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Crayon Pop’s Bank Account Incident  
Crayon Pop's Bank Account Incident
The South Korean girl group formed in 2012 -under Chrome Entertainment - Crayon Pop has been widely criticised for opening opening a bank account specifically for charitable contributions.
The issue was that the announcement was worded incorrectly. The announcement seemed to emphasize that the bank account was for gifts instead of making it clear that the deposits would be donated to charity.
The announcement states: “As Crayon Pop rises in popularity (...) it is sometimes difficult to handle all the presents (...) From now on, the gifts we receive from fans, whether it's five on-site or via mail, will not be accepted. You can gift Crayon Pop in another way instead. We will soon open up a account specifically for presents. Those who want to offer gifts can enter a deposit into the account. Once the account reaches a certain sum, it will be donated to help those in need and charity organisations.”
A good deed never goes unpunished and the fact that they did not consult with fans prior their announcement was not received well, especially amongst those who had already prepared gifts or were planning to give the girls gifts with no monetary value.
Moreover, the wording of the announcement, mentioning a special bank account being set up and asking fans send in deposits raised suspicions of observers.
After the backlash, Crayon Pop and Chrome Entertainment issued an official apology and announced they would rethink their previous decision.
First the company stated: “The reason why we decided not to receive gifts was because the members felt burdened when they received expensive gifts. We chose a ‘donation' method where both the fans and the singers could be happy, but we didn't put enough thought into the method or the way we spoke up about it.
Of course we are thankful for the gifts, but it's also true that we feel sorry. It's burdensome for both the person who gives and the person who receives, and for student fans who aren't financially well off, it could even be bad. And even when the members wear it (gifts), that could create a misunderstanding.
We can't accurately divide the presents between what we can and what can't receive. We also cannot ignore the effort of our fans, so we had to figure out a solution that would best suit the both of us. We chose a method of donation that everyone could be happy with, but we weren't good in the execution and in the words we chose. We are sorry.”
Top connections in the K-pop industry  
Top connections in the K-pop industry
Show business might work a bit differently from other industries but it's ruled by commercial logics after all; thus, networking is a determining factor when it comes to making it in the K-pop industry.
There are certain idols who seem to get along with everyone, including influential people in the industry. Some of these idols obtain these connections through their label, some of them are personal friends and some just seem to come by randomly.
Media outlet Dispatch and JD Visual Dive has uncovered some of the top connected idols in the industry.
Big Bang's G-Dragon tops the list with his countless friends in the K-pop industry, including Jo Kwon, Jun.J, Jay Park, Shin Se Kyung, Yoo Eun Hye, among others. He also has connections abroad. Among his foreign friends, there are extremely successful artists such as Will Smith, Missy Elliott, Flo Rida and Justin Bieber. K-pop celebrities also need to look after their style and G-Dragon knows this. That is why he is also well-connected in the fashion industry; for instance, he is friends with Le Soo Hyuk.
2NE1's CL comes second in the list. CL is also friends with a lot of K-poppers such as Sohee, Nicole, Mir, Hyoyeon and Min. She also has a brilliant selection of international friends such as Kanye West, Will.I.Am and Jeremy Scott.
BoA is the veteran in this list. He has been in the K-pop industry for the longest and she has friends in every corner of the South Korean entertainment world, hidden or not. Most people know she is close friends with Lee Hyori and Kahi, but she is also friends with actors such as Yoo Hae Jin, Lee Jun Ki, Jang Hyuk, and Shin Se Kung. Her international links would turn anyone green with envy. She has connections to divas like Avril Lavigne, Britney Spears and Koda Kumi.
Seungri’s Sex Scandal  
Seungri's Sex Scandal
K-pop star Seungri - best known as a member of South Korean boy band Big Bang - has been implicated in a sex scandal in Japan.
A Japanese tabloid magazine named ‘Friday' released a story with the suggestive title “Famous Hallyn Idol Group Big Bang's Seungri's Bed Photos Leaked”, and uncovered revealing photos of a man who is supposed to be Seungri.
