Jonathan Watts, a writer for The Guardian, proclaimed in a January 24, 2003 article that the creative power of South Korea’s new media might have won victory for the incoming president, Roh Moo Hyun.
The new era of e-democracy emerged. The term e-democracy, known as digital democracy or Internet democracy, suggests greater and more active citizen participation enabled by the Internet, mobile communications, and other technologies in today’s representative democracy. It also entails more participatory or direct forms of citizen involvement to address public challenges.
E-democracy has not always supported the development of democracy in Korea. As Watts pointed out, Korea’s e-democracy needs safety checks. He said, “Although the new media have played a mostly positive role in democratizing South Korea in ways that other countries have not yet experienced before, its ambitions are in danger of running too far ahead of its resources and the establishment of safety checks.”
As Watts mentioned, Korea in the year of 2017 suffers from uncensored media content. Former U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon blamed fake news during his campaign for presidential election. He claimed that those fake news misrepresented him and made him drop bid for South Korean Presidency.
Fake news in Korea are produced, delivered, and spread throughout the country in the form of social media and physical fabricated newspapers and flyers. E-democracy has been dead in Korea. Democratic discussions should be based on facts and truths, not what they want to believe. Korean people tend to be keen on finding information that is aligned with their political and social views, regardless of its veracity. That is why producing fake news and proliferation of them are one of the most serious issues in Korea now.