Tuesday, December 11, 2007

[The Chosun Ilbo, November 29 2007] Copycats Hollowing Out Korea’s Internet Industry

What took a full year to achieve in the past now takes only a month. In the IT era, the 1990s are a long time ago. A memory from that historic time is the rivalry among word processor software developers. Lee Chan-jin, dubbed the "Bill Gates of Korea", made a great success of his Hangul software, and other software makers followed suit to develop word processor software of their own. As a result, domestic and foreign word processor software makers such as Papyrus, Saimdang, AmiPro, Gulsarang, and Arirang -- companies whose names nobody now remembers -- competed fiercely with each other. A few years later, almost all of them were gone. Only Microsoft Word and Hangul managed to survive, and the word processor market ceased to exist.


Korea has already been overtaken by Japan and other countries in terms of the super-speed Internet infrastructure, which we once took credit for leading. Korean businesses are busy copying other people's ideas instead of developing innovative technologies of their own. It feels like a the death knell of the Korean Internet industry.

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