According to the magazine, these photos were taken by a woman who affirms that she spent a night with the idol member.
The article states: “Currently residing in Japan, Seungri's bed scandal was revealed... A woman who slept with him shared, ‘Seungri has the habit of choking (the other individual involved) during sexual intercourse.” She also - allegedly - stated that he didn't even kiss her once.
Undeniably, with this sex scandal, the magazine has achieved a massive success in terms of readership. After hearing about Seungri's apparent sex scandal, netizens have been commenting with their own opinion on the issue, and most of them have expressed their disbelief in the publication's story.
Followingly, Seungri talked about this scandal on a TV show called ‘Incarnation‘. He stated: “I came onto the show because I thought I should let the public know about what happened during the scandal”.
“It was the first time in history that an idol became the centre of a scandal like that. The magazine / tabloid I was published in is very famous. They don't even bother to talk about anyone who isn't famous. It was my first scandal, but it was so big. I was a bit scared and shocked. It think a lot of people started to think I was an adult because of that scandal.”
He added: “To be honest, I was told about it being printed in the magazine a week beforehand. It's not printed on the internet, but printed at a factory. So I couldn't stop it even if I knew.”
True or not, Seungri's scandal has had the same consequences Miley Cyrus's twerking has. If anything, it has put them both back on the map of the entertainment world.
Busan Rock Festival  
Busan Rock Festival
Every year South Korea hosts an incredible music festival with a peculiarity that will surely make all the bohemian rock lovers very happy: the admission is free of charge.
Inaugurated in 2000, Busan Rock Festival has become very popular amongst South Koreans. The music festival takes place every year in August in Busan. Impressive rock, metal and indie bands play near the beaches of this South Korean city.
This festival is not only unique because it is free, but also because it takes place right in the city. The event usually takes place at the spacious Samrak Park that borders Busan's west edge against Gimhae. There are two stages, the main stage and the smaller stage for up-and-coming acts.
This year was dominated by big names in Korean indie music. The Finnish band Stratovarius headlined the event this year. Another international band Soil & Pimp Sessions, a jazz/funk 6-piece out of Tokyo, also rocked the event.
A band from South Korea, Kingston Rudieska swept the audience off their feet. They are the original Korean ska band and - like wine - have improved since their foundation a decade ago.
Romantic Punch was also in the line-up. The band looks like they are out of the 80s and the frontman knows how to put on a good show. Other bands that played at the festival were Icy Cider - rock band with an entertaining frontman, #1 Korean - a grea ska-punk band who lay back into reggae sometimes -, Feverdogs - an up-and-coming band from Busan, who will soon become a big indie phenomenon-, Stoned - punksters from Busan -, and other rock bands.
Top Korean Dramas  
Top Korean Dramas
You've probably heard about the South Korean dramas, their incredibly good-looking actors, their twisted plots and their heart-aching scenes. Most of these love stories have a tragic ending, and they will probably make you cry, but you will keep wanting more because they are beautifully produced.
The stories usually revolve around a couple that can't be together due to external circumstances that involve family conflicts, terminal diseases and the wrong-doings of the other people involved in the love triangle. There's is a high dosage of drama!
We offer you a selection of the best recent Korean dramas according to Megan Soh's blog.
The first one is a paranormal romance titled “Who are you?”. The story is about a woman who is able to see spirits and a man who only believes in solid evidence. There is a love triangle between ghosts and humans in this TV show.
Another TV show is called “Good Doctor” which is a medical drama. One of the main characters was a victim of domestic violence at a very young age. Due to his development disorder that is a type of autism, he especialises in education at a care centre, where they find out that he is a savant. The other main character is a girl who is a pediatric surgeon with a strong sense of duty. Then there is another character who is a cold-hearted perfectionist. His fiancé is the daughter of the foundation's director and proves her worthy by being smart and assertive.
