Saturday, February 09, 2008

[The Chosun Ilbo, January 17 2008] Newspaper Man Cleared 47 Years After Execution

A court on Wednesday exonerated a newspaper chief who was executed during the early 1960s on charges of siding with the North Korean regime. The Seoul Central Court cleared Cho Yong-soo, the head of the Minjok Ilbo, who was arrested by the military junta led by Gen. Park Chung-hee, later to become president, and accused of violating the special crime law in 1961.

The bench said the special crime law applied to key officials of political parties and social organizations. But the Minjok Ilbo was a profit-making organization, not a non-profit social body. Nor was there any evidence that he had sided with the communist state.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 17 2008] Samsung Corp. Partners with U.S. Fuel Cell Maker

Samsung Corp. said Wednesday that it has signed a series of strategic cooperation agreements with a leading U.S. hydrogen fuel cell manufacturer to enter the market for hydrogen fuel cells for power plants.

The agreements give Samsung exclusive rights to distribute and sell HydroGen Corp.'s phosphoric acid fuel cell power plants in Korea, China, the Middle East, India and Australia.

The American company holds core technologies for increasing the capacity of fuel cell power plants up to 30 megawatts. This is done by connecting 2-megawatt power plants and recycling hydrogen, a byproduct of chemical plants, for use as the power source.

Samsung Corp. plans to use HydroGen's technologies to supply heat and electricity from fuel cell power plants to Korean chemical plants or energy providers and expand its business into the hydrogen fuel cell market.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 17 2008] Protecting the Good Name of Korea's Global Brands

Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Japan's largest electric home appliance maker, last Thursday decided to abandon the name Matsushita, the name it has used since its founding 90 years ago, and replace it with its export brand name Panasonic. As a result, the company name and its export brand name will be the same. According to Japan's NHK news service, one of the reasons the company decided to change its name is because its brand power is weaker than Samsung's.


Our global brands, such as Samsung, Hyundai Motor, LG, SK, and POSCO, are like the public face of Korea, representative of the 50-year history of Korea's economic growth. Wherever you go around the world, your heart will burn with patriotism when you find Korean brands or their signboards. You can feel as if your heart is too full for words when you see signboards for Hyundai Motor or Samsung Anycall mobile phones on the streets of Europe -- just as you feel proud when you hear of the victories of PGA champion Choi Kyung-ju or gold-medalist swimmer Park Tae-hwan.


Corporate brands are not just names of corporations or their products. They are organisms that can communicate with consumers. It is difficult to build brands well, but it is very easy to destroy them. We are worried about what TV viewers around the world will think when they see the logo of Samsung, a main sponsor of the Beijing Olympic Games in August.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 17 2008] Swan Song for the Propaganda Office

Eight years and eight months after it was established, the Government Information Agency has come to the end of the road. The GIA has faced severe criticism for taking the lead in the Roh Moo-hyun administration's draconian press policies. The presidential Transition Committee on Wednesday said the GIA “has given priority to imposing regulations on, and interfering with, media companies, who are its consumers, and other government agencies."

Since none of the parliamentary parties, not even the ruling United New Democratic Party, oppose the plan, the GIA will be closed once the committee's government reorganization blueprint is approved by the National Assembly.


The GIA began drafting the press control policy after Roh in January last year accused journalists of “colluding” with each other in the press rooms to report stories a certain way. In May, the GIA released the so-called "advanced media support system", which permits reporters to enter government buildings only after they declared which government officials they wanted to meet, and to gather information only through press relations officers. The GIA turned a deaf ear to criticism from even the otherwise friendly UNDP and all presidential candidates, as well as the press and the International Press Institute. It closed the press rooms at 11 government agencies, including the office of the prime minister, the Foreign Ministry and the National Police Agency in October.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 17 2008] Korea's 1st Astronaut to Mix Korean Soil in Space

Korea's first astronaut will bring soil from each side of the divided Korean peninsula on his journey into space. Ko San made the remarks in a televised news conference with Reuters on Tuesday.

"We still think this is one country. So I'm going to bring the soil of North and South (Korea). I'm going to mix them up in space," he said.

