Some “Interesting Videos” From (Or Related To) Japan and Korea

Note: I’m cleaning out link folders — folders full of stuff marked “to post,” and will probably post a pile of goodies every week for a while…

First of all: while I’m not really nuts for anyone’s pop music, the ardent praise and fandom of K-pop has always baffled me. K-pop has always struck me as a boiled down version of a watered-down version of Western and Japanese mainstream pop junk.

Which is to say, I don’t usually have much nice to say about American and Japanese pop music either, though sometimes… well, sometimes you at least end up hearing a sound you’ve never run across before.

Like, say, a mashup of bubblegum pop and heavy metal:

I have some other interesting videos to share, too:
An interview on an Indian TV Network with Bonojit Hussain, the man who was harassed (surely for the Nth time) by a drunk Korean man on a bus–in the city where I live, Bucheon, and no, this is not at all surprising–and, fed up, sued the man and the police who refused to take his report, and won:

Okay, more weird Japanese stuff. Yes, this movie, Robogeisha, got funded and made:

… which just makes me wish the money had gone to something more worthwhile. Wish there was a corporate version of Kickstarter out there… Hmmmm.

This has nothing to do with Korea, but if you’re loving A Game of Thrones, and missing it now that Season 2 is finished — but are daunted by the huge books — you’ll probably appreciate this cache of extra background videos, which such goodies as this one:

Learning Hangeul is easy, but I still wish these videos had existed when I was learning…

… not to mention some of the other Korean language-learning resources, like this one. They’re mostly for beginners, and of course cutesy and very safe, but that’s okay for language study and it’s a huge move ahead in making the survival basics of the Korean language more immediately accessible to people who don’t have the patience to work their way through one of a number of textbooks that are all structured in the same, boring, unnatural way. Unsurprisingly, it’s young people online who are innovating, not the people paid big dollars to rehash textbooks according to dead methodologies. See for yourself:

2 thoughts on “Some “Interesting Videos” From (Or Related To) Japan and Korea

  1. Remember that, for the people who are “paid big dollars”, their customers (i.e. the people who examine their work and approve the payments) are not the potential students, but rather the old senior bureaucrats in government. So, the material is targeted to them – not the people who actually use the material. (I had some experiences when I was working with the government, and when working with university administrators. I suspect people who work for companies have the same problems as well)

  2. Junsok,

    That’s a very fair point… though of course there’s also the fact that everyone goes along with it. Also, is that true of university textbooks? I know that high school textbooks target senior bureaucrats and also know (from direct experience) just how brainless university bureaucrats can be in terms of what they accept as legitimate publications.

    But whether these pressures bear on authors of in-house language textbooks for Korean universities’ own Korean-language instruction programs, I’m not sure. Are the university presses here that ridiculously bureaucratized that they actually determine the pedagogy of the language programs? I’ve met Korean Language-Teaching majors who seemed to know a fair bit of modern language acquisition theory and teaching methods common in TEFL, but the textbooks — and by all reports, the programs at a lot of universities — have not really caught up.

    I’ve looked at a number of official university books, and while they’re, um, tolerable, the only one that was actually interesting in my opinion was the books out of University of Hawai’i–which are pretty much unavailable here unless you order them.

    In any case, that makes Youtube (and similar services) a good place to build a market: your customers pay you with ad views, and vote on the effectiveness of your teaching method (and, I suppose, to some degree the attractiveness of your instructors) with their view counts…

    Aaaaaaaaand… I just realized that I’d posted this as stuff related to Korea or Japan, but A Game of Thrones has nothing to do with Japan or Korea. Ooops!

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