“Her Legend” tells the story of two women who switched fates and a man who has everything. The love story is between Eun Jung Soo - who works her way up in luxury industry - and Do Jin Hoo - a smart and handsome man who is the heir of the greatest fashion group. During the show, Eun has to hide her true identity to make her dreams come true.
Top South Korean Films  
Top South Korean Films
Get some pop corn, it's Korean drama! Sit back on a comfortable sofa because we are about to tell you the top 10 South Korean films, according to Gail Kavanagh and published in Listverse.
The popularity of South Korean films has rapidly grown in the past few years. Since they have their own peculiarities, they offer a nice alternative to western films. South Korean cinema produces films in all genres: romance, suspense, comedy and fantasy.
If you are looking for a change from western films, you can find the must-watch South Korean films below:
The first one is titled “Musa”. In 2001, when Seong-Soo Kim directed this epic film, it was the most expensive movie ever made in the country. The story of the film revolves around the kidnapping of a Ming princess and how she grows through her experiences from a spoilt royal into a commanding woman. This character is played by Hidden Dragon star Zhang Ziyi.
“Old Boy” is an exciting film with an original plot. The main character - Oh Dai-Su - is imprisoned for 15 years in a hotel room by someone he doesn't know and for something he can't remember. Suddenly, Dae-Su is inexplicably released. The film is based on a Japanese manga and it is highly entertaining and surprising.
“The Chaser” tells the story of Joong-Ho who changes his respectable profession as a detective to become a pimp. The plot thickens when he starts facing financial ruin because his prostitutes start disappearing mysteriously. Since the police doesn't seem to do anything about it, Joong-Ho makes use of his former skills to uncover what happened to the girls. What he find is horrific and will revolt anyone, yet the film has been widely acclaimed.
Male Korean Actors in Hollywood  
Male Korean Actors in Hollywood
They have it all it takes to succeed in Hollywood. They are good-looking, they are talented, they have nice bodies, they can play characters in drama, action, and comedy shows and they drive the ladies crazy. They are male Korean actors that should get more screen time in Hollywood for the industry's sake.
As the Korean phenomenon keeps growing, it is not just k-pop idols who are making it in the international markets. South Korean actors, with their good looks and dramatic skills - are also attracting the eyes of foreign producers.
These actors have their devoted fans and could really have a good impact in Hollywood movies. Here is a list of South Koreans who would make the big screen look good.
Korean-born American actor, Steven Yeun has become worldwide famous with his role of Glenn Rhee in the AMC television series The Walking Dead, as part of the main cast. However, before Yeun has also starred in an independent film, a couple of shorts and guest-starred in American TV show The Big Bang Theory. His charisma has won him countless both male and female fans at an international level.
John Cho is a Korean-American actor and musician who has starred as Harold Lee in the comedy films Harold & Kumar and played the character John, MILF Guy No. 2 who made fashionabe the term “MILF” in the American Pie films. Undeniably, he has made many people laugh with his funny performances and would be an asset to any comedy movie.
Other notable actors we would like to see more in the big screen are two actors who played in Fast & Furious, which are Sung Kang and Rick Yune, Tim Kang who starred in The Mentalist, Lee Byung Hun from G.I. Joe, And Julien Kang - High Kick Through the Roof.
Psy’s Quotes  
Psy's Quotes
South Korean pop artist, Psy took the world by storm a few years ago with his single “Gangnam Style”. Since then, everyone has followed his career and tried to learn his horse-riding dance moves. As a tribute, we have gathered a few of his famous quotes which can reveal some details about the personality of this world-famous icon and some of his secrets.
“The world's most famous and popular language is music.”
“My lifetime role model and hero is Freddie Mercury of Queen.”
“I try to dress classy and dance cheesy.”
“I'm a bit jealous. Until two days ago someone told me I am the most famous Korean in the world.”
“Gangnam is a territory in Seoul, Korea. I describe it as noble at the daytime and going crazy at the night time. I compare ladies to the territory. So - noble at the daytime, going crazy at the night time - and the lyrics says I am the right guy for the lady who is like that.”
