Korea

Korean activists upset over plans to sew the anuses of river rats shut, make them eat each other

Recently if you were to type the Korean name for a copyu (aka “river rat” or “nutria”) into a search engine it would also likely suggest the Korean word for anus. That’s because of a controversial measure proposed to control the population of these pests which net users are calling “wacky” at best and “needlessly brutal” in the worst terms.

According to a report from South Korea’s Dong-A Ilbo, the new measure begins with sewing the anus of a copyu shut so that it can’t defecate and it really only gets worse from there.

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South Korean design company turns subway maps into beautiful artwork you can hang on your wall

The first time I went to Tokyo alone, I got lost within the first five minutes of arriving at Shinjuku Station, unable to comprehend why there were so many transfers to different lines going in different directions. Without mobile data on my phone, I was basically one of the ‘internet-less lost gaijin’ crippled by the lack of Google Maps who ended up befriending the station master at every transfer station because, without them, I would probably have had to spend the night hanging out with the buskers on the streets.

The maps in Japanese subway stations are not only confusing, they also look like multi-colored spaghetti or weird roller coasters, and I can clearly recall thinking how nice it would be to have a better-looking representation of the city’s train lines. Thankfully, it looks like South Korean design company Zero per Zero has fulfilled my wish with their subway map designs, which are becoming a hot topic on Reddit.

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Movies vs Reality: Can duct tape really be used to shut someone up? Korean YouTuber finds out

Some people say life is like a movie. Well, that’s certainly true in some respects, since there are many movies and dramas that are inspired by real-life events. But we all know some scenes and plots in movies are blown out of proportion to achieve a more dramatic expression on-screen, and sometimes movie plots are too exaggerated to ever be thought of as anything more than works of fiction.

One Korean YouTuber has seemingly been pondering such issues as well, particularly why kidnap victims in movies and dramas can’t scream for help simply because they have a piece of duct tape over their mouths. And to prove her point, she tries it herself.

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Bored of sushi? Level up those rice rolls to sushi gratin!【Recipe】

All right, who loves sushi? The colorful, beautiful little clusters of rice that look and taste like little pieces of art. To many people, sushi is synonymous with Japan, but Japan’s neighboring country Korea has their own version of maki sushi, known as gimbap (or kimbap).

As we’ve previously seen, the Koreans are incredibly creative when it comes to food improvisations, so we weren’t totally surprised when we came across this funky recipe for sushi/gimbap gratin. See the full recipe after the break!

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Thai video claiming corruption at the 2014 Asia Games goes viral

Readers in the West may not have heard much about it, but the 17th Asian Games were held between September 19 and October 4 in Incheon, South Korea. As the largest multi-sporting event after the Olympics, the Asian Games bring together athletes from all across the Asian continent only once every four years. By the end of this year’s competition, China had racked up the highest medal count, followed by host South Korea and Japan. However, this year’s Games were also plagued by rampant rumors of suspicious refereeing, fixed matches, and host country favoritism, leaving many nations with a bitter aftertaste upon their conclusion.

In response to the multiple stories of alleged corruption, one irate Thai viewer created a parody video to vent his frustrations. As of this writing, the video, with its scornful lyrics yet surprisingly bubbly nature, has been replayed over 2 million times on YouTube, despite having been published less than a week ago. Judging by the comments, it seems the rest of the world seems to sympathize with its message…

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Maruyama Zoo tries to mate two spotted hyenas for four years, recently learns both are males

Maruyama Zoo in Sapporo, Hokkaido was the scene of awkwardness on 26 September when it was learned that two spotted hyenas slated for making babies were actually both males. At first this might seem like a major oversight of really basic biology, but in the unique case of the spotted hyena it’s actually fairly understandable.

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See Studio Ghibli film characters recreated in 3-D perfection at special exhibit in Seoul

Studio Ghibli fans in South Korea can finally rejoice, because a special exhibition dedicated to the beloved animation studio is now open to the public in Seoul. The exhibit features a variety of three-dimensional replicas from famous Studio Ghibli film scenes, among other surprises sure to delight long-time fans. Now’s a better chance than ever to actually experience the world of a Studio Ghibli film firsthand!

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Samsung is making its own hour-long sitcom starring a fictional employee

Samsung is working on its own sitcom that will center on a fictional employee, which will be released via YouTube and social media, ZDNet Korea reports.

The series, which will be called “Best Future,” will be written to portray a “young Samsung” that people in their 20s and 30s would want to work for, the reports says.

Samsung is taking the name of the series quite literally. The main character, a woman who works at Samsung in the series, will be named Mirae, which ZDNet Korea said means “future” in Korean. The male lead, who shares a boarding house with Mirae, will be named Chaego which means “best” in Korean.

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Korean cosmetic surgery show treats two Thai women to free procedures

Yeah, yeah, here comes another article about plastic surgery in South Korea. But this time there’s an international twist to it–the story is about two Thai women who received plastic surgery on a Korean TV program.

As reported by Coconuts Bangkok, the September 4 episode of Korean show Let Me In featured a pair of Thai women who received several cosmetic surgery treatments for free and which followed the entire surgerical process from start to finish. The women’s transformed faces were revealed to the public for the first time at the end of the episode. How do you think their procedures turned out?

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South Korean lock maker goes (very) hands-on to prove the strength of his product 【Video】

Back in my university days, my creative writing tutors were always keep to hammer home the message of “show, don’t tell”. Rather than explaining everything for the reader and holding their hand the entire way, they taught us, it’s better to simply present your fictional world, characters and dialogue and let the reader experience them firsthand.