The 31-year-old scientist will leave Earth in April aboard a Russian Soyuz rocket and spend 10 days conducting experiments at the International Space Station.

"Our government has long-term plans for the space program," Ko said in the news conference. "We don't know if we can send another astronaut or not, but we will continue our experiments. We have plans for moon exploration. I and (backup Yi So-yeon) are going to work in that field after this."

The Ministry of Science and Technology said Wednesday that Ko will use equipment developed by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) in his experiments at the International Space Station.

Japan and Korea will sign a declaration agreeing to cooperate in space exploration in Seoul on Thursday. Korea will use JAXA's portable device for measuring space radiation and an HDTV camera for Ko's space experiments.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 17 2008] Korea to Invest W316 Bil. in Space Research

The government plans to inject as much as W316 billion (US$1=W937) this year to spur the development of the nation's fledgling space industry.

Space scientists in Korea are brimming with anticipation as 2008 will usher in a number of ambitious projects in domestic space exploration.

Among them, Korea will send its first-ever astronauts on a space mission, open the doors to a new space center and launch several new satellites into orbit.

Funding for Korea's space program is part of efforts to bring the space industry to a new level as Seoul seeks to end its reliance on other countries and keep pace with global advancements.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 17 2008] Koreans Take Building Applications Online

The unprecedented development of the Internet and growth of electronic commerce are now prompting people to go online to take care of building plans. The automation of the building control system reportedly allows for a faster approval procedure.

Fewer visits, less paper, and just a click away: this is the gist of the latest invention by tech-savvy Koreans that provides a single-window online solution to the usual delays that plague the building approval process.

It's called the electronic Architecture Information System or e-AIS for short. It's a four-year work-in-progress that Seoul's Construction and Transportation Ministry flipped the switch on late last year.

Already some 80 percent of regional governments in Korea use the web-based system that allows for blueprints and other building plans to be reviewed with a few clicks online.

Friday, February 08, 2008

[The Chosun Ilbo, January 16 2008] Samsung Defeats Motorola to Rank No. 2 Phone Maker

Samsung Electronics believes it has edged out Motorola to become the world's second-largest mobile phone maker.

Korea's largest electronics maker said Tuesday that it sold 161.1 million handsets last year, a 42 percent increase from 2006. Motorola is estimated to have sold 160.9 million handsets in the same period.

If it confirmed, it will be the first time that Samsung has taken second place in annual handset sales in the global market.

The company's share of the global market increased 3 percentage points from 11.4 percent in 2006 to 14.4 percent in 2007. Sales increased seven percent from the previous year to W18.37 trillion while operating profit jumped 22 percent to W2.12 trillion.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 16 2008] Credit Card Limits to be Strengthened

People carrying credit cards such as Shinhan, Samsung, and Hyundai Card will see their spending limits cut starting February.

The Financial Supervisory Commission says it will revise regulations on credit card companies, giving them a chance to maintain the same minimum reserve levels as bank-affiliated cards.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 16 2008] Korean Digital TV Technology on Par with Japan's

Recent findings say Korea has leveled the playing field with Japan when it comes to making TV screens and mobile devices.

An analysis by the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy found Korean LCD and plasma-screen technology to be equal to that of Japan.

This compares favorably with 2006 when Korea's screen technology was evaluated as only 90 percent as good as Japan's.

Korean-made DVD players, handheld video players and mobile phones were also found to be as top-notch as Japan's.

However, research results show Japan still outshines Korean in electronic parts, medical devices and robots.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 15 2008] TV Boom Pushes LG.Philips LCD to Sales Record

LG.Philips LCD achieved record sales and operating profit in the fourth quarter of last year.

The Korean display maker said at an investor relations seminar on Monday that it racked up W4.322 trillion (US$1=W938) in sales and W869 billion in operating profit based on a consolidated financial statement for the October-December period.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 14 2008] TV Presenter Kang Su-jung to Wed

The TV presenter Kang Su-jung will marry a Hong Kong-based fund manager in March, her agent said Sunday.

