Figured out how to turn caps lock off.
Foreword by D_S:
Are these things supposed to introduce the actual authors or something? Okay, whoops, bit delayed there.
- Leader of GotWoot (rip)
- Got drunk at a con and tried to kill Sindalf (not cool)
- Is one of only two people I have on KakaoTalk (why did I ever download that shit?)
Onto the content, part 2 deals with translations. So, y’know, there’s some overlap with what the blog normally does.
PART 2 – THE TALE OF SAM OKYERE OR: HOW TO POLITICALLY/MONETARILY PROFIT OFF IGNANCE THROUGH OVER-SEXUALIZATION, FETISHIZATION AND MISTRANSLATION
Nicki Minaj wags and quivers her hips while prostrated on the ground on all fours. Two Korean models watch the screen, enraptured.
“He must be hard,” one model supposedly says.
“That must be tough for him,” was the real line, but the subtitles were slightly changed — a blatant attempt to arouse the emotions of the channel’s desperate, needy viewers.
“My pelvis is about to break,” another misleading translation reads. The model had actually said “It looks hard on their hips,” in reference to the twerking stunt moves Nicki Minaj and her gang had mastered.
With the fall of faithful fansubs for underground content, comes the rise of disingenuous corporate translations and content.
Blatant mistranslations at this level that would be deemed criminal in any fan translation community, but Korean fetishization channels have no issues with twisting words to their desired effect. And the viewers lap it up.
But they want more validation. Moreee!
This all comes in the wake of the Korean Hallyu wave, where Asian pop songs top America’s billboard charts with increasing frequency, breaking records and perhaps overtaking Japan as the most popular East Asian visual culture in America.
As a result, more and more videos spawn, feasting on the hopes and dreams of any K-fan who hopes to one day be noticed by oppa. Countless “Korean dates/marries an <insert nationality here>” videos now have millions of views.
But let’s skip the relationship videos and get to the good stuff. There are also countless “reaction” videos showing attractive Korean men staring at their computers thirstily, eyes glazing as they rake over the bodies of various dark-skinned singers and dancers, targeting black female fans who also want to be validated by oppa. Sexually.
The result? I imagine the corporate Korean overloads clasping their hands and laughing maniacally as they profit from both the validation and over-sexualization of the black woman.
Lil King’s hair was carefully styled, his facial features smoothly sculpted in a way reminiscent of a manwha character. After starting his Youtube channel, he soon dedicated his content to shyly reacting to black hip hop videos, showing an unthreatening and pure character react with abashed titillation, with slightly exaggerated acting as he watched the overtly sexual videos through his fingers which no doubt sexually excited and validated his colored female viewers:
“Big King is going to be focusing on other stuff now, I’ll do my best to give you content on my own,” Lil King said later in an uncharacteristically professional and serious video. His eyes betrayed a sense of calculated planning, a mature, quiet intensity and complexity of thought rather than the character of a shy naive boy who had never touched a girl, that he had portrayed in other videos. Was this just another character he had created to titillate the senses of the female viewer?
That brings me to the story of Sam Okyere, a black man from Ghana who had built his career as a TV personality who spoke against racism in Korea for over a decade. Okyere’s career and reputation recently burst into flames after he harshly criticized South Korea’s lack of awareness of the horrors of black face, upon seeing a picture of a group of highschoolers re-enacting the Ugandan coffin dance meme.
Koreans were angered and offended by his use of the English words “educate” and “ignorance”, which translate into Korean words with negative connotations when stuck into Google Translate:
Netizens were livid at the thought that Okyere would write disparaging comments under their noses. “You think we can’t read English????” they screamed:
They scoured through his public history and found an example of him allegedly “eye-raping” a Korean model wearing a dress in one variety show clip, screeching happily as they reamed him for perceived sexual harassment. But “worst of all”, they found him giving hearty agreement to the phrase, “once you go black you never go back,” in a picture where he was standing next to a Korean woman:
“This is sexual harassment!! How dare Sam point a finger at us when he lives such a prosperous life that we gave him despite his inferior skin color?!” Korean netizens bellowed. “We want our celebrities to be perfect!”
As of now, his once-frequent appearances on TV variety programs have stopped, and there have been petitions for his deportation.
To black women’s chagrin, local K-pop “news” channel “DKDKTV” covered this story and supported the implication that Sam was engaged in sexual harassment, using the most sexual interpretation of the phrase.
“Why are people using OUR phrases and telling us what it means? It’s not necessarily sexual. It can be about culture. Yes, it may have been sexual 20 years ago, but the phrase evolved,” exclaimed nearly every black woman.
“Stop pretending. This phrase is obviously about BBC,” a Korean commentator writes. “Us Koreans are very sensitive to sexual jokes.”
The Korean commentators, however, couldn’t give two fucks about reality. This English phrase meant what they said it meant, and it was definitely sexual:
I can’t help but think that this over-sexualization of foreigners (particularly black women) is what leads to assumptions that they are “open-minded” and ready for action, making them an easier target for rape.
“I love the muslim community, muslims are so beautiful and kind,” Jun Lee says in his video titled “Daud Kim” a defense video of said person.
Jun Lee, pandering to muslim K-pop stans looking for a new oppa after their old one was defiled, no doubt, recently published a video claiming indeed, that Kim had just made a simple “mistake”. Lee was a “17” year-old South Korean youtuber with his own sordid past. He had earlier been accused by the black female K-fan community of creating content to target black women’s desires for validation from Korean men, and was shown on video allegedly assaulting a black ex-love interest he thirsted for and had tried to create a fake YT relationship with. He’d largely fallen off since then, and had resorted to making defense videos and smaller interviews with a new American love interest.
