Ok, so this is an incredibly broad topic, because there are so many different forms of advertisement, not just in Korea, but everywhere in the world. Doing a short video about all that Korea has to offer in terms of advertisement is impossible, so we just talked about some of the things that stood out for us.

One of the things we didn’t mention, though, but we discussed with each other, was how cosmetics are marketed here. Now, I haven’t seen all of the cosmetic ads in both Canada and Korea, but for some reason I remember Canadian makeup ads seeming all scientific and stuff. People in lab coats with clipboards being like “we found the scientific formula to make you not have uglies” with chemical compounds silhouetted on the screen. The doctor is always a beautiful blonde girl with her hair in a bun with thin metal framed glasses. It’s all sciencey and stuff. In Korea, though, it seems like the cosmetics ads are more…nature based? Like “holy shit! I found this fresh fruit right off this tree! Let me crack this badboy in half and rub its insides on my face.” And they don’t even rub it on their face. They delicately dab their finger in it and then dab their face as well. Then they splash a boatload of water. So much splashes! But it’s so natural! Straight from Mother Nature! Is it just me? Maybe I remember ads differently:

Side note: we finished this video SO EARLY compared to our other videos. We usually film, edit, and publish TL;DRs on the same day. We thought this week, though, that we were going to be in Japan for the second part of our project….buuuuut it turns out that Japan is supposed to have another crazy storm happening the SAME DAY that we’re supposed to fly in. What is it with us and our bad luck for weather? I think Mother Nature is telling us to stay in Korea. Ha! Anyhow, we filmed this early so we can get this up before we went to Japan, and it turns out we didn’t need to film so early. Huzzah! We should be going NEXT week, though. I’m just afraid of mentioning that out loud in case Mother Nature reads this blog, which I doubt she does. I’m sure she has other cool stuff to read instead. I heard she was vegan. Just saying.

Another thing we didn’t mention that we find really interesting is TV advertisements. Namely, they’re not cutting the TV show into pieces all of the time. In Canada, it’s like, here’s 6 minutes of the TV show, and then here’s two minutes of ads, with another 6 minutes or so, and another 2 minutes of ads. In Korea, though, in an hour-long program, the show will air uninterrupted for its duration, 45 minutes or so, and then ads will be shown AFTERWARDS for 15 minutes or so. Isn’t that brilliant? Think about North American shows for a second, and how the show is edited with commercials in mind.

And the person….who will be leaving…MasterChef…today….is………….
….and the person….who will be leaving….MasterChef….today….is….

Oh man those shows are so terribly edited. Holy hell! I hate it so terribly. But the shows here in Korea aren’t edited with that evil-ness in mind. HOWEVER, because of the lack of commercials during the programming, you might notice a boatload of shameless product placements in the videos themselves. Excuse me: just let me hold this Pepsi with my fingertips as I show the logo for all to see. AH! That was so refreshing, wasn’t it?

Last thing I want to mention, going back to small business advertising: we feel this the most whenever we come back from Tokyo, but we really hate those inflatable balloons outside of restaurants and noraebangs on the sidewalks of Korea. If you’ve been here, you know what I’m talking about. So many shops have them. Big inflatable things eight feel tall saying “Noraebang here!” or “Salon here!” outside of all of the businesses. Walking on the sidewalk sometimes feels like a modern day slalom. It’s tacky. Tokyo doesn’t have it. I don’t think it’s particularly interesting, and it just makes the place look cheaper. Let me know if you agree.

Yeah! So that’s it for this week’s TL;DR. Let us know how things are in your country and if you noticed any differences when you were traveling elsewhere. Yay! But before we go, let’s leave you with this stellar piece of honest advertising:


Also, let us know what you thought of the ending of this week’s TL;DR. We feel like you guys leave some really great comments, and we’d like to include those in our videos in the future, where we can talk about them a bit, and just show our thanks for your engagement. If it was lame, umm, don’t be afraid to tell us. We can take it!

Otherwise, make sure you click on this pretty button down here, so we can share some more cool stuff with you for our FAVORITE section of the week. We love doing these TL;DRs. Thanks for watching them, guise!

  1. Hey I love the comments at the end of the video!! But maybe 3 is a bit much? I think 1 is enough. Otherwise we’ll just zone out….

  2. Celebrity advertising in Finland can be boiled down to exactly one thing: Hockey players. That’s all we have. Poor Selänne’s stuck doing weird, slightly creepy, way-too-long milk commercials.

  3. Very interesting to read how commercials vary from country to country. As a rule of thumb, I don’t buy products advertised by celebrities because it make them untrustworthy to me. They are getting paid to push a product they most likely never used until they had to endorse it.

  4. I think commercials are a bit annoying all across the globe, but some countries do make an effort to better adapt commercial breaks in the network schedules just to make them a little more bearable. Unfortunately Romania (where I currently live) is not one of them. Except for the ones on public networks and on demand channels, every single piece of tv programming is butchered to make room for commercials.
    The most watched show here, which is the Romanian version of The Voice, is probably the worst edited one. They stretch it so much here with 10 minute commercial breaks every 15 minutes, add that with 5 minute previews of what’s gonna happen after each break and a shit load of product placement. It’s such a waste of time that it makes it almost unbearable to watch.
    By the way, I saw that Korea has it’s own version of the Voice too, and I was wondering if you guise watch it. I think it’s a good thing for Korea to start promoting people that are different and to show you don’t have to look like a kpop star to be as talented or even more. Anyway, it’s really cool that you can watch something on tv over there that’s not filled with adds during the content airtime.

  5. Today, there was an article about SMOG in China and that it’s so extreme at the moment that even Seoul is affected by it. That’s why nobody should go out at the moment. So, what’s it like in Seoul right now?

  6. AppleCider ChocolateCinnamon-b

    I have a question for TL;DR. I’m currently trying to learn Korean. I’ve already familiarized myself with Hangul and can read it (very slowly). and I can say very basic words, but I’m trying to find a faster way to build up my vocabulary but whenever I search “Korean word games” I can only find the generic flash card memorization and other boring methods where they dump categorized words and tell you to remember. ARE THERE ANY FUN WAYS?! No Korean Scrabble?
    No fun computer games for toddlers? (which I had when I was younger, it was called kindergarten jump start)

  7. IDEA FOR VIDEO: a co-lab with My Korean Husband! Maybe about their recent move and how easy it is for foreigners to get settled in Korea? Is it different in Seoul versus the country? Did you find community at your jobs or in other ways that made it easier? How long was it until you felt like Korea was home for you? Was there was a definite moment that you felt comfortable?

  8. So Ji Sub is promoting a bra for the brand, VIVIEN. Totally normal xD


  9. You mentioned commercials involving fridges and all I could think of was this, one of the best commercials ever.


  10. omg i’m crying at that commercial

  11. Cindy Almond

    Wow, this is soooo long. Had a few comments to the video and other responses, hope I’m not being too repetitive:
    1. That CABI commercial was crazy long. Any longer and it’d be an infomercial, except without the info. In the US, ads are generally short and sometimes have a shorter version for … different commercial breaks, I guess. Our longest ads are generally the ones for prescription drugs, and this is mostly because they have to read the warning label, which takes about a minute and a half, and they want to spend at least as much time on the upside.
    2. We have an unusual ad situation during the Super Bowl (the final playoff game of the American football season). Since ad time during the game is really expensive, advertisers put up their best work in those slots, which has led to awards for the best commercial debuted during a certain year’s Super Bowl and even to hyping the commercials that are going to appear. “Make sure you watch the Super Bowl so you can see our hilarious new ad!”
    3. Someone mentioned that in Poland, commercial networks have frequent commercial breaks while public networks only show commercials between shows. It’s that way in the US, too, except there’s only one public network (PBS), and it makes most of its money from telethons and wealthy benefactors. (Incidentally, radio is the same way, except they have commercial breaks in their programming and still need fund drives.)
    4. Not quite on topic, but why does CF mean “commercial” to Koreans? I’ve tried to guess what it stands for, but I always come up blank.
    Sorry; I tried to keep it short.

  12. Can you guys talk about kim yuna’s medal placement in sochi olympics? Everyone in Korea is going crazy cuz of that.

  13. can you guys please talk about how korea ((and you guise)) reacted to the women’s figure skating results in the sochi olympics??? were there protests or any accidents involving angry kim-yuna fans? what do you guise think about it? thanks so much guise ^^~*

  14. SAMSUNG!!!!!!!!! Gosh I don’t know if anyone notices, but in EVERY modern drama they use Samsung phones. Also in a Ukiss video I believe they’re like “look at me using my Samsung watch.” “Let me show you my Samsung phone.” “Oh my I love my Samsung tablet!”
    Gosh that is so annoying sometimes!!!
    Or the Samsung commercials of Dramafever. Its like a 20 second ad where you can look around at the items but the timer is going by SO SLOW. So instead of a 20 second ad its really like 30 seconds.

  15. I really liked the ending, I actually got a bit surprised (and I almost clicked the video away – oops!) but I really like this new idea! :D

    There’s a food store company here in Sweden who usually (more or less always) make funny commercials for the TV. They started with that when I was a kid, and it worked! People talked about them everywhere and the characters in it. I can’t remember that any other company had funny commercials before this food company (that’s maybe because I was a kid so I don’t remember that many commercials before but anyways >.> ) and since then, other companies also began making fun ads as well.

    And I’ve also recently noticed new kinds of ads… the “you deserve this”-kind. There’s an ad at the bus stop by my school (only a few meters away) and it says something like “Congratulations, you made it this far! Now you deserve a chocolate wafer!”. Like, what? No one deserves anything, at least not us high school students who walk a few meters to this stop, haha! xD And I also saw another ad on the train: You deserve this as a snack (is it ok to translate mellanmål to snack, dear fellow Swedish nasties?) and it was full of sugar and candy. Like. No. Thank. You.

    Anyway, time to quit my babbling now~ Keep up the good work!

  16. I remember figuring out that if an famous actor was doing commercials, he/she wasn’t a big deal/popular anymore. Now maybe it isn’t quite as pronounced, but in the US, actors are more likely to become famous (for 15 minutes at least) from a commercial then a famous actor choosing to do commercials. It is a come-down.
    However, athletes can do commercials and it can be a step up. (wheaties – used to be famous for it)

  17. Amy F ;)

    PS, I totally laughed when I read about picking fruit right off the tree and applying its guts to my face…if no one is around and I’m cooking breakfast or something, I will save the mango peel or piece of lemon or strawberry and rub it on my face to use as a 10 minute mask. It brightens my skin (especially freckles!) and the fruit acids exfoliate.
    Hope Japan is awesome, whenever you get to go!

  18. In Norway the advertisments vary a lot from product to product. Like, they use the football players and skiers for commercials regarding certain types of food or sports equipment, (and sometimes clothing) but other than that I don’t really see a lot of advertisments where Norwegian celebreties are used. It’s getting more and more popular, however, to use international (mainly American) celebreties in commercials. For example they used George Clooney in a lottery commercial, where a woman wakes up next to him because she won the lottery. Apparently their slogan is “lottery-millionaires aren’t like regular millionaires”.

    There are also lot of international commercials on Norwegian TV, like the Nikon commerical with Usain Bolt. There’s also a rapidly increasing number of billboards etc. that are “subtitled” in English and other languages because of the increasing number of immigrants.

  19. Amy F ;)

    Who is on Martina’s sweatshirt?

    I think its fun you mentioned the fridges, when we started watching kdramas my husband and I always had a good laugh about the water bottle doors built in to the front. We decided that feature saves energy by not releasing as much cold air into the room as if they had opened the whole door?

    Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised when you commented on the comments! I agree that it could be overdone, but some is fun!

    Simon, you totally have a point that there is not a lot of available research on drinking fluids with meals although I still stand by Drakmore’s mom, lol- I searched for a hour and only came up with 5 links that discuss this. They are all from sites that are selling stuff. Usually all the more reputable-looking, government sites are years behind everyone else so I didn’t spend time on those. I must have read about it originally in books. I had to read a ton of books about digestion (I’m a nerd) and nutrition because I was so sick and the doctors weren’t helping. I think the current main consensus is that water 30 min. before mealtimes helps provide enough hydration for making proper digestive fluid, (saliva, stomach acid), but closer to mealtimes would dilute those fluids so that they wouldn’t be as effective at breaking down the food. In people with healthy digestion (lucky you!), its not going to a big deal, but sicklies like me have to pay attention to it. I think with soup, it depends on if your body recognizes the proteins and can make the right enzymes to digest it. How the soup is prepared (what’s in it) and how hydrated you are to start with all affect how well you could digest it, even though its a liquid. Chriskesser.com has lots of lengthy posts about digestion that seem well-researched, but I’m out of time for today (need to cook lunch;).

