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National Library to expand archives of web-based cartoons, novels

A view of National Library of Korea in Seocho-gu, Seoul (National Library of Korea)
A view of National Library of Korea in Seocho-gu, Seoul (National Library of Korea)
Web cartoons and web novels, rising as mainstream forms of Korean content, will join the official collection list of the National Library of Korea.

The National Library said Tuesday it has amended the related regulations for the first time in 11 years to expand the criteria of the “official types and forms of online data to be collected.”

According to Article 20-2 of the Libraries Act, the National Library of Korea collects and preserves online materials with high preservation value among online materials.

Currently, it has about 18 million online materials and collects about 1.5 million each year.

However, web-based pieces have been collected only if they had been published physically. This limitation has been removed in the recent revision, allowing for unpublished pieces. The revised list also includes music data used in such materials as lectures, interviews and audiobooks.

“This revision provides a basis for systematically collecting high-value online materials including web cartoons, web novels and sound sources that were originally omitted from the subject of preservation,” said Seo hye-ran, head of the National Library, adding that the change does not mean it would become mandatory for the authors to submit their online work to the library.

“Through this change, we expect more diverse materials to be collected and preserved in the National Library of Korea and to be passed down to future generations,” Seo added.

By Lee Jung-Youn (
Korea Herald Youtube