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YouTube Halts Uploads and Comments In Korea

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the self-determination-for-some-values-of-self dept.

Censorship 76

adeelarshad82 quotes AppScount.com with this disconcerting bit from what many people rank the world's best-connected country: "YouTube users in Korea are no longer able to upload new videos or comment on existing ones. The changes come in response to the country's recent Cyber Defamation Law. Enacted on April 1st, the law requires users of all sites with more than 100,000 uniques a day to provide real names and national ID numbers, in order to curb anonymous comments."

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'A series of tubes' (4, Informative)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568765)

It's pretty easy to circumvent the restriction. All korean users have to do to keep uploading and commenting is to go in their profile and change their country of origin to something different than Korea.

Re:'A series of tubes' (1)

superpaladin (1521599) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568787)

While that may be the case in the youtube implementantion (i don't know if it is), it's not hard for them to check ip addresses

Re:'A series of tubes' (1)

sleekware (1109351) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568831)

Still, an IP address check could be circumvented by using a proxy outside of the country.

Who would pay for such a proxy? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569069)

an IP address check could be circumvented by using a proxy outside of the country

True, but who would pay for such a proxy? YouTube could just block the popular open proxies using the same database that Wikipedia uses. Wikipedia tolerates proxies that require authentication [wikipedia.org] , but YouTube is designed around video, which uses a lot more bandwidth than Wikipedia's text.

Re:Who would pay for such a proxy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27569975)

Then use an unpopular open proxy. There is no way in hell that anyone can block all open proxies, there are just too many of them.

Re:Who would pay for such a proxy? (1)

Simetrical (1047518) | more than 5 years ago | (#27577733)

Then use an unpopular open proxy. There is no way in hell that anyone can block all open proxies, there are just too many of them.

Portscan.

Re:'A series of tubes' (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569987)

It certainly could, but it doesn't seem like YouTube wants to do that. They're doing the absolute minimum required as a result of S. Korea's asinine new law -- if users say they're not from S.K., then it's not YouTube's problem anymore.

I suppose the S.K. government could try to force YouTube to do IP-based geolocation on everyone regardless of what country they specify, but that would be a pretty major escalation; they'd basically be in the position of having to threaten Chinese-style censorship in order to get compliance. I'd hope that would backfire.

Still, the whole thing is unusually ballsy given that Google usually seems to have little problem handing over user data to any government who comes knocking.

Re:'A series of tubes' (2, Informative)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568833)

FTA: "If users in South Korea switch their location to anywhere but Korea, however, uploading will once again be enabled. "

Re:'A series of tubes' (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569569)

It's pretty easy to circumvent the restriction. All korean users have to do to keep uploading and commenting is to go in their profile and change their country of origin to something different than Korea.

On the other hand, then I think Google has some protection there, in the form "but you can't expect us to look up users on the assumption they are Koreans if they haven't told us so".

Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27568767)

Now without all that inane commenting, they can concentrate on important things - like nuclear war.

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27568869)

It doesn't look like the nuclear discussions were any less childish [bbc.co.uk] than comments on Youtube.

Re:Well (1)

sepelester (794828) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568911)

That would be North Korea. Since they don't even have phones to reach outside of their country, they don't really have to worry about youtube. They do have intercontinental rockets and nukes, but that's probably just for show.

Real reason for N. Korean ICBMs (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569083)

They don't trust their birds [rfc-editor.org] .

If only... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27569169)

Well they could do the whole nuclear war thing....

If North Korea could make a working atomic bomb

and

If North Korea could make a working missle

It's like a slice from "Goofus and Gallant".

So, lemme understand that... (2, Informative)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568843)

As soon as there could be a danger that someone could actually hear (or, gasp, listen to!) what you have to say, i.e. when there's something akin to an audience, you have to provide identification, so it's easier to ... to what, exactly? To track you down and send you behind bars for talking about a serious problem (aka "lying according to the powers that be") [slashdot.org] ?

I recommend a look at TOR [torproject.org] . That way you're from Russia, China, the Netherlands, Australia, the US... all at once. Often enough while visiting one single page.

How do you think I get around another one of YouTube's favorites: "this video is not available in your country"? Fine. Since I can't change your policy, I change the country I come from. Today I feel very Russian.