  20. we have those trucks here in spain as well

  21. Marzia Matalone

    I think that the ways of marketing change a lot in every country…since kpop and idols are so popular there, of course they become the best vehicle for adverticement and products placement…they are looked at as perfection icons , morover they are so similar to the characters of a story that goes on everyday, that they can be anything in the public eyes even without a real link to the product they are selling…

  22. In Australia there’s a lot of quirky, funny and silly ads. A ram hiding in a kitchen cabinet that bursts out on an unsuspecting family and does a Rams car insurance pitch. Free range bread being herded on a picturesque farm.

    Ads that throw in the unexpected are big too. I think the most recent one gaining a lot of attention would be this (graphic image warning): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ty3kl0v8Kl0

    There’s also this ‘words of wisdomy’ or patriotic vibe to a lot of them. Good examples are the beer and generation lamb ads. A more risqué example would be the Dick Smith Australian food one (which was banned from prime time tv).

    Wanting to bring out ‘Australianess’ could also explain why the Vegemite campaign still uses footage from it’s 1959 commercials and the Mortein fly thug Louie has never changed. Not to mention VB and Cottee’s cordial have used the same soundtrack and ending for over 30 years making them iconic (even if VB is terrible). They’re part of the landscape and highlight how long the company has been serving Australian consumers.

    The last thing, tunes, sound tracks and catchy slogans running through multiple campaigns can catch on for years. ‘Not happy Jan!’, ‘Slip Slop Slap’ and the I like aeroplane jelly song are ingrained in my psyche due to years of repetition.

    To end though, Korea’s nightmare version of the ice cream truck, oh god, so good. I need to experience this phenomenon right. now.

  23. There is a French website (created because of a TV program about ads that stopped broadcasts a while ago) about TV ads around the world. Videos are usually subtitled in English (because French is overrated…) and here’s the link to look for videos by countries: http://www.culturepub.fr/pays
    I found that there are ads for Japan but none for Korea and I was disappointed.
    Although I found one video I really liked by chance on culturepub.fr about tea though, it totally could’ve been sensational in Korea with K-pop artists I guess, the Yorkshire Tea song. It’s so funny and catchy, I love it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFfn8L2saYI

    Otherwise, I read somewhere on dramabeans that some Korean TV cable shows try to incorporate ads, into a drama broadcast for instance, and their first attempts were pretty clumsy with the cuts. And because here’s already ads inside the drama, with product placement, it seems a bit weird.

    I remember coming across a Korean ad for ramyun that was reaaaally weird… can’t remember the product though, but a Korean actor was all bad ass and I think there was fire involved. Dunno, so weird.

    In France, we now have a law against ads during prime time on public channels, but private channels still have theirs and it’s so damn annoying, but apparently less than in North Amercia, so there’s that. Anyways, there are some complaints because of the no ads policy in the evening because of money (who would’ve thought?!).

    There’s also regulations about billboards, signs and stuff. I don’t think there’ll ever be a Time Square or Picadilly Circus shiny fancy ads in France, but who knows.

    Plain old ads with pictures and texts are the norm but more and more ou have those television boards with animated stuff that I hate.

    Also, we have those “huge” (I don’t think we have bigger than the pictures I found, sorry if I’m late) billboards that have two ads or more. Either it’s a system where the posters roll so you can see other one (http://static.latribune.fr/article_page/133424/panneaux-pubs.png for instance), or you can have a board painted on, I don’t know, some kind of bars that turn to show you another ad (like this http://static.ladepeche.fr/content/media/image/zoom/2011/04/07/201104071712.jpg this area is full of ads because it’s an industrial/shopping area on the fringe of the city, you have less ads in the town centres and all) and usually thoses are old and noisy because of rust or whatever…

    We don’t really have ice cream trucks (like it can happen but it’s fairly rare where I’m from in France at least, maybe it’s more common in the South and the North of France because they usually have all the cool stuff!) but we have those trucks going around telling you the circus is in town and I love those (here’s the only example I could find http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=00zQ6iKr35Y ).

    There is something I was curious about foreign ads in Korea. Do famous brands hire Asian actors for their ads or do they keep the (usually) American ones?
    Other thing I was curious about: Korean car ads. Are they any different from North American ones or European ones?

  24. Korean people think the more commercials a celebrity is in, the more famous and popular she or he is. The celebrities know that and want to be in commercials. A very popular and pretty (with good skin) female celebrity gets to advertise cosmetics, so she is usually proud to advertise the product. Also usually really popular top celebrities advertise refrigerator, apartment, and some things that are relatively expensive. And the reason they advertise something that are not related to them is because the people who make the advertisement chooses the celebrities by their character and image, not by whether they are related to the product or not. For example, I think Big Bang advertised the alcohol brand because the advertisement maker wanted their lively and young image.

  25. This is like my third comment OTL lol but I just remembered that some ads will make whoever is advertising it “famous”. Like whenever you see that person, or even animal, people will know what’s being advertised. Geico has the gecko and Progressive insurance has Flo.

  26. For the loud truck drivers, in Puerto Rico, people drive around with huge speakers on top of their trucks or whatever with the radio on or for promoting stuff as well. You could say I’m used to it since I go there almost every year lol Though the people with the speakers don’t actually have anything in their vehicle to sell, it’s just for promotion.

  27. The main thing I see celebrities promote (mostly musicians) is Pepsi and Coca Cola, like Taylor Swift is promoting Diet Coke lately. I’ve also seen for yogurt, like Jamie Lee Curtis is the face of Activia and John Stamos has done some yogurt commercials too. Today I saw a new yogurt commercial of John Stamos (can’t remember the yogurt brand lol) and Dave Coulier and Bob Saget were in the commercial too! I was like FULL HOOOOOOOOOOOUSEEE lol There are definitely billboards here in America. There are also digital billboards where it’ll change so that multiple ads can go there, not just three like those other changing billboards. My favorite commercials right now are for AT&T! They’re so funny! xD Here’s one of them: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l61LjTwME7w

  28. Sarah Kim

    HEYYYYYY~ -o- ~ Simon and Martina, We all know that everyone , worldwide, is crazy for the Sochi Winter Olympics. In Korea, how do people feel about the olympics? Do they go crazy when an athlete from Korea( ex: KimYuna) wins a medal? How about other sports events (ex:Soccer)? Does everyone have that “crazy” spirit in Korea? or is it really unlikely? Thanks~

  29. L Meoka

    I don’t know what I found funnier in the Caribean Bay ad, the fact that it’s basically a mini drama that was four minutes long, or how serious they all were in the beginning… or possibly even the supper shinny oiled bodies ‘>.>…>.<"…<.<' "I swear I'm not watching anything weird", on comes the sprite commercial "okay. ahhh…I would say I could explain…but…boobies (?)(?)"

  30. Could you talk about Sports in Korea. I know you’ve talked about health and fitness before, but is there much of a culture of competitive sports?

  31. Korea definitely uses their celebrities like crazy, although most of the ads are pretty fun to watch, they’re usually light and funny/have eye candy while American commercials are so bland and ugly lol
    Agreed with the triple H girls and Chum Churum, that was so ridiculous. Selling a female body at its finest, sometimes I wonder if the girls actually like doing that and don’t feel violated at all.

    Wait you HAVE to wear swim caps?

  32. I think you’re really right about celebrities in ads, they seem to be everywhere in Korea. Here in Sweden there’s one with the soccer player Zlatan reciting the national anthem to advertise for a car. And I’m definitely shaped by the culture, cause I’m just like “wtf what does it have to do with cars”, but if I’d seen the same thing in Korea I probably wouldn’t have reacted at all, haha.
    Another thing I’ve noticed is all the music video ads. In Sweden they’d just make a short clip telling us why with should by the thing, but in Korea they make a full 3 min music video just showing good looking people use it or whatever (both the Cabi Song and Chocolate Love by SNSD and F(x)). It kinda feels like it’s somewhere between an ad and product placement, but it’s a lot more fun! Also the whole SM the Ballad vol. 2 is basically the same thing with several music videos in several languages just for promoting Changmin’s new drama. Maybe a bit too much? But it did made me curious about it, so they might be successfull… ;)

  33. I loved the thing at the end :)

  34. Cosmic Cat

    Don’t Korean singers advertise like everything? We don’t really use singers. Infact the only singer that I can think of who is advertising stuff right now is Cheryl Cole. Mostly you’ll see actors. I don’t know what adverts are like in other countries. Most of the ones in the UK are boring, you will get the odd one that is funny but the rest are like “there’s a sale, buy now!”. I can’t believe they don’t show adverts during the programme over there! It’s so annoying (espesh when watching a film) when adverts arrive every 15 mins >_< We do have the BBC which is advert free but we have to pay a tv licence. I can't think of anymore to type so I'll leave you with this ad I saw the other night :3 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxXZ_uEVr9c

  35. Mariam Watt

    In the states, you’ll see actresses working for Cover Girl or Neutrogena. But with a few exceptions, the bigger a star you are, the less likely you are to advertise anything other than really expensive items like cars or Rolex watches or high fashion. Stars are very selective because they want to protect their image. I think its looked down upon in the States, acting in commercials is how you get your start in acting, you don’t go back to it once you are a star. Although you will see a lot of American celebrities go overseas and be in advertisements for all kinds of things they would never advertise in America.

  36. In Germany there are nearly no celebraties used for ads except if you are a football player… then you will endorse cars, shoes, chips, sweets, beer, hotels, banks….. everything!!

  37. I actually REALLY enjoyed the new end of this :) I think it is really cool. Sometimes, when you are looking through comments, there are just a bunch of really boring generic messages. This, however, makes it easier for viewers to be lazy hahah “I can just wait for Simon and Martina to TELL me what I missed” woohoo

    Also, it feels like more interaction between you guys and the viewers which is nice :)
    Hope you can continue to do so~

  38. Hi Guys! I’ve noticed that Kim Yuna is getting a lot of praise for her Olympic medal on idol sites but how much of celebrities are Sports People. Do they advertise products or appear on Variety Shows. How does the celebrity status of an athlete compare to that of a K-Pop group.

  39. I didn’t grow up in Toronto and those Ice Cream trucks scare the crap out of me. Its like they came straight out of a horror movie every time I hear them.

  40. Well I dont have that much comments about Canada’s CM. You already done it and I find our CM quite boring. But I can talk about the CM in JP XD. Last year, my favorite JPOP group (NEWS) did a CM for ”Kirei CM’s Campaign “Sarahada””. It was a BRA CM. In fact, only their new single (Nagisa no Onee Summer) was used during the CM…but it was kind of strange XD. Even more when the boys did a contest during their radio show. You had to send an email, with your bra size and all….and if you win you would get a bra of this size XD. I doubt the guys actually saw the bra size informations …but seriously it was awkward XD.

    Anyway, Japan have a lot of CM with idols too and with every products you can possibily think about. It was quite effective on me ….I bought some stuff after seeing the idols cm XD.

  41. Another great video guys! I think the new ending is great :D You mentioned yellow dust in last weeks tl;dr blog post last week, but I haven’t really heard of it. Maybe a tl;dr on natural phenomena in Korea would be cool?

  42. I’ve found that Australian advertising is usually humorous, frequently in a series of related ads, and very often interactive. For example: Louie the Fly was a part of a save or kill campaign – vote online, Rhonda and Ketut are in a series of ads for AAMI Insurance (also interactive voting online), or compare the market versus compare the meerkat (you can actually find comparethemeerkat.com.au as set up by the company). I have to say though, my favourite commercial (even though it’s old) has been the It’s a Big Ad campaign for beer (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LGJiTpBBD18) which is so aware of itself as an advertisement that it just cracks me up.

    P.S. I like the inclusion of comments – its interesting to see what jumps out at you guys when listening to us!

  43. Blueberries

    I live in Finland and lot of product sold here come from European countries and from US so most of advertisements come from those countries too, we just dub majority of them ^^;

    In my country celebrities aren’t used that much, but for example sometimes famous athletes advertises healthy products. However you often see same persons in different advertises, I think they are advertisement models or actors XD Especially same company tends to use same people.

    Advertising alcohol on television is intresting debate in my country since it has been banned and unbanned time to time. I think problem is that Finland wants it banned and EU demands it unbanned. Right now you can advertise mild alcohol drinks (lower than 22%) but not strong one’s in anyway. However I haven’t seen any tv ads about alcohol drinks lately, but there is always street ads. Also cigarets are illegal to advertise in anyway.

  44. For those of you looking for the refrigerator commercial here’s an example. It empahsizes the fact that it can pack lots of stuff:

  45. OK because a few people are sharing their favorite commercials, I have to share this gem. My favorite part is when he is talking about the different ways to contact the professors. And the last statement “Hey, what’s your wifi password?” is true of anybody who lives in the U.S. You might not say it but everyone is thinking it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NsuSTbrdlE8

  46. talking about advertisements, india is going towards artsy ones..

    the jewel ads fill more than two thirds of ad time (cause you know everyone in india LOVES jewellery with a capital L)

    also people tend to concentrate more on general issues and concerns even for coke ads

    for example one coca cola ad showed a group of college students spreading joy to sad people by giving coke… okay that isnt as funny as it sounds really


    and indian ads have more of cricketers,athletes and movie stars~

    and tend to have a catchy jingle which later turns into the ringtone of many people…


  47. I love that you read out the comments! Speaking as someone who gets depressed and paranoid when people don’t reply to my texts or tweets or emails or anything it’s nice to know that you do actually read comments! :)

    As for advertising, I found that at least between Britain and China, the purpose of the ad seems to differ – in Britain there seems to be more emphasis on building the brand and TV ads tend to be slightly more creative in terms of how they present the product and try to differentiate it, whereas when I went to China on holiday the ads seemed very direct and shameless about plugging the actual product. While I know that commercialism isn’t really to be admired for its artistic-ness, I do appreciate ads that are a little more interesting, original, memorable or thought-provoking? Especially since they take up so much of my TV watching time. I often found myself having uncontrollable cringe attacks when the situations presented in Chinese (and Korean and Japanese ads that I’ve seen) are so obviously fake and unrealistic (not that I’m saying those presented in Western ads are real but they are a little more believable and they sometimes try to be a bit more relatable).

    Also, with celebrity endorsements, I’m not a celebrity so I don’t know, but I would have thought there would be some stigma associated with endorsing something as non-luxury or not cool as fried chicken (for a singer or model at least, not saying fried chicken is not cool, but come on, it’s physically impossible to eat fried chicken gracefully), whereas it seems in Korea that any endorsement is a good endorsement and it improves rather than damages your image? I can’t imagine say Miley Cyrus agreeing to be the face of KFC for example (maybe high-end goods like cosmetics though). Maybe that’s just a difference in celebrity culture? Idols in Korea are more open to all sorts of areas like advertising whereas those in America or Britain prefer to remain planted in music? I haven’t seen many American ads so I can’t speak for them, but I for one can say I have never seen a singer in any sort of ad on TV except for music-related ones e.g. radio. Oh apart from Cheryl Cole for cosmetics, but I think cosmetics and perfume and jewellery and stuff is almost another category of ads on their own really.

  48. 2pm does advertise everything!
    i remember a few years ago
    in India they showed the seoul tourism ad
    where 2pm had their “fly to seoul tarara less dance dance shatagain boom boom boom” thing
    and everyone was singing it :P

  49. Hands down, my favourite Korean CF is the Lotte one with Hyun Bin, 2PM, BIGBANG, JYJ (roll down those sexy windows JYJ), Jang Geun Suk, Kim Hyun Joong, Kim Tae Hee, and Song Seung Hun…it’s so crazy over the top that I just can’t help loving it! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XHyatjbhnQc

  50. I love the interaction at the end of this TL;DR. Also, that Caribbean Bay commercial reminded me of like a Korean version of the Real World (am I dating myself? Yes, probably).

  51. In the Philippines isn’t seriously 90% shampoo ads and all of them are exactly the same. Thats why I haven’t watched TV in years. Australian ads tho are one of the things I miss most about oz . There there is much more well planned and thought through ads, and tonnes of banks and insurance and cars

  52. Great video! I feel like tv advertisements in Korea seem to make the item magically better than they really are. Like you said, Western ads are more factual based (of course emotion based somewhat too). For example, the soju ad where the girl has terrible luck thoughout the day (late for meeting, mascara running, broken heel, etc) and someone shows her a bottle of soju and she immediately perks up and everything turns into a party. So funny! And so not true. Lol. I also feel like there’s a lot more singing in Korean ads than in Western ads… but maybe that’s because it’s kpop stars doing the advertising. :)

  53. Dana

    interesting topic! regarding boobs in ads etc i’d definitely recommend you check out Miss Representation which was a super fascinating film about how women are portrayed in ads and generally across the media. it’s available on netflix (though i’m guessing that might not be an option in korea..) here’s a trailer – http://vimeo.com/18985647

  54. There’s a law in Korea that makes it illegal to show ads in the middle of a program. I think that applies to over-the-air channels only though. Cable and satellite-only broadcasters are exempt. It probably stems from the fact that the public ultimately owns the spectrum over-the-air broadcasters use, and chopping programs to show ads is against public interest. Unsurprisingly, Korean broadcasters are always lobbying to have that law changed.

  55. i really enjoyed your inclusion of people’s comments, it feels interactive and fun

  56. here’s “Mr.Pizza” commercial we’ve watched during marketing class. according to it, Korea might be the birthplace of pizza ._. oops

  57. Ok how about this ad. It’s one of my favorites! No boobies but equally effective! ahahaha


  58. My dad is from Hong Kong so our house really only has Chinese television. I swear that every other commercial is about medicine…O.O i have only seen like, one McDonalds commercial and it was a dubbed over English commercial..

  59. OMG The Coway ad makes me cringe so bad!!!! =_=

  60. finally, i get to use my fancy book learnin’! i majored in marketing and went to a school that focused on international viewpoints; i even took an international marketing class, so i can give a little insight on the reasons behind the madness

    the reason that korea uses celebrities a lot is because asian cultures in general put more trust in them. since asian cultures are collective and high context, they don’t like hard sell approaches. celebrity endorsements use the celebrity’s “authority” and professional image and performance to subtly hint at the meaning that the commercial is implicating, rather than just stating things outright with the use of the “everyman” like western countries do.

    martina is right on the money when she says that it seems like celebrities advertise everything under the sun. in asian cultures, once an entity, whether it be a company or a person, establishes credibility and trust with the consumer, it can transfer this trust to all of its products, regardless of whether these products are related. that’s why companies like samsung, lg, etc, can make a slew of products like tvs, cellphones, radios, washing machines, refrigerators, banking, and shipbuilding and nobody will doubt the quality of these products because they carry the company name. conversely, in individualistic cultures like the united states, companies and individuals have to create/endorse products that are somehow related to them. this is why david beckham sells sports related things or celebrity chefs endorse a line of cookware.

    in regards to cosmetics and beauty products, asian cultures prefer the commercials for these products to reflect health and how they will help improve it. as such, advertisements will focus on nature and related imagery, because it conveys that the product is pure and healthy, and therefore good for you.

    so yeah, there’s a long winded explanation of some of the reasoning for the way things are advertised. i hope some of this helped, or you at least found it interesting.

  61. Here in Sweden the TV-shows goes on for 12-15 minutes then a 5-8 minute long commercial…It’s soooo annoying! I mean 2-3 minutes is fine but after 5 minutes I’ve already lost my interest. It’d be great to have the commercial after the show instead.

    About the commercial themselves, there’s a lot of different styles of commercials but there is one that is like a small series, it has been running since 2001. It’s about a small group of people working in a super market and all they ever do is talk about food and show the products to the camera while speaking. It might sound boring but it’s quite fun^^ It’s been running for so long that we’ve seen interns, vacations, new staff members, Christmas celebrations etc.

    Commercials regarding cars, make-up, phones are actually from other countries. I guess that is because they don’t feel the need to make a Swedish version when they can use the original one instead. And some of these commercials are subbed while some are not.

  62. Here in Sweden the TV-shows goes on for 12-15 minutes then a 5-8 minute long commercial…It’s soooo annoying! I mean 2-3 minutes is fine but after 5 minutes I’ve already lost my interest. It’d be great to have the commercial after the show instead.

    About the commercial themselves, there’s a lot of different styles of commercials but there is one that is like a small series, it has been running since 2001. It’s about a small group of people working in a super market and all they ever do is talk about food and show the products to the camera while speaking. It might sound boring but it’s quite fun^^ It’s been running for so long that we’ve seen interns, vacations, new staff members, Christmas celebrations etc.

    Many commercials regarding make-up, beverages, cars, phones are actually from other countries. I guess that is because of the same products exist here as well and also that they are in English (we start to learn English quite early in school), so they don’t dub them or need to put subtitles.

  63. That Coway jingle sure is catchy LOL

  64. I really like your “commenting on comments” section at the end of your video. I know a lot of big youtubers do it and I think it’s a really good idea. Not only is it cool to see the comments you guys like and wanted to discuss, but it encourages more comments since people will want theirs to be picked by you. It’s pretty genius, actually.

  65. Oh man, that Caribbean Bay one was like a mini Korean drama!!!… (i loved it!)

  66. I love the new ending! I think it’s really fun.

  67. leesigh3

    Hope those circle lenses don’t cause you too much eye damage…

  68. Alexandra E. Rodríguez

    Can somebody please post link to the Korean fridge ads Simon and Martina spoke about? After hearing them talk about it, I’m fascinated to know how they are.

  69. when I visited Korea last year I noticed a big difference between the TV commercials compared to ones in the UK. they were quite quirky and stuck in my head for 8 weeks after I returned home. One in particular was the Cass advert with the guy saying “ahhh Climax” at the end.

  70. question for TL;DR:

    You’ve mentioned how Korea has been getting used to accommodating pets in terms of parks, food stores, and vets, but can you tell us a little more about how apartment owners feel about taking tenants with pets? In Texas, even upon finding an apartment that doesn’t mind them, they usually charge several hundred dollars per pet.

  71. I know I can’t prove it, maybe If I post a picture of my high school report card/transcript. Anyhow, I went to a Vocational High School, and took 4 years of Advertising and Design classes in lieu of Gym. Frankly a bad ad, can really turn me away from a product, I find it interesting though the difference from Western and Korean ad’s. I can understand why its the norm for Kpop artists to be the face of so many different products, after all, they are marketed as “Idols” Where Typically in the states, an Actor, can cross over into the music industry but they rarely produce more than one hit if they do make it, and eventually stick to acting…. ranting… anyhow I really enjoyed the way this segment ended, its like a Q&A.

  72. This is the main reason why Netflix is something that EVERYONE uses. Netflix skips all those lame ads that don’t work and you can watch all your favorite shows easily! The only ads that everyone watches are the superbowl ads. Lol those tend to be funny.

  73. Why did the commercial for Caribbean Bay have to be a love story? It reminded me Dara, and Lee Min Ho in “kiss:” Im almost certain this is a commercial for Cass… I could be wrong.. but still. So cheesy. Though, id be lying If i said I didnt love it. haha >_<

  74. You guys are right ! Ads on Canadian TV are so irritating ! Watching a movie on television is like watching 60% of movie and 40% of ads. That’s really annoying ! In France, there is a law which says French national television aren’t allowed to put commercials after 8 PM. Also, there are not so much ads in the middle of a program instead of that, they just put it more between two programs.
    By the way, I really like the new ending ^^ (I always find interesting to read the comments here)

  75. I’ve been going back and forth with HuluPlus a bit trying to convince THEM to show aaaaaaaalll of their many many MANY commercials together instead of every 8 minutes. It’s SO annoying, it almost ruins the shows for me. (Not quite though – where else can I see Jin Yi Han in “Empress Ki??”) My question – where else besides Hulu CAN’T you fast forward through an archived show?? It’s crazy.

  76. In Portugal, aside from ice-creams, there are some trucks selling stuff like potatoes or fish (in refrigerated vans) and (no idea how to translate>) “farturas” and sweet “churros” (the last ones are sold in roulottes). There are all sorts of other stuff like fruit and more. I have to say that both the potatoes and fish ones have always been useful. xD

    I only find them in my neighborhood in Lisbon nowadays but there might be more around.

    To explain the sweets I talk about above: well, it’s typical to eat these at street fairs or at popular celebrations close to amusement features like carousels and stuff.

