Tuesday, January 08, 2008

[The Chosun Ilbo, December 26 2007] Was ‘UCC’ a Storm in a Teacup?

This may sound irrelevant, but in my office I sometimes listen to a regular lecture by Marti Hearst, an associate professor in the School of Information at the University of California at Berkeley on "Search Engines: Technology, Society, and Business." I can download his latest 1-hour-40-minute lecture files by connecting an iPod to my notebook. Strapped with earphones, I can feel as if I were in a lecture hall of UC Berkeley.


One of the keywords in Korean society this year was "UCC", short for “user-created content.” It was to be nothing short of a media revolution: ordinary people, so the idea was, would no longer be passive consumers of information but become active creators, making their own using camcorders or blogging. Early this year, all presidential hopefuls launched UCC teams in the firm conviction that the presidential election would be determined on the Internet.

It was not to be. Just as the BBK investment scandal, which was to be the “single stroke” felling Grand National Party candidate Lee Myung-bak, proved a damp squib, so the online efforts had no tangible impact on the campaign. One presidential candidate who had overwhelming support in the "blogosphere" ended up winning far fewer votes than expected.

Korean service providers are still racking their brains for ways to make ends meet, though they invested massively in anticipation of booming business during the presidential election campaign. Some people suspect it was just a passing fad in the IT industry and “UCC” a storm in a teacup.

No comments: