Korea’s Broken Internet Paradise

Ok before we start this TL;DR, I know what you’re thinking. Yes, Simon changed his hairstyle You can tell, it’s different. I look cute now. So, for todays TL;DR we’re gonna talk about The Korean internet because, Even though a lot of people know The Korean internet is one of the Fastest in the world, If not THE fastest in the world It’s also one of the most broken internets in the world. Like really badly broken in many ways. And if you don’t live in Korea, You don’t experience a day to day life Of being on the internet, but If you’re just visiting, you’re like ”Wow, the internet is so fast, it’s the greatest!” Well let me tell you guys, there’s Ish ish use We got some things to talk about So first let’s talk about the positive things, Yes, the internet here is incredibly fast, If you want to download a movie illegally Because I know some of you do, Then you can download it in a minute or so. Seriously, I press download and I walk to the bathroom And I came back, and it was all downloaded. If you use instagram in Korea, it is actually Insta-gram. It’s instant gram but I remember when we were in Australia, it was like delayed gram, or non existent gram. Yeah. It just couldn’t load. It was really weird. We were like ”What is it broken? What’s happening here, is it broken? My hands seems like it’s broken.” ”There’s a swirly thing?” If I press refresh, pictures pop up like ‘that’. If I wanna load a website in Korea it loads just instantly loads, and when we go back home again We become tiny spoiled children who Don’t know how to function. However, despite the fast internet speeds, Let’s say that you live here and you open up A bank account and you wanna do online banking Or like online shopping, should be easy right? Anything involving money. Incorrect.You’ve just been activexed Let me explain what Activex is. It’s a set of tools of some secutiry softwares Developed by Microsoft in the 1990’s and a lot of Korean internet websites Base themselves of Activex So in order for you to actually do any online banking Or online shopping, you have to download And install this Activex on your computer. Problem number 1 is, it’s really really old and bloated software The software’s so old that we had to go And buy a Windows computer to do our online banking But Windows eight was to far ahead of it to run. You have to get back to internet explorer 6 and internet explorer 7 if you wanna use it. And this is for our bank, that’s a bit concerning that 
You’re not updating yourself with the times. Like whaaaa? Problem number 2 is Activex is Windows stuff So if you have a mac then you can’t install Acitvex
On your computer and you can’t do a lot Of basic stuff on the Korean internet. This may not have been a problem for Korean People maybe several years ago, but There’s been a boom of Mac technology in Korea There are Mac stores and iPhones are like crazy, they’re everywhere Right. So now the problem is that now that A lot of people in Korea are using mac technology They find ”Oh I can’t do my banking on my phone, or I can’t internet shop, What?” And it’s just not Activex that you have to install on the computer A lot of different banks and different websites give you Additional hardware software that you have to Install on your computer, and the problem is that you Wind up installing so many different programs like I remember we tried to use a Farbank There’s like 8 different programs we had to install And they slow you down, Just imagine installing Norton Antivirus 10 TIMES On your computer. Just so you can use a bank, it’s a mess. And we’re technologically savvy, imagine if You try to help out your parents, your grandparents to use the internet.
Oh man. But ok, some of you might be arguing The security is important (it’s a good thing) It keeps people from hacking for online banking. Information can remain safe because of this, Really? Because recently Korea had over 20 million People’s IDs and information stolen, from their banks. Including me by the way! Martina’s got conned And then, just today: KT which is arguably the biggest cellphone company in Korea, just mailed me this today. Hey Simon, all of your information has been conned and stolen. They just gave this information today, But people have been hacking them from FEBRUARY 2013! For 13months this has been going on And I just found out today. That’s nice. So all the information where we live and our ID numbers And our banks, our Alien registration number, Our like how many transactions, how much we pay All of that information’s out there now. It’s all out there! Activex, you’re so good! Really good at your job right? You’re good Activex! Obviously it’s working, don’t you think? Going back to Apple and Mac technology, A lot of people have iPhones but you find that You can’t actually use Apple maps here or You can’t even use Google maps, Because the security of Map software in Korea’s So strict as well none of those things really work here in Korea. You go over to Japan and you ask it for directions And it shows you the buildings (3D) But if you try to zoom in anywhere in Korea it’s all modelled and fuzzy Because you’re not allowed to use that here. I think one of the big things that I’ve noticed with Korea is that They have their own sphere where they do things So for example if you use Naver and Daum maps, Ok, no problem! Fantastic! You can get all the visible streets, but it’s in Korean So yeah we can read it and we can understand it But then if I try to send it to someone who’s like let’s say visiting, they don’t know what’s going on. So if you wanna use Daum and Naver stuff, You got all access to it, but google and Apple Are very much kind of pushed out of Korea, They don’t want them to be doing stuff here. In fact even if you wanna use Youtube here You’ll find that it’s severely throttled and I know A lot of people talk about Net neutrality and whatnot But try to watch Youtube videos here, They load a lot slower than they actually do in Canada! And Canada’s internet is like Flintstone era internet. Aw, poor Canada! It’s better than some other countries. But you can actually watch that but here in Korea You really have to, it just keeps on buffering and pausing. Because it’s actually throbbed here So a lot of people keep on saying to us ”That’s