RSS feeds can distribute a lot more than simple text. A Nov. 2, 2003 Comixpedia story explains how online comic artists can use RSS feeds creatively to expand their audiences. So far, few comic artists are doing this, but I think it would be great to see growth and experimentation in this area.
Back on June 28, 2003, my online publishing colleague Chris Pirillo posted in his personal weblog a plea for comic artists to start using RSS. He later updated that entry with links to several comic artists who offer RSS feeds, including Doctor Fun which offers the full graphic version of its 15 most recent cartoons by RSS.
Other comics, such as SEV and Diesel Sweeties, offer text-only RSS feeds. That undoubtedly has value but in my opinion, an RSS feed that announces graphic content such as comics cries out for the inclusion of some sort of imagery in the feed.
Now I’ll admit, I haven’t thought through how RSS feeds might affect the business model for a working comic artist. There are undoubtedly concerns, especially if the comic is already commercially syndicated. But for independent or new comics, RSS could be a very useful audience-building tool.