Wednesday, March 05, 2014

SBS: 'Is Korea their Paradise? Blond hair blue eyes' part 1

The 2005 English Spectrum Incident

Part 1: English Spectrum and 'Ask The Playboy'
Part 2: The Kimchiland where it’s easy to sleep with women and make money
Part 3: English Spectrum shuts down as Anti-English Spectrum is created
Part 4: How to hunt foreign women
Part 5: Did the foreigners who denigrated Korean women throw a secret party?
Part 6: The 'Ask The Playboy' sexy costume party
Part 7: Stir over ‘lewd party’ involving foreigners and Korean women
Part 8: The 2003 post that tarred foreign English teachers as child molesters
Part 9: Netizens shocked by foreign instructor site introducing how to harass Korean children
Part 10: 'Recruit a Yankee strike force!'
Part 11: The Daum signature campaign: 'Let's kick out low quality foreign instructors!'
Part 12: Movement to expel foreign teachers who denigrated Korean women
Part 13: "Middle school girls will do anything"
Part 14: Netizens propose 'Yankee counter strike force'
Part 15: Segye Ilbo interview with the women from the party, part 1
Part 16: Segye Ilbo interview with the women from the party, part 2
Part 17: Web messages draw Koreans’ wrath
Part 18: Thai female laborers and white English instructors
Part 19: KBS Morning Newstime: 'I can also suffer from the two faces of the internet'
Part 20: AES: Grandfather Dangun is wailing in his grave!
Part 21: 'Regret' over the scandal caused by confessions of foreign instructors
Part 22: "Korean men have no excuse"
Part 23: "Unfit foreign instructors should be a 'social issue'"
Part 24: Growing dispute over foreign English instructor qualifications
Part 25: 'Clamor' at foreigner English education site
Part 26: Foreign instructor: "I want to apologize"
Part 27: No putting brakes on 'Internet human rights violations'
Part 28: "They branded us as whores, yanggongju and pimps," part 1
Part 29: "They branded us as whores, yanggongju and pimps," part 2
Part 30: Don't Imagine
Part 31: Anti-English Spectrum founder's statement
Part 32: 'Foreign instructor' takes third place
Part 33: Art From Outsider's Point of View
Part 34: U.S. Embassy warns Americans of threats near colleges
Part 35: Internet real name system debated
Part 36: Dirty Korean women who have brought shame to the country?
Part 37: Invasion of Privacy Degrades Korean Women Twice Over
Part 38: 60 unqualified native speaking instructors hired for English instruction
Part 39: The rising tide of unqualified foreign instructors
Part 40: Warrant for Canadian English instructor who molested hagwon owner
Part 41: MBC Sisa Magazine 2580: "Korea is a paradise"
Part 42: Foreign instructor: "In two years I slept with 20 Korean women."
Part 43: Viewers shocked by shameless acts of unqualified foreign instructors.
Part 44: Warrant for the arrest of a man in his 30s for breaking into home of foreign instructors
Part 45: [Cultural criticism] Hongdae club day lewd party incident
Part 46: Unqualified English instructors seen as major problem here
Part 47: Investigation of the realities of 'foreign instructors' methods for luring Korean women'
Part 48: Broadcast announcement: 'For foreign instructors, is Korea a paradise for women?'
Part 49: To white English instructors, the Republic of Korea is a paradise
Part 50: "If they're white, it's okay?" Lots of English instructor frauds...
Part 51: A new message from Anti English Spectrum
Part 52 : SBS: 'Is Korea their Paradise? Blond hair blue eyes' part 1

[Note: The episode files have been re-uploaded.]

The last several posts in this [intermittent] series have been building up to the February 19, 2005 broadcast of the SBS 'investigative news program' 그것이 알고싶다 (I want to know that)'s episode about English Teachers, titled "Is Korea their Paradise? Report on the Real Conditions of Blond-haired, Blue-eyed Teachers."

The show can be downloaded in a rar archive here (in four parts - 1, 2, 3, 4 - download them all and click on the first part to extract the file).

While KBS had already done a reasonably balanced 5 minute morning report, and MBC a more negative 15 minute late-night report, SBS decided to spend a full hour detailing the threat to Korean society white, male English teachers posed.

The show opens with the image above as menacing music plays and the show's host narrates, 'An internet site for foreign instructors working in Korea. Last December posts denigrating Korean women were posted.' We're then shown examples of what was written:

That's right - they couldn't be bothered to find the original sentences written in English; instead they translated them again from Korean into broken English and had a native speaker read them (with obvious difficulty).

We're then told that at another site, a post detailing how to molest students was put up which breaks down methods for students by age. The image on the show is taken from Anti-English Spectrum, where the post was copied and disseminated to the public:

The narration then switches to English: 'Play a game, and make the boys win. They win a prize and leave class a few minutes early. Lock the door.'