really weird, why is Youtube so slow in Korea I thought It would be faster?” That’s because they don’t want people using Youtube. Don’t use Youtube… They’re trying to push people to use other Korean businesses. I think a good way understanding Korean internet Is that it’s great within its little equal system of Korea If you’re Korean then all the things work very well But if you’re an outsider trying to do other things Or an international website then you might find That things here aren’t all too friendly for you. I’d have to disagree with that, the reason why Is that Sozee said that, yes she understands Activex and that she has to install it, But it annoys her. And that now when she switched to mac She couldn’t even register for her school program. So you think that it’s just effecting people Who are visiting but I think it’s affecting Korean people as well. So let’s move onto unintuitive website design Very simple example here, if you wanna order from Like Domino’s pizza in Korea. So you can actually go to Domino’s the website You can put in your ID whether it’s Korean or Foreign And then you have to make an account And then you can actually order online and have pizza sent to your house. That sounds super awesome. That’s brilliant! I know a lot of countries don’t actually have that. So that’s a good thing. Except, a lot of the log informs for these places have been so there’s like a maximum of like 3 characters. Because most names are like last name and then two first names. Kim Soo Zee, that’s all you need. Yeah. Except, I have some Korean friends whose first names are like Ma-Ri-Ah, that’s just their first name If you don’t enter your exact ID from your card because Korea is very tight when it comes to security then you can’t log in. But if your name is longer than three characters you can’t log in either. So for us, we can’t even begin to Because my last name on my Alien card Has already passed the zone. Who thought of this as a design? Like a maximum of three Why would you do that? It’s not just screwing over foreigners It’s screwing over Koreans with different names! But I don’t even know why you would build a website And be like ”Hold on hold on, no one can be longer than 3 characters.” So that kind of stuff I find very frustrating. And the last thing that I wanna talk about, If you are a foreigner in Korea and you Wanna capitalize on the amazing internet speed You’re gonna find that a lot of the services That you’re used to, you can’t use anymore Netflix for example, Hulu for example, and pornography for example Are all blocked here in Korea. The first two Netflix and Hulu aren’t necessarily blocked They just don’t offer international services Porn on the other hand is many times blocked, And if you do some online gaming for example I bought Final Fantasy XIV cause I really wanna play it Because I love Final Fantasy is blocked as well I can’t play it. Chocobo? Final Fantasy XIV is an online game
You can’t play it offline you have to be connected online And you just, it’s blocked here But why would they block it? Because Fuuuk you that’s why. I’m just curious like I think it’s because Korea is really trying To track down on teenagers that are Gamin online a bit too much. Didn’t they make a law that you Can’t stay on past 12 o’ clock? Yeah, so there’s like a lot of control measures That are put in there now, and since SONY can’t comply with those measures Because it’s not only catering stuff for the Korean audience but international audience Korea say: You can’t play by our rules, You can’t play in our country That’s so sad, you’re like a man who wants To play a video game who has been told that he can’t Stop nannying me Korea! Let me me play my video games And let people I know wanna watch porn! Also, outside of porn I know a lot of people say They like watching Korean dramas And when they come to Korea they can’t Watch them anymore so it’s also blocked. So, good luck with that guys. VPN! VPN WOOP WOOP VPN IN THE HOUSE! That copy style of working VPN So we’re gonna talk a little bit more of
The restrictions of Korean internet on our website So make sure you click on the link here to read more about it. So I’ve got a whole bunch of questions for you guys. If you’re Korean and living in Korea how do you Feel about the internet, does Antivex bother you? Or if you’re outside of Korea what issues does The internet have in your country? Apart as not being as fast as ours. What what~ Fastest internet in the world, What you got Japan? What’s you got? Japan’s got porn. I was gonna say Japan’s got porn And Final fantasy. For last TL;DR we wound up talking about Yellow dust in Korea and what that actually does to you And when we wound up asking you for your inputs And some of your comments were extremely awesome Like for example ’HolyWarriorFury’ that said That in their country they get ”haboobs” Which are dust storms but the name is Haboobs… That’s such a cute name for something terrible. Does anyone else find that name amazing? Question: Can you get on the water during a haboob? Because then you would be motorboating in a haboob. Get it?I like your like ”I was thinking about something funny So I twitched” ’Exo Kai’ thanks for watching Kai, Says they’re from Malaysia and they get crushed From haze they said it’s so bad that when You’re driving it looks like something from Silent Hill. That’s crazy! That’s creepy… I don’t know like I think it’s very different Than what we have from yellow dust I don’t think it’s really dusty I think it’s more of a Pollutiony? I’m not too sure about haze. But I know that a lot of people in The comments were complaining about the haze there. The user ’Zelle13HallyuForever9’ Like obviously the best name ever, showed us a picture from the Philippines of a bus Shitting in your mouth. It’s sooo.. Okay you’re making it so They’re on a motorcycle and the bus was like BZUU A bus just unloaded a big cloudy turd In your mouth it is terrifying supposedly this Kind of stuff happens often Really? Yes. They should get checked for their…. I’ve never experienced that? I know that whenever we’re on our scooter In korea we always try to stay away from the buses Because we always hear the like Poooooof So I know that the buses are farting But just not big black turds.. And then the big black turd came!