    If it’s not well explained enough say something guys :)

    >”farturas” seller: http://bibliotecariodebabel.com/ficheiros/farturas.jpg

    >sweet and filled “churros”: http://cdn1.tweegee.com.br/Cms/News/4/0/504/98591_129626538218437500513_Original.jpg

    >regular thin “churros”: http://i113.photobucket.com/albums/n222/carlapinheiro16/Receitas/churros5.jpg

    >fish van: http://www.tvi24.iol.pt/multimedia/oratvi/multimedia/imagem/id/13580766/550
    I can’t find any pic of potato sellers.

  77. I’m from America so advertising (probably similar to canada, though I imagine a bit more shameless) is all tits and ass, ass and tits, food porn, food porn with titties, GET THIS CAR WITH 0 APR FINANCING FOR THE FIRST YEAR, PLEASE WATCH THIS SHOW THAT WILL BE CANCELED IMMEDIATELY FOR TERRIBLE PLOT/CONCEPT/WRITING/ACTING etc (these occasionally feature tits, ass (Male or female), and some sort of embarrassing moment OR Action packed chase), ACTION MOVIE WITH GUNS…that you didn’t even hear was coming out….why?? Do people watch all of them? They seem to all have the same plot and involve 1-2 people who don’t really understand each other or the rules of doing whatever…Also usually with some girl with nice bazongas who turns out to be good in a fight…
    ALSO Medicine with CGI cute or semi cute mascots, or celebrities telling me to be pretty bu using this natural, uber scientific new [makeup, facewash, toothpaste]. Also obligatory headphones or sportswear commercials–those air ALOT. oh, and sports commercials telling me I’m fat because I don’t exercise CONSTANTLY.
    We also have alot of insurance commercials from Geico to State Farm to Progressive, and they are always weird. ALWAYS.
    I have also gathered that all cell phone companies are equal since they all claim to be number 1 in the country.

    I feel like I might have over exaggerated the tush and titties, but kind of not. some are CERTAINLY much more blatant than others…like when the “sexy” woman takes a bite from a freshly microwaved hot pocket and says “That IS hot”. DON’T YOU KNOW THAT THAT IS BASICALLY LAVA IN A CRISPY BREAD SHELL??? THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!! Others are just subtle like women wearing slightly deeper v neck shirts or something or one less button buttoned. I personally like the ones shamelessly targeted at women with really handsome guys whose hotness ratio stipulates that they must have a brain the size of a pea or yknow….chocolate food porn…but the ads, especially for alcohol (minus skinny bitch cocktails), are more geared towards men.

    I’ve noticed lately that many commercials now have puppets. Unfortunately, they seem to usually get someone who is not a puppeteer or just a TERRIBLE one to do them. Alot of times they make that the gag, but it just doesn’t work. Im actually in school for puppetry and it is REALLY hard to watch them ruin it for the rest of us. If the only puppetry people are exposed to is crap, they’re going to think that that is what it will always be like :( (If you ever want to do a puppet segment I would find a way to fly to korea to help you!!! Other youtubers have done some, but they don’t do them well. I want to be your intern!)

    Wow this ended up really long…I guess that’s what happens after a long day of classes. Long time watcher first time posting.

  78. YeYe1004104

    I do like the commentating on the comments… (insert joke here)
    Really though, it reminds me of PBS Idea Channel and that makes me happy xD

  79. In Portugal, aside from ice-creams, there are some trucks selling stuff like potatoes or fish (in refrigerated vans) and (no idea how to translate>) “farturas” and sweet “churros” (the last ones are sold in roulottes). I don’t recall seeing much else, but both the potatoes and fish ones have always been useful. xD
    I only find them in my neighborhood in Lisbon nowadays but there might be more around.

  80. In Portugal, aside from ice-creams, there are some trucks selling stuff like potatoes or fish (in refrigerated vans) and (no idea how to translate) “farturas” and sweet “churros” (the last ones are don’t move around). I don’t recall seeing much else, but both the potatoes and fish ones have always been useful. xD I only find them in my neighborhood in Lisbon nowadays but there might be more around.

  81. In Portugal, aside from ice-creams, there are some trucks selling stuff like potatoes or fish (in refrigerated vans) and (no idea how to translate) “farturas” and sweet “churros” (the last ones are don’t move around). I don’t recall seeing much else, but both the potatoes and fish ones have always been useful. xD I only find them in my neighborhood in Lisbon nowadays but there might be more around.

  82. Australian ads are pretty similar to NA but popular adds are almost always humorous (for example there have been a VERY popular string of ads for the insurance company AAMI which solely relies on this) and beer ads especially usually show a group of mates mucking around – with plenty of pranks.

  83. What about the wealth of really weird adverts involving grown people singing kiddy songs and doing cutesy dances and stuff, I find those so disconcerting. And there’s always an overly cute kid saying something in a high pitched voice.

  84. Perfect ending, haha! x)

  85. Why would they make my 2PM sing that song!!! Lol they must have been getting payed well for that advertisement. Lol anyways interesting topic ^^

  86. In Colombia, most of the advertising have a sexual message and its not like in Korea that only the people that is 18 or more can what them, there even the kids school notebooks have a super sexy model with big… WHO CAN BE FOCUS IN CLASS WITH THAT PICTURE?!!

  87. Wow, Korea has some sweet refrigerators! Oh, I see that Martina is wearing the earrings that I sent her a while back! Yay!

  88. Could you guys do a video showing these fridges?

  89. Hello Simon and Martina, you guys always joke/talk about extreme types of fans in Korea. In Australia, like any other country, there are extreme fans, but in Korea there seems to be a higher concentration. Is this true? If so could you please talk about it?

    Thanks guys :)

  90. i loved that you guys put comments at the end of ur video from the previous ones!! keep doing it!!!!!!!!

  91. Well in the US, somehow boobs are ALWAYS included, mainly in Superbowl commercials where they have like a bag of dorritos and then BOOM! This girl with big tits comes out of nowhere and everybody’s like O.O

  92. I rarely get angry at commercials but there is one lately in Quebec that just makes me want to destroy the television. I am really not someone who loves car, a car is just something to go from A to B and there are already enough car commercials, so why do one with a stupidly ”sexy-man-trap” song ??? Here is the translation of the lyrics (roughly made by me) :

    You’ve searched for her everywhere, from dawn to dusk
    She was there waiting for you, she was shining in the dark
    You’ve searched for her everywhere, so desperate, yeah!
    Before finding her, a Sunday at PB
    Fall in love, drive through the days
    Accelerate to the maximum, passion without detour
    Fall in love, love at first sight guaranteed
    The car of your dreams, awaits you at PB


  93. Kpop idols are constantly used in advertisements, aren’t they? On one hand, it’s pretty annoying, but it’s also kind of nice. If you’re watching TV and you have no choice but to watch commercials, it’s nicer to watch ones with your bias in it than some random actor that means nothing to you, right?
    Oh, and since everybody is sharing their favorite commercials, I’m just gonna leave this here for you… watch to the end. Seriously.

  94. Well that think about the man on the track and the speaker sending vegetables o whatever that was, exist here in Argentina. It’s pretty common in downtown. As for the idea of showing the comments, I actually think it’s a fantastic idea! Good luck next week in Tokyo! :D

    • We have those in Mexico too. It’s so charming to wake up with those noises that just wont shut up. From tamales, to the trash truck or the one that buy you old stuff. We have them all and with the most annoying voices ever!


      • omg I had so many mistakes up there xD haha Yeah, I know what you mean. It’s so annnoying -_- and then they play music ._.

  95. A couple of semesters ago in one of my classes we studied about how sexualized commercials are nowadays. I remember we had this video on a documentary. The woman on the documentary was talking about how ridiculous TV commercials were getting. A quote from that video was “Commercials nowadays tend to be ‘…the most seductive cookie…’ WHAT THE HECK! IT’S JUST A COOKIE!”

  96. In the Netherlands we have a lot of American shows on TV, like Oprah and such, but the commercials are skipped so that there are only two or three commercials left per episode. I find the editing so annoying, but I can only imagine how it would be with all the commercials ><

    Also, I haven't seen the balloon things yet, but I probably just jinxed myself and will walk right into one today kkk

  97. In Australia there was an insurance ad that was unexpectedly a hit. <3 Rhonda and Ketut <3 There is a 3 (or 4) parts of the epic romance between the safe river Rhonda and the hot Balinese waiter Ketut.

  98. This is pretty much how Mexico’s Canal5 does it: Couple of minutes of show, commercials, more show, more commercials, show, commercials, end credits, commercials, beginning credits of the next show, commercials. Rinse and repeat.

    • Yeah if the show it’s supposed to be of an hour it will actually be like what, 40 minutes or so. And most of the commercials I find them to be about medical stuff and very graphical like hey this is how your intestine looks like before and after you take this pill, and they are on the whole day

      • I know!! And then Lolita Ayala pops out of nowhere with”informacion que cura” with all these graphic stuff you’re talking about and it’s pretty much around lunch time or any eating related time. Even if I’m a public health major that doesn’t mean I wanna see intestines while I’m eating XD but you know Lolita she just pops in whenever you’re eating XD

  99. I can’t think of anything to add (since I haven’t seen the whole thing yet), but… Martinaaaa, where did you get those ear rings >w<

  100. kawaii_candie

    I enjoyed this topic a lot! fun post! plus thanks for also posting the “carribean bay” ad. lol. i didn’t know 2PM was so hot!!! lol. When you were talking about them adverrtising everything, it made me think about Arashi in Japan. they advertise everything. EVERYTHING. seriously. and they’re on variety shows every single night, and lots of them act in dramas too. you can’t escape them!!!

  101. What does a nine pack look like? I’ve heard of 6 and 8 packs, but nine? where would it go?

  102. Lise Karlstand berkerud
    Lise Karlstand berkerud

    Norway has very strict rules for Ads. The Ad companies can’t make ads that sell alcohol and smokes. The ads can’t be meant for children. No sexual stuff, but some manage to get away with it. When it comes to the TV, it depends on channels.

    TV2: It has a lot of ads, and it is one of the biggest TV companies in Norway. They are hosting the Olympics TV for Norway this year, and many Norwegians aren’t happy with it, cause they put a lot of ads. They show a lot of different type of shows. The variety is HUGE!

    NRK: We have to pay licence for it. If you want NRK, you have to pay the licence. IT has NO ads!! The only ads they have is programs that they are sending when a program is over. It only last few seconds. NRK is one of the biggest TV companies in Norway. They were often the charges for the Olympics, and they are quite good with it. NRK shows a lot of interesting series, news, and documentaries. One of my favorite channels.

    TV3: The worst one. It has like 15 minutes of show, 10 minutes with ads. It is the worst channel ever! They show interesting things, but I avoid it, cause of the ads. TV3 is a big company, but not as big as NRK, and TV2.

    I really hate ads. Few ads:





  103. It’s kind of stupid of me that I didn’t even read the title for the TL;DR and I just saw boobs and I thought to myself “This outta be interesting…” and interesting it was! Thanks, EYK Studios, for your useful advertising ._. You really caught the attention of me and others with that XD

  104. Simon says (…) the banner advertisements that we see are not really graphic-heavy, it’s more like “this is the service that we offer, this is the number you should call”. It’s not really… pulling you in, you know, with like boobies and whatnot., my first thought: https://twitter.com/eatyourkimchi/status/433819024271478786 Pulling you in with half naked guys with bouquets!
    Fun video, guys! And I liked the ending :)

    In Polish television commercial breaks are ridiculously long and will interrupt shows or movies in commercial broadcasting, public broadcasting is not that bad – they only show ads between their programmes. As for celebrities advertising products, I think the ratio of unknown actors to celebrities in ads is more or less 50/50, I don’t really pay attention to it. Similarly to Korea, celebrities usually advertise random crap, not necessarily related to their proffesion. A sportsman advertises tea, singers advertise loan agencies and comedians advertise mobile phone networks.
    Sexy ads are usually for some manly stuff. Especially all these small businesses like garages, hardware shops etc. have banners with scantily clad girls. You have to repair your car? Oooh, look at these boobies. Wanna buy a drill? I’m sure my butt will convince you to choose this particular shop.