Re:So, lemme understand that... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27568913)

The real sad part is that this seems bad to us, but if you scratch the surface you would probably find that there are many in the US and other nations that would publicly condemn this action, but would really want to see it in their own country. Remember the article about "Anonymous" recently?

Re:So, lemme understand that... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27568985)

You must be a terrorist. Hold on, I'll send Homeland Security your way. Thank you for participating in our Keep American Safe program, citizen. The Death Vehi... err Transportation Vehicle is en route to your location, please stand by for further orders, citizen.

Re:So, lemme understand that... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27570023)

You must be a terrorist. Hold on, I'll send Homeland Security your way. Thank you for participating in our Keep American Safe program, citizen. The Death Vehi... err Transportation Vehicle is en route to your location, please stand by for further orders, citizen.

Fellow traveler, one's use of deprecated terminology indicates that one has failed to attend the mandatory bi-weekly Voluntary Political Harmony Vocabulary Building exercises for quite some time. Fear not for soon a Synchronization Chariot will arrive bearing Compliance Facilitators to assist one in bringing one's vocabulary into alignment to ensure that The Perfect Harmony of Goodful Oneliness is maintained.

Re:So, lemme understand that... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27569377)

I recommend a look at TOR. That way you're from Russia, China, the Netherlands, Australia, the US... all at once. Often enough while visiting one single page.

While TOR is very handy, it doesn't change the exit node that often. IIRC it's around every 10 minutes or so.

Google's response is what surprises me (4, Interesting)

freedom_india (780002) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568909)

Google's response to such limitations was to cease uploading altogether. "We have a bias in favor of freedom of expression and are committed to openness," YouTube Asia spokeswoman Lucinda Barlow, told Yahoo. "It's very important that if users want to be anonymous that they have that chance."

It's surprising that Google ejects South Korea while continuing to hand over its user information to Brazil [cnet.com] and India [nartv.org] and kowtowing to Chinese for Censorship [theregister.co.uk] .
Very odd.

Re:Google's response is what surprises me (2, Insightful)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569249)

Maybe was it the first time they were confronted with a regression in free speech in a country where they operate...

Re:Google's response is what surprises me (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569271)

In pursuit of their commitment to Openness, they are simply opening their user records.

Re:Google's response is what surprises me (1)

freedom_india (780002) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569369)

The comment is fun, but the questions it raises are not.
Somehow Google has amassed more information about more people in a period of time that is the quickest in the world.
I bet even Gestapo did not have such detailed maps, photos, addresses and names of people it monitored.
So much is owned by so Big a company with so little oversight...

Re:Google's response is what surprises me (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569709)

Somehow Google has amassed more information about more people in a period of time that is the quickest in the world.

The "somehow" is not a surprise. All along people have been willing to trade their personal information for convenience. At the same time, I don't send my secret plans to rule the world through my gmail (woops, I guess it's not a secret any more! snicker, snort.) and if I did I would encrypt them.

The simple truth is that all this information is already out there. Google is trying to give all the information to everyone. Sure, they want to rule the world. You just have to hope that they're more benevolent than the other guys trying to do the same. I mean, I wouldn't mind ruling the world and I think I'd be less of a dick than some... but I don't particularly think I'd be that good at it. Google, on the other hand... :)

Re:Google's response is what surprises me (1)

freedom_india (780002) | more than 5 years ago | (#27587871)

You just have to hope that they're more benevolent than the other guys trying to do the same

Benevolent Dictator?
Adolf Hitler was also benevolent: to his Aryan race. He was the most benevolent leader the Germans ever had (from 1933-1941)
Hell they loved him very much.
But to get the real picture you have to ask Jews and Poles and Slavs.
Google may not be Hitler, or it may be. Remains to be seen.

Re:Google's response is what surprises me (2, Interesting)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569479)

In reality, adding the ability to register (and verify) accounts based on the citizen ID number is probably just too much effort for Google. Many Korean websites are having a difficult time complying with the new law.

From S. Korea

Epic Fail (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27570263)

> It's surprising that Google ejects South Korea while continuing to hand over its user information to Brazil and India and kowtowing to Chinese for Censorship .

