Monday, November 25, 2013

Denial of service, then and now

A bit late with this, I know (sorry for such light posting lately), but in the news last week was the tale of businesses in Bali banning entry to Korean customers:
Hotels, retailers and restaurants on the resort island of Bali are rejecting Korean customers due to some who flout regulations to make the most of their stay, according to South Korean TV network SBS.

Korean tourists are reportedly finding new and creative methods of vacationing on the cheap at the Indonesian vacation destination, which is frustrating local business owners to no end.
There's a discussion thread about it here that was pointed out to me (read it if you dare; it consists of lots of 'Koreans deserve it because they do it in Korea too' kinds of comments). This isn't the only place that has shown annoyance with Korean tourists, as Scott Burgeson noted in Fukuoka a few years ago; on a similar topic, he posted a chat with a woman who worked as a receptionist at a Korean-run karaoke club in Jakarta almost 9 years ago.

Upon hearing of what had happened in Bali, I couldn't help but be reminded of a passage in Jo Yoong-hee's article "The Relationship between Joseon Envoys and Western Missionaries in Beijing in the Early 18th Century: Focusing on Lee Gi-ji's Iramyeon-gi."*

In it, he describes Lee Gi-ji's visit to Beijing as part of a diplomatic mission in 1720, and notes the friendly relations between the missionaries and Koreans. Forty years later, however, Hong Dae-yong wrote about his visit to Beijing in 1765 as part of a mission and described how the hospitality of the missionaries towards Koreans had changed:
Since the Emperor Kangxi (r. 1662-1722), Joseon's diplomats used to visit the Catholic churches in Beijing and to be welcomed by the missionaries. The missionaries used to show exotic paintings, icons and other objects in the churches and even give the visitors presents brought from Europe. Joseon diplomats year by year wanted more exotic goods and experiences at the churches, so visiting Catholic churches in Beijing became the diplomats' conventional practice. Our country's custom seemed like arrogance, exaggeration and maliciousness, and the diplomats from Joseon often neither behaved politely nor paid back for the presents they received. Moreover, their followers were often uneducated, smoked and spat inside the churches, and touched things without allowance, which made the missionaries, who liked cleanliness, angry.

Recently, the Western missionaries became to dislike visitors from Joseon more than before. The missionaries refused to do the Joseon visitors a favor. They did not treat the visitors with heart.
The article goes on to describe how things had changed over 40 years: "Whereas Lee Gi-ji was welcomed by the missionaries without any advance notice of his visit, the visitors from Joseon in Hong's days were not allowed to enter the church even when they asked to see the church."

I guess you have to hate it when a bunch of idiots ruin things for everyone.

*일암연기 / 一菴燕記, in Hangeul / hanja, for the curious.

(Hat tip to Kelly.)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The part about Koreans helping other Koreans cheat Indonesian hotels and setting up blogs to spread the word reminds me of how Korean hagwons and their organization(s) tell each other at their meetings how to cheat native Eng. speaking teachers(their employees) when they arrive, live, and work in S. Korea.