'When you are alone, that is your cue. Give her a massage.'

'When you are in your place making dinner for them, yes, cook with rum or something.'

We're then told that this made netizens angry and they formed an anti site (Anti English Spectrum). The problem site (English Spectrum) is now down.

And so begins a 50 minute "Report on the Real Conditions of Blond-haired, Blue-eyed Teachers" - with a re-enactment of about the worst thing on the internet written by a foreign English teacher (which may have never happened). The producers spend the rest of the episode trying to provoke or outrage the audience by focusing entirely on the negative aspects of the white males teaching English in Korea (with, as the title of the episode puts it, 'blond hair and blue eyes'). In fact, when the title appeared during the show it was compressed, reducing it to purely racial terms:

"Blond hair, blue eyes - is Korea their paradise?"

Our host, Jang Jin-yeong, appears and promises that this episode will find out the truth about the white men who made these posts, and about the foreigners teaching our children, many of whom are unfit or unqualified to teach. The best place to start is, of course, a certain university area in Seoul, and we're shown images of white men hanging out with Korean women on the street of Hongdae.

They talk with a foreign instructor there who is a college professor in Suwon who worked in a recycling factory in his home country:

'I teach English. I work at many companies too. Every foreigner does, and the government knows it, too, so I'm not telling you any secrets.'

The narrator tells us that "Foreigners can easily work illegally in Korea."

They ask someone who's a student if he's taught English; when he says yes, they ask what kind of visa he has, and he says a student visa, and – after a part of their conversation is obviously edited out - that he taught at two different universities in Korea. They also show him walking away with a Korean woman. In fact, several such couples are shown, while the host talks about the teacher's inability to grasp his illegal behaviour.

More white men with Korean women on the street are shown, as well as 'hot' scenes in a club. The host talks about how easy it is for foreigners and what their true purpose in going to Hongdae is.

Michael (English instructor): 'About an hour and a half' [on site sound] [Subtitles: to pick up a girl]. Dubbed sound: I'm not saying you're going to bring home a beautiful girl, but if you want to have a one night stand with anybody, I'm sure that you can.

Then we are presented with Andy, who's listed as an English instructor:

He says, "At first a girl will think: wow he's American or he’s a foreigner, I can go talk to him and learn some English and be friends, but the foreigner's thinking 'It's a girl that I could have sex with… to go out with. That's it.'" Watching this more than once, it becomes clear that the person is nodding at all the wrong times; the conversation has been dubbed.

This is followed by another obviously overdubbed conversation read by a native speaker but clearly written by a Korean: "90% of the guy who come to Hongik University Street are English teachers." (This is about the opposite of the reality that most of the men who go to Hongdae are Korean.)

As can be seen from this photo, the foreigner pictured in the scene with the overdubbed English above is the same guy who re-enacted the 'student molestation guide' which opened the show.

Suddenly, Andy appears again but is listed as 'Korean American' and speaks fluent Korean, saying that guys just go to Hongdae to pick up. It then becomes obvious that Andy's first appearance was dubbed over with another native speaker's conversation.

It then reveals the evil guide 'Making out in Korean,' a book which shall live in infamy, and shows some key phrases like 'You’re sexy,' 'Your… is/are beautiful,' 'Look into my eyes,' 'Take your… off!' 'Don’t be shy,' 'Close your eyes,' 'Turn off the light.'

In the next interview it's implied that the teacher being spoken to is sleeping with the students who are mentioned.
Tomi (Canadian English teacher): My youngest student was maybe, 21? My oldest one is maybe 38.
Interviewer: She must get married.
"She used to. She was a student there."
Up next... Hey! Andy’s back!

And he's a 'foreign instructor' again, but has a new voice which speaks English slowly: 'I have sex around 50 Korean girls in a year. Usually to have sex 2 or 3 every week.' It's good to see that SBS will find native speakers willing to divulge such stories about their personal lives, even if they have to make it all up. It would be laughable if it hadn't been so effective, as we will see.

This is followed by shots of blue eyed men and Korean women getting into taxis together.