100 thoughts on “Korea’s Broken Internet Paradise

  1. Me imagino que para extranjeros a de ser complicado adaptarse y parece ilogico, pero personalmente no creo que su manera de proteccionismo sea tan mala, pues eso ayuda a mantener estable la economia del Estado; pues las empresas extranjeras no son inversion directa, por lo que más del 50% de sus ganancias salen del país, y eso es todo lo contrario a lo que se quiere.
    Si, es dificil para alguien como un americano, o canadiense pues sus paises tienen ideologias globalizadas, Korea tiene una vision más proteccionista.

  2. Well, I get used to it. Just Ignore…. Active X thing (giving up smartphone banking). Though I have to use cuz i must go on like military service.(as korean)

  3. How does the Proxy stuff work then? You know how people you proxies to get around censorships and stuff by changing there IP address to make it look like your in the states or something.

  4. … I can't believe I'm just seeing this almost 2 years later. The internet makes me want to slam my head into my desk at school ( STILL). HWP is the WORST. I can't believe you guys didn't mention the beautiful fact that a lot of sites here are just total .jpegs. Like if you don't know Korean, have fun retyping all the text into google translate because you can't copy and paste. It's just one. giant. picture. Not to mention the random things that get blocked at my school (Google Drive on IE, but works 95% of the time on Chrome). Ah the ragey-ness that is Korean internet. That VPN dance is me every time I get mine to connect properly 😊

  5. @Simon and Martina is there any restrictions on using a ps4 or ps3. Me an my husband do a lot of gaming. Would we have a problem enjoying our games/systems and with great Internet speed?

  6. I notice that this was published almost 2 years ago. Has this changed at all since then? I will be moving there in a couple of months and would like to know so that I can be better prepared. Thank you!

  7. the worse on korean website is that you need you ID card to subscribe everywhere. You can't have anonymity on internet, which is really frustrating. And if you are foreigner, there is no way you can subscribe. For instance I wanted to register on afreeca to practice korean but they asked for my passport. My passport for commenting video on internet, wtf ?
    VPN can solve many problems, but not that. You have to hack someone's else id, which is illegal.