Though the end goal maybe slightly different, the same principle can be applied to advertising. Living in a world where we as consumers are constantly being told that product X is better than product Y, or assured that the purchase of item Z will somehow enrich our lives, it’s genuinely refreshing to see a company dispense with words and simply show us that the thing they’re selling works. Like this chap from South Korea who went decidedly hands-on with a window-locking system his company makes to prove its durability and efficiency…

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Korean Photoshop Troll Trilogy: The shocking conclusion! 【Photos】

When you’re talking about sheer quantity, it’s hard to beat Chinese production, which perhaps why we’ve been treated to no fewer than seven installments of Photoshop trolling from China to date.

But the world’s most populous country doesn’t have a monopoly on taking bad photos and twisting the words of those looking for help doctoring them. Last year we looked at two batches of similar shenanigans from Korea, and today we’re going back for a third helping to finish off the trilogy before its inevitable gritty reboot.

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Korean video game ads borrow K-pop group’s faces to depict the horrors of war, noodles 【Videos】

Never willing to be outdone by their island-dwelling neighbours, South Korea upped the ante in the weird olympics recently with a series of ads for free-to-play first-person shooter Sudden Attack. Enlisting the services of popular K-pop group Girl’s Day, the commercials show nary a snippet of footage from the actual game itself, instead focusing on the kind of situations most online gamers will know all too well.

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Enjoy a holiday at your desk with a hammock for your feet

When crazy ideas work, they can be genius. And if that little spark of genius makes our working day just that little bit easier to get through, it’s got to be applauded and shared.

So, without further ado, we bring you the foot hammock. With benefits for your physical and emotional well-being, there’s never been an easier way to rest your body and your mind while at work.

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Korean Independence Day continues to stir the pot for Japan-Korea relations

Every country loves to celebrate its Independence or Foundation Day. While many such national holidays have become celebratory days for friends and family, there is always a thread of proud nationalism that runs through them. Korean Independence Day, Gwangbokjeol, which was won only 69 years ago, is ruffling some Japanese’s feathers as relations between the two countries continues to strain. This year, some images of children celebrating have caught the attention of not only Japanese media, but Chinese media as well!

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If you were in a circus, what would you be? Your choice reveals your weakness!

It seems like the Japanese are not the only ones crazy about personality tests. According to this one introduced by Weekly Pass, a Korean blog powered by Naver, the roles in a circus can unveil your hidden weakness!

First, imagine you’re a member of the circus. If you could choose between an entertaining clown, a beast tamer, a tightrope walker and a popular magician, which role do you imagine yourself taking on?

Have you decided? Now, read on to find out what your Achilles heel might be!

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Sushi-inspired wooden building blocks & other stylish, whimsical toys even parents would want!

In an increasingly digital world where toddlers and pets alike develop their hand-eye coordination with Fruit Ninja and Ant Crusher, it’s undeniably important to let kids experience the pleasure of tactile toys and natural materials. I still have the tsumiki (wooden building block) set that my brother and I used to play with; now worn around the edges but with the same nostalgic smell, the pieces still make a delightful and distinct clacking sound when they hit each other.

And so, after coming across a unique build-a-sushi set that has been garnering attention in Japan for its sleek minimalistic design, we rounded up a few timber toys from Asia that not only would spark children’s imagination, but would also look right at home at Anthropologie or the MoMA gift shop. With their chic sensibilities and innate warmth, even adults would love to have these playful objets d’art in their home!

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Gangnam Style tops Billboard chart again in 2014, continues to toy with PSY’s emotions

It was back in the summer of 2012 when “Gangnam Style” was released. Thanks in part to YouTube, the single transformed South Korean rapper PSY into a worldwide pop phenomenon. But nothing lasts forever, and although it had a remarkably good run on the charts, general interest in the mega-hit gradually waned.

Since then, PSY has been hard at work coming up with other singles such as “Gentleman” and “Hangover”, but neither have captivated the public’s interest to the same degree. It’s a hard degree to surpass, however, as in just the past week, “Gangnam Style” reached number one again on the Billboard charts. This surely comes as bittersweet news to PSY who by now has got to be completely burnt out on performing that song over and over… and over again.

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South Korean military under fire after severe hazing leaves private dead

More details have emerged of the abuse suffered by a private in the South Korean Army who died after intense physical bullying from fellow soldiers, and photos of his body reveal it to be black and blue with bruises. The incident has sparked outrage and concern for other young soldiers who may be suffering hazing or other problems during their intense mandatory two-year conscription.

Warning: This post contains graphic imagery and descriptions of violence.

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A losing South Korean baseball team filled 3 rows of seats with robots that cheer for them

Watch the video below and tell us that robots aren’t going to change everything.

The Hanwha Eagles, a South Korean professional baseball team, recently filled three rows of its stadium with robots designed to cheer in the stead of real fans watching the game at home, reports CTV News.

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South Korean shipyard workers wear robo-suits for super-strength

If Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering gets its way, employees will be carrying out their duties while decked out in strength-enhancing robotic exoskeletons, according to New Scientist.

As one of the largest shipbuilders in the world, the company is investigating ways to make its workflow more productive. But after researching the use of such robo-suits on the job and finding them to be helpful, the company is now working on improving its prototype model so that the suits might soon see regular use on the job.

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