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Entering Features

  • Required - if it exists for the sequence
  • Definition: The purpose of a feature designation is to group together stories containing the same character, same group of characters, or same thematic concept. Feature can join all appearances of such characters together regardless of in which title they appeared. This is most helpful with:
  1. Stories which appear in anthology titles and therefore may not take their feature designations from the magazine title, and
  2. Characters who appear in more than one title.

  • Feature data storage design: To create a new Feature, see the Adding a Missing Feature page. The Features in the database are represented by three objects:
    • Feature - Where we record the name, genre, language, feature_type (story, ad, letters page, in-house column), year created, notes and keywords.
    • Feature Logo - Where we record a text name, scan of the logo, year began, year ended, and notes. See Feature Logo.
    • Feature relation - Which connects two features. This is currently only for the feature in different languages, but other relations may be identified, defined, and added.

  • Feature workflow has been changed. When entering a feature in a story, there are now three options:
    • the old way, enter directly in the text field
    • selecting a feature from the database using the dropdown list for Feature Objects.
    • selecting a feature logo from the database using the dropdown list (the corresponding feature from the database will be automatically selected) .

NOTE: You cannot both enter a text feature and select a feature from the database at the same time.

Migration of Features

  • Features can be migrated from the text field to the Feature Objects.
    • In the editing mode a 'migrate' button will appear next to a sequence if there are credit text entries that can be migrated. Currently the migrate button does not appear if there are only features to be migrated.
    • Clicking this button will take you to a screen where you can review the results of the migration and make any needed changes before saving.
    • Note: the 'migrate' button simultaneously migrates both Features and Credits.

Feature Names

  • Features must be based on objectively observable things. For the purposes of the Grand Comics DatabaseTM, "objectively observable" means something that appears somewhere connected with the printed stories themselves. The feature is usually named for the lead character or group or thematic concept. The name of a feature often coincides with the name of a comic book series, but it is not necessary that it do so. That is, not all features are named after magazines or reflected in story logos. For example, there is no feature named "All-Star Comics" or "Marvel Spotlight." The feature instead is named after the characters, groups, or concepts appearing therein.
  • Feature names are not always equivalent to the logos that appear with individual stories, as logos vary more than feature names. Logos reading "Dr. Strange," "Doctor Strange," and "Stephen Strange, Master of the Mystic Arts" all appear on different stories belonging to the Doctor Strange feature. For features known or presented variously, the core or dominant version should be used.
  • If a name of a feature, contains a / to separate two individual name components we use a space before and after the /, independent of how the name appears in print in regard to spaces. No spaces are used if the / is integral part of the name.
    • Examples:
-Batman / Superman
  • Not all stories are part of features. Not even all super-hero stories. The creation of artificial feature concepts just for the purpose of filling in the field serves no purpose.