  105. Has anyone noticed how ads in the US for KY Jelly personal lubricant or for condoms, if a couple is shown to be using either of these items they always make sure to close in on their wedding bands? Only married people have sex kids! Or for dish washing soap– it’s always a married woman! Are men allergic to soap water? It sure seems that way

  106. One thing I really do appreciate about England is the advertising. Or really, the lack of it. There aren’t obnoxious billboards obstructing my view of the beautiful British countryside. The great architecture of London go mostly unadulterated, save for that one screen in the middle of Victoria Station and a few LEDs around Picadilly and Lecister Square. Mostly poster advertisements can be found lining the insides of train stations as you approach the capital, and at bus stops (and on the buses themselves). Yes, there is plenty of advertising, but I haven’t so much as breathed a complaint ever since I saw a picture of central New York. The buildings were piled high with huge screens! It was astonishing and shut my mouth quite firmly. Even the NYPD have the name in neon on the outside of the building… Is it a working establishment or tourist point?!
    Yeah, anyway, that’s my take on English advertising out and about. I can’t say about TV advertising cause I don’t watch it.

  107. I think the Coway song would make more sense if sung by Haru from Free! since it’s basically a love song to water xD
    Ah I love u 2PM, and EYK!! <3

  108. Most of the commercials in Norway is mostly 1 food and food stores. 2 make up possibly with a foreign star or some scientist. 3 cars ohhh so many cars. 4 either a bank or telecom company. There are not really that many commercials with star endorsements and most often if it has then its a foreign star. Like Jennifer Lopez and her True mach foundations. They seem to go mostly for humor or just plain charm really. Like this one. Mr Melk from the main dairy. And the last one is on a nudist beach so viewer discretion is advised. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ua8FwdwtPC8 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5fOT38OJZfw&oref=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3D5fOT38OJZfw&has_verified=1

  109. I was just talking about this with my friends! I noticed how in dramas there didn’t seem to be any place for advertisements, so whenever it breaks for an ad on the site you’re watching it on, it just seems so awkwardly placed. Like when the ost starts playing in the background and you start singing along, getting into the moment or something big just happened and tears start falling and it cuts for an ad and you’re just like oh. Are these tears? Then the ad break totally ruins the atmosphere and you just can’t take the moment seriously anymore. Anyway I was just wondering about that and it all makes sense now, thanks xD
    You should definitely keep the comment section at the end :D

  110. Just a very small thing, and excuse me if someone mentioned it already: the guys with the trucks going around the neighbourhoods, never sell electrical appliances. Instead they advertise that they’re buying old unused or broken ones. They get their money back and a bit more later by selling the metal and parts to other places, such as garbage collecting lots etc(not sure exactly how all this system mysteriously works!). As another Greek person said, we have this exact same thing in Greece too and in other parts of the world. Plus their terrifying voices are recorded, thus so repetative and monotonus!

  111. In the states, A-list celebrities will only do a few commercials and are usually locked in as a spokesperson for that brand for a year or more. Mostly luxury cars and cosmetics. They make the big bucks doing commercials overseas for everything but Americans don’t ever see them so their “image” remains the same. Besides Carls Jr boob burger nonsense, I feel like the big shift in advertising is clever, self-aware spots or ones with heart (where Chiptole and Sun Chips will make you cry) or someone mentioned Cheerios and ones promoting a message. Which is great but sometimes people flip out, like over the Coca Cola spot where international people sang “America the Beautiful”. What can I say, Twitter is racist and people are lame. I watch a lot of shows on Viki and it’s a fascinating comparison since they play ads from American sponsors and the original Korean ads that aired on the show. Simon was right, there will be Suzy playing in the forest, all serene communing with Nature and then BAM! Animated, killer Kellogs cereal pieces. American advertisement tend to be more IN YO FACE. Bout sums up the country right there.

  112. In Australia we have this big obnoxious red hand. Urgh.

  113. The editing for TV shows in Canada is SO BAD now that you can tell exactly when they’re going to go to commercial. And it’s so easy to mock as well.

  114. What are some common expressions you might hear in Korea, the way a Westerner might say “speak of the devil” or “finding a needle in a haystack”?

    • Cecilia Avila

      I think this is a good question. Maybe SooZee ad Leigh can answer it , its not considered slang, but I think it fits into their segment better?

    • In Korea, we have expressions like 호랑이도 제 말하면 온다더니=speak of the tiger, and 건초더미/사막/모래사장에서 바늘 찾기 finding a needle in a haystack/desert/sandy beach. There are actually 2 types of idioms where one is in korean(속담) and one based on chinese characters(고사성어). But you’d hear them only once in a while if it’s common.

  115. Cecilia Avila

    Speaking of Billboard ads, there is this somewhat famous location in LA’s Figueroa Hotel that is spread out on 3 buildings. The ads there are always really cool, but what makes them unique is that they are PAINTED on.

    Skyrim Ad: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=po3IaWq5kVI&oref=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Dpo3IaWq5kVI&has_verified=1

    GTA V: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=tMyBwksHfXo#t=10

    Covergirl (5th video in playlist): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbPJvAYED2Y&list=PL1_vRQKoHSny8X19f7waE7G5jap9O23G9#t=1

    Final Fantasy XIII: http://www.gamekapocs.hu/media/hirek/final_fantasy_figueroa.png

  116. Cecilia Avila

    Ah, the dudes in trucks with megaphones. Doesn’t happen here in California, but when I’ve visited Mexico they pass by out house EVERY MORNING. And its on a crappy speaker system so it sounds all staticy. They are usually selling gas (because you have to buy your own gas tanks if you want hot water) water (because no one drinks tap water) and the strangest one I remember was some dude selling dirt. And boy did he have all kinds of different dirt for all kinds of occasions.

    Definitely agree with the cosmetics bit. You don’t always have hot blondes in lab coats but cosmetic advertisements do always have some scientific aspect to them. Like how this mascara uses some specially engineered brush that prevents clumping. Playlist of Covergirl commercials for examples:


    • I noticed that when I was in Haiti. Not only trucks with megaphones but people in push carts or wheelbarrows were calling out trying to sell their wares. for me it was pretty cool since the trucks didn’t come by until 9 or 10 in the morning.

      • Cecilia Avila

        “the trucks didn’t come by until 9 or 10 in the morning.”

        Haha, thats about the time the trucks would pass by as well…. thats too early for me. XD

  117. advertisiment in Peru is likely to be done by unknwon models not that much by celebrities.

  118. In Spain we haven’t got any kind of commercials in the public TV, and in the private most of the times they tell us how long it will be the commercial time (most of the times between 3-5 min.).
    Our commercials…are like this…

  119. I hate the way American TV shows are edited too, but at the same time, it makes perfect sense from the marketing perspective. If all the commercials are shown after the show, it’s so easy to just change the channel or stop watching TV, so you won’t end up seeing any of the advertising at all. Thinking of viewer convenience that’s great, but it’s not so great for the companies that buy commercial time from TV channels.
    In my country, Finland, we have commercial breaks in the middle of the show but there’s not as many of them as in North America; about three for an hour long program, but that also shows in the length of the breaks as they are a bit longer than the ones in America (well, that’s what I think. I haven’t been in America much and I’ve never measured the length of commercial breaks so…)

    Side note: No way is Mother Nature a vegan. She’s a total carnivore when you think about it. Living beings die all the time and then they turn into soil, that’s Mother Nature eating them right there, no? Or is that Mother Earth? Are they the same thing?

  120. I really wanted to show my new favorite finnish ad. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=74lBSROQycg
    I love this ad! It’s “Jaffa is a popular carbonated soft drink produced in Finland” as wikipedia says :D and the music is old Christmas carol, called: No onkos tullut kesä. Which means, something like: Oh, has summer come or something like that :D (and yes it is a Christmas carol) In Finland you see lot of North american ads, maybe even more than actually Finnish ones. But Finnish ads don’t really use celebrations, but they try to make them fun (or then they are really boring and blah). Yeah wanted to share this, because I really find that ad adorable and fun! Go Jaffa!

  121. I found the comments you made about the use of sexuality in ads very interesting. If I had to compare with how ads are in France, I’d say it is used differently. Like we don’t have the sexy girls dancing for alcohol or what not, but we do have naked women under the shower for soap ads (men as well, but not as much).

    Which leads me to think that sexism was somewhat present in ads, and especially car ads. Like “get the car, we’ll offer you the sexy women with it!” or “If you get this car, all the women will fall for you!” Women, however, would only be featured in family-car ads. Ah well. It might just be me getting a bit sensitive about this point^^ Also, I don’t have a TV anymore so things might have changed by now?

  122. speaking of commercials… and its wednesday… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWBhP0EQ1lA

  123. I really think we are lucky in France because for a 45 minutes show, usually there would be 1 ad, maybe 2 sometimes but nothing more. And also the government decided to stop all ads after 8:45pm on some national channels…which is freaking awesome!

  124. Adverts in North America are mind boggling. You could be watching an ad for almost a minute and still not know what it is for. Also, there are so many ads that are hilariously offensive like this one for “Summers Eve”. http://youtu.be/e4Cs3Pp7mYg (PS: I saw this “Summers Eve” advert at a Harry Potter movie. Ew)

  125. Good change I like the comment part. And you mentioned my two favorite Korean ads. The Carabean bay commercial is so beloved in our apartment it is on I pods and replayed all the time. It’s very distracting to the one driving at the time. Hence listening to bubble pop is also banned in the car.

  126. Amyaco

    Definitely keep the comments! It reminds me of communitychannel’s porno music/comment time, which is one of my favorite parts of her videos. I think it might also inspire people to make clever/witty/insightful comments, which could yield some fun results. ^^

  127. love the idea with reviewing some nasty comments at the end of the video. nicely done.

  128. Great TL DR, I really liked the comments at the end! Also, at least the ridiculously sexy life guards are aimed at everyone: “you like girls? Have some girls! You like boys? Have some boys!” <3
    I can't even begin to imagine a North American or western ad for refrigerators, hahahahaha that would be hilarious.
    In my country the best ads are for beer, they are hilarious and witty, they tend to poke fun at ads and the tropes that you find there.

  129. the Caribbean bay commercial isn’t a commercial its a friggin mini movie my god i kept thinking to myself when is it gonna end? lol

  130. I really liked the ending where you talk about some comments. Also. I really want a Korean refrigerator.

  131. KATHyphenTUN

    Oh also, I really enjoyed the ending comment section! It’s cool to hear some of your reactions to them!

  132. French ads don’t star famous people in general except for cosmetics and luxury products.
    In Korea, the more you are popular the more you get advertisements. In France, it’s the opposite! Usually, we only see famous people in advertisements when their carreer is in trouble. It’s not a good sign.

  133. KATHyphenTUN

    My favorite North American commercial is the budweiser Clydsdales! Those horses are amazing! And the videos are so warm and fuzzy ;)

  134. SillyRnti

    I noticed the change where you highlight certain comments and I love it. Reminds me of Natalie Tran’s ‘Porno Music/ Comment Time’ for her YouTube videos. Plus I think it encourages people to bring their remarks to the blog post where it’s easier to have a discussion than it is in the YouTube comments.

  135. In Korea, though, in an hour-long program, the show will air
    uninterrupted for its duration, 45 minutes or so, and then ads will be
    shown AFTERWARDS for 15 minutes or so.

    Ah, except for cable. The TV ads on (oh, say) tvN, for example, cut into the drama at the oddest times. All dramas have natural pauses, points at which showing an ad would be logical. But no, instead they choose to cut into the middle of a scene (seemingly at random – maybe it’s timed? as in, after 20 minutes exactly, no matter what’s happening in the show, we’ll air an ad! woohoo!), completely disrupting the flow of the drama. *coughs* Sorry, I just found that really irritating during AM1994.

    Thanks for the TL;DR – it’s probably my favourite EYK segment at the moment due to how informative (yet fun!) it is.

    (and I have to agree about the make-up/skincare ads – in the UK it seems to be all about statistics. but, of the Korean ads I’ve seen, most appear to focus on nature and – shockingly – natural beauty. well, I’m sure they’re wearing make-up, but it’s made to look as natural as possible, which I find interesting, as so many ads here feature supermodels wearing eyeliner, false eyelashes and red lipstick.)

  136. I like the idea of ads with good looking celebrities because people will be more inclined to look. It used to be that way in America with the Pepsi ads and what not. Now all the ads have unknown people wearing urban clothing and don’t shower. I even like the Kate Upton ad because it was eye catching. Now it seems the tv is full of boring car commercials, hipsters and phones, and those helpful honda people omg they are so annoying. I get the commercials are supposed to be funny, but it’s only funny to people over 50. I want hot celebrities in my commercials!!! Enough with random d-list actors! The only ads I genuinely find pretty and eye catching are the Victoria’s Secret ads. Everything is pink and pretty :) well to me since I’m a female, to boys I guess BOOBIES!