The only thing worse would be to say this while cursing.

When someone does something good, it's idiotic to say "they're still doing bad in X Y and Z" because it doesn't provide an incentive for them to change behavior. They should be rewarded for the good behavior and it should give them gooey feelings, good press coverage, and maybe even help their bottom line--even if they're still doing stuff that's wrong. Sure, maybe you mention the stuff at the bottom of an article--but the thrust of the message should be "this is a positive thing" rather than "you're an evil evil person/group who did one goodish thing."

Positive reinforcement. Not "if you do something good we'll blast you for everything else you're doing that we don't agree with."

Re:Google's response is what surprises me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571935)

Here they have a legal and practical way of protecting privacy.

Brazil and India: Google was legally obligated to turn over info, so they did.

China: censorship != privacy, and as a minor search engine in that market, Google is in no position to force policy changes.

Not sure what you're confused about...

Re:Google's response is what surprises me (1)

acid06 (917409) | more than 5 years ago | (#27578993)

I pretty sure they complied to the court orders here in Brazil because, otherwise, the Brazilian directors/managers would actually go on trial for "obstruction of justice" or maybe even something like "facilitating child pornography". Those are *criminal* charges, not civil ones.

I pretty sure you would comply too.

Disappointed with S. Korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27568917)

...maybe N. Korea will attach soon and set them free.

Of course! (2, Funny)

Exitar (809068) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568925)

We all know that the Evil North Korean Communists are against freedom of speech!
What? South Korea? Oh, never mind...

South Korea (5, Informative)

benjamindees (441808) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568961)

This is South Korea. The democracy. The US client state. Requiring citizen ID numbers and outlawing anonymous free speech.

Not North Korea. The communist dictatorship.

Make no mistake. Since the article makes a point to keep saying "Korea", a significant portion of US readers will conflate the two.

The two Republics of Korea (4, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569109)

Neither country's official name has the word "North" or "South". "South" Korea is officially the Republic of Korea (ROK), while "North" Korea is officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

Re:The two Republics of Korea (1)

Zumbs (1241138) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570963)

True, but most people say "China", not "Peoples Republic of China"; or "Germany", not "Federal Republic of Germany". In the real world, the names used by the press and known by the general public are North and South Korea, so it is a bit misleading to just write "Korea".

Re:The two Republics of Korea (1)

alexo (9335) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571575)

Neither country's official name has the word "North" or "South". "South" Korea is officially the Republic of Korea (ROK), while "North" Korea is officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

Neither is "America" the official name of the USA.

"America" is the A in USA (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571753)

Neither is "America" the official name of the USA.

But "America" is the A in USA: "United States of America". "North" is part of "State of North Carolina" and "State of North Dakota", but not "Democratic People's Republic of Korea".

Re:"America" is the A in USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27574085)

So, which country does "Korea" refer to? And what is your fucking point?

Re:"America" is the A in USA (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27574801)

So, which country does "Korea" refer to?

I read "Made in Korea" and think South Korea. I hear "Korea" and think South Korea except where the context makes North clear.

Re:"America" is the A in USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27575577)

Yeah, of course you've never seen anything made in North Korea because of trade embargoes.

So if I say "Korea starts up a nuclear reactor" or "Korea develops a missile" or "Korea violates the rights of it's citizens", you think of South Korea?

Virginia. West Virginia. Korea. North Korea. (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27579945)

Yeah, of course you've never seen anything made in North Korea because of trade embargoes.

And whose fault are those, other than Kim Jong Mentally-il?

So if I say "Korea starts up a nuclear reactor" or "Korea develops a missile" or "Korea violates the rights of it's citizens", you think of South Korea?

The Korea that has chosen to cooperate with other nations is ROK, so it's the first Korea to come to my mind. If I hear about "Korea" doing something that sounds to me uncharacteristic of ROK, I go check the source to see if it's actually ROK or really North Korea, which in turn shapes my perception of both Koreas. Another way to think about it is sort of like Virginia: "Virginia" by itself means Virginia, not West Virginia.

possible reaction? (1)

Joe the Lesser (533425) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569419)

In democracies there is often a case where the minority gets a law passed because the majority is not paying attention, and then the law is reversed eventually.