According to DY Entertainment, the bridegroom is a Korean-American and a Harvard graduate with a master degree in business administration. Identified as Kim, he works as a fund manager for a Hong Kong financial firm. The wedding will be held in Hong Kong, where the groom and his family live.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 14 2008] Portals Facing Tighter Control Under New Gov't

Korea's Internet portals will no longer be allowed to change the headlines of articles presented by newspapers.

The Presidential Transition Committee said Sunday that the Ministry of Information and Communication submitted a report on strengthening regulations on Internet portals that included the ban on the grounds that changing headlines is a violation of copyright laws.

The ministry also said in the report that it will discuss with relevant agencies measures to hold portals as well as media companies accountable for incorrect articles. It also raised the need to regulate the manipulation of search rankings on portals.

A Transition Committee official said, "The incoming administration will tightly regulate the manipulation of search rankings on portals because it can result in the manipulation of public opinion, causing serious havoc with national policy-making decisions."
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 14 2008] Korean Drama to Debut in Europe

It looks like a popular Korean TV series will be airing for the first time in a European country.

Beginning in mid-February, Hungary's government-run station MTV will begin airing "Daejanggeum", a 2003 TV series based on the first female royal physician of the Chosun Dynasty.

The series will air two times a week for six months for a total of 70 episodes.

A representative of MTV Hungary said "Daejangguem", also known as "Jewel in the Palace" in English, was chosen for its cultural and educational values and also for its marketability.

A Korean ambassador said airing the series on a national public station will be instrumental in introducing Korea's popular culture to Hungary and the rest of Europe.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 14 2008] Forbes Picks K-Pop As Globe-Sweeping Trend

K-Pop or Korean popular music has made Forbes' latest list of 20 trends sweeping the globe.

On its Internet edition the American business magazine has come up with 20 pop culture trends that are making headlines around the world.

It introduces how Korean pop music has made waves across Asia for years now and how there's also a change in the music scene.

The article notes Korean indie bands are finally catching a break, while hip-hoppers are toying with Latin fusion for original sounds.

The magazine also doesn't forget to mention K-pop star and actor Rain who will make his Hollywood debut this year with a role in "Speed Racer" directed by the Wachowski brothers, the creators of "The Matrix".
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 11 2008] Electronic Arts to Open Games Studio in Korea

Electronic Arts, the world's leading video game company, will establish an online game development base in Korea. The company said Thursday that it plans to set up a development studio within the year and create three or four new online games.

Famous for hit series such as "FIFA Soccer" and "The Sims", the company's sales stand at US$3.7 billion.

EA aims to secure talented Korean game developers to lay the foundation for a future advance into the Asian market. Senior producer Danny Isaac will head the new studio.

"The size of the studio hasn't been decided yet," a company source said. "First we plan to recruit dozens of workers to develop the 'NBA Street' and 'Battle Field' online games, but if we have more applicants than expected we may increase the size of the studio and develop another game.”
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 11 2008] Windows Vista, One Bad Year Later

A year since the release of Windows Vista, Microsoft is cringing at the poor sales of the new operating system. It was initially touted as a landmark new development to reinvigorate the IT industry, prompting expectations of wide-ranging “Vista effects.” Instead, Apple’s new operating system, which now also works on PCs, is stealing the thunder. Microsoft has hurriedly responded by developing a new version of the old XP.

◆ Windows Vista flops
◆ Microsoft in Agony
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 11 2008] New TV Services Alter Movie Releasing Schedule

Thanks to new technologies, the television is emerging as a sort of second-run movie theater in Korea.

Hanaro Telecom has started showing recently-released films such as "May 18" and "The Happy Life" through a video-on-demand service on Hana TV, the company's Internet TV service. New movies including "Sex Zero 2" and "Lust, Caution" will be available on Hana TV within the month.

Some of these movies are still playing in theaters while others only closed a month or two ago. The Internet TV service has reduced the time between theatrical distribution and distribution through other media by as much as a year.

Until now, movies were first released in theaters and then made available on DVD or videotape three to six months later. Then it took another six to 12 months before they were aired by terrestrial broadcasters.

Internet TV has started to change that schedule by allowing viewers to watch recent releases at home even before they become available in video or DVD shops.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 11 2008] SNU Sells Nano-Particle Technology for Record Price

A university has earned a record-high price for the sale of a technology to a private company. Seoul National University said Thursday that it will transfer a technology for mass-producing uniform nano-particles to Hanwha Chemical Corporation for W4.3 billion (US$1=W938).