  137. lady_kire

    The H Mart I go to has that ad with that kpop group for Banana milk. I don’t remember which group it is, but it works as I buy banana milk.

    Honestly, if Western markets had ads where it wern’t hypersexualized, had actual famous people (not random actors), and had men advertise makeup, I’d buy their stuff. I’ve seen so many kpop men advertise makeup online, I become more interested in buying random makeup stuff I don’t need, but I want it just to know I have a kpop influenced makeup item.

    The only ads I’ve seen with celebrities is the stupid Aveeno ad on youtube, a Capital one ad, and random covergirl ads. I think Western markets can’t use celebs anymore since they have to be tied to the product and MUST use the products.

    What are perfume or fragrance ads like? In the Western market, they make no friggin sence and you see some hot girl or dude being hot or stripping.

  138. but…fandeath is real. There’s proof. No I’m not korean, I’m American. AskaKorean Blog did an entire post on it, He’s korean american and used scientific evidence from Western sources(including the environmental protection agency) for it because he knew no one would take it seriously if from Korean sources. He arguably said it is rare..but that the science backs it up. He also pointed out that fandeath has been used as an example of Korea’s lack of critical skill thinking. Usually used when westerner are criticizing korea for what it perceives as “backwards thinking” His post was delightfully honest, using ONLY SCIENTIFIC FACTS, as well as western scientific sources, and also a warning from the weather channel in the US about fandeath…..so no..fan death is not some crazy superstition everyone thinks it is. Read up. http://askakorean.blogspot.com/2009/01/fan-death-is-real.html

    • If it’s real where are the dead bodies? Weathermen are not forensic coroners and no forensic coroner has ever confirmed a case of fan death.

      • I’m honestly curious…did you read the link or did you skim? I’m guessing skimmed, because you wouldn’t be asking me about dead bodies if you read straight from the link. You wouldn’t be asking me anything at all seeing how I’m not the one who wrote the article. The writer of the article said it’s very rare and that he also thinks that alot of the fandeath related deaths were linked to other causes as well…however that does not refute the FACT that the science is there to support the belief that the conditions of fandeath are dangerous, and he explains why in the article..with sources to western science, and great analogy. Please read it. His main reason for looking up the evidence from western sources(not just the weather channel, but also the EPA, and also a western climatology professor…all in that link and sourced) was to say that just because a culture outside of yours believes something you think is ridiculous doesn’t make it wrong, doesn’t make that culture of people stupid or silly, and there is a reason why that belief is there, even if a little misunderstood. He gave the reason, the very scientific reason. So you can read the science for yourself and not ask me about dead bodies. ^_^ I honestly don’t care if you believe it to be real or not…however, I’m with the writer of the article…I wish people would stop making fun of Korean people for the belief…especially when the science is there to back it up.

        • Alu Sparklez

          If it’s so rare it honestly could’ve been a coincidence that they just happened to die WHILE their fan was on during the night and died because of some other cause :P. I’m not saying all the science-y stuff and ‘FACTS’ couldn’t be true, I’m just saying there’s a lot of other reasons people could’ve died besides just because they left their fan going as they slept.

        • Desi De'Lane

          Yep. And the author said the exact same thing you just did in his explanation of fandeath. In fact I even said the exact same thing you just did in my last comment. The authors point..if you read the link I posted, was that people are quick to dismiss Korea’s belief as retarded backward suspicious thinking as if this thinking or “superstition” doesn’t have a logical scientific back up. But when it proves to have scientific back up(not only that, but a logical scientific back up proven by western science) people still want to argue that Korea’s thinking is backwards. So yes, he’d agree with you there could have been other causes of death(he states this in his article)…..but that doesn’t change the fact that science backs up the widespread belief of fandeath. *shrug* ciao.

  139. Hey Simon and Martina, what’s the indie/art scene like in Korea. I know you guys do an indie playlist every week, but how big is the actual indie scene there. Like here in the US it’s seen as kind of cool, even if you aren’t into the art and indie scene. There’s always that idea that being different and defying the norm is cool. So are the artists and indie kids looked down upon in Korea or the scene gaining popularity?

  140. Turkey uses the same actors in their commercial so you can associate the product with the actor and the actor with the product: a win win sitatution for both parties. Like for example there’s a comedy group that always works with Vodafone.

  141. Isabel Ruby

    srsly chicken? shouldn’t onew be all up on that? i think it was cool that you guise included the comments at the end; reminds us that you actually read these lol

  142. OK… let’s crack this topic down… from someone who has studied marketting—OK, that is not 100% true, I study media and communication…

    However, my uni-work is pretty much nailed to marketting, so I do understand some of these things, and this is my conclusion, having watched and read on this topic:

    1, I guess there is a lot of kpop-related ads, in which kpop stars advertise several products. This, I guess, is based on old studies in which it does prove that fanbases will buy products from someone they recognise or trust. Such a person can be a doctor, a dentist (happened a lot where I live during the 90′s when 100% of our toothpaste commercials on TV were supposedly made with real dentists). My guess is, because the kpop industry spends so much money to literally keep their artists in front of your faces, it is hard to not recognise them, and so with this the idea is that people therefor will recognise them on the ads, and buy the products because these people, who tells you to buy something, aren’t completely unknown. You may not be able to name them, but you’ve seen them before.

    This also, as I guess, could explain why many stars act so much. I mean, there are a lot of shows of kpop stars in different situations (Hello Baby, Invicible Youth etc). Kpop stars, as I can see from your (Simon and Martina’s) old posts about how certain stars cannot do things in front of your camera, or why SM wouldn’t allow your interview with Shinee. There is just too much money and fuel to shape these kinds of people, they cannot afford to ruin it. Because everytime someone makes an ad, they don’t just advertise a product, they also advertise a person.

    2, the old annoying people who make so much racket at night.

    I like the fact that you say they are old. I am trying to think more of what these people grew up with, and how things were marketed back then. 1950-ish Korea became seperated, and it took many years for the country to rebuild itself. During this time, things were very different from now, the country was torn by war, people had died. Some children even had to leave Korea for good (the early adoptions). Koreas early western encounter was also with US military, which we know was the main impact to how Korea has modernized.

    Well, it is a well known fact that if you can make noise, people will hear you. And the oldest theories of communications does imply that they once thought that the medua was so powerful, people thought it brought the ultimate truth, hence how propaganda was born. But nonetheless, being heard is being recognised, this is something we know from such things as youtube. I’m just saying Gangnam Style.

    My guess is, that these old people, who haven’t had marketting education, are just a bit behind. Theoretically what they are doing may work from time to time, but generally it probably annoys the hell out of people. Marketers today learn to spread a product, while at the same time either not be too annoying, or just scream to be seen (there are generally to ways to view this). It depends really on whom you work for, some like annoying and some hate it.

    3, TV commercials
    The old commercial style is probably my favourite of your topic, because I am so happy someone still does this. Back when I was young during the 90′s our TV channels did the same.Then, the Internet came and the commercialized channels realised you could put commercials in between the program (WTF). Luckily, this is regulated by our law and principles of how TV in our country has to be handled, so our one and only TV-commercialized based channel can only send a certain amount of commercials an hour… sadly, the remaining commercial channels are based in London, who doesn’t have this and still sent all their programs at us.

    This is also why I love my country’s TV-laws. Since the beginning of our TV-history, there is a monopoly of the state. There was only 1 channel (Kanal 1) that started. This was based on radio-hosting, so things were a bit weird at times. When the world started getting more and more channels, they made one more channel, Kanal 2 and thirdly they allowed the commercialized channel TV4.

    But, the 2 biggest channels in this country (nowadays more known as SVT1 and SVT2) are based on public broadcasting service, which means that there are no more ads then ads on other programs (if we really can call those ads). The downside is that we pay a fee to keep the channel alive, but since everyone pretty much watches them, (as they are the 2 biggest channels in the country based on the amount of viewers), people generally like them.

    I could easily discuss a topic like this forever, but I’ll spare you all… it would be no end to it ;)

    • This is really interesting. Do you remember who performed some of the studies from your first point? I hadn’t thought about it before, but it really does make sense. Hats off to Korea, where they have learned to manipulate our natural trust psychology in order to sell more of their products.

      • Since I don’t study marketting, this was a topic we looked at very, very briefly. The main focus that my uni-work involves is politics, which according to myself, is the most boring topic in the world when it comes to communication, because we all figured politics only goal is to gain votes… end of story.

        But, since I had to sit down with my books today, I browsed through the term for you. Consumer psychology

        I have no idea to be honest who came up with the term, but it involves psychology and marketting, so I think this is what you may be interested in. I had to check on one of my books about opinionmaking, and maketting is mentioned as a chapter there, but not highly developed. I am sure there are many more things to find there.

        • Politics isn’t too horrible, I suppose. Sure, all they want to do is gain votes, but looking at how they do so, what makes people smile rather than slam the metaphorical door in their face, could be kind of interesting. Possibly.
          Thank you for finding the term for me. I spent some time on Google looking it over, and it does look genuinely interesting. The decisions people make every day without really thinking…..why do they choose the way they do? What patterns can be found? What can we do to manipulate those choices? It looks fascinating, really.
          I am a senior in high school, so at this point finding something that I am interested in and that has an actual paying job attached to it (two categories that intersect far too rarely) is a good thing, to say the least. Who knows, I may take a class sometime in the next four years and end up choosing to go into the field. I repeat: Thank you for taking the time to look it up for me. Good luck at uni.

        • Nina Johansson

          I think analysing politics really depend on which country you look at, and where I live politics has literally been fought between 2 sides, and an occasional third party. I don’t really dislike it, but since 90% of all our discussions base on politics, you almost wish they would talk a little more about things like: how do companies communicate? How is film used? I guess, film is one of those areas I am really curious about, but we barely ever discuss it. Despite having gone through the history of every media-technology we use today.

          And just to say, if I had not done what I study now, I would have loved to study marketing as well. Although marketing (I think) involves courses of economy, and I am horrible at that.

          And to say things like this: I started out on a really loopy journey myself. I was initially really into languages, so I chose to start with Mandarin Chinese. After I visited China I got really hooked into the Chinese culture, and did courses in both Chinese cultural and political studies, as studies of Asia. Finally, I kind of sat down and realised this would not bring me anywhere, so I asked a councelor for advice, and he recommended Media and Communication. Today, despide the fact that I have yet to look for a job, everyone I meet and talk with within international companies says I chose right, some have even said I could contact them once I finish.

          So, I’d say there is nothing wrong with starting out through an interest. OK, hopefully you will not need to spend nearly half as much time as I have spent in uni, but it can help you realising what you wanna do, because I didn’t know that back when my upper secondary (pretty much college) ended.

  143. Laughed so hard at “Nightmare version of ice-cream trucks” It’s SO true!! And 세탁소아저씨s(drycleaners in the morning) too!

    I’m from Korea and I’d like to add some things I noticed:)
    Billboard ads -They are not so popular compared to US or Canada I guess, but they are usually concentrated in busy streets and streets that are likely to by jammed all the time.
    In fact, there are number of products that’s endorsed by professionals-doctors, professors and athletes- which is related to their uses, like toothpaste, vitamins and sport shoes. Still, some companies want Lee Seung gi or other actors to be on their commercial film for toothpastes because their film’s message was -Hey, look, if you don’t use this toothpaste, you’ll have bad breath and drive all the hot guys away!
    Soju, yes! Sexuality!!!!! But a while ago some companies tried In sung Cho and Ah In Yu and they worked okay among girls, including me, who were tired of all these “sexy” girls shaking and touching.
    I do think Korean ads have too many celebrity endorsers and it’s pity all the commercial film has this same storyboard with different celebrities. It’s really no fun. Plus, most companies just want hot celebrity to be their endorser no matter what, like Martina and Simon mentioned, so sometimes it’s just ridiculous, like 2PM advertising water purification whatnots.

    Lastly, for chicken, I have no idea why they want K-pop idols as endorsers but I don’t let them mess with my choice anyway ;)

  144. this makes sense now, when winner went to Japan they were like “oh!! look at the billboards!!” i didn’t get it then, i get it now!!!