  8. So if YouTube isn't common then how do people watch videos, or music videos then? Is there another website or something, because I want to move to Korea once I finish school and I need to know this stuff.

  9. Hey! Didn't rap monster from BTS said on a show that he watches porn? How does he do that? I might have not remembered it correctly though

  10. At least you have unlimited bandwidth and data….I live in rural canada and while our internet's not as slow as it used to be (cougheastlinkcough) It's still not great.

  11. Wow korean internet totally sucks, they force you into outdated ecosystem that doesnt even work. Here we are getting jealous of thier speeds but nope thanks, prefer my own thanks after hearing this and even testing the google maps thing and yup you cant zoom in at all. Stupid.

  12. I tried to buy tickets for a Korean show online and they made me set up an account and answer all sorts of ridiculous questions..

  13. I live in Beijing, China. Of course censorship is a big issue – no access to YouTube, Google, Facebook, and all that. This is largely politically motivated, but I find what is similar with Korea is that censorship is also used in China to promote home-grown Internet companies. There may be one YouTube out there, but there are at least five competing video sharing and hosting services in China that are like hybrids of YouTube and Netflix. What is cool is that these Chinese services provide both domestically produced content as well as foreign content through legit copyright licensing deals (yes, piracy is coming to an end, even in China). The same thing goes for Google, Whatsapp etc. as well. So for an average Chinese person, the censorship poses little inconvenience for everyday life – some of the domestically technologies have actually surpassed their foreign counterparts in terms of functionality and adapting to local needs. It's a different story for expats though, because a. they tend to live in between worlds and actually need constant access to the blocked services b. a lot of the really juicy, cutting-edge apps are Chinese only – so when their Chinese friends are ordering up takeways on their phones and making payments digitally, the expats still need to make a phone call and use cash. But all in all, censorship truly sucks and it cuts Chinese people off in a major way when it comes to doing business and maintaining social relations with partners, colleagues, and friends outside of the country.

  14. I can't live without my youtube or google, maybe Korean isn't the best place for me. They may have the best food and culture but living there wouldn't be so great for me.

  15. I went to Google Maps and was shocked! You weren't kidding! I could use Google Maps to find my way around NORTH KOREA, but not South Korea! Are. you. kidding. me?!

  16. with the comment on the philippine pollution, it only applies to metro manila when it comes to heavy pollution yet for me it's not somewhat livable by now
    i would honestly prefer to live in central philippines aka the visayas region because it's cleaner and if you do guys come here i would strongly discourage you guys to go to boracay island because it is full of buildings and less of trees and nature than it was before

  17. About not wanting people to use youtube in Korea and pushing ppl more towards korean apps, this makes even more sense now with how hard music companies are pushing the V app these days.

  18. ActiveX isn't "security software" but a set of extensions/applets like Flash or Java that developers can use in order to create code and interactive objects for the web. Also, you could just install IE6 on your fancy Macs via Wine, that emulates Windows programs: http://osxdaily.com/2010/04/20/run-internet-explorer-on-your-mac/ . There was ActiveX on Macs, back when the OS wasn't based on Unix, but this was a really long time ago (2001 or so). I'm not sure why ActiveX wasn't working on the Windows PC because IE11 still has support for ActiveX…

  19. what bout the fcking net here in Philippines
    like I cook my dinno, I took bath but I still downing movie

  20. I like the fact that a lot of people in the comment section keep saying that they don't want to experience the beauty and thrill of living in a different country because of a faulty internet system. I'm with my people

  21. The fact that ActiveX doesn't work on iPhones or Macs is actually totally irrelevant. It doesn't work on any smartphone or any modern browser. You could have stopped right there.

    But, since you brought it up – the average market share for Macs in South Korea has grown.. from 0.11% in July 2015 to a whopping 4.64% in May 2016. 84% are still running some version of Windows. Which is probably why banks just don't care.

