Look at the name written on this signboard of a (probably) fried chicken restaurant (오마이치킨= Oh my chicken) . What do you think this is a parody of? It’s obviously not a literal translation of “오, 나의 치킨” or “오, 나의 닭”, right?
Of course, you would often hear Korean people saying “오 마이 갓!(Oh my God!)” in a joking manner even if they don’t really speak English, but looking at this 오마이치킨, I am sure 90% of all Korean people who use the Internet (which is … almost everybody) would think of the name “오마이뉴스”.
오마이뉴스(http://ohmynews.com) is an online newspaper that has the motto “Every Citizen is a Reporter(모든 시민은 기자다)” and it was founded 7 years ago in 2000. It’s an interesting form of media because about 20% of all the articles from Ohmynews.com are written by 55 freelance reporters who are mostly ordinary citizens, yet this online newspaper has such a big influence that it even had some obvious influence in the result of the presidential elections in December 2002.
Not everybody likes this newspaper because it’s very progressive in its views, but it is gaining wider and wider readership because people feel that other major daily newspapers are influenced too much by pressure from outside and it often publishes articles that you cannot find in other newspapers or articles that talk about the same topics but in a different point of view.
So, it would be no surprise if EVERYONE told me that they thought of 오마이뉴스 when they saw 오마이치킨 - it’s THAT influential, or at least its name is widely known. Ohmynews also has an English site for global news and its content is 100% contributed by citizen reporters from all over the world. Take a look at ” http://english.ohmynews.com/ ” if you are interested.
Well, that’s it for now. I’ll try to introduce some more topics that would be helpful for you to know in understanding the Korean culture, including these kind of ‘parodies’ found in signboards, so if you have any questions or requests, please let me know.