“We are just at the studio, me and my choreographers, we are spending like 30 nights and we are thinking, what is my next dance move? Because in Korea there are huge expectations about my dancing. So it was a lot of pressure.”
“All the people in Korea are cheering me like I'm a gold medalist or something, so I have a responsibility to my country.”
“Before ‘Gangnam Style' I was not a good attitude artist.”
“I just made my album. I did my best. And I uploaded the video just to ‘YouTube.‘ That was all.”
“I need to show the world that my final goal is to perform huge concerts like Madonna.”
“I never expected I would become a K-pop star.”
“I'm not that good-looking.”
Top Restaurants in Seoul  
Top Restaurants in Seoul
Seoul locals stand out at an international level for dining out on a regular basis. This lifestyle is partly due to their long office hours and partly due to the vibrant culinary scene of the city - the restaurants are open through the night.
The city's wide selection of restaurants, bars and market stalls comprise the riches of Korean cuisine, which is now being appreciated for its complexity and sophistication, and has surpassed the traditional favourites of barbecue and kimchee.
Here is a guide to the best dining experiences in Seoul according to Thomas Storey.
If you are looking for a real Korean taste, go to Song Jook Heon, which is a restaurant that specialises in hanjeongsik which is the most lavish and luxurious type of Korean cuisine. A huge variety of smaller side dishes are combined with a main dish of meat, fish or a hot pot to make a fancy banquet. This type of cuisine originated in the royal palaces and aristocratic homes of ancient Korea, and these distinguished origins are still palpable in the abundance of dishes - up to 30 - on offer in a traditional Hanjeongsik.
Byeokje Galbi, which specialises in beef or Hanu, focuses on the more carnivorous side of the Korean food spectrum. The main element is galbi, which is the Korean grilled or barbecued meat that has become famous throughout the globe. The pieces of Hanu are barbecued on the table in front of diners, along with a variety of side dishes. This process is part of the social atmosphere and also guarantees the freshness of the meal. In Byeokje Galbi, the quality of the meat is extremely important.
Eulji Myun Oak is a restaurant that has been serving Naengmyeon - a refreshing Korean staple - for over 30 years and is one of the most beloved restaurants amongst locals for its family feel and the sheer quality of its Naengmyeon recipe. This classic Korean dish consists of cold noodles made from either buckwheat or potatoes, stewed in vinegary beed broth and served cold with cucumbers, pears, boiled egg, a spicy mustard sauce and occasionally toped off with cold braised beef.
South Korea's working hours dilemma  
South Korea's working hours dilemma
As one of the four Asian tigers, South Korea maintained an exceptionally high growth rate and rapid industrialisation between the early 1960s and 1990s. Today, along with Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore, this Asian Dragon has developed into an advanced and high-income economy.
As South Korea has become a world leader in manufacturing information technology, the demands at work have increased. The stakes are high and the nation needs to maintain its high standards in order to compete at a global scale and retain its world-leading position.
These demands have changed people's lifestyles as they work more than office hours in an extremely competitive environment. This situation has created a work-life imbalance that mostly affects women.
In order to restore work-life balance amongst its citizens, the South Korean government has recently implemented a Five-Day Working Policy, which makes Saturday an official non-working day and cuts weekly work hours from 44 to 40.
However, according to a study, this policy has not have the desired effect. According to a national survey of urban Korean households - called the Korean Labour and Income Panel Survey - the policy did not result in greater life satisfaction for men or women; nevertheless, women report liking the measure slightly more than men.
The comfort from having more hours at home was counterbalanced by increasing stress at work as the hours were fewer but the demands remained the same.
The study, which was published in the Journal of Happiness Studies, puts forward two explanations for this situation. Accordingly, either less working hours are not resulting in the benefits they are meant to or work stress escalates when production hours are cut.
In any case, the shorter work week was supposed to be a benefit for individuals and that is not the way it turned out to be. However, time will tell if South Koreans will be able to adjust to less office hours or if the demands from employers need to decrease and how that will affect the economy.
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