Policies like this may be part of that...once the average man is inconvenienced he suddenly becomes a politician.

Re:South Korea (1)

HungSoLow (809760) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569537)

Yep, first thing I thought of when I read the article was "big deal... nothing new coming from the North Koreans..."

Nothing new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571505)

This is not anything new at all in Korea. All the Korean websites I know of require Korean ID to create an account. It is the law.

Helps keep the hermit society as an outsider it is nearly impossible to get a login for the sites as you don't have the Korean ID.

Re:South Korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571757)

And after free expression is destroyed, then they can finally get around to fulfilling their need for more pylons and ending any feeling of worthlessness by hardening with fire. At least that's what I got from skimming the vids on YouTube.

Re:South Korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27572007)

This is South Korea. The democracy. The US client state. Requiring citizen ID numbers and outlawing anonymous free speech.

Many other nations have different standards of free speech. For all the bitching & whining about Bush/Cheney/Hilter/Haliburton/HopenChange, the US remains one of the freest countries on the planet.

Make no mistake. Since the article makes a point to keep saying "Korea", a significant portion of US readers will conflate the two.

I doubt it. North Korea barely has electricity & food. The general population does not have high-speed internet access to youtube.

Re:South Korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27574517)

Make no mistake. Since the article makes a point to keep saying "Korea", a significant portion of US readers will conflate the two.

I doubt it. North Korea barely has electricity & food. The general population does not have high-speed internet access to youtube.

You misunderestimate Americans.

Provide real names? (1)

melikamp (631205) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568991)

[...] to provide real names and national ID numbers, in order to curb anonymous comments.

Can someone please explain just how does this prevent me from registering with a fake name/number combination? OK, suppose websites check the name against the number. How does this prevent me from using my next door neighbor's credentials? Or that other guy's I know? Or, if I work in the government and have access to the said database (if it exists), then why shouldn't I use a random name every time? Are they expecting records not ever to leak? I find the whole situation baffling.

Re:Provide real names? (2, Informative)

ihavnoid (749312) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569483)

Yes, you can lie and submit a fake name/number combination. How they implement the verification system is their problem. Some never check at all, many others just check the hash value (the national ID number has its last digit generated from a simple hash function), others check against other databases suchas ones from credit rating agencies, and ask for a photocopy of their ID card if it doesn't exist on the database. Sadly, records occasionally leak due to incompetent server admins, rouge employees, and even careless people posting their ID publicly on the net. There actually has been some class action lawsuits regarding ID leaks, and several prosecutions related to databasae leaks.

The only thing that prevents you from using a fake or somebody else's name/number is that doing so is a criminal offense.

I think that the national ID number must be abolished or make it practically useless other than as a hash number, since it is so easy to obtain someone else's ID number and abuse it.

(ps : I am a South Korean.)

Re:Provide real names? (1)

SBacks (1286786) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571869)

Is it just me, or does this "national ID number" sounds just like a social security number?

Re:Provide real names? (1)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#27579113)

How they implement the verification system is their problem. Some never check at all, many others just check the hash value (the national ID number has its last digit generated from a simple hash function)...

Is it just me, or does this "national ID number" sounds just like a social security number?

It's just you... SSNs don't have a check digit [wikipedia.org] .

Yes, yes, I know, that's not what you meant... but actually, they're not very similar at all. The US Government does NOT want everyone in creation using your SSN as an ID number. They'd rather you didn't use it to log onto every website or to look up your driver license. According to the Electronic Privacy Information Center [epic.org] :

The Social Security Administration recommends that you should ask the following questions before releasing the SSN:
- Why your number is needed;
- How your number will be used;
- What happens if you refuse; and
- What law requires you to give your number.

For my part, I always put "decline to state" or DTS in the SSN field unless I see a clear need for the number, such as when filling out paperwork for a new job. My doctor's office does NOT need my SSN, and doesn't have it, for example.

Re:Provide real names? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27581415)

A number of differences:

Korean "national ID number" itself exposes a huge amount of private information. For example, the number may look like:

750425-1408357

"750425" is the man's birthdate (1975 April 25) in plain digits.

