Extra! Korea

February 17, 2010

Filipino community leaders collect signatures to save “Little Manila”

Filed under: expatriates, multicultural society, xenophobia — extrakorea @ 12:36 pm

Zen Kimchi has a post with snippets about the latest measures to attempt to save “Little Manila” (as well as Filipino cooking).

You might recall that the “Little Manila” market is being threatened with closure, and the Filipino ambassador is getting involved in the efforts to save it. In the latest development, community leaders are starting a drive to collect signatures.

The Jongno District Office had cited complaints from residents and storeowners regarding the cleanliness, orderliness and traffic in the area, as reasons why the market should be closed.

Look at this video below. To those of you who live in South Korea, does this look especially dirty or disorderly, especially when compared to other outdoor markets? I see far worse at the little plastic tables outside my local convenience stores.

The petition also highlighted the Filipino market’s contribution to multiculturalism in Korea. While the majority of market-goers are Filipinos, there are also a number of Koreans and foreigners who are visiting the market to sample Philippine food such as barbecued meat, stir-fried noodles, fried banana and rice cakes.

“Even Koreans, who have been to the Philippines, come here to buy pancit (stir-fried noodles) or balut (duck egg),” said another Filipino vendor, who did not want to be identified.

Several vendors interviewed by The Korea Times expressed their willingness to cooperate and make improvements, in order to prevent the market’s closure or transfer.

[ snip ]

“We’re aware that there are some complaints because there are really a lot of people in the street, especially when the mass ends around 3 p.m. But it’s only a once a week market, and we’re more than willing to cooperate with any changes they want us to make,” said Wilbert, a Filipino vendor who lives in Bucheon.

Many Filipino workers from different parts of Korea travel to Seoul on Sundays just to go to church and shop at the market. The Filipino EPS Workers Association (FEWA) is one of the organizations trying to gather signatures for the petition to save the market.

FEWA President Marcy Serdena said the market has become an important part of Filipinos’ way of life in Korea.

“We go here every Sunday, even if it is far, just to go to church, buy food and meet other Filipinos. … I think they should first try to make sure the market is orderly and impose discipline among the vendors. This can be resolved through discussions, and not immediate closure,” Serdena said.

I don’t think it’s too much to ask. The question is: Is the Filipino community going to be allowed to enjoy their culture to try to cope with homesickness and culture shock, or are they only good for doing dangerous labor in factories and being baby machines for unmarriageable Korean bachelors?

Under the Times’ article, I noticed this comment by “jsburgeson” (J. Scott Burgeson):

Mayor Oh Se-hoon, if you close down Little Manila, Seoul City will lose a big part of its soul. And if you do go ahead and close it, don’t you dare use the world “multiculturalism” in any more of your city slogans.

February 11, 2010

Ambassador hopes to avert the closure of “Little Manila”

Filed under: expatriates, multicultural society, xenophobia — extrakorea @ 3:35 pm

The Philippine Ambassador to Korea, Luis Cruz, hopes to avert the closure of “Little Manila”

“Our point is both ends should meet. … There can be discussions with vendors for alternative solutions and to address the issues the Jongno residents raised. Such issues like traffic and the garbage can be addressed. The vendors can make efforts to clean the area and create some order,” he told The Korea Times in a phone interview.

For instance, Cruz suggested that vendors be provided with store carts that can make the market look cleaner and more organized. Currently, vendors at “Little Manila” usually place their products in boxes or on the sidewalks, causing congestion for pedestrians.

Cruz said embassy officials will also meet with Jongno District officials to clarify the matter and discuss alternatives solutions to the problems raised by the residents.

He also said the Filipino community leaders should talk to the vendors to work out a system to make the market more orderly. There are currently 16 vendors, selling Philippine delicacies, canned goods, noodles and magazines, clustered in the area leading to the Hyehwa Catholic Church.

The Filipinos are certainly willing to meet half-way, but what about the Koreans who complained? Since they’re so worked up about a market that only exist for six hours, one day a week, something tells me that that they’re not very open-minded or tolerant. Then what?

Cruz emphasized that the market cannot be separated from the church, since it is a way of life for many Filipinos. “It’s a place where Filipinos gather to meet other Filipinos. It’s like social networking. It’s also about Philippine culture. If people go to the Philippines, they’ll see that outside the churches, there are markets and a lively fiesta atmosphere,” Cruz added.