The process was developed by Prof. Hyeon Taeg-hwan of the SNU's School of Chemical Engineering and Institute of Chemical Processes

The university's Industry Foundation said that the sale is the highest ever between a college and a company. Last year all of Korea's universities together earned around W10 billion from selling technologies.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 11 2008] Heated Competition Lies Ahead with IPTV Services

Competition for TV audiences is expected to get more intense this year. The National Assembly passed a law late last December that paves the way for real-time Internet Protocol Television broadcasting services.

Analysts say real-time IPTV could be put to commercial use within the first half of this year, pitting cable operators and telecommunications companies squarely against each other.

Telecoms are using IPTV which also offers video-on-demand and online shopping services to get in on digital TV action.

Cable operators are bracing for the coming competition by bundling TV, high-speed Internet and Internet phone-calling services into single packages.

Meanwhile top mobile carrier SK Telecom has an acquisition pending for Internet service provider Hanaro Telecom to give the companies an extra edge.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 10 2008] Rare Pictures of Korean Pavilion at 1900 World Expo Surface

A Paris-based collector has unearthed rare photos of the Korean pavilion at the World Expo in the French capital in 1900. Oh Young-kyo found the pictures which were published in Paul Gers’ book “1900.”

The photos are of the outside of the Korean pavilion, a steel dragon sculpture, musical instruments, weapons and clothing. They also include images of King Kojong’s envoy Min Yeong-chan and Lee Bum-jin, Korea’s diplomatic representative in Russia, Austria and France, who later killed himself in 1910 in protest against Japan’s annexation of Korea. The French sponsor and architect of the Korean pavilion, Le Conte Mimerel and Eugene Ferret, are also seen.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 10 2008] FTC Sets Internet Shopping Mall Standards

The Fair Trade Commission has come up with a set of guidelines to smooth one's visit to Internet shopping malls.

In a bid to give online shoppers the ability to make better choices, the antitrust watchdog chose 31 products to test out the new policy of providing more information on merchandise.

Under the new measure, clothes shoppers, for example, will know the material maker and method of cleaning their online purchase. The same goes for electronics which will be presented with the date they were produced as well as the cost of getting repairs.

The FTC hopes to reduce complaints about Internet shopping, which have been on the rise over the last two years. Monthly online shopping transactions topped US$148.8 million for the first time in November last year.
[The Chosun Ilbo, January 10 2008] Gwangju Nurtures Animation Industry

When it comes to boosting their region's economies, local governments are thinking out of the box. Korea's southwestern city of Gwangju is nurturing the lucrative business of computer animation.

An animation blockbuster creates added-value business as characters become the ideas for arcade and handheld games, a TV cartoon series, stuffed animals and more.

Seeing the potential, the city of Gwangju has been funding the computer-generated imagery industry since 2006. The result is the mega-hit animation "Adventures of Hong Gil-dong" which landed on TV screens this week.

To make the 26 half-hour episodes of Korea's very own Robin Hood story, the producers sought US$4.5 million from the town of Jangseong in South Jeolla Province. Nearby Gwangju city took part by investing in the high-tech studio needed to make the film.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

[The Hankyoreh, January 29 2008] LG Electronics starts selling 'Viewty Phone' in China

LG Electronics Inc., South Korea's second-largest electronics maker, said Tuesday that it started selling one of its hit mobile phone models, the "Viewty Phone," in China as part of efforts to expand its presence in the world's largest market with high-end products.

The Viewty Phone is one of the company's latest mobile phone models, unveiled in October last year by the world's fifth-largest manufacturer of handsets to target deep-pocketed customers in Europe.

Priced at around 740,000 won (US$787), the phone is equipped with a 5-megapixel camera that provides semiprofessional-level digital camera features. It currently sells in 14 European countries including Britain, Germany, Italy and Spain.


