The Loneliest Country in the World?

17 12 2010

This is really, really sad… The South Korean developer, Nabix, has released an iPhone app for a virtual girlfriend:

Called “Honey It’s Me!” the $1.99 app provides a 20-something virtual girlfriend named Mina– one made of actual flesh and bone– that calls and leaves video messages four times a day. Mina will also shower the lonely heart with additional love messages– from a library of 100 clips recorded by the model– throughout the day including “Good night, sweet dreams” and “Are you sleeping? It’s time for breakfast!

I really hope the intention of the 80,000 downloaders (per day!?!?) are merely for entertainment or curiosity. But then who am I kidding. We are talking about the country that makes Christmas about couples as opposed to family. The land where the taboo on plastic surgery seems more and more obviated. The land that is technologically so advanced, that perhaps, real human interaction is being forgotten.

This is proof that never is supply and demand not morally charged. Just because there is a demand, does not mean that it should be filled. Our desires are often skewed and is in need of a remedy, not of satiation. In my bewilderment, there is only one thing left to say.

Men. Please…. grow a set.

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2 responses

11 01 2011
Ryan

Dude, there’s always lots of social interaction going on in Korea. If you ask me it’s one of the countries with a culture where they truly value caring for your friends and taking care of them.

It’s one of the more sociable countries in the world if you ask me. And don’t diss the family values of Korea, you’ll see some of the most family oriented people there. When I was in Korea I can recall having a 27-28 year old Korean roommate who still goes out with his family every weekend. Family is pretty strong within traditional Korean values, can’t knock it. Even in the modern day, Korean families are very involved in raising their children.

I’d say from my opinion that Korean culture is a very emotional/passionate culture, you can say materialistic in some ways because of the emphasis of buy-buy-buy couples events but still, I like how emotional and expressive they are.

Korea isn’t a lonely country. Quite the opposite. It’s a very happening and eventful nation with lots of things going on, lots to discover. I think you suddenly made a sweeping generalization based on some silly application made by a S.Korean developer.

It’s a LOT OF FUN living in Korea. My life in Korea was the happiest time of my life. When I was in Seoul I felt like it was heaven, it was that good. My first 4 years in San Francisco is no match for the 4 months that I spent in Korea, it was that good.

11 01 2011
Paul Park

Ryan,
thank you for your comment, but I must say that you miss the point of my entry entirely.

I do agree with you that Korea is a very social country, it’s culture is communal far more than any western country. And yet, my post tries to bring out the difference between social interaction versus intimate connection. Ask any sociologist or psychologists, they will agree that though there is overlap, there is certainly a distinction between the two. Have you ever thought that maybe such plethora of social interaction could be an indicator of the inner loneliness of each interacting individual?

And I also agree that Korea is still very family oriented, but this support is tangential at best. It has little to do with the issue at hand.

And I am sincerely proud that you enjoyed living in Korea, but I do NOT think 80,000 downloaders per day indicate that my comment is a “sweeping generalization”. I’d say it is, at least, “statistically warranted.” Also, if 18 years of living and observation is “sweeping” then I guess I made a “sweeping” analysis, but what it is not is a generalization.

But all in all, I say you miss the point of my entry because this entry is not a critique on Korean traditional or communal culture, but of the blindness to economic morality. The main point of the entry, for your convenience, is encapsulated in “Just because there is a demand, does not mean that it should be filled.” And also, it is not a critique on Korean family values, but a critique on Korean modern culture, particularly, that of men. Thus, the last statement.

Please reread the post without reading in assumptions that are not there.

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