Wednesday, August 20, 2008

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 23 2008] Daum's Hanmail Suffers Major Info Leak

A considerable amount of personal email information was leaked at Internet portal Daum's Hanmail e-mail service on Tuesday. Some 22 million people use Hanmail as least once a month.

Hanmail users say that when logging into their e-mail account for about an hour from 3 p.m. Tuesday another person's account appeared. When they logged off and logged in again or opened a new website, they were again connected to someone else's e-mail account. All 22 million Hanmail users may have been affected.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 23 2008] Portals Face Strengthened User ID, Libel Rules

Starting next year, Internet companies will be prohibited from compiling the personal information of their users. Also, Internet companies, including portals, must self-monitor the postings being made and distributed on their own websites and will be punished if they neglect to remove postings following the requests of victims citing libel and slander.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 22 2008] Internet Portals Must Be Accountable

The Fair Trade Commission said Sunday that around half of the 110 terms of agreement offered by the country’s six major Internet portals, including Daum and Naver, contained clauses that unilaterally limit or violate the rights of users. The unfair terms of agreement cited by the FTC were simply ludicrous.

They authorized portals to freely reproduce and distribute the postings put up by users, while leaving portals free of any responsibilities when it comes to possible copyright violations. Portals were allowed to transmit to their affiliated companies personal information of users without obtaining their consent, while allowing themselves to send advertisements to the mobile phones of users. They also freed themselves from any responsibility should the IDs and passwords of their users be leaked by accident or if users suffered losses or disadvantages involving cyber money or through changes or cancellations in service. What’s worse, they required users to file for compensation only at the Seoul Central District Court and within three months of incurring the damage
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 18 2008] MBC Should Tell the Truth About Mad Cow Disease

The Korea Communications Standards Commission on Wednesday ordered broadcaster MBC to apologize to viewers for distortions in the current affairs program “PD Diary” that sparked public fears about American beef when it aired on April 29 and May 13. The KOCSC said “PD Diary” had violated broadcasting standards on fairness and objectivity.
It pinpointed nine cases where “PD Diary” exaggerated the facts and confused viewers by editing material to deliberately misconstrue the facts and make vague information appear as if it were hard fact. It ruled that the areas of exaggeration and distortion which “PD Diary” had been passing off as simple oversights or mistakes in translation were deliberately planned.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 18 2008] MBC Digs In Over Order to Apologize for 'PD Diary'

MBC seems reluctant to comply fully with an order by the Korea Communications Standards Commission to apologize to viewers for distortions in the current affairs program “PD Diary” that stoked public fears about American beef imports. MBC in a statement on Thursday night’s “News Desk” said it “humbly accepts the decision by the KOCSC that we made mistranslations and other mistakes” in the two-part program “and that we did not immediately correct them.” But it added, “We regret that these mistakes misled people into thinking that the entire programs were biased and the controversy surrounding the programs is being spread in malicious reports in some newspapers.”
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 18 2008] Daum Suffers Declining Traffic, Gov't Scrutiny

Internet portal Daum is reeling these days. While it appeared to wield online public opinion on the anti-U.S. beef protests, recently it has seen fewer pageviews and the resignation of founder Lee Jae-woong and key executives. Moreover, the government is seeking to heighten Internet portals' social responsibilities while securities firms are dimming their formerly bright forecasts on the prospects of e-business.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 18 2008] Naver Hit By New Hacking Method

Hackers recently targeted Naver, Korea's largest Internet portal, in a never-before-seen kind of attack. Choi Whee-young, CEO of Naver's parent NHN, said in a meeting with reporters Thursday that Naver users recently had trouble accessing the portal's cafes because it had to temporarily block access after detecting new kinds of hacker attacks.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 18 2008] RFID Technology Applied to Beef Sold in Korea

The government announced its plans on Thursday to expand the usage of the radio frequency identification tag system to become one of the industry's top three countries by 2017.

The Ministry of Knowledge Economy says it will first apply the RFID system to keep track of state-owned items, facilities, and increase its use in postal services.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 17 2008] Most Koreans Want Tighter Internet Controls

Eight out of 10 Koreans believe a real-name based Internet system is necessary and are concerned with lawlessness online. The Korea Legislation Research Institute under the Prime Minister's office released results of a survey on Koreans' views of law and order conducted by Gallup Korea of 3,000 adults on the occasion of the 60th Constitution Day on Thursday. Some 80 percent accepted the need of real-name confirmation for online postings with 38.6 percent saying it was “highly necessary” and 41.2 percent “fairly necessary.” One-fifth of respondents were negative, with 4 percent saying “not at all necessary” and 16 percent “not very necessary.”