And how do I know it's a man? Because the seventh digit is 1! (For woman, it's 2.)

The next 408 is the unique ID of whatever town office your parents registered your birth. They are grouped by larger areas just like long-distance phone numbers, so 4 means central South Korea (Chungcheong) area. A little obscure, but it really comes handy if you are an employer and wants to secretly discriminate job seekers based on their birthplace.

The next 35 is whatever number the aformentioned town office assigned to you. As you see, they can have only 100 different numbers, so WE ACTUALLY HAVE A COLLISION. I once heard some 50 thousand Koreans have duplicate identification numbers. Imagine what your life would like, if one of your "ID number twin" is a convicted criminal!

Finally, the last number is a hash to validate the whole sequence. The hash algorithm is naive, stupid, and straightforward (and well-known), but I heard writing that information is illegal, so I won't take the risk. Sorry.

And you want to know the best part?

These numbers are used EVERYWHERE! You visit some obscure garment shopping-mall, they say "To place order, please type in your name, ID number, address, and cell phone number." And they actually check it against 3rd-party DB service so I can't use fake ID. At least I should use some real guy's ID number. And where is any guarantee that they won't store the number and use it for malicious purpose? NONE.

Quite unlike American SSN. During my 5-year stay in America (to study Computer Science), I think I had to write my SSN down for, err, a dozen times or so. In Korea, it will be more like five hundred times.

Trust me, it is awful.

Re:Provide real names? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27580759)

Did you provide your national ID# when you submitted this post?

Don't be surprised by the knock on your door in a few minutes, citizen.

Re:Provide real names? (1)

dokebi (624663) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570567)

South Korean websites have demanded national ID numbers for many years, to "prevent fraud" and to "verify age" (The numbers include your date of birth). And to "curb abuse", misrepresentation or misuse of the numbers is punishable by hefty jail terms. I guess this became law at some point.

Consequently, their world-class internet infrastructure is safe, but extremely insular. Foreigners, even if they speak Korean can't sign up for Korean sites because they lack ID numbers. And you can't simply pick random numbers either, as it has a built in check-sum algorithm. And don't get me started on their dependence on IE. .

Now, all this has historical context that goes back hundreds of years (i.e. the hermit kingdom). It's surprising to me how much things don't change even in the internet age.

Re:Provide real names? (2, Interesting)

dargaud (518470) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571457)

Why don't website in korean hosted out of the country spring up all over the place to provide the much needed anonymity ? After all there are a lot of korean speakers in the US who could stand to make a buck or two providing this service. Why don't they ?

Re:Provide real names? (1)

YourExcellency (1532329) | more than 5 years ago | (#27573931)

Korean language websites hosted overseas solely for the purpose of circumventing government censorship have already sprung up years ago, specializing in the areas related to the, well you guessed right, pornography.

The powers that be in (south) Korea are adopting measures similar to those employed by the Chinese gov't in blocking Falun Gung related internet traffic to block access to the aforementioned hardcore porn sites. I hear that some Koreans are even using the "ultrasurf", the very same tool that was created to evade Falun Gung crackdown in China, to connect to the sites.

The real horror is the not so unlikely possibility in the near future that Koreans might have to resort to the "ultrasurf" to connect to overseas hosted Korean language websites just to exercise their right of free speech of making fun of asinine gov't policies.

South Korea is certainly going to be a superpower in the IT landscape at least in the area of...

censoring "sensitive" traffic in real time.

Re:Provide real names? (1)

Shihar (153932) | more than 5 years ago | (#27584613)

Jumping over a border doesn't magically make you immune from your home nations laws. For instance, if a US citizen zips over to Thailand to have sex with 12 year old girls, when he gets back to the US they can be arrested like the event happened in the US. You can violate a US law even when you are not in the US.

I would assume that the same is happening in South Korea. You can host where you like, but so long as you are a Korean citizen or live in Korea, they get to claim that their laws apply to you, and seeing as how the authorities have the guns, you really are in no position to argue.

The best you can do is obscure your own involvement. Having the server in Canada certainly makes it easier to break the law as the server is probably safe from search, but if they have other evidence that you are the owner, I imagine they can still bust you.

