Regardless of what Quesada says, he can give a better breakdown of the costs to make the comics, and their relative increases. The reasoning of "not wanting to tell the competition inside information" is a crap one. DC already knows about what Marvel pays their creators, what it costs to print them, overhead, etc. But he could easily give a general percentage breakdown of that $3.99 cover price. For instance, 40 % goes to the LCS, 40% to Marvel, and 20% to Diamond. Then for Marvel's 40%, he could break it down into creative cost, overhead, and printing. Then he could say something like "creative costs have increase 10% over the last 5 years".
The argument that you can't go to less attractive printing unless everyone does is crap. The biggest factor in choosing which comic to buy is always price. If Marvel could offer their product at $3 in a less attractive package than DC does at $4, Marvel would still have higher sales. I gladly await the rise of the indy comics with digital distribution.
Marvel has no plan to attract new readers. A $4 comic is a huge barrier for a new reader, and in return that potential reader won't pick up the comic. You have to lower the price on titles you feel have "new reader potential".
The MAX line is a failure. it's time to put it down. It's not meant to be the equivalent of Vertigo, simply because Marvel isn't a comic company, but a licensing company now. I would love to see Marvel put more effort into their publishing line, and create a true creator owned line, but they aren't going to. They simply don't invest in the long term here.
That whole interview came off like one of the meetings we have at work where the fat cats justify their insane salaries while lower tiered workers are getting let go because we can't afford to keep them on.. although it takes over 50 of some of us to pay ONE of their salaries (plus bonus)
It's just greed. And yeah, bring on the Digital Longbox Indy books, I can't wait!