Kind of ironic after that post about a Japanese idol coming over to Korea, recently there has been anti-Hallyu* sentiment in the form of staged protests. Fuji television is especially targeted for its support of Korean dramas and entertainers on its channel.
The protestors highlighted in the article seemed quite harsh and their words unrefined, but I can understand their frustration. With the support Korean entertainment gets, even more from its own government, it can seem like the onslaught of cultural exportation is a systematized spread of cultural imperialism, though that’s more evident in flows to Southeast Asian countries.
At the same time, there is an obvious market for Korean entertainment goods. If there were no consumers in Japan or other Asian countries, Korean products wouldn’t have had a chance to get a foot in the door.
If people are really concerned about the high amount of cultural imports, maybe they can lobby for limits, like the ones that exist in Korea (half-joking). The screen quota in Korea has been credited as helping the local film market grow and flourish.
*Hallyu translates to “Korean Wave” and is thought to have been a term coined by Chinese media in the 1990s, referring to the popularity and spread of Korean pop culture in Asia.
A comment by cze under the Soompi article sheds some more light on the issue:
“Japanese people are angry not becuase they hate Korea and Korean culure,but because some TV networks, especially Fuji, have tried to fabricate what is callled Hanryu boom, even before people came to like it, by bombarding them with floods of Korean things, although Japanese programs and songs are still strictly banned on Korean TV(except on cable channels). What is more infuriating, the TV stations do so just because Korean content is extremely cheap, and also because they can get money through Dentsu(Japan’s largest ad agency from the Korean government, despite being public media companies granted the broadcasing license by the government. So this protest is not against Korea or Korean culture per se. Korean people should protest their government wasting their tax money for Japanese TV networks.”
Articles from various sources here. It is interesting that most of the sources are from English-language Korean press.
K-pop drives hallyu craze: survey
English speakers favor Super Junior, French and Spanish are Big Bang fans
By Kim Yoon-mi (firstname.lastname@example.org), 2011-06-13 18:31
Korean pop, or K-pop, is driving the Korean Wave abroad and Asian women in their 20s make up the majority of overseas hallyu fans, a survey found on Monday.
The Korea Tourism Organization conducted the online hallyu survey on 12,085 non-Korean visitors from 102 countries to its website (www.visitkorea.or.kr) from May 11 to May 31, to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the website. The survey asked seven questions related to the Korean Wave in eight languages ― English, Japanese, traditional Chinese, simplified Chinese, German, French, Spanish and Russian ― on the site, via e-mail and on social networking services such as Twitter and Facebook.
Asked to select a category of hallyu that interests them, 55 percent of respondents, 6,447 people, picked K-pop. This was followed by TV drama with 33 percent, film with 6 percent and others with 7 percent. Others included TV variety shows such as KBS’ “2 Days & 1 Night,” Korean food, shopping and cosmetics.
Out of the 12,085 respondents, 9,253 were from Asia, 2,158 from Europe, 502 from the Americas, 112 from Africa and 60 from Oceania.
By age group, 49 percent of the respondents were in their twenties, followed by those in their thirties at 18 percent, teenagers at 17 percent and those in their forties at 8 percent.
By gender, 90 percent or 10,826 respondents were female.
Asked which hallyu celebrity they wish to travel with in Korea among 30 stars or groups recommended by the KTO, the highest proportion of 13 percent chose the 13-member boyband Super Junior. Five-member band Big Bang came second with 9 percent, followed by JYJ with 7 percent, TVXQ with 5 percent and Girls’ Generation with 4 percent.
The interest in hallyu celebrity differed from language to language. English speakers favored Super Junior, while French and Spanish users preferred Big Bang. German speakers favored actress Kim Tae-hee and Japanese, actor Bae Yong-joon.
Japanese users showed more interest in TV drama than in K-pop and more than 50 percent of Japanese respondents were women in their 40s and 50s. Japanese in their 20s and 30s showed the strongest interest in K-pop.
Among the French speaking respondents, K-pop fans were mostly teenagers or in their 20s, and preferred going to amusement parks or karaoke to experiencing Korea’s traditional culture and history, the KTO said.
Foreign respondents overseas picked Seoul and Jeju Island as the travel destination in Korea that they would like to visit with their hallyu star.
Source: Korea Herald online