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Korea Most Known Abroad for Biz Groups, Hot Temper

Posted November. 18, 2008 03:10,   


An online survey has found that Korea is best known throughout the world for its leading conglomerates Samsung, LG and Hyundai, while its people are most known for their quick temper.

The Dong-A Ilbo commissioned the world’s leading search engine Google to conduct surveys on keywords that best represent 30 member countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and China, as well as their people.

The names most associated with Korea were Samsung; LG; Hyundai; kimchi; StarCraft; porcelain; textiles; Boa (singer); taekwondo; and personal computer games.

Korea was the only country among major economies such as the United States, China, Japan, the United Kingdom, France and Germany to have the names of companies among the top three keywords. This showed higher awareness of Korean corporations in the world.

The Korean people, meanwhile, were mainly described as “quick-tempered and workaholics,” followed by “hardworking and ambitious” and “friendly and kind.” Another interesting keyword was “early morning prayers.”

For the survey, Google Korea ran an automatic search Sunday evening on hundreds of billions of Web pages after typing in a series of questions in English on what a country or its people is known for.

Japan was most known for kimono; Mount Fuji; ninjas; manga (comic books); sushi; and electronic goods. The Japanese were best known for their high life expectancy and materialistic pursuits and low risk of heart disease.

The most common words associated with China were ancient civilization; kind people; the Great Wall of China; terracotta warriors; the Yangtze River; and exotic recipes. Words linked to the Chinese people included passionate about learning, culture and diverse natural remedies.

The list for the United States was unique in that its top 10 keywords were all related to culture, beginning with exhibitions and festivals followed by concerts, experimental arts, entertainment, historic monuments, memorials and museums. Global Web users most often cited the tenacity and tolerance of Americans.

mungchii@donga.com jhk85@donga.com