 Then the next day they interview Jon, a Canadian English teacher.
-When you came to Korea, how much luggage did you...
'Very little. A travel bag. [They show a backpack sitting in the corner.] I had absolutely no plans when I came here. Originally it was to travel.' [Korean translation: He started working as an English instructor in order to travel.]
 -Normally how many hours do you teach?
'Around 4 maybe a day.'
-Do you have a written schedule?
'Unfortunately I don’t, which is why I sometimes miss classes (laughs).'
He goes on to say he has shot stuff for TV and other random jobs.
-When you go back to Canada, do you think you’ll be able to teach children?
'There’s a lot of overqualified teachers in Canada. So it’s a very hard market to get into.'
-But you can't really teach without a teaching certificate.
'Right. I would need to get certification if I wanted to teach in Canada.'
-You don’t have special preparation for class?
'I shower. That’s my preparation for going to class, you know?'
'If you’re working too hard you can't really enjoy what you're making. So, I prefer working a couple of days a week, a couple of hours a day, enjoy myself, every now and again travel.'
He teaches elementary school students and says he makes 3 million a month, and doesn’t work Monday or Wednesday. He's working illegally and not paying tax. He's asked how he feels when he sees a cop on the street, and he says he doesn't feel scared, and that there's never been an immigration crackdown.

He then prepares to go out, and says the easiest place to pick up is Itaewon , the hardest is Apgujeong, the place where it’s 50-50 is Hongdae.

The host tells viewers: 'Earning money easily and with no fear, for blue eyed foreigners Korea is a paradise.'

MacGrey (American elementary school teacher): 'The teachers I meet here who work illegally are here and they're gone. They don’t settle down for a year or two in Korea because the risk is too high. They come, they make a few million won, and they go to Thailand for a year. They sort of use Korea as a cash machine at a bank.'

Bob (Irish teacher): 'Korea pays the most in Asia. They're traveling, they realize they could go to Korea for a year, save money, and keep traveling.'

Erin (businessman): They don't do enough background checks so they're not hiring professional teachers. They're just hiring people who want to come and have fun or save some money and have fun. So Korea has that reputation of come here, save money, party and have fun.

The host returns to talk about teachers who see Korea as a cash machine and paradise and who aren’t qualified – but more than education problems are problems associated with them teaching our children.

Two informers - hagwon students - tell of an unbelievable incident at an English Hagwon.

There they have an American teacher and a small number of students, so they get along well. They would often eat and drink alcohol with their teacher. After school they had a party and 20 students came and they bought foreign alcohol, tequila, some other strange alcohol, and went to the teacher's house.

There was a first year high school girl there. People got drunk and passed out and the girl was discovered in the teacher's bed and their clothes were on the floor.

Menacing music plays as the camera pans across the sleeping couple, clothes on the floor, and the empty alcohol bottles.

And – he also rolled green leaves in white paper and suggested they all smoke it – it was marijuana. The high school girl smoked it too.

 (Don't try rolling tobacco in toilet paper at home!)

SBS then heads to the hagwon, and finds that 'Peter' teaches classes of at least 10 university students or high school students who are good at English conversation. They follow him as he teaches privates and interviews a parent of one of his students ( an elementary student) who pays him 250,000 won a month for 3 days a week. When asked if he knows it's illegal, the father says yes. But what can he do?

SBS then shows up at his house with the police and a translator.
-We've been informed you smoked marijuana with students. Tell him if he moves we can punish him, don't move.
'Shouldn't I have a lawyer?'
-Tell him that under Korean law a lawyer doesn't accompany him.
They find a pipe and he tells them how he uses it .
'Very relaxing and if I have a lot of stress, it's healthier.'
-When did you smoke it?
'Three weeks ago.'
-Did you know that smoking marijuana in Korea is illegal?
'Yeah. I didn’t know it as a fact, but I had an idea.'
-Have you smoked marijuana with your students?

-Do you have a student named __?
'Yes, I taught her for about a year.'
-Have you ever drunk with her?
'Yes I have. We had a party one time and there was tequila there, but I can’t say whether she drank it or not, I don’t know.'
-Do you have a Korean girlfriend?
'No, not like a serious one.'
Menacing music then plays as photos, presumably from his house, of Korean women are shown.

He's next taken to the police station and fingerprinted.
-What do you expect next?
"I expect everything to be fine since I don’t think there’s a problem here. That is healthier, [it's] very unhealthy smoking cigarettes."
Drug tests results see him booked for breaking the drug control law and an investigation into whether his students were involved.

We're then told that there are more victims.

We're told a Canadian English teacher sexually assaulted a middle school second grader who was at his hagwon.

A phone conversation with someone working at a hagwon reveals that something happened when she was in second grade, that it didn't happen at the hagwon, that she was invited to a house to study English, and that she moved to another hagwon afterward. The subtitles reveals that what happened was '(sexual assault)', though those words are never spoken in the phone interview we hear. After seeing at least three conversations having been obviously dubbed, you'll have to forgive me for being skeptical of the story above.

Of course, above is a description of the first third or so of the program, which is just getting started, as we will see in the next post.


Matthew Lang said...

Any chance you could re-upload the mediafire links please?

matt said...

I've re-uploaded them. Sorry about that - I couldn't see a problem from my end. Thanks for pointing it out.