Late last year, LG Electronics started selling its "Prada" and "Touch Navigation" models there. It aims to raise the ratio of high-priced cell phones, whose prices exceed 2,000 yuan ($285), to a half of all handsets sold in China this year.
[The Hankyoreh, January 29 2008] Samsung stays top global LCD seller in 2007

Samsung Electronics Co., South Korea's largest electronics maker, retained its global leading position in terms of sales of liquid crystal display (LCD) panels in 2007, an industry report showed Tuesday.

According to the report compiled by DisplaySearch, Samsung Electronics sold a total of US$18.59 billion worth of LCD panels last year. Its hometown display maker, LG.Philips LCD Co. came next by posting $15.59 billion in sales.

The two South Korea-based companies saw their combined sales exceed the total revenue reported by five leading Taiwanese rivals including AUO, CMO and CPT, which sold around $32.94 billion during the same period, the report showed.
[The Hankyoreh, January 25 2008] Samsung and Hynix to collaborate on memory chip

Chipmakers’ hope to maintain dominant position over Japan

Samsung Electronics and Hynix Semiconductor will cooperate to develop a next-generation memory device.

The Ministry of Industry, Commerce & Energy on January 24 announced that Samsung and Hynix have agreed to collaborate on developing the basic technology for a next-generation memory device. The two chipmakers will invest 9 billion won (US$9.5 billion) over the next two years on a project to develop a terabit and spin transfer torque MRAM (STT-MRAM) nonvolatile memory chip.

The world’s top two chipmakers have apparently decided to collaborate as a way to maintain their dominant position over Japan, which has invested 3 billion yen (KRW 26.5 billion, US$27.9 million) to develop its own next-generation semiconductor.
[The Hankyoreh, January 25 2008] Task force will explore restoring shuttered press rooms

Lee Myung-bak’s transition team, journalists and media reps discuss press freedom

At a press conference on January 24, President-elect Lee Myung-bak’s transition team, journalists and representatives of media organizations agreed to form a task force to work on restoring press rooms that were shut down over the summer under a new media policy instituted by President Roh Moo-hyun.

Lee Kyung-sook, the transition team chairwoman, asked those attending the press conference to speak frankly about the outgoing administration’s media policies.

Korea Press Editors’ Association Chairman Byun Yong-sik said that he wanted to discuss the idea of restoring the press rooms and resolving the restrictions on reporters’ activities. He said, “Those who suppress the freedom of the press should know from past experience that they will pay a price for it.” He also said that the Press Arbitration Law was being used to harass members of the press.


Press conference participants shared the view that the freedom of speech and the people’s right to know should be guaranteed and agreed to organize a task force to discuss the matter in detail.
[The Hankyoreh, January 22 2008] Daum, Microsoft team up for Internet TV mart

Daum Communications Corp., South Korea's second-largest portal operator, said Tuesday that it has teamed up with global software giant Microsoft Corp. and local set-top box maker Celrun Co. to enter the local Internet TV market.

Under the three-way cooperation deal, Daum said it will provide contents and other know-how in operating the overall service, while Microsoft will offer its own internet-protocol TV (IPTV) solutions and focus on overseas marketing. Celrun will provide the necessary equipment for customers to use the Internet TV. Internet TV is fast emerging as a significant alternative to the traditional way of watching TV programs, by allowing viewers to choose and view TV contents interactively via a broadband Internet connection. Currently available services mostly consist of video-on-demand (VOD). Recently, a bill passed the National Assembly, allowing for a complete version of Internet-protocol TV (IPTV), under which customers will be able to watch not just VODs but also real-time contents including sports, dramas and news. Daum plans to launch the Internet TV service, excluding real-time broadcasting, in the second quarter of this year at the earliest, it said in a press release.
[The Hankyoreh, January 18 2008] Same concept, different word

When current President Roh Moo-hyun’s people wanted to put the Broadcasting Commission under the Office of the President, they were accused of attempting to hurt the independence of the media.

Now, incoming President-elect Lee Myung-bak, a man surrounded by some of those who participated in the criticism, want to put the National Human Rights Commission and a new Broadcasting and Communications Commission under the Office of the President.

When someone else tries to do what you want to do, it’s “hurting media independence.” When you get to do what you want, it’s about being “efficient.”