Re:Provide real names? (1)

dargaud (518470) | more than 5 years ago | (#27586103)

If this was applied extensively, you'd get arrested for having watched porn or drank beer some day or other as soon as you set foot in Saudi Arabia...

Re:Provide real names? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571561)

Someone needs to make a keygen then ;-D

i know its a strange question (1)

nimbius (983462) | more than 5 years ago | (#27568997)

but i always wonder how they do these geographically isolated site changes...
if its geoip it depends greatly on the database, but then again im certain the government
would be more than willing to hand over a listing of subnets theyd like to see restricted to youtube.

governments certainly make running a massive media service like youtube ludicrously difficult for admins.
i cant imagine keeping a cluster strictly for china, and another strictly for korea, while my global cluster
cant have any access to either and vice versa.

dont misconstrue the comment to mean i endorse the censorship, im quite against it. I am however in awe
of youtube and google engineers when it comes to bending to the social will of governments who insist crazy things like, say, 100% logging
of everything however camp X-Ray must be censored out of any maps.

Re:i know its a strange question (1)

Simetrical (1047518) | more than 5 years ago | (#27577831)

but i always wonder how they do these geographically isolated site changes...

In this case, they don't. They key off what country you say you're from in your profile. If you sign up with a South Korean IP but say you're American, you're fine. If you sign up with an American IP and say you're South Korean, you won't be able to post.

Re:i know its a strange question (1)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#27579273)

dont misconstrue the comment to mean i endorse the censorship, im quite against it. I am however in awe
of youtube and google engineers when it comes to bending to the social will of governments who insist crazy things like, say, 100% logging
of everything however camp X-Ray must be censored out of any maps.

I think that's the point; S. Korea has put in this requirement on ALL websites, and Youtube has said "Sorry, can't do that; see ya!" and blocked all users who identify as being from S. Korea.

Re:i know its a strange question (1)

hellop2 (1271166) | more than 5 years ago | (#27581407)

Ack! Learn punctuation. I can't do anything but overlook your post.

protectionism? (1)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569029)

Most of such cases might be related to the economic protectionism measures under the pretense of the attack on free speech, rather than real attack on free speech.

Your child will hate you if you take his toys away (1)

MikeOtl67of (1503531) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569033)

What is happening to the Korean today is what happens to people working for Corporations when they suddenly are banned from checking their personal email, facebook, etc. They can stop for a while the dissent, but the level of bitterness increases gradually until a real crisis will happen.

korea does not exist, its N/S korea (2)

wjh31 (1372867) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569117)

in this case South korea, simply stating 'korea' is ambiguous, clarifying north/south really doenst take a moment

Re:korea does not exist, its N/S korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27569255)

Neither South Korea nor North Korea really exist. They're The Republic of Korea and The Democratic Peoples' Republic of Korea, respectively.

Re:korea does not exist, its N/S korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571065)

Just like The Republic of Carolina and The Democratic People's Republic of Carolina.

Re:korea does not exist, its N/S korea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571267)

I lived in Korea (I'll let you figure out which one) for a year, and no one over there refers to it as "South Korea". They either say "Republic of Korea" or just "Korea".

Even westerners who live there for awhile and come back to the US will almost always refer to it as "Korea". I know I do. Yes, I get the occasional question: "South...right?" or "Which Korea, North or South". But most of the time people have the smarts to figure it out.

Koreans themselves almost have this concept in their head that they are still one country. They consider themselves to be one people divided, really, which is where this probably stems from. They continually think that they are getting closer and closer to unification, when anyone from an objective outside perspective will tell you that it would be horrible for the ROK do to so, especially from an economic standpoint. It would be akin to having your dirt poor crackhead brother move in with you to clean up his life.

Breaking News! (1)

InsertWittyNameHere (1438813) | more than 5 years ago | (#27569177)

Princes all over Nigeria express wide support for the new law introduced by Korean legislature.

South/North (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27569425)

IMO, this is a much bigger deal coming from South Korea, a democracy, rather than North Korea. Shouldn't that be made a little more clear in the summary?

Hope this reduces the racist flamewars. (1)

ashitaka (27544) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570735)

Read the comments section on any video on a topic to do with the conflicts in East Asia during WWII.

