United Features sets its comics free

I came across the news earlier today that United Feature Syndicate, which distributes about 150 comic strips to newspapers and other publications, has opened its doors and set its content free on the Web. As described by the comic blog Drawn.ca, the site run by United Feature — which has the great domain name comics.com — used to restrict access to the strips it syndicates, and even RSS feeds only included links to the panels. Now, users can sign up for a feed of their favourites and get the entire strip. The site has set free its entire archive of comics as well, which means (among other things) all 50 years of Peanuts comic strips, which Drawn says is more than 20,000 comics. Even better, they have embed codes for their strips so you can plop them into your blog or webpage. Very smart. On a related note, if you enjoy comics at all, Drawn.ca is worth bookmarking — it was created by Canadian cartoonist John Martz, creator of the excellent Robot Johnny strip, and some other leading cartoonists, including Adam “Ape Lad” Koford.

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