, often not on purpose, accidentally reusing a previous code for a variant cover or other. Which means that stock systems can mistake one comic for another, which can cause real issues – exacerbated if they have different prices as well.
Well, at ComicsPRO, Titan Comics seemed to realise that this was an issue with them. And so made a pledge, reported by comics retailer Tim Stolzfus of Keith's Comics in Dallas.
Got to say, Tim, I found it of interest. Just me? Anyone else?