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YouTube Disables Comments and User Uploads For Korean Users 237

Craig Mundie may want a driver's license for the Internet, but Korea has actually implemented something of that kind. And, as first-time accepted submitter Pseudonym Authority writes, in the form of an excerpt from PC World: "Google has disabled user uploads and comments on the Korean version of its YouTube video portal in reaction to a new law that requires the real name of a contributor be listed along each contribution they make. The rules, part of a Cyber Defamation Law, came into effect on April 1 for all sites with over 100,000 unique visitors per day. It requires that users provide their real name and national ID card number."
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YouTube Disables Comments and User Uploads For Korean Users

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 12, 2011 @05:14AM (#37374644)

    Posted Anonymously just because I can.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Replied anonymously and called you a dink.
      Just because i can. For now.

      I honestly feel no need to ever login here to slashdot. Even after what... a decade? damm. I rather like being able to say things that won't be held aginst me in a court of law.. Or more likely a job app. What i say today i may not agree with tomorrow. But the net doesnt work that way. Once you say it. Its attributed to you forever. And i can't imagine that ever being a good thing. At best it's neutral. At worst it can ruin y

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Yvanhoe ( 564877 )
        But you lose the ability to brag about it when you made a correct prevision. You are also less likely to be taken seriously. Slashdot's attitude is smart : "Anonymous coward". Being anonymous is frowned upon, but is possible because of the few very legitimate reasons to do it.
        • But you lose the ability to brag about it when you made a correct prevision. You are also less likely to be taken seriously. Slashdot's attitude is smart : "Anonymous coward".

          The Korean government is full of pederasts and catamites.

          And yes, my real name is "PopeRatzo". My mother had a sick sense of humor.

      • by TheRaven64 ( 641858 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @07:53AM (#37375274) Journal
        The main advantage of logging in is that you get notified when someone replies to you. This means you can actually have a discussion, rather than just a load of one-off comments.
        • The main advantage of logging in is that people have a reason to take you seriously, because they can now set you as a friend or a foe. You can't believe anything any AC says.

      • After a minor facebook fiasco not related to me at my previous work place (small shop/office, not many of us there), I told my boss that if our posts on facebook were to be scrutinised, even when they don't relate to work, don't defame the company, and don't involve any coworkers, they could pay me at quarter-time for all of my off hours. I worked there for another 18 months before I quit due to other issues caused by factors well outside the job's influence, but in all that time, I never again heard of an

        • That last sentence sounds more arrogant than I intended. Only intended a tenth of what's positively dripping off that.

        • by v1 ( 525388 )

          My competence and essential position as the only guy with any product knowledge meant they weren't about to fire me.

          Assuming the local PHB won't react with a suicidal business decision on impulse and without forethought is a pretty dangerous gamble.

          And if things are already bad enough there to put you in those waters to begin with, (i.e. managers already making dumb and reckless business decisions) it just increases the likelyhood of such an event.

      • I rather like being able to say things that won't be held aginst me in a court of law.. Or more likely a job app.

        I rather like knowing that I wont get a job where the sorts of things I say here (which I filter internally before I post them) would have been held against me.

        If theres a job that would discriminate or penalize me because of my religious or political views, honestly, no thanks.

    • Least we forget.. []

    • You anonymous Coward!

      If you have nothing to hide there is no reason for anonymity. Just use your real name.


  • Korea? Wich Korea? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by biduxe ( 541904 ) <> on Monday September 12, 2011 @05:22AM (#37374676)
    North Korea of course. No democratic country would have such a law.
    • by RuBLed ( 995686 )
      No you are mistaken, North Korea is the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. The one in the south is the Republic of Korea which doesn't have Democracy in its name. This is really obvious.
  • Seriously old news (Score:5, Informative)

    by crossmr ( 957846 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @05:26AM (#37374702) Journal

    Google did this over two years ago..seriously slashdot.. I know you're usually behind but this is embarrassing.

    Wow timothy you are really clueless aren't you?
    Cmdrtaco must be spinning in his grave.

    This is extremely easy to bypass, just set your location to another country, done, you can upload and comment just fine.

  • Yes, I'm all for disabling these globally. No good has come of allowing people to comment, or vote on videos.

    • Not true. The problem with widespread internet take-up is that more and more idiots are finding their way onto the internet. With the decline of Myspace and Geocities the internet needed a new idiot-sink. Youtube comments, and, indeed, the comments sections of most major news-outlets, draw in these idiots and lock them in combat with one another in a few easily avoidable places.
      • Maybe it's just nostalgia, but I can't remember geocities being that bad.