Maybe it’s that “lively, fiesta atmosphere” that’s really the problem. Don’t those Filipinos know that in Korea, you’re supposed to be sullen and constantly worried about the future? Those Filipinos and their joie de vivre are interfering with Korea’s high suicide rate. In Korea, you’re supposed to deprive your children of sleep by sending them to umpteen hogwons* in an effort to keep up with the Kims. It’s Korean culture to jump off a roof and turn yourself into strawberry jam on the sidewalk if you get an A minus on a high school test. Those festive Filipinos must be taught Korean culture, and be forced to be as miserable as everyone else. Maybe closing down their market will make them nice and dour.

* private education institutes

February 10, 2010

“Little Manila”? Not in our backyard, say mean people concerned citizens

Filed under: expatriates, multicultural society, xenophobia — extrakorea @ 2:00 pm

Every Sunday in Hyehwa-dong, many Filipinos gather after church services to chat, eat, and buy things from their home country in an informal market. The Jongno District Office has told them to cease and desist because of intolerance from mean people complaints from passers-by and residents.

There are about 46,000 Filipinos in Korea, forming the fifth largest ethnic group, following Chinese, Americans, Vietnamese and Japanese.

[ snip ]

“The reasons they gave up us was one, they received complaints from neighbors and pedestrians in the area; two, there were concerns about cleanliness and order; three, they want to redevelop the sidewalk and include a waterfall wall in the area; and four, they want to transfer the market to a new multicultural market,” the priest told The Korea Times over the phone.

“It’s a Philippine way of life. We go to church, then go to the market to buy provisions and meet friends. It’s an expression of Philippine culture. The national government has a policy about supporting multiculturalism in Korea, but there seems to be a contradiction with the district office’s plans. The church and the market should go together and not be separated,” he said.

Outside the church, there are usually 16 vendors selling Philippine products and cooked food. Many Filipinos living not just in Seoul, but also from the provinces, flock to the market to buy products from their home country

Parantar noted the problems raised by the district office can be addressed by the vendors at the market.

“The problems that they raised can be resolved by talking to the vendors. They are willing to cooperate. If they are concerned about the cleanliness and orderliness in the area, they can address the problems. If they want to redevelop the area again, they can integrate the Philippine market according to their plans,” Parantar said.

So they want to trample all over a migrant minority group so they can build a fountain. And if they’re concerned about “cleanliness” how about telling Koreans not to throw trash onto the street?

The district office said they have received civil petitions from the neighborhood and they have to take some measures against the Philippine market.

“There were many complaints from the pedestrians and residents. There also is a possibility of accidents as Filipinos flock out of the church after mass into car lanes,” said Lee Jong-ju of the district’s construction management division.

“A possibility of accidents”? Ever seen Koreans jaywalking right into oncoming traffic? How about delivery guys driving motorscooters right on the sidewalk? If you haven’t, you must be living in a parallel universe South Korea.

The district suggested moving to the grounds of Dongsung High School, but the school refused to participate. Another idea was shifting it to an area in front of the Catholic University of Korea campus, however, it has failed to respond to the suggestion.

Filipinos? Not in our back yard. We don’t like Filipinos It’s not convenient for us.

He added that the district will try not to use physical force. “The best way would be to transfer them to a designated area, but otherwise we are going to crack down on the market from March,” he said.

They’ll force them into a “designated area”? Somebody thinks that Filipinos in Korea should be neither seen nor heard.

February 9, 2010

Constantly changing tourist slogans may be “confusing” and “costly”, Noeshi T. Sherlock Institute concludes

Filed under: expatriates — extrakorea @ 3:09 am

According to this article, it’s been discovered that constantly changing tourism slogans can be confusing (to the target, potential tourists) and costly (for the government). This come from exhaustive research by the Noeshi T. Sherlock Institute.

Some say that the new slogan is a far cry from the successful slogans that have represented tourism rivals in Asia, such as “Incredible India,””Uniquely Singapore” and “Malaysia, Truly Asia.”

These campaigns have been lauded for capturing and defining the essence of the respective countries’ exceptional qualities that make them distinctive tourism destinations.

The need to discontinue the “Korea Sparkling” promotion had been raised for some time.

It would have been better if they had consulted some native speakers beforehand, and I don’t mean the guy who got paid big bucks to think it up. Then they could have avoided the whole mess. Oh well, bygones.

