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Webtoon’s vice president of content David Lee shares how creators can monetize their comics

'This industry would not exist without creators.'


Grace Stanley

Internet Culture

Posted on Jul 28, 2022   Updated on Jul 26, 2023, 6:02 pm CDT


This story was originally published on Passionfruit.

We’re sitting down with leaders on the business side of the creator economy to get their best advice for creators looking to launch and develop their careers. This week, we spoke with David Lee, vice president of content at Webtoon. 

Webtoon is a comics platform based in South Korea where the “webtoon” digital comic style first arose in the 2000s. Since its founding, the platform has gone global, and it currently touts a creator monetization program for those located in the United States.

We spoke with Lee about Webtoon’s ad-revenue sharing program, stipends for creators, publishing deals, upcoming tipping system, and more. 

For those of you unfamiliar with webtoons, they are scrollable, vertical strip comics which originated in South Korea during the 1990s and 2000s. In these early days, webtoons were mostly known domestically, but the comic style grew to international popularity in the 2010s.

In 2004, South Korean media conglomerate Naver launched an in-house webtoons publishing company known as Naver Webtoon. The company, after gaining attention internationally, decided to go global in 2014 with the launch of an English-language webtoons publication platform, formerly known as Line Webtoon. They have since expanded into various other languages including Chinese, Thai, Indonesian, Spanish, French, Japanese, and German. 

The English-language service has since been rebranded to be simply known as Webtoon. The platform currently hosts drama, romance, action, fantasy, sci-fi, thriller, and comedy webtoon series made by creators, and offers translation services to expand its reach to multiple countries. 

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*First Published: Jul 28, 2022, 8:00 am CDT