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Ho Kyeong Jang
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Ediya Coffee: South Korea's Answer to Starbucks?

For a country that cannot grow coffee beans, South Korea is certainly infatuated with coffee. According to the Korea Customs Service, South Korea imported more than 159 thousand metric tons of coffee beans in 2016, and 40 thousand tons for the first quarter of 2017 alone. One cup of coffee

KOREA EXPOSÉ
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A Primer: Online Shopping for English-speakers in S. Korea

South Korea isn’t the most accessible country when you’re looking for halal ingredients. That’s a struggle Shirin Zaman has had to endure since coming to South Korea in 2014. She’s a PhD student hailing from Bangladesh; she practices Islam and tries to

Ho Kyeong Jang
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KÉ Interview: Bookoob, the Book Sharing Service that Delivers

In South Korea, an unlikely type of startup has been slowly cementing its place in the peer economy: book sharing. Korea Exposé met Chang Woong, founder and CEO of “Bookshelf, the Social Library, (Bookoob in English)” to find out how he created what may be the world’s first sustainable

Ho Kyeong Jang
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South Korea's Best Meal Alternatives

South Korea faces dietary dilemmas. While government figures show that 16 percent of women below the age of 40 are underweight, the Korean Center for Disease Control (KCDC) and other bodies warn against the proliferation of “skinny obesity,” a condition resulting from low overall body weight but high body fat

Ho Kyeong Jang
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South Korea's Online Piracy Paradise

South Korea has an online piracy problem. Multiple internet sites offer bootleg movies, music, software and more for bargain-basement prices, seemingly unpoliced by authorities. A 2017 report on copyright protection published by Korea Copyright Protection Agency (KCOPA) found that losses across the music, film, broadcasting, publishing, and game industries from

Ho Kyeong Jang
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South Korea Investigates Social Media over Phone Records

South Korean authorities have begun investigating several of the country’s leading social media and internet firms amid allegations of collecting user data without consent. On Mar. 30, Korea Communications Commission (KCC) announced an investigation into four major social media platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Kakao Talk, and Band. The commission will

Juwon Park
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What's Up With All the Cafés in South Korea?

Within a minute’s walk of my office in Seoul’s Daehangno district are no less than ten cafés. And this is nothing out of the ordinary in Seoul, a city with some 17,000 coffee shops to caffeinate its 10 million citizens.   So why is this country obsessed with

Juwon Park
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Seoul's 135-minute Commute: Dead Time or Opportunity?

South Korean capital Seoul is famed for its work hard, play hard culture. But it turns out “commute hard” is also part of the picture — a 2017 survey by local employment website JobKorea found that Seoulites spend an average of 134.7 minutes commuting every day. “The atmosphere in

Juwon Park
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K-Webtoons: The Next K-Pop in Southeast Asia?

Deydra Azhara Brahmantya, a graduate student at the University of Indonesia, is engrossed in “I Am Gangnam Beauty.” The South Korean webtoon, created by an author writing under the pseudonym Kee Maeng-kee, tells the story of an unattractive girl who turns her life around by having plastic surgery

Juwon Park
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TV Viewership Is Down in South Korea, but Home Shopping Channels Continue to Thrive

Australian-born supermodel Miranda Kerr has had a successful career — appearing in the Victoria’s Secret ad campaign, TV advertising spots during Super Bowl and…on a South Korean home shopping channel selling underwear. Turn on the television in South Korea, and it seems like so many channels are dedicated

Jihyun Kim
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Evolution K-Fashion: From Dongdaemun Alleys to the World

Midnight on a Friday: A time when most office workers are going home after their work and evening hoesik. But in Dongdaemun’s Shopping Town, the day is just starting. Giant malls like Nuzzon, whose only clients are wholesalers, come to life with the rising murmurs of the crowd. Wholesalers

Juwon Park
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Why Are Samsung Electronics' Products so Expensive in South Korea?

After hearing good things about the Samsung Galaxy S9, Samsung Electronics’ latest phone, I thought about parting ways with my slowed-down iPhone. I happened to stumble upon the South Korean company’s U.S. website, where the S9 handset (64GB) was priced at $719 — about 767,000 won. On