Comichaus - British Library Team Up Banner

Comichaus and British Library Team Up to preserve digital comics

Comichaus - British Library Team Up BannerCreators and publishers in the UK can now use the Comichaus database site to not only submit their digital comics to the Comichaus app – but with one click they can also send a copy to the British Library for preservation, to support the Legal Deposit of UK independent digital comics.

Legal Deposit is something anyone creating comics in the Uk should be aware of, requiring publishers to provide a copy of every work that they publish in the UK to the British Library. It has existed in English law since 1662, and, since 2013, has also applied to digital publications.

British Library Legal Deposit Poster by Olivia Hicks
British Library Legal Deposit Poster by Olivia Hicks

It’s incredibly important, as it means that the British Library’s collections reflect the diversity of experience and expression across the whole of the UK. That means comics, including independently published comics, are just as important and valued as other publications. The UK comic scene is diverse, energetic and influences other forms of writing and expression and it’s felt publications should be preserved, as part of the national collection, and available for readers and researchers now and in the future.

But, collecting independently published comics is a challenge. While the Library does receive comics from many independent creators, not all people who make and distribute their comics think of themselves as publishers, or that they should be submitting their work to the British Library, or know how to do this. Information about independently published comics is generally not available in the same way as for books with ISBNs, so it’s hard to know what is available to collect.

Over the past year, Comichaus has been working with the British Library to ensure that digital comics submitted to the Comichaus app can also be sent to the British Library (with the publisher’s consent) in fulfilment of Legal Deposit obligations. This helps the Library ensure that its collections reflect the diversity of UK independent comics, ensures that the comics will be preserved long-term, and means that they are available and discoverable in the Reading Rooms of the British Library and the five other UK Legal Deposit Libraries (the National Library of Scotland, National Library of Wales, Bodleian Library at Oxford University, Cambridge University Library and the Library of Trinity College Dublin).

“The Comichaus App is continuing to build, with more and more content from indie creators and publishers added each week. Readership is also increasing,” says a Comichaus spokesperson. “We feel there is a great collaborative feel to this whole project and the family is getting stronger each day.

“We believe the app is helping readers discover new comic books and we are committed to keep promoting the creators, publishers and books over the coming years.

With this in mind we are very proud to announce this team up with the British Library!”

For more information, visit this page on the Comichaus web site. or email info@comichaus.com

The Comichaus App is an app that is dedicated to indie comics. For a subscription fee of £3 a month (£30 a year) you can get access to stream and discover all the indie comics in our catalogue, save as many of the comic books offline as your device storage will allow; and search by title, creator, genre and publisher, discover more about creators.

Your subscription supports creators, too – 50 per cent of advert and subscription revenue will be split with creators based on how many times their books are read.

• The Comichaus App will work on Apple/iOS devices listed here, and Android/Amazon handsets and tablets running android version 4.4 and above. Find out more at www.comichaus.com

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John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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