Korean Webtoon Manhwa

Korean Webtoon Manhwa (웹툰) is a type of online comic originating from Korea.  In the early days, the webtoon was originally digitalized and popular only within Korea, but today it has expanded to many parts of the world and is highly competitive with traditional publications.

Webtoon format

Korean Webtoon has three striking differences from traditional comics.  Firstly, each volume is published as a long strip instead of turning the page, compatible with vertical scrolling on phones and computers.  Second, most webtoon stories are colored instead of just black and white like printed stories.  Thirdly, some webtoon episodes also incorporate sound and animation.  In Korea, the policy for webtoon creators to be more open also makes manhwa 18+ series easier to reach readers than printed stories.

Payment model

Since it is an online product, webtoon has diversified payment models.  There is a limited set of episodes that are free and require payment for the rest, and others that only allow reading a certain number of episodes for free per day.

 Profit model

Earnings for webtoon authors will fluctuate depending on the ads displayed on the page and the number of readership.  Policies for contract author and freelance author are also different.


In 2003, the Korean portal Daum launched the DaumWebtoon service.  In 2004, NaverWebtoon of Naver Company was also born, and both posted webtoon stories for free.  According to Sara Mckensei (Bloomberg), comics account for 25% of all book sales in Korea, with 3 million people paying for it and 10 million people reading the webtoon for free.

In July 2014, Naver published 520 webtoon works and created a new comic line Manhwa Hentai, Daum also posted 434 manhwa hentai on their site.  Previously, foreign readers were only able to access the webtoon through unauthorized translations, but since the early 2010s, services such as TappyToon and Tapas began to publish official English translations, and publishers  versions like Lezhin or Toomics also develop their own translation.  Many series have had great success after being translated into English, even competing with Japanese hentai manga, such as Lookism, Untouchable, Yumi’s Cells, The Sound of Heart, Tales of the Unusual, The God of High.  School, Noblesse, Tower of God.

Previously, the category of readers was only All (suitable for all ages) and 18 (only allow people aged 18 and over).  From May 2019, a new age classification system was established, applying to 10 webtoon platforms, including Naver and Daum.  The system includes: All, 12 years old and over, 15 years old and over and 18/19 years old and above.

 Generation 0

The first webtoon series were traditional comics that were scanned and posted on the Internet with a one-page layout.

Generation one

Thanks to technological advances, the author is able to incorporate flash animation effects.

 The second generation

Thanks to the website’s preloading technology, the webtoon starts to be designed vertically with flexible vertical scrolling to switch the story frame, making webtoon reading smoother.

 Third generation

The explosion of mobile devices brought webtoon to the mobile application platform.  The developed sound effects and animations help highlight some details, increase interaction, create excitement and genuine emotions for readers.


In 2015, the webtoon market and related products were worth about 420 billion won ($ 368 million).

Webtoon has inspired many other fields, the line of blwebtoonalso known as boys love, has created a breakthrough and developed with a new revenue model of free webtoon coins including cinema and television.  Typical can be mentioned the movie “Tazza” (2006) by the author Huh Young-man.  The work has been periodically published by Sports Chosun, has more than 100 million views;  was later adapted into two movies (Tazza: The High Rollers, Tazza: The Hidden Card), and a TV series (Tazza (TV series)).  Huh’s Dong-a Ilbo edition also enjoyed great success with 540,000 copies in print.

Naver’s WEBTOON, launched in 2014, is currently Korea’s most popular webtoon platform with more than 6.2 million daily users and contributes to the Korean wave that spread around the world, and also has many works.  is made into a hit movie.

Discover the top 10+ websites you can read bl for free in 2020

1 – Webtoon Line

2 – Lezhin Comics

3 – Manytoon comics

4 – Boyslove.me

6 – Manhwa.info

7 – Manhwahentai.me

8 – Mangahentai.me

9 – Manycomic Entertainment

10 – Freecomiconline.me

11- Yaoi.mobi

12- Freewebtooncoins.com

13- Webtoon.uk

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