The Presidential Council on National Branding, launched in January 2009, raised the need for a more appropriate tourism slogan.

Arrrgh, more of this “nation branding” crap. I really need to do a write-up on why I think this is snake-oil salesmanship.

Anyway, here’s Michael Breen, someone you should always listen to (even if you don’t always agree with him).

“If a slogan is not working, then officials are right to get rid of it. I wouldn’t say it’s a waste of budget,” said Michael Breen, chairman of Insight Communications Consultants and exclusive partner of FD International. “‘Korea Be Inspired’ suits Korea. Korea is a place to be surprised and energized. People invariably leave with a different impression than the ones they came with.”

I don’t agree completely. “Inspired” hints at creativity. Korea has a lot of good points, but to be brutally honest, creativity isn’t one of them.

The country is targeting 8.5 million foreign visitors this year through the 2010-2012 Visit Korea Campaign, but the latest surveys indicate that Koreans are not fit to accommodate them in a friendly manner.

In a survey by the World Economic Forum in 2008, Korea was rated 111th in an index of friendliness among 130 countries. Korea’s overall tourism competitiveness was rated 31st.

Ah-ha, now there’s something concrete that we can work on.

February 5, 2010

Dominique Noel defends her “Misuda” friend Rie Akiba and gets attacked herself

Filed under: expatriates, hard to categorize — extrakorea @ 2:24 pm

Previously, Brian (yes, that Brian) brought us the news of how Rie Akiba, a panelist on the show “Misuda” made a grave error when she mentioned that maybe it could be possible that Japan might have some sort of case with regards to claims of ownership over the Liancourt Rocks. Predictably, there was an ensuing brouhaha, with netizens attacking her.

One of her friends, a fellow Misuda panelist named Dominique Noel, came to her defense, and was attacked herself in turn. Another example of netizens’ collective intelligence, I guess.

February 3, 2010

Brian in Jeollanam-do is leaving Korea

Filed under: expatriates — extrakorea @ 2:40 pm

I was quite surprised when (via Kushibo) I learned that Brian Deutsch, a.k.a. blogger Brian in Jeollanam-do, is leaving Korea. He’s been known as “Korea’s Angriest Blogger” after he won an award of the same name,* but there are angrier bloggers out there. A better way to describe Mr. Deutsch would be “honest, with no sugarcoating.” And those who think that he’s been too critical of Korea are, in my view, focusing too much upon certain posts, and need to step back and see the forest for the trees, viewing his blog as a whole. He has given a lot of information about events that tourists might be interested in, and has shown us a lot of the interesting sights of Korea through his photographs. Also, he put his real name, face, and location out there, and while some would describe this as attention-seeking, it shows courage that his anonymous detractors lack. Kushibo’s comments describe my feelings very well, and I would like to echo both him and Korea Beat in saying that I’m glad that he spoke his mind, and didn’t “keep [his] head down.” There’s definitely going to be a vacuum in the Korea-related blogosphere. Brian’s blog was a one-man show, and yet it cranked out more content than other blogs that have several writers. The man is a machine. (Zen Kimchi noticed, too.)

Brian says that he has a big announcement coming up. He’s already announced his upcoming marriage, and the fact that he’s leaving Korea. What could it possibly be? Maybe he’s getting ready to tell the world that he thinks that Kara are, in fact, very talented and groundbreaking.

* The award’s title was tongue-in-cheek and not meant seriously. Just ask Roboseyo, who thought it up.

January 31, 2010

(Updated) Anti-English Spectrum’s leader admits to stalking “following” foreign teachers in the LA Times

Filed under: crime, expatriates, xenophobia — extrakorea @ 12:45 pm

The Los Angeles Times has an article about the group called Anti-English Spectrum, and its leader admits that he stalks foreign teachers. Well, he says it’s not “stalking” but “following.”

Sometimes, in his off hours, Yie Eun-woong does a bit of investigative work.

He uses the Internet and other means to track personal data and home addresses of foreign English teachers across South Korea.

Then he follows them, often for weeks at a time, staking out their apartments, taking notes on their contacts and habits.

He wants to know whether they’re doing drugs or molesting children.

Yie, a slender 40-year-old who owns a temporary employment agency, says he is only attempting to weed out troublemakers who have no business teaching students in South Korea, or anywhere else.

