15 years of gangster behavior by ghost story forces… The biggest victims were small and medium-sized merchants

Ms. Yang, who runs a small and medium-sized travel agency, cannot forget what happened 15 years ago. In April 2008, when the Korean government decided to expand US beef imports, it was at a time when rumors like, “If you eat an American cow with mad cow disease, you’ll get a hole in your head,” swept the country. ‘Ghost story supporters’ said that so-called conservative newspapers such as ‘Jojung-dong’ should be shut down, and collectively made threatening phone calls to advertisers of these newspapers.

Prior to the summer peak season, Yang published a 5-column black-and-white advertisement in the Chosun Ilbo on June 2 of the same year토토사이트, with detailed descriptions of overseas travel products. Newspaper advertisements were the most important marketing tool for small and medium-sized travel agencies. On the day the advertisement was posted, threatening phone calls such as “If the advertisement is not stopped, the travel agency may be closed,” instead of making reservation inquiries, have been pouring in from the morning. So did other travel agencies that carried advertisements. With an automatic internet connection program, he accessed the homepage up to 7,000 times, protested, and paralyzed the server. In a phone call with this magazine, Mr. Yang said, “As the summer peak season was blown due to threats, sales decreased by more than 40%, and some employees left the company.” I can’t understand,” he said.

One of the phenomena that appear whenever ghost stories spread is attacking advertisers in the media. In order to understand the reality of ‘advertiser intimidation’ during the 2008-2009 mad cow disease incident, this paper analyzed the judgment related to the ‘National Campaign for Media Consumer Sovereign (Eonsoju)’, the judgment on 16 people who boycotted advertisers, the prosecution’s indictment, and the investigation. We obtained and analyzed the prosecutor’s opinion and advertisers’ confirmation of damage. At the time, it was small and medium-sized advertisers that suffered the most damage. This is because advertising in the relevant media is almost the only means of sales, and there is no countermeasure. It was as if the biggest victims of the ‘fukushima contaminated water ghost story’ were fishermen, fish market merchants, and small businesses such as raw fish restaurants.

◇ Small and medium-sized merchants who became the biggest victims of ghost storiesThe data at the time contain intact the damage of small and medium-sized businesses and merchants, for whom ‘newspaper advertisements’ were almost the only method of sales and sales. It started in May 2008 with the ‘Jojung-dong National Closure Campaign (later renamed Unsoju)’, a cafe opened after an Internet portal. The cafe’s management and members started pressuring them by taking the coordinates of the advertisers to focus the protest calls on. They called it ‘homework’.’Boindang’, located in Jongno, Seoul at the time, was a 70-year-old seal specialty store with five employees. For decades, the Chosun Ilbo published advertisements 2-3 times a month. It is said that most of the sales came from newspaper advertisements. However, in June 2008, after posting two 5-page advertisements, threatening phone calls poured in. “Don’t place ads in Jojoong-dong. If you must do it, place an advertisement in the Hankyoreh and Kyunghyang.”In 2008-2009, at the time of the mad cow disease rumor, there were about 800 companies on the boycott list, regardless of size. ‘Company D’, a sales agency for apartments and shopping malls from 5 construction companies, also suffered from hundreds of phone calls after advertising for sale in newspapers. One of the construction companies that had entrusted company D with sales as a sales agent failed to sell them, and went bankrupt in July of that year. A urology clinic paralyzed the hospital as more than 200 complaints were received on the day the advertisement was published. The appointment of urgent surgery patients and return patients was completely paralyzed. In an opinion submitted to the court at the time, the prosecutor who investigated the ‘advertiser intimidation case’ said, “(Defendants) made a list (to be attacked) every morning and posted it on the Internet, as if they were feeding a hungry beast. The damage was more severe for small and small businesses,” he said.◇ Demand for “Advertising on the Hankyoreh and Kyunghyang instead of Cho Joong-dong”Eon So-ju and others argued that collective protest calls against advertisers are ‘legitimate consumer rights’ and ‘freedom of expression’. In reality, the purpose was to change the media landscape in an advantageous way by pressuring media outlets that did not suit their taste, shutting their mouths, and pressuring certain media outlets, which were their allies, to advertise.Those who were boycotting advertisers in Jojoong-dong demanded that a vitamin beverage company stop advertising. An official from this company met with a member of the boycott movement and conveyed the company’s position, “Considering the effect of advertising, it is impossible to stop advertising in Jojung-dong.” Then, they demanded, “Then, the Hankyoreh and the Kyunghyang Shinmun should run advertisements on the same scale as Jojoong-dong.”At the time of the mad cow disease incident, those who actively participated in threatening to stop advertisements were convicted in the Supreme Court for obstruction of business. The court even said of them, “It took the form of collective harassment or attack, and it came to a force that severely suppressed the free will of advertisers.”

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