  145. In France, we don’t often see celebrities in ads. Almost never, now that I think about it… Our commercials are the boring type with good-looking actors. But they tend to be more quirky and less cheesy that North American ads from what I’ve seen.
    The editing is the same as Korea; the ads are all cramped up together and films are usually just interrupted once or twice. When we watch American shows, we get the stop/black screen/back to show but with no commercials in between. I thought it made for cliffhangers until I traveled to the US and found out they had WAY more commercials than we do.

    I LIKE THE ENDING where you read our responses! It’s great! Keep doing it!

  146. I’m curious about the electronics in Korea. I know that Korea is the leader in a lot of technology, but I was wondering, when you buy the electronics there in Korea, is it all in Hangul or can you buy them with English settings? Also about how much are the electronics there? To get a laptop here in the US is about $300 to $500 and WAY more depending on what you want it to do. Smartphones are also expensive in the $500 to $900 range. How much better do you think the electronics are there, as well?

  147. this is one of the most famous UK adverts, from 2009. a lot of British adverts are becoming kind of…nonsensical? haha! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TVblWq3tDwY

  148. AfizaFarhanaPija

    Let me short it, in Malaysia we rarely use celebrities in TV commercials normally we use real models, and mostly celebrity that we used was actors and actress/comedians (no singers)..and rarely our commercial so intense or serious image with good looking persons. Our commercial mostly likely comedy, funny or humor jokes around like western style (I watch) but less nastiness and more polite jokes…obviously we have no boobs Simon! =P
    And we advertise everything just like S.Korea (with refrigerators, etc) but most popular ads was telecommunication lines ads and we do have a lot (I MEAN LOTS) of big/small billboards and banners!
    Specials about our TV commercials from other countries that we did commercial in 3 different language (Malay, Chinese-Mandarins, and English – sometimes in Tamils too) in different time of airings.

  149. I really like Martina’s headband!

    • Cyber_3

      I think I spent half the video trying to figure out if it was a paisley bandana turned into a rose or if it was a silk rose with sparkly bit under each petal. I’m still not sure…….if it’s the first = super cool, if it’s the second = not my thing……

  150. I’m from Canada, currently living in China. I can relate to a few things you were talking about here, especially idol endorsements. There’s actually a lot of ads with K-pop stars in China!
    Also one big difference I’ve noticed between Canada and China is ads in the metro stations. In Canada you would have various ads scattered around. Here in China it’s like, you have 20 iPhone ads in one section. A Pizza Hut hallway. Here’s 30 copies of the same cosmetic ad in this escalator! Also one thing I think is pretty cool, between very busy stations they have those screens on the walls of the tunnel, and the ads kind of like follow you while the train is moving… I was pretty impressed when I saw that for the first time! I wouldn’t be surprised Korea has that too?

  151. I like the new ending, I think it’s a nice way of interacting with us but I’m also worried that it could became a forced thing… I think it’s a great extension to the video but it should be used carefully … when there are no interesting comments don’t feel obligated to include it …. Either way great video and I’m really getting curious about Japan !!

  152. In India, there are a lot of family oriented ads. It usually has a housewife, or a couple. There are really few ads for younger people, since majority of the audience are housewives who watch al the soaps on the channels. If there are ads for younger people, they’re usually really trendy and hip, showing the latest trends, making pop culture references, using slang, etc. None of the ads are super-sexual, since there’s always the danger of little kids watching TV with their parents or siblings. If celebrities endorse something, it’s usually the small-scale TV celebrities, in southern India, at least. Unless you’re from Bollywood (northern India), you don’t endorse that many products. As for product placement, it can happen in movies or TV shows if they are supported by that particular company they are endorsing. But it’s not obnoxious.
    I kinda like how advertising works in India. It’s not obnoxious, overly sexual, or annoying, but still manages to catch the attention of people.
    EDIT: But that’s for the bigger brands. The small shops and street vendors can get sooooo annoying, but it’s still refreshing, since I only go to India once a year for about a month, and I think of it when I miss home.
    I walk up every single freaking day at 5am when I’m there because of the damn milkman yelling “AMMA PAAAAAAALLLL!!!” (Paal means milk in my language)

  153. North American advertising is taking an interesting trend, a lot more commercials are bringing you into a story or a joke and a lot of the time they claim “these are real people who don’t know what’s going on”. For example this one http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gKKVQLDYYcw also apparently the new Cheerios commercials are controversial but I see nothing wrong with them.

  154. you should’ve mentioned the impossible-to-get-rid-of adverts that pop up in SM videos!

  155. I’m studying marketing at uni and supposedly the reason that celebrities don’t advertise products very often is because it lowers their net worth. you need to be exclusive to get paid more so if they were to advertise something they’d have to be getting paid buttloads of cash; product association isnt really an issue. you do however see western celebrities doing lots of ads in asia because celebrities are held higher there so they can do as many ads as they want and not lose any worth. and thats how we ended up with those awful yet amazing miranda kerr lipton ice tea ads. so amazing.

  156. Akira Miyashi

    We’ve got really horrible TV ads here in Malaysia as well…always in between dramas every 10 minutes or so. Ads here aren’t highly sexualized at all. It seems that there’s more humor ads or family-oriented ads here or ads with really lame jokes. But around major holidays, we do get some really nice and meaningful ads.

  157. It seems to me, that in America, the commercial breaks are getting worse. They keep getting longer and invading every facet of our daily lives. On t.v. and Hulu they keep increasing the length of breaks. Also there are more ads on Youtube and even in the super market. At Walmart they have little t.v.s everywhere and keep repeating the same 30 second loop of ads. Which can get quite annoying if you work there… So I try to limit my exposure to ads as much as possible by ad blocks and never watching live television. On a side note, I do enjoy the public broadcasting channels that do their ads in between programs.

    Also, I did enjoy the ending of this weeks TL;DR. I liked hearing your takes on viewer comments.

    • I know! It seems like there’s 2 minutes of a T.V show sometimes then another 4 minutes of ads. I really hate it. And then it forces you to either watch the ads again or waste time fast-forwarding them when you record the show

    • This is why I’m not too disappointed that my family has canceled our cable. We only watch Netflix and movies we actually own now. It is ridiculous to pay so much to watch a 20 minute show with 10 minutes of stupid commercials. Now the only ads I run into are online or in the form of billboards. And I actually like most billboards. :) An hour away from my sister’s house is a billboard that just says “Have a nice day!” with no name of a company or anything.

  158. I’d rather have ads I can walk away from than product placement. As far as endorsements go, American celebrities have to be very careful what they pick or you get the “Oh poor Orson Wells, he’s been reduced to pitching crappy wine.” syndrome.

  159. In Spain I’ve noticed lately a really weird trend in advertising: many spanish commercials are dubbed. Not only foreign commercials, but spanish commercials in SPANISH as well. It’s been happening for a few years now, it wasn’t like that before. But now it seems like they prefer to hire good looking people for the ads, and maybe they are not very good actors/actresses or have really crappy voices, idek… but fear no more! they will dub it with a sexy radio voice from a much better actor. We are really accustomed to dubbing but I think this is crossing the line a little bit XD

    • Same with Middle Eastern ads! Bad acting and dubbing, to the point where all actresses sound the same (and their male counterparts sounding the same too)

    • tatiana lopes

      ahh maybe that’s why here in Portugal we have a couple of commercials from there that are creeply dubbed. Or maybe we’re just not used to dubbing at all. I think no one here likes it.

      • No wonder no one likes it! I think dubbing is really weird and creepy if you are not used to it. We are obviously used to it, but what’s the point of dubbing a spanish actor in spanish, if not a way of masking bad acting skills? How I envy portuguese non-dubbed tv! XD lucky thing I live right on the border with Portugal and I can watch some channels ;)

  160. In England we obviously do have celebrities advertise things but they try to put a comic twist on the advert. For example Virgin Media is normally quite funny and has David Tennant and Usain Bolt wearing ridiculous wigs or being in the presence of an abundance of cute kittens! Just going to casually leave this here… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uWpx5CHe2-o

  161. I liked the ending ^^ I would love to see more interactions like that ^^

  162. Every time I go visit my grandparents in Mexico, I always hear those trucks go by early in the morning. Most advertise water or gas. Tap water isn’t safe to drink there so every other day my grandparents keep an ear out for the water man so they can buy a big water jug. They also buy a gas tank to heat the water for the bathroom and the washing machine. EL GAAAAAS! Man, that one never gets old. Then there are random ones like handbags or herbal medicine. I know it may sound annoying but I like it. I don’t get to visit Mexico very often and I find myself missing those little quirks and lifestyle differences every time I go back home.

  163. Here in the UK, once in a while you get a few hilarious ads on TV totally unrelated to the product being advertised but they soon become viral and gets everyone talking about them. Quite ingenious marketing there I think :D

    Watch this one from last year… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ekr05T9Iaio

  164. Well, in Czech TV we usually have about 20-25 minutes of show, that between 5 and 10 minutes of advertisment in commercial TV and in the public TV they can have ads only before or after show. We dont have really many celebrities in ads. But we are flyer world power, we have so many of them every day in our post box. 8D Also we use a lot of sex for selling things – on FB there is even group which pinpoint every ads like that – https://www.facebook.com/LidovaReklamniTvorivost/photos/a.154822348025734.1073741826.154749891366313/209735349201100/?type=1&relevant_count=1 – it is ad for curtains and https://www.facebook.com/LidovaReklamniTvorivost/photos/a.154822348025734.1073741826.154749891366313/209499269224708/?type=1&relevant_count=1 it is ad for flat renting. Our Tv ad are usually boring, but I like one for my favorite soft drink Kofola, which I send you last year in package. It has eng sub. 8D http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fz1WjfGnASw

  165. I’ve been living in Korea for the past 3 years and if there is something I can’t stand (apart from plastic surgery ads… and hyuna, sorry but that’s my personal opinion) it’s the soju ads! Apparently soju makes u prettier, sexier, and so much more… Well, it’s somehow true, it makes the guy who looks at you blinder!
    Another interesting point is the number of boy bands that advertise make up brands (SJ for Tony Moly now, CN Blue for Holika Holika some time ago,..) This was for example something totally new to me when I first arrived to Korea.
    Sometimes also, the ads are too long for nothing, like the love/friendship stories in the Caribbean Bay advertisement. I think it’s too much. It’s a way of making advertisements interesting maybe, but I don’t like ads in general so maybe that’s why.

  166. In N.Ireland it depends on the tv channel really. The state channels (BBC1/BBC2) will show programs uninterrupted and then a couple minutes of adverts for OTHER shows that will be on BBC. That’s why we have to have a TV licence if we have a TV or anything that can stream live TV -.- Apart from that other channels do 15 mins of programs – ad breaks to fill out an hour.
    On the streets there’s no billboards really, there’s a loooooot of public service announcements about health, the environment and littering, there’s no adverts on buses or trains outside that (our public transport is entirely state owned). .
    I’m terrible for advertising though, I’m like an advertisers dream come true. Seriously one day I was deliberating over whether to buy VitaminWater or River Rock and eventually I was like “Well, GD advertised for Vitamin Water so, that one it is!”
    Afterwards I realised my reasoning and was like “….Halp.”

  167. Tedrick Leong

    In Hong Kong, advertisements differ in terms of their cheesiness or seriousness, depending on the product being advertised. For supermarket sales, insurance and local products, they tend to be pretty cheesy. They also tend to use a lot of animation because they lack the money to actually film a proper scene. They also tend to keep advertisements running for a LONG time. There’s this one hair advert, along with a snack ad that’s been running for more than 10 years. They also tend to be pretty loud, with bright colours and lots of verbal comments. The advertisement for Watson’s bottled water involves lots of shock and horror, panicking faces and a scientific solution given by a child, and all the adults nod in agreement.

    On the other end of the spectrum, high-end goods are also pretty common on TV. There tends to be swelling music, slow-mo pans across the product and… that’s pretty much it. A lot of images of the product. Although there’s a watch advertisement currently running that involves a man pulling a watch from the smouldering remains of a burnt tree and crying over it because for some reason it’s connected to his lover who left him and I really don’t know what it means. God Save The Queen was also playing in the background. Idk.

    In terms of posters and physical advertisements, they also differ depending on the location. In popular shopping areas such as Causeway Bay and Central, the majority of the advertisements tend to focus on cosmetic products, clothes, shopping and electronic devices. In poorer, residential areas, they change to posters talking about community spirit, baby formula, recycling and medicine. This can clearly be seen on the escalators going up and down the MTR (HK’s metro), as they line the walls up and down.

