Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Cyworld closes Korea operation

As documented in earlier posts, Cyworld was once South Korea's leading social media platform and was wildly popular with young people in this country.  It had over 30 million users at its peak popularity.  Earlier this month, as reported by The Korea Times, it suddenly closed down its operations in Korea, without advance notice to users or the  public.  As reported by the Korea Joongang Daily, Cyworld had already closed down its international arm in 2014 (click on the graphic for a full size version).  A major cause of Cyworld's demise was its failure to adapt to the mobile revolution.  That failure, in turn, may have been exacerbated by the two and one half year delay in allowing Apple's iPhone into the Korean market, a topic explored in this blog and my recent books (with Myung Oh).

Friday, September 27, 2019

Self-reported exposure to fake news in Korea and other countries

The Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at Oxford University has surveyed people in nearly 40 markets around the world on changing attitudes toward the news and news consumption patterns.  South Korea is one of those markets.  The graphic (click for a full size version) shows that 30 percent of Korean consumers report that they have been exposed to "completely made-up news in the past week."  This graphic is from the 2018 report.  The 2019 report contains.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Samsung's data centers

An article in The Korea Times a few days ago carried some interesting information about Samsung's foray into cloud computing and its network of data centers, in Korea and worldwide.  Admittedly I'm biased since Samsung has just unveiled a new data center in Chuncheon, where I lived for almost  two years (1971-72) while teaching English at Kangwon National University (as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer).  The graphic (click for full size version) shows the new data center.  This is not your 20th century, early 1970s Chuncheon!
The detail in the article is interesting and informative. "The company said during a media event held Friday that the new facility, which was completed in June, is a software-defined data center equipped with eco-friendly, high-tech facilities."  Also "Currently, the company operates about 210,000 virtual servers. The firm, which operates 15 data centers globally, was the only Korean company that entered the list of top 10 worldwide infrastructure managed services providers, selected by global research firm Gartner....The Chuncheon data center with a size of 39,780 square meters is the firm's fifth data center in Korea after those in Gwacheon, Gumi, Suwon and Sangam. . . .The firm, which operates 15 data centers globally, was the only Korean company that entered the list of top 10 worldwide infrastructure managed services providers, selected by global research firm Gartner."

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Greenpeace Korea gives Hyundai Motor billboard a new message

Activists from Greenpeace Korea put stickers on a Hyundai Motor billboard near company headquarters in Seoul.  As reported by The Korea Times, "Activists from Greenpeace Korea have allegedly damaged a Hyundai Motor billboard in a campaign against internal-combustion engines, with police saying Monday they were investigating them on suspicion of destruction of property.

"After receiving a report from Hyundai about the damage to its huge billboard on display near its headquarters, we are now looking into the case," an officer of the Seocho Police Station said.

According to the officer, the activists used a ladder truck to put stickers on the 40-meter-high billboard promoting the carmaker's Sonata, Sunday. They left the message "Now stop using internal-combustion engine cars."

The environmental organization said the campaign was part of a global protest calling for an immediate end to the production and use of cars running on internal-combustion engines that it refers to as the main culprits behind climate change."

Saturday, September 14, 2019

YouTube is Korea's leading Android App: Some implications

As reported by the Korea Joongang Daily, YouTube is by far the most frequently used Android app in South Korea.  A close reading of the article shows how this phenomenon relates to a theme often touched on in this blog, namely this nation's overly heavy dependence on the manufacture and export of hardware versus software and services (YouTube being a video content provision service).  See, for example, these posts.
A major theme of the Korea Joongang Daily article is that Korea's mobile service providers are unhappy with YouTube's popularity, believing that it does not pay enough for use of Korea's fast networks.  This line of reasoning tends to ignore the inherently global scope of the Internet and the fact that three quarters or more of the global ICT market is made up of software and services, NOT hardware.