Lee’s presidential transition team says putting these two commissions directly under the control of the president would make them more efficient.
[The Hankyoreh, January 18 2008] Immigrant group hopes translated comic books and films can ease transition to Korean life

Materials translated into four languages will be distributed to immigrant organizations nationwide

A group of immigrants from a number of South Asian nations will distribute four South Korean comic books and movies, after having translated them into their mother tongues. The project was initiated as a way to help future immigrants adapt to life in South Korea, but faced a number of obstacles following a crackdown on migrant workers that took place last year.

On January 17, Cultural Action, a liberal civic group which is actively engaged in affirmative action and cultural reforms, announced that eight to nine immigrants from various South Asian nations had completed the translation of four South Korean comic books and films into Tagalog, Vietnamese, Chinese and English. The four works are: the comic book “Lini’s Grand Operation to Cook Her Own Food”; the movie “A Walk”; and two animated films, “I Need Father” and “A Walk on a Rainy Day.”


However, the project has been on shaky ground almost since its inception. Hundreds of undocumented migrant workers, including those who had expressed a desire to participate in the project, were scattered during a government crackdown on illegal immigrants between August and December.

The project was ultimately completed by those immigrants who had married South Korean citizens, and thereby had legal permission to stay in the country.
[The Hankyoreh, January 18 2008] [Editorial] Keep human rights and the media free from presidential control

The presidential transition team says it wants to make the National Human Rights Commission an organization directly under the Office of the President. The dumbfounding idea ignores the very reason for the commission in the first place. The transition team also wants to create a new broadcasting and communications commission and have that also be directly under the president. It announced the larger direction of things, but when it comes to how it will put this new commission together, and how it will operate the two commissions, it has said nothing. We would hope that the idea did not originate from a desire to firm up government control of broadcasting.

“The National Human Rights Commission and the (existing) Broadcasting Commission do not exist anywhere within the legislative, judicial and executive branches,” the transition team said. “ This violates the constitutional principle of checks and balances.” It truly defies good sense to say something like that, especially about the Human Rights Commission. Is the transition team really ignorant of the fact that it is a body that exists to keep government authority in check? The need to have governmental human rights institutions be independent from other organs of the state in order to function properly was noted in the 1993 Principles relating to the Status of National Institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights, otherwise known as the Paris Principles, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly.
[The Hankyoreh, January 17 2008] [Editorial] The historic acquittal of Jo Yong-su

Yesterday, a court ruled that the late Jo Yong-su, president of the newspaper Minjok Ilbo, was not guilty of the crimes for which he was executed by the military government of Park Chung-hee shortly after its coup d’etat in 1961. While this judgment does not bring Jo back to life, we truly hope to see it be of at least some consolation to Jo’s family and those who were affected by the case, all who have lived in much pain in the decades since.

The court’s decision confirms that the actions of the military government were indeed a “judicial murder.” The dictatorship saw that, from its inception, the Minjok Ilbo’s editorial position called for peaceful reunification while also calling for South Korea to declare its neutrality, which would imply a break in its alliance with the United States. As this perspective was becoming immensely popular, the regime closed down the paper and framed Jo as someone engaged in activities on behalf of Pyongyang. For Park Chung-hee, who justified his military coup as a sacred action taken to save the country, which as he saw it was facing a menacing threat from the North, the existence of the progressive newspaper could not be tolerated. Legal principles were disregarded and a special law had to be put together in order to apply it against him retroactively.
[The Hankyoreh, January 16 2008] Newspaper publisher acquitted 47 years after his execution for "helping North Korea"

A young newspaper publisher who was executed in the early 1960s for collaborating with North Korea was acquitted Wednesday in an emotional trial that cleared one of the most wrenching legacies of the country's decades of authoritarian rule.

Jo Yong-su, the founder of the Minjok Ilbo meaning People's Newspaper, was executed at the age of 32 after being convicted by a military court of setting up the newspaper with North Korea's financial support and being a member of pro-Pyongyang underground organizations.

"The defendant is innocent," Judge Kim Yong-seok of the Seoul Central District Court said, as his family members and friends applauded and wept. There's no evidence that he participated in such pro-North Korean parties, the judge said.