  168. I know in the States there are way more regulations about celebrity endorsements in advertising. It’s supposed to be like, they are actually to be regular purchasers/users of the product etc (at least that was the intention when the regulations were written), but of course there are a million loopholes. But I think there’s just more of a stigma with celebrities endorsing products in general here.. the idea of selling out… you’re getting money for not actually doing anything, instead of what your talent is, perhaps. Especially if it’s a product that doesn’t seem to directly relate to who you are/what you do.

    Just think about Pepsi when they got Michael Jackson and Madonna, and more recently Beyonce, and how that kind of thing made the NEWS here (Michael’s hair catching fire and Madonna’s constant pushing the envelope notwithstanding). Things like actresses becoming models for cosmetics companies and doing those commercials doesn’t seem quite as a big a deal (but it also puts out a very glamorous appeal for them, whereas Pepsi, not so much) – but it’s not often you see them touting tampons or beer or detergent or…water purifiers. (“Hey, Culligan maaaaan!” though that I think was water softeners…)

    But it seems to be accepted/expected/the norm in Korean celeb/idol culture, really. It’s also a large part of the principal income for a lot of the Korean celebrities, isn’t it? Whereas in the States, I know concert/tours and such are one of the biggest sources of income for music artists (pretty much never seems to be actual albums selling or anything, anywhere, haha). Endorsements and sponsorship for concerts also seem to be more ‘acceptable,’ because it’s not like the celebrity is directly on some ubiquitous media device selling the product to you and your kids right in your living room.

    30 minute programs are actually like 22 minutes, iirc, and 1 hr are 46? 48? Commercial breaks typically 3 mins and some. So figure like 3 commercial breaks in a half hour? Seems about right, most shows are written into 3 acts + the prologue/title? Reality shows are pretty bad with writing/editing for commercials though, with all the stupid cliffhanging. So annoying.

  169. I actually do see fridge ads over here in the US! D: They’re not as high tech as the fridges you have over here. French doors are the big thing.

    As for the sexuality of ads in the US right now…I’d have to say I can’t recall many, either because I tune out all ads now or there just isn’t as many pure sexual ads anymore. Ads online are of course tailored to your taste, but even on TV, I can’t remember many! The last sexual ad I remember is Herbal Essences from looong ago (lol). Can’t remember the last time I saw an Abercrombie & Fitch ad, but there’s that too. Oh, there was that perfume ad for Britney Spears of people lying in bed, clutching bed sheets (soooooooooooooooooooooooo subtle) a while back.

    Then there’s the Old Spice ads, but that’s not really sexual so much as it is comical. Even the KY lubricant ads now focus more on the relationship aspect in a romantic or comical way, rather than just “slap this stuff on your genitals, feels good!” *videos of people making out*

    • I was thinking the same. Ads don’t seem uber sexual to me, or I’m just missing them all. You do get some pretty bad ones, like pretty much any commercial for GoDaddy, but I don’t feel like sexual commercials are all over the place.

  170. I don’t actually watch regular TV any more so I’ve enjoyed having no ads in my every day life – but whenever I visit my parents and we watch TV I get reminded of why I prefer Korean dramas and variety shows, where the ads are tasteful and well planned out in the scheme of the show – and don’t take up 15 mins of showtime…

  171. Madeleine Stråhle


  172. Martina! Are you wearing contacts, or is this your natural iris colour? It is so pretty!

  173. Hm…Advertisements in my country:
    § actors who appear on tv shows and in theater advertise something
    § they take foreign ( usualy american ) advertisements and just voice over them with our native speakers
    § alot of health medicine advertisements (advertised by some people and professionals of that field )
    § alot of our countries products advertisements
    § we have more than one mobile serivce so they have commercials for those too
    § some of our commercials are filled with humor and sarcasm and others are normal
    § commercials for certain magazines and new issues
    § if there is some sort of an event in the country then commercials for those events will starts to appear ( example: winter Olympics 2014 in Sochi. Our skii team was there so we had a few commercials with them )

    Those things get pushed before, after and during programs ( but not the news ) and can last up to 10 minutes. We have that “master chef ” moment on our television ALOT.

  174. Yup. In Germany they do the same.. they show like 10 minutes movie/series and 5minutes ads.. and so on. -.- ugh..

  175. Cyber_3

    Fortunately, I’ve managed to insulate myself from advertising pretty well these last couple of years so being bombarded even temporarily with ads is usually entertaining just for the novelty. Thanks for including the ads in the playlist so that I could get the full picture. It would have been nice to see a fridge ad though, if I took nothing else away from this TL;DR is that those refridgerators with the extra door just for drinks are SU~WEEEEET!

    It would have been nice to include some Western advertising for comparison too, since you didn’t really mention any specific ones in the video, a fun TL;DR all around. Martina, did you change your make-up or lighting? because you are looking FLAWLESS girl!

  176. That Coway ad was funnny! A trend that I have noticed in America recently is that advertisements have been pushing progressive viewpoints such as Oreo (pro-marriage equality), Coke-Cola (Beautiful America superbowl commerical), Cheerios (interracial couple and child), and JC Penneys (pro-marriage equality).

  177. haruchi

    The frikking trucks! Oh god… The first morning I wake up in Seoul and I’m like what’s going on!?!? Then it happened for several days and I almost got mad during those 2 weeks… The thing I hated the most about them was that the men’s voice sounded boring and uninterested. Didn’t make me wanna buy from them…
    I like Finnish ads on tv, I mean in one hour you have like 3 commercial breaks I think… 5 minutes each so you can go to the toilet or fridge between! haha
    What I’ve noticed about Japanese and Korean ads is that they sing a lot in them. Doesn’t really happen in Western ads.

  178. Also fun thing, I kept track of the different ads we had during a commercial break during the news yesterday and it went something like: pills, ICA, cure cancer, unicef, pills, babies, don’t wanna have babies? more pills, cars, travel abroad, PILLS. No joke, Swedish advertisement seem to be very centred around things available from your local drug store.

  179. PunkyPrincess92

    i study advertising…..i didn’t choose to! they put it as part of the course and my tutor did advertising as her career before so she talks to us about it A LOT…
    and i had to give a presentation today to some dudes who work at advertising companies and i still have that feeling of nervousness!! TT_TT (fortunately they really liked my work though….)
    as my tutor would say…. “sex sells”

    “that was medium bang” AHAHAHAHHAHAHAH!!!

    wow!! those really are some coolass fridges!!

    what i like about some of the Koreas ads i’ve seen is how much more fun they are!

  180. Hahahahaha it’s so seriously true about the boobs. It could be an advertisement about a toy car for babies and somehow, SOMEHOW, they’d manage to find a way to include them, like “look! You can even roll it over your mum’s boobies! WHOO!”

    But when I visited South Korea I found that I actually quite enjoyed their ads. I don’t know.. They just seemed kind of straight to the point and pretty. I often see ads here that make me wonder what kind of drugs the advertisers are on because they’re SO irrelevant to the product, like “this is a picture of an elephant. Buy our house paint.”

    But yeah, I also noticed the thing you wrote about there being ads so frequently on American telly when I watch American shows online. I much prefer the way they do it in Korea. Here in Greece is the worst, though. You have like 10-20 mins of show, and then like 10-15 mins of ads. It’s RIDICULOUS! And the worst part is that the shows aren’t even worth watching! Greek tv is just so crap… No wonder I shunned it long ago. They have this really irritating habit of stopping the show about 2 mins from the end, then 15 mins ads, then you get the last 2 mins, credits and another 15 mins of ads. Just… What? Where is the sense?!

    And I love the new ending guys!! It’s a really nice way of interacting with us :) Great idea!

    • OOOOH!!! Glad you noticed the ending! We read all your comments and we discuss them off camera privately so we thought, why not include a few comments?? Yay!!!

      • Cyber_3

        Yes, this was a great idea, makes it more interactive than just the question that starts it all off.

      • Wah! How did my comment get included!!! I think this interaction thing is already working! haha Now you just need to come to Perth (Australia) – where no one ever comes… not even Running Man [turns out they're going to Brisbane and Melbourne even though Perth is much closer]. I can try and get my Korean class at university involved ^_^

      • YAY! Your TL;DR section was what brought me to you guise and also to Kpop so… THANKS!!! ^_^

      • Now I have to try and make my comments as witty as possible!

        One thing I forgot to mention is that we also have those creepy guys in trucks buying/selling old furniture. We call them a ‘paliatzi’ (literally ‘a guy who sells old stuff). There’s at least one in every neighbourhood that goes around at least once a week and you can here them coming from a mile off:


        • “O paliatzis, o paliatzis!!” LOL
          I was surprised seeing those in the city, when I moved in Greece ;P
          For me these guise are smth associated with countryside in the past~ xD

        • Really? Well I’ve never lived in the countryside so I don’t know what it’s like down there, but I’ve always seen them in the city. That being said… I DO live in the suburbs. When I was little it was a weekly occurence at school one particular year that during our ICT lesson he would pass by and we would hear him. We all thought it was the most hilarious thing and start imitating him. Thinking back, it really isn’t/wasn’t that funny… xD Kids will be kids?

        • Well, neither did I lol
          I just sorta saw it in movies or just thought it should have been like that in the past gnerally xD

          Also those 3-weels “cars”! I’ve never seen anything like that in other countries ! XD I always think they’ll fall over when the turn! They look so unstablee! Lol

        • Ohmigosh! Yes! Hahahahahaha those are hilarious! They’re the most unstable things I’ve ever seen. It’s as if they were screaming to get into an accident!

      • Hey Guys,
        Thank you so much for including my comment in this video. I was totally not expecting it and I almost died of excitement when I saw it. And thank you Simon for pronouncing it correctly as well (most people don’t). As for what I said, I’d be more than happy to send you proof. My mom has her degree framed at her house, so next time I’m home I’ll take a picture of it and send it to you. Or even better, you can meet her in person and she can explain it all to you herself when you come to Chicago for the US Tour. I’ve actually been appointed by the Tour Admins as the person in charge of planning your visit here and I can’t wait to finally meet you both in person! ^_^
        P.S. I actually have a few questions for you guys regarding the Chicago Tour stop so I can finish making plans.

      • That ending is really awesome! very interactive :) I like it! :D

    • The situation in Bulgaria is same….that’s why I stopped watching bulgarian TV and now it’s like I’m on dramas, kpop and stuff 24/7 like drugs! And last but not least you gays <3 ! Thank you for your work and to Leigh and Soo Zee! :) I've learn so much inf for what's like real life in Korea that can't be found on the Intrenet.

      PS: OMG the WANK about Eyelash Extensions was super cool (sorry Simon ;) but now somehow you have THE BOOBIE EDITION you wanted) I couldn't imagine that such thing even exists…Korea impress me every time :D

      • I’m sorry about the picture… it wasn’t supposed to be post. I’m just not that great when it comes to technology :( But at least the meaning is awesome and it goes for EYK crew :)

  181. Even in the countryside…. it will be a beautiful day… the sun is shining, the air is fresh, there is a beautiful view of mountains…. AND THEN ONE OF THOSE TRUCKS WILL DRIVE THROUGH THE VILLAGE! Most annoying sound ever! Do those men deliberately make their voices the most annoying sound ever?

    I feel like in a lot of western countries there is a much more negative view of celebrities advertising stuff. Like they can advertise something associated with them but if they do too much or something that has nothing to do with them they will get criticism about selling out. I find my view also changes depending what country I am in. I’ll be more critical about western celebrities and advertising but in Korea I’m like “GD IS ADVERTISING WOMEN’S CLOTHING AND HANDBAGS?? SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!”

  182. I think my favorite adverts I’ve seen are Yoochun’s adverts with the water (girls, train….can’t remember what its called) and food adverts like the noodles he did and the pizza place

  183. Onew bursts into the EYK Studio

  184. I really do like it when I watch the movie channels..and when its the commerical 15 minute long break. Its the best amount of time to use the restroom and make snacks :3!!

  185. I saw boobs! So I came as quickly as possible!

  186. Am I really the first one here? I’m in class, so I really shouldn’t be reading this, and i can’t watch it. But YES to the commercials thing. I would totally rather see product placement (’cause that happens anyways) than just adds all the times! And it would force producers to use things other than commercials to build suspense, which would be much more fun.

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