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 17 2008] Apple Looking to Launch iPhone in Korea

Apple seems to be preparing to launch its popular iPhone in Korea as it has posted a job opportunity notice on its website ( for a Korea iPhone account manager. The account manager would be a full-time employee, who, according to the job description on the site, would "manage the day to day issues of our chosen carrier, ensure healthy relationship and help develop the market."
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 17 2008] MBC Ordered to Apologize for Mad Cow Program

The Korea Communications Standards Commission has ordered MBC to apologize to viewers for distortions in the current affairs program “PD Diary” on the safety of American beef aired on April 29 and May 13. An apology to viewers is the most serious punishment the commission is empowered to mete out.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 17 2008] Rain Among Top Global Cell Phone Celebrities

Korean superstar Rain has been featured in U.S. business and financial news magazine Forbes once again. The singer and actor was featured earlier this week on as one of ten celebrities representing major cell phone brands from across the globe.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 16 2008] IPhone 3G Could Shake Up Global Mobile Industry

The latest version of the iPhone smartphone debuted on Friday to white-hot sales. Apple sold over one million iPhone 3Gs in just three days, dwarfing the response for the 2G iPhone which came out in June last year. Experts who were initially doubtful of Apple chief Steve Jobs' pledge to sell more than 10 million iPhones by year's end now believe the goal might be surpassed.

◆ New model turns up the heat

◆ A shift in the mobile industry?

◆ How will it affect Korea?
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 16 2008] Sexy Music Video Provokes Controversy

Singer Lee Hyo-lee is again at the center of controversy. Critics charge that the music video for the track "U-GO-Girl" from her third album plagiarizes Christina Aguilera's video for "Candyman." And some say the nurse that Lee portrays in the video is too provocative, with Netizens taking issue with the nurse costume's plunging neckline.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 15 2008] New Korean Chip Melds DRAM and Flash Memory

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology said Monday that a Korean research team led by Prof. Choi Yang-kyu of the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology has developed a next-generation fusion memory chip called United RAM (URAM) that incorporates the advantages of both flash memory and DRAM.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 15 2008] Online Advertisers Demand Industry Reforms

The online advertising market is growing explosively, to the tune of a 15.7 percent share of Korea's entire advertising market. But as the market grows, so too is the grumbling of Internet advertisers. A number of small-scale online business owners have established the Online Advertisers Association and are seeking to lodge a suit against major portals and ad agencies. They claim that online advertising effects are poor compared to the costs, citing severe damage from "click fraud" above all else.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 14 2008] Int’l Press Predicts Tensions on Korean Peninsula

The international press foresees more tension between the two Koreas after the death of Park Wang-ja, the South Korean tourist who was shot by North Korean soldiers near the North’s Mt. Kumgang resort.

Leading U.S. newspapers covered the incident in their international pages on Saturday. The Washington Post predicted the incident will make the situation on the Korean Peninsula more complicated in the short term.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 10 2008] Faces of Korea in the International Press

Foreign experts are warning that the mad cow controversy and candlelight protests will damage Korea’s international credibility. Standard&Poor’s Chief Economist David Wyss said the beef protests being led by anti-government factions have turned Korea’s image into a joke among foreign investors, while Simon Cooper, the CEO of HSBC Korea, said frequent candlelight protests could damage Korea’s international image.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 10 2008] Unconscionable Behavior by MBC

State prosecutors are intensifying their investigation into the people involved in the MBC program “PD Diary” as details emerge pointing to exaggerated and distorted reporting in the two-part series on U.S. beef and mad cow disease. The producers as well as key officials at the broadcaster in charge of planning, external affairs, news, public relations and other key departments sat down with a lawyer in four separate meetings between June 27 and July 1 to look for ways to deal with the situation. A report of the discussions during those meetings has now been made public.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 10 2008] Troubled by Chinese Hacking Claim

The claims of an unidentified Chinese hacker have alarmed Korea's Internet portals., a leading Korean portal run by SK Communications, is dismayed by a message left on a Chinese website. Claiming to be a hacker, the writer offered to sell the personal information of 12 million members for one million yuan (W100 million, US$1=W1,006). As if to prove the claims, the writer revealed the information of five or six Koreans.

SK Communications was thrown into panic. If the claims are true, it would be the largest leak ever of Koreans' personal information, even topping the leak in which data on 10.8 million members was hacked.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 9 2008] Mobile Phones as Vehicles for Art

Cell phones have recently been dressed up with works of art. The songs of global stars are used as ringtones and works by famous artists decorate the screen of cell phones.

LG Electronics is leading the trend using songs by the Real Group as ringtones for its 30 models. Users of LG cell phones enjoy songs by the Swedish a cappella group when they get a call, make a call, turn on or off the phone, or push the slide up or down.