He established the Minjok Ilbo in February in 1961, just months before Park Chung-hee, then an army general, overthrew the government in a May 16 coup. His independent newspaper sold well, with stories criticizing the authoritarian regime, divulging officials' corruption and promoting peaceful reunification with North Korea in a sharp contrast to the established papers which aligned with the Park regime.

Jo was arrested shortly after the May 16 coup, along with his senior staffers. The junta's court sentenced him to death in August, and an appeals court upheld the ruling in October. He was executed in December. His colleagues served jail terms

LG:llä kovat kännykkätavoitteet Euroopassa / Mobiili / Digitoday#comments#comments

LG:llä kovat kännykkätavoitteet Euroopassa / Mobiili / Digitoday 6.2. klo 15:12
LG:llä on rajut odotukset älypuhelimiensa myynnistä Euroopassa. Kuvassa LG Viewty.
6.2. klo 15:12 Eteläkorealainen matkapuhelinvalmistaja LG Electronics aikoo kasvattaa tänä vuonna Euroopan myyntiä 38 prosenttia."

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

[The Hankyoreh, January 14 2008] [Editorial] Manipulating the media

It has been revealed that the presidential transition team directed civil servants at the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, which is responsible for overseeing the publishing of books and periodicals, to report to it about big names in the news media. Reportedly it also told ministry officials to look into advertisers who have influence over given media companies. This is an incident that simply should not have happened in a democratic society, an incident that was an open display of an intention to control the media. The transition team later explained that it took place because of the individual and unauthorized actions of one team member, with the surname Park, while he was at the ministry office. It has issued an official apology, called Park back from the ministry, and destroyed the documentation that was produced on its request. However, there are more than a few aspects of this that are suspicious enough to make it difficult to just move on and accept the transition team’s explanation.


In its move to do away with the “newspaper law” and in other things as well, Lee’s new administration is showing signs of regressing to years past. Lee and the GNP need to spend some time in deep thought. History has taught us that when state authority rejects the free criticism and watchfulness of the media and tries to manipulate it instead, it is the powers that be who lose in the end.
[The Hankyoreh, January 14 2008] Transition team member’s attempt to gather information on the media uncovered

Culture Ministry was ordered to compile list of personal and ideological information on members of the media

President-elect Lee Myung-bak’s transition team is under fire as one of its members was found to have ordered a government ministry to compile a list of executives of daily news outlets detailing their personal information and ideological leanings.

The transition team member, known only by his surname, Park, reportedly sent an email on Wednesday to the Culture Ministry asking that it gather a variety of information on media executives and send a report on their findings to the transition team. The following day, the ministry was found to have sent an official letter to the Korea Press Foundation. In it, the ministry requested the compilation of a list of personal information and other data on presidents, chief editors, and the staff of the political and cultural desks of nearly all news media companies. The ministry’s letter also ordered that information on the directors of organizations related to the media, executives of organizations under the Culture Ministry, executives of broadcasting firms and advertisers be compiled. The information required consisted of eight categories, including name, place of birth, academic background, career and ideological leaning, sources said.

AsiaMedia :: KOREA: YouTube's Korean site makes little impact

AsiaMedia :: KOREA: YouTube's Korean site makes little impact: "The tepid response to YouTube's Korean site further shows how foreign web services struggle to compete against local Korean sites
The Korea Times
Sunday, February 3, 2008

AsiaMedia :: KOREA: Herald Media chairman resigns

AsiaMedia :: KOREA: Herald Media chairman resigns: "Herald Media seeks to separate ownership and management, as well as management and editorial direction

The Korea Herald
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
By Lee Joo-hee

Herald Media, the publisher of The Korea Herald and The Herald Business, yesterday announced a major management overhaul, aimed at further enhancing the efficiency and transparency of its operations.
The company said its largest shareholder, Hong Jung-wook, is resigning as chairman, chief executive officer and publisher.

A new CEO and a new publisher will be named soon, as the company seeks to operate on the basis of separation between ownership and management, as well as between management and editorial responsibility.

'With a split between ownership and management, and a fully independent editorial responsibility, Herald Media has cemented a foothold to develop a step further into becoming an advanced media group,' Hong said in a statement."