        • Agreed. Geocities was full of bad design and lame fanfic, but it wasn't an idiot-sink. It was comparable to today's Blogger / Wordpress sites or Facebook pages (and make no mistake, if Facebook allowed it, most kids' pages would have a Matrix or Hello Kitty color scheme with auto-playing music just like the old Geocities pages. Up until about mid/late teens that is considered cool, I know, I was guilty of running such websites...). It took a little skill to get those sites up and running - not much, but bey

      • With the decline of Myspace and Geocities the internet needed a new idiot-sink

        Isn't that what Facebook is for?

        • Only if you friend request idiots.

          That's the nice thing about Facebook, you can set your news feed only to the people who you actually care about.
      • The problem with widespread internet take-up is that more and more idiots are finding their way onto the internet. With the decline of Myspace and Geocities the internet needed a new idiot-sink.

        Honestly, I think we have a bigger problem with the number of people with superiority complexes on the internet, who assume that because someone doesnt understand technology or isnt a great typist, they must be utterly worthless as a person.

        Its always fun dealing with (new) friends who constantly apologize for not knowing tech, because they assume that as a tech guy I will obviously look down on them for it. Thanks everyone for establishing that stereotype.

        • No YouTube comments are idiotic not because of bad spelling, grammar, caps... The stuff they say is just stupid. I remembering one time I was watching some clips from an 80's TV show, for nostalgia and there was one sentence where the Bad Guy showed a little be of complexity to his character and said one sentence outside of what a Bad Guy would say and there was posts upon posts of people feeling sorry for the bad guys (who were otherwise quite evil) just from that one sentence.

          No YouTube comments are not i

    • You're against an expression of free speech because you don't like the comments. You have a great future as a censor, one of the few careers with ever expanding opportunities.
      • There is a huge difference between government censorship and a corporation choosing what wants to do in regards to comments and voting. Freedom of expression is a natural right, being able to comment on X when X is a privately owned website is not.
  • Google takes strong stance against name collection after it says no to fake names on google+ :) haha... oh well, oops, things happen I guess

  • G+, Anyone? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by dsavi ( 1540343 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @05:31AM (#37374738) Homepage
    I know this happened a while ago, but given the recent events about Google removing users from G+ that were using the service under a pseudonym, this feels really ironic.
    • by Xest ( 935314 )

      "this feels really ironic."

      It shouldn't, because it's not.

  • Seriously, who cares about the crazy North Korean dictatorship. I'm sure they're doing other outlandish things to like blacking out half the internet with their not-so-great-firewall and..

    Oh.Shit. It's not the North Koreans... []

    Fuck. Well, I never knew the South Koreans were supposedly so bad at internet that they need to be tracked and punished.

    I guess now when they whomp me at Starcraft I'll at least have their real names so I can know who beat me IRL.

  • by addie ( 470476 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @05:34AM (#37374748)

    This comes as no surprise to me, having worked and studied in Korea for over five years. There was virtually no way to access any online services - buying tickets, posting comments on news sites and the ubiquitous online cyber-cafes, online gaming - without a government ID number. As foreigners, we are issued an Alien Registration Card (ARC) which ostensibly does the same thing, however in my experience this never worked. Perhaps that was a blessing in disguise, as it meant I didn't put myself in a position to be easily tracked.

    That all aside, the mad cow protests of 2008 [] exemplify why the government wants to do this. Inflammatory comments on cyber-cafes fueled a ridiculous campaign of misinformation that led to the shutting down of downtown Seoul for months on end (not to mention riot police, water cannons, abuse of foreigners, etc). This all stems from the National Security Law [], designed to prevent discussion of communist ideals, and support for the DPRK. The acceptance of that law has led to gradual acceptance of further but unrelated restrictions on free speech.

    The most depressing aspect of this is that most South Koreans who I know don't see this as a problem. As long as they continue to achieve economic progress, lack of civil liberties is little more than an inconvenience. I hope the attitudes of this generation will change, but only time will tell.

    • I'm not sure that this is necessarily a bad thing. If you've been keeping up with the Chosun Ilbo, you may have noticed that there are an increasing number of crimes being routed over the 'net. For example, there've been a lot of cases of online bullying leading to suicides, and unsavoury stories of middle school students being blackmailed into prostitution via online means. Not to mention all the cases of internet addiction.

