Hi, I’m 22 years old South Korean. Recently I found SOPA/PIPA act in U.S. Also, I found peaceful demonstration on Youtube, Wikipedia, and WordPress. I really feel admiration of you because here in Korea also happened similar kind of government acting.
1980’s South Korea was ruled by the general dictator ‘Jeon Doo Hwan’. Although Korea still accepted democracy at that time, he attempted a coup and ruled South Korea for 8 years, just like Chile’s Pinochet and Perú’s Alberto. However, being a dictator in democratic country wasn’t so easy as there were real journalists and democratically elected politicians. Thus, he devised some plans to justify his throne.
You can see this video with interest if you can speak Korean. If you feel like seeing North Korea’s Broadcasting, don’t worry. We feel the same.
As Jeon was a soldier, he pressed the press with his army and forced to use his propaganda, censoring media and even broadcasting companies to make people not to see his faults and praise him. He proceeded his plan by sending documents to the press. It’s called Report Guidance, and media in South Korea couldn’t help saying as he told to.
Actually, Jeon’s throne remained quite long because he used McCarthyism toward his enemy. If Jeon feels distressed to someone, it was easy to frame them as North Korea’s spy. As North Korea was the top enemy of South Korea (not anymore by the way), It really worked. Media was no exception, so he can control his media easily.
This photo was published in TIME.
In May 18th, 1979. There was a massacre in Gwangju city. A group of special force advanced Gwangju and butchered innocent civilians. Gwangju city was the center of anti-Jeon public opinion, so Jeon framed every civilian of Gwangju to be North Korean spy. What’s worse and desperate, The truth was not even known at that time. 80’s world had not seen iPhone or Twitter yet so news was only found in broadcasting and press, and those were what Jeon controlled. The massacre was revealed in 1990’s and some people still believe there was really a spy in Gwangju. We can see how bad the media control is by seeing this affair.
This photo was selected in Associate Press’s Top 100 Photos in 20th Century in 1999
Fortunately, there still were real Journalists and protesters in South Korea. By continuing protest like Libya and Egypt in 2011, Jeon finally stepped down from his throne. And South Korea people protects the law of Democracy preciously until now.
What I really want to say is this; If you let the government to censor your information, you let the government to censor you and your right to know. Also, censored information could easily be controlled, distorted and even not known by ones who are censoring the media. There gotta be some ways to protect creator’s copyright and censoring is the worst way that a country could act. All those I wrote were happened under the dictatorship nation, and I don’t think U.S. is under the dictatorship.
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