The distrust, discrimination and downright hatred instilled in Koreans, Chinese and Japanese for each other laid bare for all the world to see.

Re:Hope this reduces the racist flamewars. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571235)

Nobody forces anyone to read it.

Re:Hope this reduces the racist flamewars. (1)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 5 years ago | (#27582841)

It's not really 'racism' per se. Virtually every ethnic group in Asia is insular and xenophobic, but the post-WWII attitudes aren't racist claptrap like 'black people commit all the crimes'. The Japanese really were the Nazis of Asia. They had forced labor camps that worked people to death by design, mass murders, rape and pillage, created ghettos in the territories they occupied, etc. Those were all very real things, and what's worse the Japanese have made an art out of pretending it didn't happen. At least the Germans appeared to feel sincere remorse for their crimes against humanity under their half of the Axis power structure. So yeah, if your grandparents were treated with unflinching, merciless brutality by a nation that won't even take responsibility for their actions, you'd probably hold a grudge too.

Obviously its South Korea (1)

prezkennedy.org (786501) | more than 5 years ago | (#27575651)

Do you folks think North Korea needs to enact a law for people exercising free speech? They'd just as easily be able to make them disappear with or without said law.

What is really hilarious in this kr.youtube fiasco (3, Informative)

YourExcellency (1532329) | more than 5 years ago | (#27577801)

You know what is really hilarious in this Youtube Korea fiasco?

I'd like to think of google's decision to ban uploads for the users with the location set to "Korea" as a sort of tongue-in-cheek rebellion against the Draconian "Real Name Act", for even a relatively-computer-illiterate Korean is able to bypass the ban by simply changing the location setting. I even get the feeling that google is actually actively encouraging the bypass "hack", with kind advertisements of the effect achieved by changing one's region setting.

Now, for ordinary Korean citizen youtubers, changing the location setting means just the one-time inconvenience of a few simple clicks in the preference panel and that's it. No harm done. Nothing to write home about.

When your youtube account officially represents government agencies, however, it becomes a whole lot different story. Your region setting now takes on a symbolic meaning, and you would think twice before fiddling with the region setting , which is there for the whole wide world to see , to upload some promotional video clips.

Imagine you're in the hypothetical year 2003, right before G. Bush is about to invade Iraq. In this alternate Earth, US enacted their own version of the "Real Name Act", forcing google to ban uploads from the users with the country setting of "US". The White House, eager to upload video clips emphasizing the threats the Iraqi-owned WMD -- still a vaporware even in this fantastic version of the alternate Universe -- will pose to the world, decides to change the country setting for the White House account to...

... "France" (Gasp) !

"Get Real!", you would say. Well, this is what will be "really" happening to the Korean version of the White House (so called the "Blue House") youtube account, sort of.

"Blue House" has been uploading weekly radio speech by the Korean President Lee, titled "Address to the Nation" to Youtube on the channel http://www.youtube.com/presidentmblee [youtube.com] . How was the blue house to handle the google decision? They couldn't just kill the "show", since they had officially pronounced that the Blue House would be "proudly" uploading the speeches to youtube long before they could anticipate this type of conundrum.

Last week, on the heels of the upload ban decision by google, there followed an announcement by the blue house spokesperson that the gov't will continue the uploading, only this time, the account owner's country content preference will be set to...

well, fortunately for them, one of the option was this :

"Worldwide".

Their explanation?
"The president's speeches are uploaded for the benefit of the worldwide audience".
Like anyone outside Korea would even care what Lee has to say ( Even the Koreans themselves mostly couldn't care less. Lee is largely a subject of taunt and ridicule amongst the Korean internet users.)

The excuse becomes lamer when we find out that the content of the speeches almost exclusively consist of government propaganda on the internal affairs of Korea. Even the title itself is "Address to the Nation", not to the "World".

I would classify this hilarious fiasco as a classic example of "Self-defeating Legislations".

Re:What is really hilarious in this kr.youtube fia (1)

hellop2 (1271166) | more than 5 years ago | (#27581683)

This was a very informative post. Obviously, YourExcellency has sinned so his default '1' score will prevent anyone from learning about the South Korean government's ironic location change.
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