Publishers are the actual companies, organizations, or sometimes even individuals that are ultimately responsible for the production and printing of comic books. Though a Publisher often does not do the physical printing, they are responsible for the production and layouts of comic books. Publishers do not necessarily represent the actual company names that a comic book may be published under, rather it is a "Name" that is contrived from common usage to represent continuity of many comic book Series and Issues across different ownerships, legal titles, etc., of physical companies (for exact recording of publisher company names, see Data Structure for Indicia Publishers ).
Publishers exist at the "top" of the hierarchy of data within the XOWComics.com site. All other data within the site exist, to one extent or another, within Publishers. A typical Publisher Detail page is shown to the right.
As company names have changed over the years, or as publishing companies opened subsidiaries to produce comic books, the number of Publishers grew substantially. Smaller Publishers often changed names frequently, especially during the 1950s and 1960s, in the United States for a variety of business reasons. Non-U.S. Publishers faced their own unique conditions throughout the years, resulting in a tremendous fracturing of actual Publishers over the last 100 years. The result is a compiled list of over 7,000 Publishers already within the XOWComics.com site and it continues to grow.
A Publisher has a limited number of "attributes" that the XOWComics.com site tracks. These individual attributes are as follows:
Note: for Years in Operation, individual values will be displayed in italics if the values are not certain to be correct.
A Publisher, as being the top of the data hierarchy in the XOWComics.com site, also can contain details relevant to other data within the site. This is often summary data that details the quantity of data "below" in the data hierarchy. The following is a listing of these items, each obviously detailed separately:
For all of these counts, a Publisher must not contain any of any individual type. Meaning, there does not have to be any Brands "within" a Publisher.