The volunteer manager of a controversial group known as the Anti-English Spectrum, Yie investigates complaints by South Korean parents, often teaming up with authorities, and turns over information from his efforts for possible prosecution.

Outraged teachers groups call Yie an instigator and a stalker.

Yie waves off the criticism. “It’s not stalking, it’s following,” he said. “There’s no law against that.”

Since its founding in 2005, critics say, Yie’s group has waged an invective-filled nationalistic campaign against the 20,000 foreign-born English teachers in South Korea.

On their website and through fliers, members have spread rumors of a foreign English teacher crime wave. They have alleged that some teachers are knowingly spreading AIDS, speculation that has been reported in the Korean press.

Teacher activists acknowledge that a few foreign English instructors are arrested each year in South Korea — cases mostly involving the use of marijuana — but they insist that the rate of such incidents is far lower than for the Korean population itself.

“Why are they following teachers? That’s a job for the police,” said Dann Gaymer, a spokesman for the Assn. for Teachers of English in Korea. “What this group is up to is something called vigilantism, and I don’t like the sound of that.”

The article goes on to mention the fact that Anti-English Spectrum has posted photos of teachers’ apartments online and the death threats made against the ATEK president. Like Kushibo and Brian in Jeollanam-do, I remain unconvinced that the death threat is undoubtedly from a Korean person as opposed to, say, an expatriate playing some kind of sick joke.

What’s most important, I think, is that now that this guy has publicly admitted to a famous, international newspaper that he stalks, er, I mean, follows, foreign teachers, it’s time to bring the hammer down on the guy.

Edit/Update:

Brian in Jeollanam-do now has a post in which he gives a lot of background information on Anti-English Spectrum, both from his blog and from other sources such as the blog Gusts Of Popular Feeling and law professor Benjamin Wagner.

In case you’re thinking that Mr. Yie actually cares about education, I would direct you to this comment by King Baeksu, a.k.a. author Scott Burgeson.

Browse the AES site and you will find at least two threads from 2007 in which Yie himself urged his cafe members to call up my former employer, Hongik Univesity, and demand that I be fired for the “crime” of publishing a critical, but nonetheless bestselling and well-reviewed, book about Korea — despite the fact that at the time I was a certified ESL instructor with some ten years’ experience in the field. He was even so thoughtful as to include the phone number of Hongik’s office of academic affairs. No mention of my actual teaching ability — or lack thereof — was mentioned in either thread, I might add.

An equivalent analogy would be neo-Nazis in the US trying to get a Korean-American university instructor fired for writing a critical book about the US.

Of course, this is no surprise to anyone familiar with Mr. Yie and his group. Aside from advocating the harassment of foreign teachers, he has never made any suggestion as to the improvement of English-language education, or education in general.

Like asadalthought, I liked this quote from the LA Times article:

Yie, who is single and has no children, volunteered to help organize an effort to rein in such behavior.

But he looks so cheerful, handsome, and kind.

Surely some Korean woman is eager to snatch up this prize of a man.

In the interest of fairness, I feel that I should point out this part of the article:

In 2005, by then living in Seoul, he joined the fledgling activist group after seeing an upsetting posting on a website: claims by foreign teachers that they had slept with Korean students.

Yie, who is single and has no children, volunteered to help organize an effort to rein in such behavior.

“People were angry; most of them were parents with kids,” he said. “We all got together online and traded information.”

Gaymer says he doubts that such a posting ever existed. Instead, he says, Koreans were angry about photos posted on a job website showing foreigners dancing with scantily clad Korean women.

“They were consenting adults at a party with foreign men,” he said. “They weren’t doing anything bad or illegal.”

They’re both right. Gaymer is correct in that people were enraged upon seeing pictures of Korean women dancing with foreign men at a party. Those women were stalked and harassed online, and called “whores” by people who in all likelihood went on to form Anti-English Spectrum. However, Yie is also correct. The website called English Spectrum (from which Yie’s group gets its name) had a discussion forum as well as column written by an unnamed foreigner called “Ask The Playboy.” The Playboy and other members did indeed discuss ways to seduce one’s adult students. Plans and strategies for sleeping with one’s students is unacceptable, indefensible behavior for so-called “teachers.” Other members of English Spectrum should have spoken up, or spoken up more strongly, but they didn’t, and now we are all suffering the consequences. I write this because I feel that we must counter lies with truth, not with distortions of our own. As they say, “Two wrongs don’t make a right.” We should take the high moral ground by owning up to what really happened. However, as they also say, “Let the punishment fit the crime.” Also, the innocent should not be punished along with the guilty. For Yie and his group to be sta… er, following innocent teachers because of the actions of a few who, in all likelihood, are no longer even in Korea, is beyond the pale.