      I admit that this may not be the best idea. Ideally, the police would investiga

  • There are a lot of people elsewhere who think this sort of crap makes sense--mostly people sick of cleaning up forums full of trolls. Even some major sites, like Techcrunch, have made the mistake of switching to Facebook for their blog comment system. It really makes me sad to see that kind of thing happen.

    Sure, you cut back on trolling but you cut back on a lot of good stuff too when people don't feel free to speak honestly. I'm not willing to make a political statement of any sort attached to my real n

    • by crossmr ( 957846 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @05:56AM (#37374844) Journal

      That's not how it works. The real name is only attached to the back-end, not what people see. Even then, this story is 2 years old and the government here is moving away from it in a sense. They're now encouraging the use of the real name system through a proxy. Your first create an ID at another site, you then use that ID to sign-up at the target site. At some point your ID is verified, but not on the main site. They won't have your identity to reveal, but it still allows them to permanently ban trolls.

  • Congrats first time accepted submitter Pseudonym Authority, your presence has made Slashdot even worse. Seriously though, who thought it would be a good idea to accept a submitter for the first time for posting an article FROM FUCKING APR 13, 2009!!!!!!!

    Are we trying to set the bar so stupidly low that a cat on a keyboard can become a Slashdot submitter, and then not only accept the submission but announce it in glory and praise?

    Remember when they rolled out the Idle tag, at least we could block that! Maybe

  • by psiXaos ( 702248 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @07:15AM (#37375120)
    Read it here: []

    FTA: "The Ministry of Public Administration and Security is set to report to ruling party lawmakers about comprehensive measures to protect personal information online, including abolishing the real-name registration system, Yonhap news agency said."

    Also, this says the system was in effect since 2007 :)
  • Do they just block anybody whose view history is more than 80% Starcraft?
  • You have to wonder what was going on in politicians heads to pass this stupid law. It's so easy to bypass and so draconian that it stifles free speech and does nothing to protect against what it is supposed to exist for.

    I'm quite certain that Korea could have implemented a national OpenID server (perhaps operated privately and under strict rules about information disclosure) where people could register and create aliases but still be accountable should someone pay a large deposit and file the legal paperw

  • Or the submitters?

    From TFA:

    "By Martyn Williams, IDG News Apr 13, 2009 3:50 am "

    2 and a half years late is not exactly news. What next, Apple inc hires back Jobs and fires Scully?

  • all you need to do is have google verify the person opening the account is who they say they are... oh wait..

  • When a saw the header I stopped at "Youtube Disables Comments" and thought for an instance that the world was improving for once. I should have known better.
  • Seriously, about 83% of the comments on youtube are adolescent and ignorant.

  • How's that censorship? You still can say whatever you want to say. You just have to stand by your word now - like, before the internet.
    • by crossmr ( 957846 )

      Actually in Korea they have a history of wearing special masks while criticizing the government..

  • by br00tus ( 528477 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @11:31AM (#37377126)
    South Korea is the free Korea. You know it is free because it has military bases of a foreign nation (the US) which is blessed by God scattered all over it. This law is good because it protects South Korea from the evil North Korea, whose military bases are only staffed by Koreans - they have no foreign military bases protecting their freedom. If South Koreans can go online and criticize the government without entering their national ID number, this might hurt freedom. Some South Korean freedom-haters tried to have elections [] in 1980. Thankfully, the military government went in and massacred all of these freedom-hating communists. Thankfully, US Ambassador Gleysteen and General Wickham authorized martial law in Gwangju after the massacre, for humanitarian reasons as they put it back then. I know North Korea is the evil Korea and South Korea is the great, freedom loving Korea, with US troops backing it. In fact five years ago, soldiers from the US air base were making friends [] with the local people in Gwangju. Keep showing those pictures on US TV of North Korean tanks and Kim Jong-Il whenever North Korea is mentioned, propaganda in the GDR was a little more subtle.
  • Most of me rejects the idea of forcing people to disclose who they are online for many reasons. There is a small part of me that thinks that the anonymity of the internet allows assholes to be assholes at a whole other level, and it wouldn't be a terrible idea for somebody to show up at their door with a crowbar once in a while.
  • by D H NG ( 779318 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @01:43PM (#37378558)
    This happened 2 years ago, and the Korean government already caputulated and gave YouTube an exemption [].
  • by Weedhopper ( 168515 ) on Monday September 12, 2011 @02:33PM (#37379212)
    Look at the date of the article! It's two years old.

If graphics hackers are so smart, why can't they get the bugs out of fresh paint?