“Shut the fuck up. Is your wig from Costco, bitch?” Jun Lee asked ChliGotSeoul on a public Instagram call, as she attempted to question how sincere his desire to “educate” Koreans about black women was, if he had failed to add Korean subtitles to his videos. He had attempted to weaponize stigmas and target her hair, a sensitive topic among black women due to long-set historical discrimination regarding its highly dense and coiled curl pattern. In the following video after the call with June, I recall seeing that the strong brashness of Chli’s face had disappeared as she sat with a quiet, vulnerable look of hurt. Being heavy set with unconventional looks, she had once stated she felt she had often suffered racism and discrimination more than her lighter skinned, thinner, and more conventionally attractive counterparts.
Blatant mistranslations even take the stage in documentaries. In “My Neighbor, Charles“, a Cameroonian refugee seemingly states this about ramen:
But what do the French speaking commentators reveal? That yet another corporate translation is full of shit, pushing a cultural agenda:
Considering the reaction Okyere got, this might have been a purposeful mistranslation intended to protect the refugee from scorn of the Korean public, but it’s not like they had to include this clip. Whatever the intent, the result was just another blatant manipulation to make Korea seem a more impressive nation in the eyes of Koreans and non-French speakers.
PART 3 – THE SIMULATION
It wasn’t long before richhobo69 and part of his crew returned from the long hiatus that was forced upon him by numerous allegations of rape.
This time, he arrived with an over-the-top, garishly made trailer for his rebuttal to the allegations:
“I never messaged them! They always messaged me!!” richhobo69 defended himself, slumped next to his lame-looking rapist enabler buddy, portraying himself as equally pathetic and innocent. A soft, lightly accented female voice behind a camera came, “Did you ever meet them?”
“No way, never!” richhobo69 and his stooge pleaded.
In “The Truth About Won Nation Victims”, richhobo69 and his accomplices spin a narrative of harassment by former fans, causing untold heaps of mental trauma to his girlfriend and his family.
In recent social media posts, a Somalian girl with doll-like features appeared as his new counterpart, claiming she would be the one to “educate” him on his misdeeds. In one video she appeared utterly mesmerized by him, as if his eyes held an oasis of peace. She stared at him as he twisted and improvised her appendage to appear silly and entertaining for the video. Perhaps she sees in him a future she always wanted, the type of person she wants to become.
In another video, richhobo69 had dropped his pants in the middle of the club in his typical dirty, nasty way, and she sternly commanded he don his pants a gesture that lovingly said “now is not the time”. In yet another, he dances around her, plants a kiss and the girl leaps into his lap, flicking off the camera as if to show their disdain for the world and all their haters and to orchestrate displays for social media of how kawaii they are:
Was this just the good ole trick of victimizing someone and acting like the victim themselves? Would planting these seeds of dishonesty help keep his shenanigans afloat on his path to widespread notoriety?
Other various instances of internal drama had already caused discord in the expose group, and I felt a flash of annoyance at the group for letting their emotions get the better of them, now introducing a motive for vindictiveness and obfuscating what was once the clear cut logic of the case.
Despite those hiccups, enraged commentators continue to curse them out and send them messages on social media. “How will this story line develop?” I wondered to myself. I have to admit, I sometimes feel unsure if this is just all entertainment or a proper documentation on people’s life events. As of September 13, 2020, none of the people mentioned in this series have gone to jail or experienced legal punishment for the above-mentioned allegations.
To quote AsToldByKenya:
Have you ever heard someone in a Youtube video say “leave a comment, I don’t care if it’s good or bad? All the Youtube algorithm is going to see is that you commented about Kenya. It is going to boost the video. For me, the negativity is not worth it to move that way. But for some people it is. For Jeffree Star, I think he got to the place where he realizes he can’t make all ya’ll happy and repair his reputation, but he can keep ya’ll talking about him because at the end of the day the checks look the same. It is so easy to make money off of ya’ll being mad.
It doesn’t make sense for Jeffree to rebrand as a good person, so he might as well give you something to talk about. When Jeffree Star posted that picture, he knew he would get ya’ll irate. We are playing in a simulation, and you play your role every time. It’s like “I just did this, your part of the script is to get upset and comment”. It’s a play, it’s a song and dance, it’s a simulation. When are we just going to say we do not care anymore? You enjoy the (hating) game too much.
At the end of the day we’re all talking about it. From far enough away, we all look like fans. He is pulling a stunt, and the stunt is for ya’ll to talk about him.
“Is there anyone willing to collaborate who isn’t messy and looking for clout? Asking for a friend. I’m the friend,” black former K-pop star KiyaBoyd posted recently, tongue-in-cheek. Perhaps not addressing these issues specifically, but it could be taken as general commentary on what the culture of “social influencing” has become.
Am I committing a sin or a betrayal by pointing out how much this all adds up to an interesting narrative, admitting I eagerly await each new video or post as if they were an installment of a new chapter? For wondering what would I and everyone comment with, as if in a simulation? After all, these channels, videos and profiles cannot persist without the pain or engagement of others. Every superhero needs a villain to exist.
I briefly wondered if these events would ever become common knowledge like the “bigger” Youtube dramas, and how many other dramatic narratives were playing out in other niche Youtube communities.
Turned slightly away from my camera in a dramatic posture, my face crumpled as I was taken in by the moment. Despite the fact that I was in a quiet and empty room, the memories of a love I’d once had reverberated in my mind as I relived the languish I had felt as a woman that had been a victim of passionate love, as I improvised the words of my monologue. “That was beautiful!!” my acting teacher said over Zoom, “True acting. You are in pain, but that’s what our audience wants to see and gain pleasure from, because it reminds them of some beautiful fleeting feeling inside themselves that they had once felt.”