Like Brian, I would also strongly discourage any kind of vengeful retaliation. If he or one of his cronies is, ahem, following you, then gather evidence (e.g. photos) and take it to the proper authorities. That’s their job, and don’t think, “I’m not a Korean, they won’t take me seriously.” Look at Bonojit Hussain.

January 27, 2010

Reviews for Macaroni Market restaurant

Filed under: expatriates, food — extrakorea @ 1:57 pm

A long time ago, I wrote a post about the restaurant called Macaroni Market. Now you can read some reviews:

–> Seoul Eats’ review

–> Paul Ajosshi’s review

–> Lightning Review (Seoul Eats)

–> First Impressions (Seoul Eats)

To get to Macaroni Market come out of Itaewon station and walk towards Hangangjin, past Hard Rock Cafe, Kraze Burger, Ali Baba and Villa Sortinos and you’ll find yourself staring up at the restaurant. You can call them on 02 749 9181 and satisfy your cravings for cheesy pasta.

January 5, 2010

Why is Korea Telecom reluctant to give iPhones to foreigners?

Filed under: expatriates, technology — extrakorea @ 4:12 pm

You may have read my previous post, “Can foreigners in Korea get an iPhone?”, in which we found out that foreigners, not just ones on F-series visas, but even ones on other types, such as an E-2 (teachers’) visa, can get the iPhone. They need to: a. have a Korean credit card, b. get a one-year plan, and c. pay in cash up front.
So why is KT so reluctant to give iPhones to foreigners? The Joongang Daily mentioned in my previous post said:

[T]he simple fact is that the overdue payment rate for our foreign customers is much, much higher than for locals,” said a KT official who declined to be named. “They [foreigners] are able to leave the country at any time so for us, it is frankly quite a risk to take on foreign customers.”

So we have no specific numbers from a source who insists upon remaining anonymous. It could be a load of nonsense made up to save face and explain away discriminatory practices.
However, the Korea Times now has an article that gets a little more specific.

Although KT officials declined to give out any specific numbers, other industry sources in previous years estimated that around 20 percent of foreign mobile users left the country without paying their final bills.

(emphasis mine)

First, the officials of KT, the only company that we’re concerned with, won’t give out any numbers even though they’ve been pressed. Second, the statistics cited seem to be, given the wording, outdated. What’s the delinquency rate for foreigners these days ? Third, where’s the corresponding delinquency rate for Korean nationals, so that we can have some kind of comparison? If, for example, it’s 10 percent, then people could spin foreigners’ delinquency rates as double for that of Koreans, when in fact it’s only 10 percent more. Lastly, consider the source, the Korea Times, which recently brought us articles about Demi Moore’s hips, an unretouched photo of a a nude person, how to pronounce 2010, a bra for finding a husband, and finally, a flatulent pig.

The chief [of the firefighters] added that the pig got very excited when it all saw the commotion and continue to pass gas and squeal.

“I haven’t heard too many pigs (pass gas) but I would describe it as very full-on,” the chief says.

January 3, 2010

Can foreigners in Korea get an iPhone?

Filed under: expatriates, technology — extrakorea @ 3:32 pm

Let’s look at this article from the JoongAng Daily.

Many expats here who have tried to buy the device in Korea have been turned down at the cash register or were blocked from pre-ordering the iPhone before it went on sale. Take Robert Koehler, an American citizen who has lived in Korea for over 10 years on an E-7 visa and currently works at a publishing company. Last week, Koehler – who recently penned a guidebook in English about Korea – tried to buy an iPhone at the Apple store in Myeongdong but was turned away.

“Basically, KT has made it so that the only foreigners who can get an iPhone are either married to a Korean or are gyopo [foreigners of Korean descent and Korean emigrants],” he said. “I have lived here for a decade and pay taxes. I even wrote a book about Korea, but I can’t get a cell phone?”

If you’re married to a Korean or have a significant amount of Korean heritage, you can have an F-series visa. Can people with those get an iPhone without difficulty?