Feature Use

  • Features may even appear in multiple series. "Superman" has appeared in the comic series Superman and in the series Action Comics. Likewise, the feature "Spider-Man" has appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man, The Spectacular Spider-Man, and Spidey Super Stories. The feature designation allows all these stories to be grouped together.
  • Stories presented as a series in a common style and format are considered features, such as "Tales of the Wasp" or "Tales of the Watcher." If the stories were reprinted without the feature trappings (the framing sequence) they would be interchangeable, and not considered to be part of a feature.
  • Just as features can span different titles and logos they can also span publishers, as features such as "Blue Beetle," "Tarzan," "Conan," and the "Star Trek" franchise demonstrate.
  • Interchangeability: in any given timeframe, any two stories belonging to the same feature could be switched without any dissonance. A reader wouldn't think "What's this doing here?" For example, in a situation in which a member of a group, such as the Human Torch, has his own feature (such as the one in Strange Tales), such a story would not be interchangeable with an adventure of the Fantastic Four in its own magazine.
  • Leave articles at the front of the Feature title: "The Shadow", not "Shadow, The"
  • Per a vote on August 27, 2007, Advertisements may belong to multiple Features, BOTH the name of the product being advertised and the comic character Feature used in the Advertisement. In a vote of September 9, 2020, this idea of the "product as feature" was extended to all ads, creating a future "advertising object" to use the product name to differentiate the objects. While this vote is not yet implemented in the site code, Features should be titled using the product name in preparation for migration.
  • ONLY for the purposes of the series A + X, as it is published around the world, the Feature shall be recorded as "Avengers; X-Men".
  • Framing sequences with hosts (and no other designation of Feature) are a special case, and if host X is present the Feature is X, for *ANY* host X. This would apply equally to hosts such as House of Mystery and House of Secrets' Cain and Abel as well as hosts such as Stan Lee or other writers/artists/editors introducing stories.
  • Feature Names in Letters Column: The Name of the Letter Column shall be placed in the Feature field only. The Title Field for Letter Columns shall be left blank unless the letter column has a separate title that is not the name of the Letter column itself. The first line of text (other than the name of the letter column) can be used as an alternate choice for letter column title.
  • In-house columns, similarly, can have their own feature based on the recurring name of the feature.
  • Text Articles are allowed to have and be part of features.
  • Per a vote on October 18, 2020, something that appears in only one issue can qualify as a feature.
  • Statement of Ownership and blank pages have no feature.
  • Credits, Title Page and Table of Contents also have no feature. Any illustrations in these types may be split out as separate sequences and given features.
  • Examples:
* Superman 
* Justice League of America 
* Asterix 
* Haunted Tank 
* Punisher; Archie 
* Hostess Fruit Pies; Batman  OR  Batman; Hostess Fruit Pies
* The Avengers
* Tales of Asgard
* Space Museum
* Bonanza (feature title is based on presentation, as it is about the Cartwright family on the Ponderosa Ranch, but named after the TV show.)
* Tintin
* True Stories of Sports Heroes
* Video example of adding Multiple Features to an story.


  • Feature is likely the most mis-understood and hotly debated topic when it comes to indexing at the GCD.
  • An inexperienced indexer or a new reader of a particular comic may not be able to identify the feature of a particular story sequence. This can only be corrected with experience and that experience should be provided by a mentor or editor who is familiar with the feature in question.
  • Links to external sites pre-approved by the Board or by Policy List vote will be allowed in the future. In order to add such a link, an indexer must select a link source from a dropdown menu populated with the list of pre-approved sources, and the link they enter must point to a page on the selected source that is directly related to the GCD record it is being appended to. The pre-approved sources should be well-established, actively maintained sites that provide information that supplements (not merely repeats) information in our own indexes. Examples include Wikipedia, the Internet Movie Database, or the Digital Comics Museum. Wikipedia links, if used, shall be the first entry in the pre-approved source list.
  • It has not yet been determined how or whether to address editorials with their own specific, recurring names WITHIN company hype pages (such as Stan's Soapbox within Bullpen Bulletins) or letters pages (such as From the Den within various places).
  • Examples:
* On the Ledge
* DC Nation
* Bullpen Bulletins
* Horsepower!
* Let's Rap with Cap
* Justice Log
* Groo Grams
* Meanwhile

Feature Relations

  • Features can now be linked to the corresponding Feature in another language using the Add Feature Relation button on the Feature page.
  • Select Relation type translated as.
  • Find the translated feature using the drop down search for the to feature entry field.

Feature Checklists

  • On the Feature page there exists the following searches for checklists for stories that have been linked to the feature:
    • Creator Checklist: A sortable list of all creators who have worked on stories linked to the Feature.
    • Issue Checklist: A sortable list of all issues that contain stories that were linked to the Feature.
    • Sequences List: A sortable list of all sequences that were linked to the Feature.

(end of definition)

Policy Votes Affecting This Topic

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/434/ - 2020-11-21

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/421/ - 2020-10-18

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/418/ - 2020-09-27

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/413/ - 2020-08-02

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/399/ - 2020-04-04

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/351/ - 2019-05-24

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/332/ - 2018-09-27

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/249/ - 2015-06-09

https://www.comics.org/voting/ballot/239/ - 2015-01-18

Agenda Item "Statement of Ownership and blank pages" - approval by consensus - 2020-07-03

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