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 23 2008] BOK to Put Dokdo on New 100,000 Won Bill

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 22 2008] Korea to Conduct Drills Around Dokdo

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 22 2008] Yomiuri Accuses Korea of ‘Illegally Occupying’ Dokdo

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 22 2008] N.Korea, Russia Denounce Japan's Claim to Dokdo

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 21 2008] Korea to Settle Dokdo

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 17 2008] For Each Provocation, a New Structure on Dokdo

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 17 2008] Korean Librarian Halts Library of Congress Move on Dokdo

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 16 2008] Dokdo Rumors Are Self-Defeating

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 16 2008] Another Antique Japanese Map Places Dokdo in Korea

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 16 2008] Japan Digs In Heels Over Dokdo Claim

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 16 2008] U.S. Library of Congress to File Dokdo Under 'Sea of Japan'

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 15 2008] Japanese Provocations Need a Considered Response

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 15 2008] Japanese Teaching Guidelines State Claim to Dokdo

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 15 2008] How Japan Is Keeping Its Claim to Dokdo Alive

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 14 2008] Japan to Announce Dokdo Decision Monday

[The Chosun Ilbo, July 9 2008] Korea-Japan Tension Mounts Over Dokdo
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 8 2008] When Broadcasters Curry Favor with Netizens

MBC TV’s "News Who" program showed an Internet page containing an article by a Netizen which claims that Korea’s three major conservative newspapers reported on the danger of mad cow disease during the Roh Moo-hyun administration, but reversed their tone since the inauguration of the new administration. The program had not verified the accuracy of its data.

"I was chuffed to see my article aired by 'News Who.' I'm posting it again so that those who haven't seen it can take a look at it,” the Netizen said in a message on portal Daum's Agora platform right after "News Who" aired the program, entitled "Cho-Joong-Dong vs. Netizens" on Saturday night. The article was his own compilation of news stories on mad cow disease in the Chosun, JoongAng and Dong-A dailies since the 1990s; it ignored columns from the time that stressed the need not to overstate the danger of BSE.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 7 2008] Chosun Ilbo Ends News Feed to Daum

The Chosun Ilbo has stopped providing news content to Internet portal Daum Communications ( as of Monday midnight. Daum has ignored illegal acts by netizens on its site, including threats, defamation and work disruption against companies that place ads in the Chosun and other major conservative dailies. The portal has also continuously violated news copyrights.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 4 2008] Portals Must be Held Responsible for Cyber Violence

The Seoul High Court on Wednesday ruled in favor of a man who sued four major Internet portals for failing to delete postings defaming his character. The defamation suit stemmed from a posting that claimed the man, identified only by his family name Kim, had caused his pregnant girlfriend to commit suicide in 2005 by demanding they break up. That posting spread across Internet portals, prompting thousands of comments to be posted every day attacking the man. Later, Kim's mobile phone number, photograph, alma mater and workplace were revealed on the Internet. Kim had to quit his job and move to a new neighborhood.

The court ruled in favor of Kim, saying that Internet portals took media articles defaming his character and placed them in prime locations on their web sites, while the search functions of the portals were used to defame him. The court ruled that Internet portals should decide whether the contents of a posting defames a person's character and should either delete or block access to those postings if they do, even if the person being targeted does not request that they be deleted.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 4 2008] Daum Cleans Up Message Boards

Internet portal Daum has begun cleaning up its online message boards following the Korea Communications Commission's decision that messages containing lists of advertisers in Korea's conservative newspapers, posted to encourage people to harass the advertisers and disrupt business, are illegal. The portal removed 58 such lists from its "Press Consumerism" cyber-cafe. Daum says a web administrator will delete identical posts from now on even without requests for removal.

In a statement on its Agora web forum Daum said, "Starting Monday, the IP addresses of posters in Agora will be partially disclosed, numerous posts from the same person will be prevented and we will work to improve the online communications culture." The partial disclosure of IP addresses -- which will look like "123.456.***.789" -- will not completely resolve concerns about online anonymity but will surely burden message writers to some degree. The policy will also help block systematic mass postings from certain computers. Other portals like Naver and Yahoo have already taken such measures.
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 3 2008] Portals Fined for Online Defamation

The Seoul High Court on Wednesday ordered Internet portals to pay W30 million (US$1=W1,042) in damages in a defamation suit brought by a man who said he became the subject of an online witch hunt. The court said web portals are media outlets and must delete online posts that can seriously damage a person’s reputation. It ordered Naver to pay W10 million, Daum W7 million, Cyworld W8 million and Yahoo W5 million to the man identified as Kim (32).

◆ Online witch hunt
◆ Portals are news media
[The Chosun Ilbo, July 3 2008] Shoppers Bemoan the Pirates of Cyberspace

Internet shopping malls have become a bastion of counterfeit designer goods, offering shoppers the ability to buy with a simple click everything from designer bags and clothes worth millions of won to famous-brand sporting goods, for prices 10 to 20 percent of the genuine article (US$1=W1,042). The counterfeit goods scene moved from offline to online a while ago, and the recent trend is that with increasing crackdowns on fake products in cyberspace, those items are secretly traded on portals' cyber-cafes or blogs instead of shopping malls.