Extra! Korea

November 18, 2009

“Short Losers” controversy causes Misuda production team to resign & retail boom

Filed under: rapid cultural change, television — extrakorea @ 2:45 pm

You may have heard about the “Short Losers” controversy, in which a guest on Misuda/Chat with Beauties said that men under 180 cm (about 5’11”) are “losers.” The young woman, Lee Do-kyoung, a student at Hongik University, immediately found herself in a lot of hot water. She tried to defend herself by claiming that the show is scripted, and that she was merely doing what was asked of her.
The show, and even its TV station, also were the targets of criticism, with one man suing KBS for causing him “emotional distress.” As a result, the entire production team of the show has resigned.
If you’re one of those who’ve suffered “emotional distress,” take heart in the fact that Hyun-ah, of the group 4Minute, likes losers. It would be so much better if she weren’t 17 and underage.
The controversy has been a boon to online retailers, who’ve received an unexpected but welcome windfall:

Interpark has set up an entirely new shopping category labeled, “escape being a loser!” The fresh line-up offers everything from height increasing shoe insoles to straight up men’s heels.

There is one condition prior to making the purchase: Shoppers can’t be taller than 180 centimeters, say Interpark officials.

[snip]

Another Internet shopping site, 11th Street, has also launched a special shopping section dubbed “don’t worry be happy” for shoppers who consider themselves “losers.” It sells a wide range of goods flattering for “vertically challenged” people at prices starting from 2,500 won.

[snip]

Sales of men’s shoes with inner heels climbed 20 percent over the past week, according to industry data, leaving some popular products out of stock.

Below are some of the designs that are finding their way onto tee-shirts:

Lastly, you can read this article about Korea’s recent preoccupation with height.
(Hat Tip to Kushibo)

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