  22. is there no way around the youtube/porn/online korean dramas thing? Could vpns work to fix that? I seriously cannot live with out youtube (cough or porn cough) and it would suckkkk to not be able to use that

  23. is there no way around the youtube/porn/online korean dramas thing? Could vpns work to fix that? I seriously cannot live with out youtube (cough or porn cough) and it would suckkkk to not be able to use that

  24. Singapore on the other hand, you pay everything and ANYTHING with your phone. You don't need anything else as long as you have a bank account and a phone.

  25. What I'm baffled about is that I'm at Yonsei University doing the Yonsei Summer Program, and the wifi here is so spotty and inconsistent, I miss my college wifi back in the States…

  26. Why would you even want to live there!? lol No Netflix or Hulu? When you're away from home you need some type of tether to it. Even when I moved to a different area in the states, alone, and didn't have cable I was like thank God for Netflix and Hulu. That for me is like Linus's blanket.. To be in a completely different country, not speaking the language, and having no entertainment? I would cry all the time.

  27. I've heard of Korean games needing your social security number to play them. Can anyone answer why?? I always thought that was weird ahaha

  28. I have heard that YouTube is really slow in South Korea, but it will load a lot slower than in Canada which is true. If you watch something, it will keep on buffering and pausing.

  29. Oh god, all of this is true. I lived in Seoul from 2006-2010 and what drove me nuts is using my alien registration number to log in to anything online! Plus, back then cyworld was a thing I had to fax a scan of my actual passport to get an account! It was nuts!

  30. OK.. so that's how they keep control of their people..by having their own form of YouTube. That's why they don't know a lot about the outside world.

  31. PORN IS BLOCKED????!!!!! Bye KOREA!!! In america the media present korea in such a manner like oooh it's so cool and they are so advanced but watching you guys made me see the truth!!! Thank you!

  32. Outdated platform requirements(ActiveX), limited character names, limited password length, classic hallmarks of amateur hour web/software development. I take it Korea doesn't have staggering financial penalties handed out by the government for private data breaches? Nothing motivates managers to update security like the specter of multi-million dollar penalties.

  33. Watched this video again for nostalgia and had to say sometimes weird websites got blocked while I was in Korea like EB Games (a video game franchise) and Staples (office supplies)!! Freaking Staples! What was the government afraid of? That I order lewd markers or something?

  34. wait??? why would korean dramas be blocked..?? could somebody explain..?? Also as of now, Netflix is in SK now right?

  35. I live alone so 100MBPS is fast for me. As long as I can watch a YouTube video in the highest quality the creator uploaded I'm good

  36. Frankly, I cannot understand what the problem is… I live in a country where the leadership is a technical dictatorship, but they do not block or hinder ANY social media or porn… cos if they did, the people will revolt!

  37. I would love to see an updated version of this. I’d hope but know better that activex has been crushed (this was lol bad at the time the video was made!). Obviously the world evolved on the internet quite a bit in a few years.

  38. rewatching this in 2018 and — so deadly curious guys : WHAT is the update on this??? Its been almost 5 years since. Plus — what is Japans internet like???

  39. In Brazil the internet is horrible. For example, the fastest internet available where I live is 10mbps and the server is only obligated by law to offer 10% of the speed we pay for. So when hiring the service it's 10mbps but in reality it's only 1 and there's nothing we can do about it because there are no other providers in my area and even if there were they'd probably do the same thing. And I don't even live in a rural area.

  40. I never bothered with the online banking or shopping in Korea, mainly because I couldn't figure out how to write my address. Also, KB Bank was within walking distance of all the places I lived, so it wasn't an issue to go to the bank. I picked KB Bank because when I moved to Korea in 2013, they were the only bank that had Western Union advertised on the outside of the bank, and I needed to be able to send money back to my mom. Within a few months I was able to send money directly to my American bank from my Korean bank through the ATM. That was awesome!

  41. Bruh I was out here on Korea vacation you feel me. And now I tired as hell. I b looking up the good stuff you feel me and i got a bigass warning wit them Korean letters and pictures of the Korean police logo n shit I got scared to shits damn straight. Now I straight up annoyed man.

  42. I literally have no problem if my Instagram loads a few seconds slower in exchange for more freedom

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