Comic Vine is nerdy in a cool way

It's like Wikipedia, but for comic books. Seriously.

Josh Lowensohn Former Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Josh Lowensohn
2 min read

Comic books are hard to take seriously sometimes. They're even harder for the casual reader to pick up, which is where Comic Vine comes in handy. Like Wikipedia, Comic Vine is a user-created encyclopedia that can make you an instant expert, but just about comic books. The big difference between Comic Vine and a site like Wikipedia is the community and user submission, which is where Comic Vine steps it up in a big--make that super--way.

You should see this guy in a flame war. CNET Networks

User profiles on Comic Vine let you become a superhero or villain. Instead of listing the usual social networking details, such as what grade school you went to or your favorite band, you can tell people how a botulized can of refried beans gave you the ability to drink beverages through your nostrils and understand Motorola's naming scheme for its mobile phones. You can post pictures of yourself in your super outfit, as well as write blog posts about anything you feel like. The sky is the limit (unless your superhero/villain can also breathe under water).

Comic Vine provides an easy template to create comprehensive profiles for all things comic-related. You can find out almost everything about major comic book characters, in addition to biographies of the people who illustrated and wrote them along with other projects they worked on. You could get similar information from Wikipedia, but Comic Vine provides its frequent contributors the benefit of posting with less stringent moderation. In fact, after you've passed a short probation period, you're granted access to make live edits to the pages which show up instantly. You're also given points for adding content to the site, which means the more content you add, the more credibility you get with other Comic Vine members.

Comic Vine is a great niche site. Whereas standard wiki authoring tools or sites like Wikipedia can be bland or too broad, Comic Vine seems built to please both its contributors as well as the casual passerby. Seriously though, stay away from those refried beans.