Even some foreigners who have one of the required visas are having a hard time getting their hands on the iPhone through KT. Michael Hurt, who has been in Korea for more than a decade, has an F-4 visa. Three weeks ago he tried to purchase an iPhone at several different KT booths in the Yongsan area, only to get rejected. “The people there kept saying that their computer system is denying my visa,” he said. Offended by KT’s handling of the situation, Hurt even wrote a letter to Apple CEO Steve Jobs and posted the contents on his blog.

So they can’t get an iPhone either? But wait …

After getting denied the iPhone, Hurt was strolling around the Gildong area in eastern Seoul, spotted a KT vendor and decided to try one more time. In less than 10 minutes, he had one.

Okay, people with F-series visas can get iPhones, but how about the other foreigners? The blogger called The Chosun Bimbo (a.k.a. Stafford, who I believe is on an E-2 visa) got one. Here’s his summary:

To cut a long story short, KT Show WILL let a foreigner sign up for an iPhone but only on a 12 month contract [as opposed to a 24 month contract]. You can still get the plans they offer (in my case I’m looking at W90000/mnth for 500minutes, 300messages and 3GB of Data), but the Gotcha is that KT will only subsidise the handset to the tune of W70000, meaning you, as the foreign customer has to pay W744000 for the handset, up front, and in CASH.

[ snip ]

Come to think of it KT Show won’t give any foreigner any contract unless they have a credit card issued by a Korean bank.

Actually, the JoongAng Daily said that, too, though it’s buried in the text.

For foreigners who do not have a F-type visa, they need to pay for the device and some of the service charges up front.

[ snip ]

“Because many of the KT booths across the country are not directly run by KT, we admit there is a lack of understanding on the employees’ part when it comes to foreigner subscriptions,” said the KT official.

This sounds like the kind of treatment you get at immigration and at banks. That is, the people dealing with you don’t know the rules or don’t care, and what’s more important is what kind of mood they’re in, whether or not they had a good breakfast, whether or not they’ve gotten laid recently, etc.

If I were the president of KT, I would be annoyed with these people because:
a. Foreigners want to give me money, and these incompetent employees are standing in the way. People are always complaining about foreigners earning money here and sending it abroad. Here is a way to keep that money in Korea and they’re messing it up. And
b. These people are making Korea look more xenophobic that it really is.

Kushibo pointed out:

[I]n Apple’s home country (the USA) there are similar restrictions for foreign nationals who are not permanent residents (say, people on student visas or temporary work permits).

In fact, here in Hawaii, I have been asked by more than one student visa holder to allow them to piggyback a two-year iPhone 3Gs plan with AT&T onto my own …

But there’s a big difference between someone on a student visa and someone who has lived and worked in a country legally for more than a decade, paid taxes all of that time, wrote a book promoting said country, and edits a magazine that, again, promotes said country.

Chris in South Korea said:

While there are two different rules in place, there’s reasons for that. We are a flight risk at any time, and yes, a company does have a reason to be wary with a heavily subsidized and demanded phone.

And Stafford replied:

In the case of the KT people Mike had to deal with it’s more a case of ignorance, and putting things in the too hard basket because theirs a foreigner involved. In my case, my good name (and credit) is not being recognised because of some dumb Canadian* f**k who screwed over KT 10 years ago. (Or whatever).

Had KT turned round to Mike and said, look sorry, because you are a foreigner we can’t give you a 2 year contract but we CAN do this, this and this I’m pretty sure he would have had at least LESS of a problem.

In my case I went into KT knowing there would be no 2 year contract available and didn’t take the blanket “no” for an answer. There is always an alternative. However it seems to becoming more and more of an art to get Korea and Koreans to look for that alternative.

All good, but I have to say that yes, he’s correct about the phone companies getting screwed about ten years ago by foreigners who fled the country with huge cell phone bills. However, they were not Canadians or westerners but people from developing countries who came here to do 3-D (dirty, dangerous, and difficult/disgusting) jobs. These days, they are still treated poorly, but back then, some of them suffered horrendous injuries, such as fingers or hands cut off in industrial accidents, and the compensation that they would receive from their employers was a big, fat nothing,** so I can’t blame them too harshly for getting out of Dodge and sticking it to a place where they had experienced such exploitation. Of course, the price had to be paid by those of us who stayed or came later.

* I’m not sure why he assumes that the perpetrator is Canadian.

** There were newspaper articles, with accompanying pictures, published, but this predates the days of the widespread Internet in Korea.

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