Dozens of online forums collected for the Finnish Web Archive

Date published

Online forums and message boards have long been significant venues for special-interest discussion and debate. They have also played an important role in the emergence of Finnish online culture. The National Library of Finland has now collected 55 Finnish online forums as a part of national cultural heritage.

Neonvärisiä palikoita ja neliöitä tummalla taustalla

The Finnish Web Archive maintained by the National Library offers resources from a comprehensive selection of Finnish message boards. A list of these forums can be found from the index of the Web Archive. The resources themselves can be accessed, in accordance with the Copyright Act, from legal deposit workstations at all legal deposit libraries across Finland, at the Library of Parliament and at the library of the National Audiovisual Institute.

In 2021 and 2022, members of the public and experts proposed the archiving of online forums and message boards due to be taken offline, such as Tiede and MuroBBS. The golden age of the message boards had clearly faded, and so, inspired by the proposals, the National Library decided to harvest the web extensively for content from popular forums on various topics. The forums selected ranged from those focused on specific hobbies such as gardening and console games to religious forums including Körttifoorumi and Pakanaverkko and general discussion forums.

The data collected are from public discussions, which means that content requiring login was excluded, as were users’ private messages.

Online resources have been collected since 2006 when the Copyright Act entitled the National Library to archive material from data networks. The act also defines how resources can be made available at legal deposit workstations. The Act on Collecting and Preserving Cultural Materials governing the archiving of Finnish publications has obliged the National Library to archive Finnish online resources since 2008.

The collection plan for online materials based on the above act elaborates on the scope of collecting online materials and on the related deposit practices. In addition, the plan accounts for research needs and other requirements associated with research and cultural-historical archiving. It furthermore ensures the equal treatment of online publishers. The plan is reviewed at least once every four years.

Further information about the collecting of resources is available from Information Specialist Sanna Haukkala ( and Head of Services Aija Vahtola (

Contact person

Legal Deposit Service
+358 (0)2941 44321 (arkisin/vardagar/weekdays 9-12)
National Library